Both the ANC and the EFF held their first crucial meetings of the year at the weekend. The ANC held its first NEC and its NEC Lekgotla from the 27th until 30th of January, while the EFF held its first Plenary Meeting of the year.
In his Political Overview, President Cyril Ramaphosa said the country’s aim is to end load shedding by the end of the year or reduce it to the lowest levels.
ANC NEC Lekgotla I Ramaphosa touches on some of the interventions to reduce load shedding:
The EFF on the other hand, has called for a national shutdown on March 20th to demand the restoration of electricity and President Ramaphosa’s resignation.
EFF media briefing post 4th annual plenum:
The high levels of loadshedding have sharply divided the country along party-political lines. In every gathering, different political parties have suggestions on how to solve the country’s energy crisis.
At its NEC Lekgotla, the ANC devised several interventions to be tabled to cabinet for refinement and approval.
Party President Cyril Ramaphosa explains, “We have addressed licensing challenges that will enable more megawatts to be brought on line by the end of the year. In the past, I have said we have a shortfall of between 4000 and 6000 megawatts. It is for this reason that we have enable the process of adding the megawatts into our energy mixed energy resource architecture and many of this have been coming as renewables that will announce in a little while.”
With a number of challenges facing South Africans including rocketing unemployment, high levels of poverty and the never-ending loadshedding, President Ramaphosa conceded that in 2024, the ANC will probably face one of the most difficult elections year in its history.
“The ANC will then have to engage in probably one of the most difficult elections in 2024. Through our action now we need to send a clear message to voters to deal with crime, lack of service delivery and our focus need to be on action and urgently.”
But EFF Leader Julius Malema has vowed not to rest until the full restoration of electricity and the resignation of the president. He has called for a national shutdown on March the 20th, promising to halt the economy as well as teaching and learning.
“The national shutdown will mean no business will be operating and no trucks and we cannot fold our arms and allow Cyril Ramaphosa, who’s involved in criminal dealing and yet protected by law enforcemet agencies.”
Malema insists on that day, the marchers’ rights will reign supreme.
“Don’t ask us about other people. Let them talk about their rights, we are exercising our rights. There will be no school, no university there will be no taxis, no bus and no train. There will be no truck to Richards Bay. South Africa will come to standstill.”
The EFF has also initiated a private prosecution against ANC National Chairperson, Gwede Mantashe, and this relates to the security upgrades at three of his properties while he was ANC Secretary General.
“Guys, there is no way that with overwhelming evidence against Gwede that he is not charged. If you go to his village, Cala you can see evidence, the cameras are there in his kraal. So, we are not scared of Gwede and the capable lawyer Victor is handling that.”
Malema also said his party’s 10-year celebrations will be held at the FNB Stadium in July. He claims the party has over a million members and insists that the red berets are ready to govern.
ANC NEC Lekgotla I SG Fikile Mbalula and new spokesperson Mahlengi Bhengu addresses the media: