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Ramaphosa to mobilise support for Ace Magashule’s suspension at ANC’s Northern Cape conference

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President Cyril Ramaphosa and other party leaders are set to mobilise ANC members in Northern Cape to fully support the step aside policy and the suspension of secretary-general Ace Magashule during the provincial elective conference.

ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa and suspended secretary-general Ace Magashule. Picture: Itumeleng English/African News Agency (ANA)

Johannesburg – ANC top guns, including President Cyril Ramaphosa, are set to mobilise party members in Northern Cape to fully support the step aside policy and the suspension of its secretary-general Ace Magashule during the provincial elective conference which started on Friday.

Ramaphosa is expected to address the conference on Saturday. He was due to give an opening address, on Friday but was unable to due to government commitments.

He is hosting French President Emmanuel Macron on an official state visit at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.

ANC acting secretary-general Jessie Duarte will now deliver the keynote address which would likely include the party’s impasse with its suspended secretary-general Ace Magashule.

Delegates at the conference are expecting a briefing on the upcoming court case lodged against it by Magashule. The Northern Cape ANC was one of the provincial bodies which strongly supported the step aside policy. They also suggested a motion that the suspension of all those who are facing criminal charges, should be reviewed after six months pending the outcomes of the charges against them.

In 2017, the same provincial leadership supported Ramaphosa’s bid to be ANC president ahead of its national elective conference in Nasrec in December.

The elective conference started on Friday in Springbok in the Namaqualand district with more than 500 delegates expected to vote for a new leadership or to retain the current crop led by Northern Cape Premier Zamani Saul.

Northern Cape ANC provincial secretary Deshi Gxanga said more than 550 voting delegates and 300 non-voting delegates will be hosted at various venues in that “village” of Springbok saying the hybrid provincial conference will be held in accordance with Covid-19 regulations.

Gxanga reiterated his provincial body support for Ramaphosa and the step aside also confirming that they voted for him in 2017.

“We were the first provincial body to make an announcement of our support for President Cyril Ramaphosa at our 2017 provincial conference. We were of the view that he was going to do the right thing for the ANC. Indeed, we were right, he is improving our infrastructure. He still has our support,” Gxanga said.

He said Ramaphosa will address the conference on Saturday. Also expected to address the conference on strategy and tactics is ANC NEC member Joel Netshitenzhe.

The conference is happening following a failed bid by four members of the ANC’s Frances Baard region who tried to interdict in the South Gauteng High Court in Joburg last week.

The four, who include former Frances Baard District Municipality mayor Khadi Moloi, argued that the branch general meetings of their regional conference which successfully re-elected Mangaliso Matika, were not properly held across the region but the court ruled against them.

The High Court found that their application did not meet the requirements of an urgent application. This paved the way for the provincial conference this weekend. However, Gxanga said the four members will not face any disciplinary charges.

This is despite the fact that the court application the provincial ANC to put at bay a regional conference which was supposed to be held in Kuruman last week.

A date for the John Taolo Gaetsewe region in Kuruman is set to be announced soon.

Political Bureau