League members in the Frances Baard region have “unanimously” decided to support Mangaliso Matika to lead the regional executive committee as chairperson.
ALTHOUGH the ANC has had to postpone its regional, provincial and national conferences indefinitely due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the ANC Youth League (ANCYL) in the Frances Baard region has in the meantime thrown its weight behind Mangaliso Matika to extend his term as ANC regional chairperson.
ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule requested the Northern Cape to convene its conferences in December as the regional executive committee (REC) was operating as an interim structure, because its term of office had expired and it had no legal standing.
ANCYL regional spokesperson Seki Seleke said on Thursday that league members in the Frances Baard region had unanimously decided to support Matika to lead the REC as chairperson, with Neo Mase as the regional deputy chairperson, Wende Patrick Marekwa as regional secretary, Mock Mocumi as regional deputy secretary and Nondumiso Buda to be appointed as the regional treasurer.
Seleke added that the decision on whether the ANC regional conference would proceed in March this year as planned, would depend on the relaxation of Covid-19 lockdown restrictions.
“We are operating in abnormal and very uncertain times, where the lives of people globally had to adjust due to the emergence of this life-threatening disease. The outbreak of Covid-19 has left the entire world reeling,” said Seleke.
He pointed out that all political conferences had to be put on hold until further notice to slow down the rate of infection.
“The ANCYL was supposed to hold its conferences around July/August last year, while the ANC in the Northern Cape was scheduled to have its conference in December. These conferences had to be postponed due to Covid-19 and will only be able to proceed once President Cyril Ramaphosa announces any changes to the alert levels.”
Seleke said the incoming leadership of the REC had to be driven by a majority of 75 percent youths.
“It is time that young and energetic leaders take over the reins of the movement … who will mobilise young people behind the banner of the organisation and champion the interest of young people, without fear or favour.
“The organisation cannot invest in young people and simply throw them to the gutters.”
He discouraged members from “hurling insults” and becoming involved in “character assassinations” during the leadership contest.
He believed that youths should become entrepreneurs and employers, instead of relying on government as a source of employment.
“The pandemic has left us in a devastating and very frustrating state. Our economy is weak, job losses are at a higher rate and the recovery rate might take some time. Young people need to be proactive in making sure we engage all relevant role-players.”
Seleke said they had noted the outcry from residents in the region regarding the lack of basic services.
“We are calling on the organisation to hold all its deployees accountable in the region and make sure a speedy approach is adopted to address these challenges.”
Seleke added that they would engage with the Northern Cape Department of Education to assist pupils who had not received places at public schools.
“The online application system is a nightmare and has caused a lot of panic. Our primary task is to ensure that all learners are catered for on time, at the beginning of the academic calendar.
“We cannot allow a situation where learning is delayed and pupils are denied an opportunity to learn when the Covid-19 pandemic has already negatively impacted on our education outreach programme and the most vulnerable and poorest are at a disadvantaged stage.
“All hands on deck are required to make this a reality.”