Fireworks are expected at the ANC Youth League’s (ANCYL) national executive committee (NEC) meeting in Irene next week, outside Pretoria, as opinion is divided over who should replace President Jacob Zuma as ANC leader.
The ANC will hold its elective national conference in December.
ANCYL spokesperson Mlondi Mkhize told The Citizen yesterday that the meeting, which takes place on Saturday and Sunday, may discuss the ANC succession debate.
“I think we might have a position on the ANC leadership after the meeting. I am not certain, but I think so,” Mkhize said.
The ANCYL, under the tutelage of Collen Maine, has been united until recently in its support for outgoing African Union Commission chairperson Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to succeed Zuma.
It has now emerged that some league leaders and provincial structures are in favour of Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa taking over from Zuma.
Limpopo ANCYL secretary Che Selane downplayed divisions in the league, saying: “Comrades are just expressing different views and that makes the ANC healthy.”
He said the league in the province did not have a position and was waiting for the NEC to take a stance on the leadership question.
“The resolution of the NEC is going to bind us,” Selane said.
The ANCYL in Gauteng is pushing for young blood to be part of the ANC’s top six leaders.
“We are pushing for younger leaders,” ANCYL Gauteng chairperson Matome Chiloane said. “We are going to make contributions at the NEC.”
The league wants Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba, Sports Minister Fikile Mbalula and Arts and Culture Minister Nathi Mthethwa to feature strongly in the top six of the ANC.
Meanwhile, Julius Malema said yesterday that Dlamini-Zuma would be the ANC leader if Zuma wanted her to be.