The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal on Sunday ruled out entering into coalition with opposition parties after the upcoming local government elections.
Speaking in Durban during the memorial service of ANC members who died since the outbreak of Covid-19 more than a year ago, ANC provincial chairperson, Sihle Zikalala, said the party was aiming to get an outright majority in all the municipalities where it would be contesting for power in the polls.
“We are not aiming for a coalition. The fact of the matter is that coalitions don’t work. Look at what happened in Johannesburg and the Nelson Mandela Bay municipalities which were being governed through a coalition,” he said.
This year’s local government elections scheduled to take place around November, are being conducted on the back of the Covid-19 pandemic which has claimed more 10 000 lives in KZN.
Zikalala told ANC members attending the memorial service that the pandemic hit hard on the party’s veterans.
“These are the people who survived the difficult times during the struggle against the evil apartheid system,” he said.
About thirty ANC leaders in KZN died during the pandemic.
“As ANC members who should be playing a leading role when it comes to the adherence to Covid-19 protocols. We have an obligation to behave in a responsible matter,” Zikalala said.
Zikalala, who is also the KZN Premier, urged ANC members to use the painful experience of losing their comrades to the pandemic as a call to recommit to the struggle to improve the lives of the province’s citizens.
“We need to refocus on our mission to unite the ANC and advance the national democratic revolution. We must strive for an equal and prosperous society,” he said.
ANC leaders who died during the Covid-19 pandemic include the party’s MEC for community safety, Bheki Ntuli, ANC provincial spokesperson, Ricardo Mthembu and former social development MEC, Meshack Radebe.
The best way to honour ANC leaders and members who died during the Covid-19 period, Zikalala said, was to address all the challenges, including factionalism and disunity, preventing the ANC from becoming the strongest organisation it wishes to be.
“We must fight ill-discipline and position the ANC as the party of the people.
“Even in the branch general meetings (BGMs) currently taking place we need to ensure that we select candidates who will be embraced by the … community.
“It should be the kind of candidates who are able to respond to the needs of the community,” Zikalala said.
The ANC will be contesting several wards across the province during by-elections scheduled to take place on Wednesday.
“We must make sure that the ANC emerges,” Zikalala said.