Accusations that the ANC Youth League leadership changed its constitution to discredit the findings of a disciplinary hearing is propaganda, spokesperson Magdalene Moonsamy said on Monday.
On Sunday, Mthandeni Dlungwane, a member of the KwaZulu-Natal ANCYL’s disbanded executive, said league leader Julius Malema and his friends had fabricated amendments to the constitution to save his political career.
At a press conference, ANC Youth League president Julius Malema responds to the ANC’s national disciplinary committee’s rulings. He emphasised that he, and the youth league, remain unshaken and would continue to fight for economic freedom, while retaining their membership and loyalty to the ANC.
His comments came after Malema told reporters in Johannesburg that the ANC’s national disciplinary committee’s verdict and sanctions against the league’s leadership, referred to an outdated section of the constitution.
Malema said section 11.2 of the league’s constitution was amended and adopted at the league’s 24th national congress.
“A person who has been found guilty by an ANC disciplinary proceeding resulting in … suspension, temporary forfeiture of membership rights or expulsion … shall be subjected to the internal enquiry by the corresponding disciplinary structures of the ANCYL,” Malema read from the constitution.
This meant that the sentence from the ANC was not binding on its leader.
Moonsamy added that those who accused the leadership of changing the league’s constitution were propagandists.
Before the amendment the section stated that a person who had been found guilty by the mother body’s disciplinary proceedings would have the same application in all structures of the youth league.
Moonsamy said the amendment was proposed at the national congress and there were no objections from the delegates.
The City Press newspaper reported on Sunday that 12 youth league leaders from four provinces denied that the amendment was discussed at the congress or voted on.
Moonsamy said it would only have been voted on if there were objections.
“The resolution was adopted at the congress and it can’t be changed. There were 5 000 delegates at the congress and you cannot speak to individuals,” she said.
“People must not speak on behalf of others who were at the congress when they were not.”
All the right processes were followed and if there were objections to the amendment it could only be tabled at the league’s congress in 2014, she said.
Malema said the amendment was made because the branches, regions, and provinces of the ANC were using the constitution to expel members of the youth league from the ANC with the “vicious intention of removing them” from the league.
Malema, youth league spokesperson Floyd Shivambu, deputy leader Ronald Lamola, treasurer general Pule Mabe, secretary general Sindiso Magaqa, and deputy secretary general Kenetswe Mosenogi were sanctioned by the NDC last Thursday.
Malema was given a five-year suspension and told to vacate his position as president and Shivambu was suspended for three years and also told to vacate.
The other four leaders all had their youth league membership suspended for two years. This sanction was suspended for three years. — Sapa