Get more Mail & Guardian
Subscribe or Login

Young Lions’ change of tune may save their skins

Since the expulsion of former youth league president Julius Malema, the league's leaders appear to have toned down their rhetoric against the ANC leadership, and this was partly the reason why there was no sense of urgency in taking action against the young lions.

Mpumalanga tabled a motion to disband the youth league during the ANC conference in December but this was rejected and the conference mandated the newly appointed national executive committee (NEC) to discuss solutions to deal with the league's challenges.

The Mail & Guardian understands that the youth league matter was not even discussed during the ANC's national executive committee in Durban on Friday.

According to ANC insiders the youth league would only be put on the agenda during the third NEC meeting in February.

On Saturday, deputy president of the youth league Ronald Lamola told thousands of ANC supporters who attended the party's centenary celebration at the King's Park stadium in Durban, the youth league had accepted the outcome of Mangaung.

He said the youth league would support Zuma and all the newly elected NEC members.

Prior to Mangaung, the youth league was at the forefront of the campaign to replace Zuma with deputy president Kgalema Motlanthe as ANC president.

"We are not suffering from the Mangaung hangover. We accepted the outcome of the conference and we will support Zuma and the new NEC," said Lamola.

Lamola called on all South African youth to rally behind the ANC, under Zuma's leadership.

Lamola said the new weapon of the struggle was education. He said the government should declare the high level of unemployment a national emergency.

Preparatory school for ANC
In his speech, Zuma said the youth league remained an important and critical structure of the ANC.

"We shall work with the ANC Youth League to address its challenges and will empower the league to continue to live up to its proud legacy of being a preparatory school for ANC cadreship," said Zuma.

The youth league is planning to hold a national general council in few months time to elect the new president and treasurer general.

Suspended youth league secretary general Sindiso Magaqa is expected to return to his position some time in May, but the Mail & Guardian understands there are some in the ANC who want to get rid of him because of his close relation with Malema.

Lamola is expected to contest for the position of president with the league's head of international relations Abner Mosase.

Subscribe for R500/year

Thanks for enjoying the Mail & Guardian, we’re proud of our 36 year history, throughout which we have delivered to readers the most important, unbiased stories in South Africa. Good journalism costs, though, and right from our very first edition we’ve relied on reader subscriptions to protect our independence.

Digital subscribers get access to all of our award-winning journalism, including premium features, as well as exclusive events, newsletters, webinars and the cryptic crossword. Click here to find out how to join them and get a 57% discount in your first year.

Matuma Letsoala
Guest Author

Related stories


If you’re reading this, you clearly have great taste

If you haven’t already, you can subscribe to the Mail & Guardian for less than the cost of a cup of coffee a week, and get more great reads.

Already a subscriber? Sign in here


Subscribers only

The South African Bone Marrow Registry celebrates 30 years of...

‘It’s not drilling into bones!’: Misconceptions keep donors away, says SABMR, but a match outside of a patient’s family is a needle in a haystack

R500-million Covid-19 Gauteng hospital contract was irregularly awarded — SIU

The bank accounts of Pro Service Consulting and Thenga Holdings have been frozen

More top stories

Nersa approves Karpowership generation licences

The Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse has questioned why Nersa has not immediately provided its reasons for issuing the controversial generation licences

With its industrial base decimated, SA’s economy needs real change...

Speaking at a book launch on Tuesday, the finance minister said a focus on manufacturing is critical to stem the country’s deepening unemployment crisis

Defence team cagey about Zuma’s health after state advised he...

The former president was absent from court, but his counsel argued that health matters be left aside, so as to hear his case for the removal of Billy Downer

The South African Bone Marrow Registry celebrates 30 years of...

‘It’s not drilling into bones!’: Misconceptions keep donors away, says SABMR, but a match outside of a patient’s family is a needle in a haystack

press releases

Loading latest Press Releases…