Call for unity in Eastern Cape ANC as conference gets under way

Outgoing ANC Eastern Cape provincial chairman Phumulo Masualle used his political report speech to call for unity in the province‚ after visible cracks showed as the party prepared for the start of its provincial conference.

The official programme of the 8th ANC Eastern Cape provincial conference began eight hours behind schedule due to late registration and unresolved disputes. The programme was kicked off by deputy provincial chairman Sakhumzi Somyo who announced that because the party was behind schedule some items will be finalised on Saturday.

Addressing a packed East London ICC auditorium Masualle said that the ANC was at its weakest and members in the province should unify in order to save the party.

“We meet in this conference when the ANC faces its most deepest crisis post 1994 it has ever seen. So this is a very significant event leading up to the December national conference. We must unite like never before and be strong enough to fight‚” Masualle said.

He said that the Eastern Cape community and the nation at large was looking to the conference in great anticipation for the province to rise to the occasion.

Masualle also took a swipe at fellow leaders saying that the tripartite alliance is in turmoil and is just a shadow of its former self.

“Our evolutional alliance now looks a pale shadow [of what] it used to be. In the recent past our allies as the ANC have become more critical of us.”

As Masualle finished his political report hands from delegates went up asking to be recognised by the chair of the session‚ Somyo.

“We meet in this conference when the ANC faces its most deepest crisis post 1994 it has ever seen. So this is a very significant event leading up to the December national conference. We must unite like never before and be strong enough to fight‚” Masualle said.

The chairperson of the province’s biggest region‚ Xolile Kompela‚ insisted that he be recognised even though continuously asked to sit down.

Masualle had to intervene going to the podium again asking delegates to allow for messages of support from allies then raise orders afterwards‚ to which Kompela complied.

Delivering a message of support‚ SACP provincial secretary Xolile Nqatha fired from all cylinders bemoaning corruption and state capture.

“In the period under review we have seen some setbacks in the alliance’s functionality. What has taken place in our country is a co-option of a few blacks including our leaders. We must have true radical economic transformation not radical economic looting for the elite‚” Nqatha said to loud applause.

After the messages of support the media was asked to leave to give opportunity for delegates to raise issues.

TimesLIVE understands that the presentation of credentials was the burning issue with other delegates. Another issue was that the Youth League had to sort out its delegates as it had brought two delegations to the conference. At the time of writing delegates had adjourned and were due to convene in an hour’s time for adoption of credentials.

By: Siphe Macanda

– TimesLIVE

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