African National Congress (ANC) National Executive Committee (NEC) member Nomvula Mokonyane has rejected the notion that the ANC Manifesto launch is being held in Durban in efforts to ensure the province is behind the party at this year’s polls.

This follows former President Jacob Zuma‘s removal from office last year who is popular in Kwazulu Natal, his homebase.

Mokonyane says that KZN is the birthplace of a number of ANC president’s including first party president John Langalibalele Dube, and that the ANC had resolved at its last conference in Nasrec that it would reconnect with its roots to renew itself.

“It had nothing to do with the former President and stuff, it is also about consolidating your base because when you go to battle you protect your base so that when you go to other frontiers your base is actually quite solid. In the last general elections of 2014 KZN gave us the highest number of votes, and it is those votes that we will have to guard jealously and that is the approach.”