19 December 2012

South Africa: ANC Adopts Policies to Address Weaknesses

Photo: Moeketsi Mogotsi/WhatsUpANC
Supporters of the president of the ruling party, Jacob Zuma.

Bloemfontein — The ANC's policy document on "Organisational Renewal" saw resolutions taken to address weaknesses within the party at the national conference in Mangaung on Wednesday.

The party has seen a decline in its core values, in-fighting at the detriment of service delivery; and organisational capabilities that do not match the demands of the current phase the ANC was in.

Commission member David Makhura said training of African National Congress cadres would be central to the party's organisational renewal in the next 10 years.

"The national executive committee (NEC) is to adopt a 10 year programme to train cadres' and change their profiles," Makhura told reporters in Bloemfontein.

The party's 1.2 million members would not just be public representatives but well-trained cadres.

The members would receive political, ethical and academic training.

The conference had also resolved to extend the probation period of new members from four months to six months.

Another commission member Febe Potgieter-Gqubule said the proposal to reduce the size of the NEC from 80 to 60 members was rejected.

"The plenary agreed to maintain the status quo," she said.

It was also decided that the next time the ANC votes for NEC members, only those with 10 or more years experience serving on a structure of the party would be eligible. The criteria was currently five years.

Delegates at the conference voted for the new NEC on Wednesday. Results were expected to be announced before President Jacob Zuma's closing address on Thursday.

During plenary there was robust debate on issues pertaining to the ANC Youth League.

Potgieter-Gqubule said the NEC had been given a mandate to urgently intervene and assess the state of the ANCYL and its stance towards the ANC.

The NEC would work with the ANCYL to resolve problems within the league.

Amongst other things the ANCYL and the mother body had clashed over the expulsion of former league president Julius Malema.

Since Malema's departure the league has been led by his deputy president Ronald Lamola.

The ANC conference also resolved to establish an integrity committee at both national and provincial levels to deal with party members accused of misconduct.

Makhura said the committee would be established within three months of the election of the party's new NEC.

The committee would have the power to subpoena any member to appear before it.

"The committee will help us nip corruption in the bud... the ANC wants to hold members accountable, and for them to respect the laws of the country," he said.

The committee would also look into the business interests of members.

Party leaders and public representatives would have to declare their business interests to the committee.

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