The ANC’s Provincial and Regional conferences will go ahead as planned, that’s according to ANC NEC member Edna Molewa. She was speaking on the sidelines of the party’s regional conference in Newcastle.
There are growing concerns in the province that forcing the conference to sit could result in further bloodshed. This follows the death of a prominent local ANC leader Musawenkosi Mchunu in Pietermaritzburg on Friday night. He is the third to be killed in three weeks.
Mchunu, a convenor of branches, dissatisfied with the state of the party, was gunned down last night. He was amongst those members who were vocal against the holding of regional conferences.
Last week, the party’s National working committee gave the green light for regional and the provincial conference to sit. Although the national structure did note challenges in three regions, it decided to proceed nevertheless.
The Emalahleni Regional conference began without incident. Delegates though were on edge. This long-awaited conference was overshadowed by the latest killing of another ANC leader.
In spite of the latest attacks that have renewed fears amongst members, party leaders still insist the conference will go-ahead.
ANC NEC member, Edna Molewa says, “We really think that if we really look at the situation right now and say – let’s not hold or continue with everything – the situation may go on and on. But it is important to stabilise the branches. It is important that those branches be once for all corrected and we think that once we have corrected the situation then things will be calm. Leaving and hoping that things will sort themselves out is not quite something that we think is actually wise to get along.”
Provincial leaders say there are those who are intent on destabilising the ANC. Mike Mabuyakhulu, ANC Convenor for KZN provincial task team:
“There are those who want to be internal opposition to the ANC but they are creating rifts within and don’t want to work together to unify the party.”
Of the four regional conferences sitting over this weekend, Emalahleni faces a host of challenges.
The region had been without leaders for two years, after they were disbanded by the former Provincial Executive. Internal squabbles and killings had destabilised the region and the conference will close with electing new leadership and the hopes of eradicating bloodshed in the region.
Watch related video below: