/ 28 April 2011

Election lists will be probed, says Zuma

Election Lists Will Be Probed

African National Congress president Jacob Zuma has promised to remove non-preferred candidates from lists after the local government elections, saying in certain areas the process was manipulated.

“We will deal with the individuals who should not be on the list after the elections,” he told reporters at Luthuli House in Johannesburg on Thursday. He announced the party had set up a team to investigate problems with the lists.

“We cannot correct the lists before the election as legally that process has been closed.

“It has become apparent … that in some instances and in some isolated areas, the processes were unjustly interfered with and manipulated. In the affected wards, candidates that were preferred by our structures and communities were removed from the lists. This has understandably caused anger and frustration.”

Since it was the first time in South Africa that communities were involved in candidate selection, there were bound to be teething problems, he said.

“The findings of this team will make it possible for the ANC to remove any candidates who were not preferred by our structures and our communities.”

‘Corrective measures’
He said the ANC’s honesty and track record spoke for itself and the party would keep its word.

“The decision of the ANC and the corrective measures to be undertaken will bring to rest any confusion that might have been created by anybody within or outside our structures regarding removal of preferred candidates.”

Zuma said the ANC was confident of victory in all areas for the election, even in the Democratic Alliance-controlled Western Cape.

“We are absolutely confident of a win,” he said with a smile.

There was a perception the ruling party had lost the Western Cape to the opposition.

“No party in the Western Cape has won the election. The ANC has,” he asserted.

“We did not lose. What happened was that other parties combined to reduce the majority of the ANC,” he said, referring to the merger of the DA and Independent Democrats.

“There is a perception that the DA runs the Western Cape and because of them it is first class and excellent … like Rondebosch. Not true. The Western Cape remains in an upper tranche set up where there are mostly white privileged people, and that is why it is first class, but it does not represent [black and coloured communities like] Khayelitsha and Gugulethu and those areas.”

The ANC, he said, promised to make it “better for all”.

Timing of Samwu strike
Zuma said the timing of the South African Municipal Workers’ Union strike, just ahead of the elections, should be questioned.

“We are not saying don’t strike. What we are saying is that the timing should be looked at.”

There had been claims the industrial action was planned to sabotage the ANC’s election campaign. — Sapa