South Africa: Legal Challenges Mount Ahead of ANC Conference

Just days before the ANC’s national elective conference, a group of disgruntled members has taken the party to court.

The group is demanding transparency in the branch nomination of potential members of the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC).

They want the ANC electoral committee to release the raw data of nominations by the ANC’s over 3 000 branches after some popular members were not nominated for the NEC.

“The First respondent be hereby ordered to publish an Excel spreadsheet of all branch nominations received for all candidates nominated by branches for election in the 55th national conference of the African National Congress,” the group said in court papers.

The ANC has confirmed it will oppose the urgent application in the Gauteng High Court.

The fairness of the processes of the electoral committee headed by former president Kgalema Motlanthe was recently challenged by a lobby group representing Deputy President David Mabuza who failed to meet the 25% threshold required to contest the top six positions.

President Cyril Ramaphosa’s running mate Senzo Mchunu, the Minister of Water and Sanitation, has also not been nominated for any position in the top six.

The faction led by Ramaphosa is now expected to nominate him from the conference floor and hope he can muster enough support to meet the threshold.

Last week former ANC Women’s League president Bathabile Dlamini lodged a legal dispute after the electoral committee disqualified her for nomination into the NEC.

Motlanthe wrote Dlamini a letter saying her conviction for “a serious crime” disqualifies her for contesting for the ruling party’s highest decision-making body.

A court found that Dlamini lied under oath during a 2017 inquiry into the South African Social Security Agency.

Advocate Tim Sukazi, who represents Dlamini, has since written to Motlanthe: “We advise that our client refutes the contents of your letter. To this end, our client intends to institute legal proceedings against yourselves in pursuance of its rights in law.”

Former ANC chief whip Tony Yengeni, who was sentenced to four years for a fraud charge in 2003, also received a similar letter.

“This is going to finish our movement,” he tweeted.

Pictured above: Electoral Committee chairperson Kgalema Motlanthe briefs the media on the outcomes of branch nominations.

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