ANC ELECTS 2022
Provincial leadership lashes Ramaphosa heckling by defiant ANC KwaZulu-Natal delegates
The behaviour of a group of ANC KwaZulu-Natal delegates who heckled party president Cyril Ramaphosa on Friday has been condemned by the provincial leaders of the organisation.
ANC KwaZulu-Natal chair Siboniso Duma along with his secretary, Bheki Mtolo, are said to have sent a strong message to their delegation on Friday evening following their involvement in the chaotic scenes.
On the first day of the conference, a small group of KwaZulu-Natal members heckled party president Cyril Ramaphosa while he was at the podium.
Speaking to the media on Saturday morning, Duma said the delegates’ actions were uncalled for, but explained that there was a prominent view that the outgoing leadership had not been effective in implementing key policy.
“It is the nature of the conference itself, comrades will find that they have been waiting for this for five years and now we are here to renew the mandate. We told them yesterday… let us behave, raise your hands in plenary. It is a democratic process, and articulate your perspective,” Duma said.
WATCH| It is day 2 of the #ANC55, Siboniso Duma chairperson of the ANC in KZN comments on the ill-disciple shown by his delegation inside plenary yesterday. He argues it was bound to happen. #ANCNationalConference #ANCElects2022 pic.twitter.com/8TFiiebRuG
— Nonkululeko Njilo (@Nkulee_Njilo) December 17, 2022
KwaZulu-Natal delegates’ songs were supportive of former party president Jacob Zuma, even chanting “step aside, load shedding” when Ramaphosa was at the podium on Friday.
Just as Ramaphosa started delivering his political report, Zuma walked in with his daughter Duduzile, KwaZulu-Natal chairperson Siboniso Duma and Duma’s deputy, Nomagugu Simelane.
Zuma supporters erupted into song and dance, continuing even while Ramaphosa tried to reprimand them.
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Duma explained that Zuma was participating in his capacity as a branch member.
“He was elected in his branch and qualifies, so he is going to participate. He is a senior member in the ANC. From time to time the National Executive Committee (NEC) needs to learn from their wisdom,” the KwaZulu-Natal chair said.
Read more in Daily Maverick: “ANC conference off to a shaky start — long delays, grandstanding and anti-Ramaphosa chants”
There was general disappointment among ANC delegates about what had ensued on the first day of the conference and many believed it was intentionally staged to embarrass Ramaphosa.
ANC Gert Sibande regional chairperson Muzi Chirwa believed it was up to the provincial leadership to ensure that their delegation toed the line.
“We look at that through very dim eyes especially because the conference of the ANC is the highest decision-making body. It has its own decorum and members who come here must exude that level of discipline, and respect delegates who have travelled the country to do that. We are not happy about that type of conduct. Each and every leadership delegation is requested to make sure their delegation is guided properly,” Chirwa said. DM