The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal has slammed the door on former eThekwini mayor, Zandile Gumede’s bid to be elected to a top position in the upcoming provincial conference.
Gumede, who is currently the ANC regional chairperson in eThekwini, is tipped to contest for the ANC provincial treasury position following an endorsement by her supporters in the region.
However, the ANC provincial leadership is adamant that Gumede — who is currently facing tender corruption charges — will not be allowed to contest for any position at the provincial elective conference scheduled to take place from July 15 to 17.
“She can’t be eligible to contest for any position within the ANC in the province. The ANC national executive committee (NEC) has made it clear that comrades facing criminal charges are not allowed to contest for any leadership position in the organisation,” ANC provincial spokesperson, Nhlakanipho Ntombela, said.
Gumede’s supporters, who in April elected her to the ANC regional chairperson position despite her facing corruption charges, are currently lobbying other KZN regions to support her candidacy.
ANC eThekwini regional secretary, Musa Nciki, told The Witness that the region is “unshaken” in its stance that Gumede should be the next ANC provincial treasurer.
“I can confirm that the eThekwini regional leadership resolved that comrade Zandile should be in the ANC top five provincial leadership structure,” he said.
However, Ntombela said the regional leadership’s position is not in tune with the ANC’s step-aside resolution. “It could be that they are not aware that the NEC amended the step-aside resolution,” he said.
Gumede, who is currently a member of the KwaZulu-Natal Legislature, is facing more than 2 000 charges of fraud, corruption and racketeering related to Durban Solid Waste tenders worth more than R300 million that were awarded during her tenure as eThekwini Municipality mayor.
Should Gumede’s supporters succeed in getting her to stand for the position of ANC provincial treasurer, she would be among the host of ruling party leaders who will be contesting for top positions at the upcoming conference.
Premier Sihle Zikalala, who is currently the ANC provincial chairperson, is tipped to seek re-election at the party’s KZN elective conference. Other ANC leaders tipped to contest for the ANC provincial positions include treasury MEC, Nomusa Dube-Ncube and Amazulu FC owner, Sandile Zungu and former director-general in provincial government, Nhlanhla Ngidi.
Ntombela confirmed that the ANC provincial executive committee (PEC) which recently held its regular meeting, resolved that the conference should take place in eThekwini at a venue yet to be determined.