Despite a court ruling that former ANC North West chairperson Supra Mahumapelo and his provincial executive committee (PEC) should be reinstated, the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC) says it will still decide how to go about it.
News24 understands the recently established rapid response team, aimed at helping the ANC in the North West chart a way forward, will table four proposals for consideration by the NEC – the party’s highest decision-making body in between conferences.
The NEC will have to mull over whether: the provincial task team (PTT) should continue as it is because some PEC members were part of it; a new task team should be established, made up of 15 members from both sides; a new PTT, without Mahumapelo and his PEC, should be created; or the PEC should continue with an additional 17 members co-opted from the interim structure.
The last suggestion was put forward by the embattled North West chairperson and was turned down by the PTT.
News24 spoke to two sources who were part of the meeting with the rapid response team at the ANC’s Luthuli House headquarters on Thursday. They have asked to remain anonymous.
Both the PTT and the PEC held discussions with ANC deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma – who was appointed to lead an inter-ministerial task team to deal with the protest-riddled province – and former Cosatu president Sdumo Dlamini.
Both sources confirmed that there were numerous proposals on the table. One said there was an urgent need to stabilise the organisation in the platinum-rich province so it could focus on the upcoming elections.
“I just hope in the end they understand what is being said because there are some very angry people in that PTT. Even in the meeting you could hear that they don’t speak with one voice. There is no centre there, everyone thinks they are leaders,” the source, who is part of the PEC, said.
The interim structure also indicated that it would wait for the NEC to decide its fate.
“The PTT cannot be disbanded. We didn’t establish this ourselves, so we will wait to hear from our national structure to have a say on the issue,” a member of the PTT said.
The warring groups had also been discouraged from continuing with court battles because it did not look good for the governing party.
It’s understood some at the meeting felt both structures had not done enough work in the province ahead of the May 8 national elections, with Dlamini-Zuma expressing the importance of moving forward from the recent challenges.
Mahumapelo and four others also won a court application this week to enforce last week’s judgment, this time, with ANC secretary general Ace Magashule being ordered to take “immediate steps” to ensure the provincial chairperson was back at work.
The PEC has already amended the province’s candidate list for those it wants to see serving in the both the National Assembly and its provincial legislature.
The ANC is still finalising its lists and will hold a special NEC meeting on Sunday to endorse the lists, which must be handed over to the Electoral Commission of SA by March 15.
The ANC’s allies and leagues resubmitted names of candidates they wanted to see serving the party in the legislatures.
“On the proposed list we submitted, we included candidates from both our side and theirs,” said the PEC member.
The provincial leader said this would show that the PEC was intent on finding a solution and not just out for war.
“We think if we want to find a true solution we must show the ANC that we are willing to compromise and to accommodate them,” the party insider continued.
The ANC’s national acting spokesperson Zizi Kodwa refused to comment, saying the party opted to “wait until after the NEC to speak on the North West”.
The ANC has appealed both the original judgment and the execution order.