The mother body ANC disbanded the youth league in 2018 after it had failed to elect new leadership. The league structures were replaced with a national task team (NTT) which was tasked to help revive this movement of young people.
The NTT tried to deliver a national conference in March 2020 but failed as it had to be cancelled due to delays in verification and capturing of membership. The conference was postponed to May last year, but the country was placed under hard lockdown due to the outbreak of Covid-19 and it was postponed again.
Mpumalanga’s representative in the NTT, Eugene Manana, confirmed the disbandment of the youth league.
“It’s actually not just Mpumalanga that got disbanded, it happened in all nine provinces. But the right person to give you all the details is our NTT spokesperson,” he said.
Mpumalanga News tried to solicit comment from the NTT’s spokesperson, but he was unavailable at the time going to press. Talk in the corridors is that the province needs to once again make an impact in the national politics of the youth league.
Manana declined to comment on these developments, citing that only the branches can make such declarations. “Let us allow the proper processes of branches to unfold,” he said.
One of his backers, Themba Mpila, who is eyeing the chairmanship of the Ehlanzeni Region, the biggest region in Mpumalanga and the second biggest in the country, said, “The existence of the ANC Youth League since the disbandment of the NEC in 2018 has been non-existent. In an endeavour to resuscitate it you need young and charismatic and energetic leaders with struggle credentials and excellent track records. I support Eugene Manana because I recruited him at a young age while he was still at school to join Cosas, and he later led it both regionally and provincially. He later went on to join Sasco and was an NEC member. He is currently leading YCL in the district and also representing us in the NTT of the youth league”.
“Undisputedly, he is a well-polished political diamond and his credentials speak volumes. My desire is for him to emerge in the top five as an official and we will work tirelessly until he emerges.
“But generally we need to deliver quality leadership from branches to national level,” he continued.
There have been calls for Mpila to also ascend to the Ancyl leadership in Ehlanzeni.
“Now, if it happens that I get to be elected as envisaged by branches, I will also work hard to rebuild and restore the limping youth league.
“We also need to build stronger branches by investing our efforts in political induction and political workshops to groom the second layer of leadership. We want a leadership of the youth league that will respect the leadership of the ANC in a manner that enables them to constructively criticise them and call them into order,” stressed Mpila.
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