ROAD TO 2024 ELECTIONS
ANC veterans in Limpopo accuse provincial leaders of ‘incessant interference’ in candidate list process
While the ANC’s list nomination process has raised concerns ahead of the 2024 elections, in Limpopo its Veterans’ League claims provincial officials are interfering in the candidate selection process.
The Limpopo ANC Veterans’ League has raised alarm bells over the MP and provincial legislature candidate selection with the Provincial Executive Committee (PEC) and the Provincial List Committee (PLC) at loggerheads.
Veterans’ League provincial secretary Sechaba Nkoana believes the leadership in the province is meddling with the affairs of the PLC to drive factional interests ahead of the 2024 elections.
In a letter to the party’s Electoral Committee seen by Daily Maverick, Nkoana registers his displeasure and disappointment concerning the “incessant interference” of provincial ANC officials in the 2024 candidate list processes.
The PLC and list administrators were appointed by the Electoral Committee to oversee the nomination process. Their work includes interviewing and screening candidates nominated by their branches to either go to Parliament or provincial legislatures.
“As the ANC Veterans League, we are gravely concerned about the attack on the integrity of the candidate list processes by some irresponsible ANC leaders who are making use of the mass media to advance their factional interests.
“We therefore condemn in the strongest possible terms the treacherous behaviour of some faceless ANC leaders who are all out to undermine the collective will of the ANC branches,” the letter reads.
“It is patently clear that the ANC PEC officials have contaminated the 2024 candidate list processes and thereby denouncing and undermining the authority of the PLC. They are in fact treating members of the PLC in a disrespectful manner and also desperately attempting to usurp the powers and authority of the PLC as if the PLC was one of their PEC sub-committees.”
The letter further states that the PLC members were accused by the PEC of flouting list processes despite the procedure having not been concluded.
“The Provincial List Committee members were hastily summoned to an impromptu meeting on Monday, 13 November 2023, and falsely accused of mishandling and manipulating the candidate list processes. Surprisingly, the processes of capturing of all the candidate selection forms were not even completed at that point in time,” it reads.
Nkoana writes that PEC members are deeply conflicted and that they cannot be relied upon to ensure that the process is free and fair.
“The ANC PEC officials have … demonstrated that they are deeply conflicted and extremely subjective on these matters. They are therefore unsuitable to make any meaningful and plausible inputs in terms of the ordering and reordering of the candidate lists in compliance with the guidelines and the ANC constitution. Your assistance and cooperation in restoring normalcy in Limpopo shall be highly commended,” the letter reads.
ANC Limpopo spokesperson Jimmy Machaka told Daily Maverick: “There was not any manipulation. Let’s await the outcomes of the report to the PEC.”
“At this stage, it’s unknown what’s the outcomes of the candidate list processes. We shall only know when they bring the report to the PEC extended meeting”
Read more in Daily Maverick: ANC struggles to rouse troops following poor branch turnout for MP and MPL nomination process
This development follows the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting last week, where ANC top brass lamented the low turnout by branches for the nomination process.
Limpopo was among the provinces believed to have shown exemplary work as the majority of their branches participated in the processes despite their internal woes.
The party must nominate up to 200 candidates for Parliament. The nine ANC provincial legislature lists need a minimum of 30 and a maximum of 80 candidates. The ANC constitution guarantees its president, Cyril Ramaphosa, the candidacy for President of the country.
Despite the low turnout, the branch nominations have been concluded and now the vetting of each candidate as well as the interview process for candidates for premier will take place.
On Saturday, ANC spokesperson Mahlengi Bhengu-Motsiri said the party “strongly denounces the recent leaks regarding the candidate selection process” that, she said, were “made by individuals who lack official capacity”.
“The 2024 national and provincial ANC candidate nominations resulted from a meticulous process led by the Electoral Committee. We are the only organisation that sets specific standards for the eligibility of candidates to serve as lawmakers in the name of the African National Congress,” Bhengu-Motsiri said.
“These standards range from requiring a post-matric qualification to ensuring that the nominees are beyond reproach and have no criminal record or ongoing corruption cases before the country’s courts, among other things.
“Moreover our process’s credibility has undergone multiple levels of scrutiny, including subjecting our branches to auditing.” DM