JOHANNESBURG – Load shedding and demonstrations by African National Congress (ANC) staffers over the non-payment of their salaries has resulted in more delays in the party’s programme heading towards its 55th national conference.
In a letter from acting secretary-general Paul Mashatile, which Eyewitness News has seen, he informs electoral commission chairperson, Kgalema Motlanthe of the extension and asks for engagement on the way forward.
Mashatile, following a meeting of the secretariat forum, said that a progress report showed that branches won’t meet the 2 October deadline.
Nominations were supposed to close on 2 October but Mashatile, in a letter Motlanthe, has requested that it be moved to 25 October instead.
He said that based on a progress report by the secretariat forum, it was clear branches won’t meet the 2 October deadline, with a proposal that it be moved to 25 October.
Load shedding has long been an inconvenience for South Africans, but now it is being listed as one of the issues holding up ANC branches from getting on with the business of the conference.
This of course is a problem the ANC’s own government is failing to address nationally.
But this is not the only issue affecting the branch general meetings.
Mashatile, in his letter, said that the impact of striking Luthuli House workers, who are demonstrating over the ANC’s non-payment of their salaries, has also been felt during this period.
The new membership system, designed to help the ANC embrace a modern way of doing things, is also an issue due to a need for a software upgrade.
One of the key issues Mashatile also highlights in his letter is that their branch secretaries are new to the job and not familiar with the system.
He said that it has been proposed that nominations close on 25 October instead of 2 October.
The ANC’s 55th conference is expected to take place from 16 to 20 December.