ANC's provincial chairs meet to place their NEC orders

Free State provincial chairperson Ace Magashule. (Gallo)

Free State provincial chairperson Ace Magashule. (Gallo)

ANC provincial chairpersons who supported the re-election of Jacob Zuma as ANC president caucused on Tuesday in an effort to ensure that their allies would dominate of the 80-member national executive committee (NEC).

Following Zuma's landslide victory over Kgalema Motlanthe and his "forces of change", delegates at the party's national conference were preparing to vote on candidates for the key decision-making body, and discussing whether the same pattern of "slate" voting would prevail to the detriment of those who supported Motlanthe.

Six provincial chairpersons attended the caucus on Tuesday, people who were there told the Mail & Guardian on Tuesday. They were: KwaZulu-Natal chairperson Zweli Mkhize, his Mpumalang counterpart David Mabuza, Ace Magashule of the Free State, Eastern Cape chairperson Phumulo Masualle, Western Cape chairperson Marius Fransman and Supra Mahumapelo; who chairs the North West.  The discussion aimed to "consolidate the NEC list", said a provincial chairperson who attended the meeting.
Though Limpopo's provincial leadership favoured Motlanthe, the province's deputy chairperson Dickson Masemola attended the chairpersons' meeting on behalf of the province. Gauteng Premier Nomvula Mokonyane represented her province because chairperson Paul Mashatile preferred that Zuma be replaced with Motlanthe.

At the caucus, leaders discussed how provinces should be represented and ensure all who campaigned for Zuma are accommodated. The NEC nomination list they drew up is also said to represent trade union federation the Congress of South African Trade Unions and South African Communist Party leaders, who Zuma recently encouraged to serve on the ANC NEC. 

Some NEC members elected in Polokwane who have now turned against Zuma are likely to be left out of the list.

Motlanthe, Thandi Modise and Mathews Phosa are all out of the top six leadership and need to be elected to the NEC if they are to remain ANC leaders.

But some Zuma lobbyists are trying to advocate for an inclusive NEC in an effort to unify the factions.

"We're not going to be factional, we will take the good guys from their side also," said an uMkhonto we Sizwe military veteran member, who has been one of Zuma's key lobbyists. Results of the NEC election will be announced on Wednesday.

Mmanaledi Mataboge

Mmanaledi Mataboge

Mmanaledi Mataboge is the Mail & Guardian's political editor. Raised in a rural village, she later studied journalism in a township where she fell in love with the medium of radio. This former radio presenter and producer previously worked as a senior politics reporter for the Mail & Guardian, and writes on politics, government, and anything that gives the disadvantaged, poor, and the oppressed a voice. Read more from Mmanaledi Mataboge