Socio-economic policies to dominate second leg of ANC conference

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As delegates gathered across the country for the continuation of the African National Congress’s 55th Conference, policies tackling the social and economic challenges took centre stage.

This comes as the party reconvened the second leg to discuss the day’s substantive business: resolutions addressing, among other things, unemployment, poverty, crime, migration, and the energy crisis.

Delegates convened at hubs across all provinces to work on resolutions that will emerge from the meeting.
2nd leg of ANC 55th National Conference| Pule Mabe updates media on progress:

As the ANC’s 55th Conference, which was described as a watershed moment in South Africa, draws to a close policies to accelerate social and economic transformation remain a prominent feature.

ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa says resolutions adopted at the conference will have implications for the direction of the National Democratic Revolution.

”The resolutions we will adopt today will also have important implications for the direction of the national democratic revolution. They will need to accelerate the pace as well as the direction and also deepen the impact of the fundamental social and economic transformation that our people are looking forward to.”

In the midst of rolling blackouts, Gauteng Provincial Secretary TK Nciza elaborates on the energy crisis.

”For us, beyond anything else Eskom must be strengthened by people who have the capacity to do so not people who are really not engineers, who don’t understand, there is at some point where we did not have load shedding in this country when it was under a particular leadership. It means we need people of a particular skill and quality to lead that particular entity.”

Meanwhile in Bloemfontein, the national hub, where the January 8 Statement will be delivered this weekend,  delegates highlighted unity and the renewal of the organisation that has been marred by divisions and strife, leading up to the conference which began in December, last year.

Oupa Khoabane of the Free State Interim Provincial Committee looks at the newly-elected NEC in a positive manner.

“‘The outcome of the election of the national executive committee talks to that, the faces that have been elected says that you know, these are the people that are capable to take the organisation to new heights.”

The Northern Cape’s Provincial Secretary Deshi Ngxanga echoed similar sentiments on organisational renewal being a matter of importance.

‘If you cannot renew the organisation, you will stagnate, so in our case, there are a number of organisational renewal issues Including the step aside resolution, some provinces believe we must scrap that …so here we will defend that policy.”

In the city of Durban, KwaZulu-Natal delegates gathered to state that their position remains unchanged. The province argues that the support for renewable energy must be balanced with coal.

Provincial ANC spokesperson, Mafika Mndebele, explains why. ”We will continue to critically raise the issue of energy, we believe that through the generation of our coal in particular …we will be able to resolve some of the problems that lead to load shedding.”

Step aside

Meanwhile, the Eastern Cape reaffirmed its stance on the step-aside rule, a rule that has been the source of much division in the party. ANC EC spokesperson, Gift Ngqondi says, “We have been the champions of this policy that talks about step aside, even in 2017, in fact, the 54th national conference, we reaffirm that stance again in this 55th national conference that the step aside must continue because we have a strong view that, that is how we are going to renew the ANC.”

Delegates also convened in Limpopo, Mpumalanga, North West and the Western Cape, to pave the way towards overall transformation for South Africans.

Second leg of ANC 55th National Conference: Samkele Maseko reports