Delegates at the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC) conference at Seshego, Polokwane, have called for unity after the gathering descended into chaos on Friday. The conference is expected to elect the National Executive Council and discuss policies.
The party says that it will use the conference to focus on issues of land, unemployment, and migration. It was officially opened by party president Mzwanele Nyhontso on Friday.
Chaos erupted before the PAC’s national elective conference kick-started at the Ngwako Ramatlhodi centre in Seshego in Polokwane. Two groups assaulted and pelted each other with stones. The disorder erupted after a misunderstanding of congress rules and accreditation.
The PAC’s conference in Mangaung in 2019 was marred by leadership disputes that ended at the Gauteng North High Court. PAC chairperson in Limpopo, Dr Pitso Mphasha says those who were fighting at the beginning of the conference are not PAC members but a rented mob aimed at disrupting the conference.
“People who realise that numbers do not permit them to win will go rent mob to come and disrupt congress, and it is not the first time in history that we had such instances in the PAC. We rather go to court, we were not having this thing of physically assaulting each other,” says Mphasha.
Some delegates at the conference say they expect the PAC to be united in the end.
“I expected Africa and Azania to be united. I want them to be united. We must not separate ourselves, because now we had a fight, I don’t understand. At the conference, we must be together as one,” says a delegate.
Outgoing Secretary of PAC, Apa Pooe says they will review their policies during the conference.
“We will also deal with issues around the land which is very central to everything, therefore as an organisation we want to review our policies and program around the land,” says Pooe.
When rendering a message of support, SAFTU leader, Zwelinzima Vavi says they will work with the PAC.
“We are mobilising the Africans, we are mobilising African workers, the black workers, we are organising the woman of our country, the youth of our country into a single movement of the working class,” says Vavi.
The current president, Mzwanele Nyhontso is seeking to retain his position. He is up against his deputy, Lunga Mantashe.