Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma’s presidential bid got a boost during the party’s provincial general council (PGC)‚ at the University of Zululand in Empangeni on Friday.
Dlamini-Zuma was welcomed with rapturous applause when she and Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba were introduced.
But S’dumo Dlamini‚ president of alliance partner Cosatu‚ and ANC treasurer general Zweli Mkhize received lacklustre applause.
Cosatu said there was “hatred with passion among comrades“‚ something the ANC needed to deal with.
Women’s League provincial secretary Nonhlanhla Gabela said she hoped the PGC will strengthen its position on Dlamini-Zuma. “We are ready with skills of a women. Like the youth league we agree that we be led by a woman … that is Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma.”
Youth League provincial chair Kwazi Mshengu asked delegates to look to the future. “This PGC is about the future. Don’t use the PGC as a platform where the death of the movement is orchestrated and the conference where it is certified.”
UMkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans provincial chair Themba Mavundla also called for unity‚ saying the party was under siege and under attack.
“This PGC must chart the way towards the unity of the organisation … there’s no organisation without feuds but we must remember its historic mission. No matter how angry you are you must not destroy the ANC‚” said Mavundla.
South African National Civic Organisation provincial secretary Richard Mkhungo‚ whose organisation has endorsed deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa‚ steered away from leadership issues — but wished the ANC well in its deliberations.
Mshengu‚ who is also a head of ministry at the KwaZulu-Natal department of economic development‚ tourism and environmental affairs‚ called for a state bank to fast track the implementation of radical economic transformation.
President Jacob Zuma‚ who was still in Swaziland‚ was expected to address the meeting later in the evening. He is attending the 5th Southern African Customs Union summit in the kingdom.