Calls for early ANC elective conference factional – SACP

Cape Town – The SA Communist Party believes the ANC should convene a non-elective conference and that calls for an early elective conference were factional in intent.

The ANC Youth League and other organisations within the ruling party have called for an early elective conference.

The ANCYL was being used by others to test the waters in this regard, the SACP said on Sunday.

“The SACP is firmly of the belief that the motivation for this call is entirely factional. If followed through it will result in deepening disunity within the ANC and across its alliance. The winners will inherit a shell organisation,” the SACP said in a statement.

Deepen divisions

Those making the call for an elective conference were not even disguising their factional intentions, the SACP said.

“They have learnt nothing from the local government elections. Nor have they learnt anything from the premature convening, against the advice of the ANC NEC itself, of the KZN ANC provincial conference which has simply deepened divisions within a formerly united ANC province.”

There would be great merit in considering the possibility of a national ANC consultative conference before the national conference.

This should be a non-elective event, the SACP stressed, with ANC provinces being accorded an equal number of delegates to avoid endless accreditation disputes.

Transition to new leadership

“The aim of the consultative conference should be to unify the ANC and indeed the broader alliance on a principled programmatic basis,” they said.

“Agreement should be reached, if possible, on the transition to a new leadership, and, at the very least on mechanisms to ensure that the December 2017 conference will not be characterised by a shoot-out between winner-takes-all mutually exclusive slates. Regardless of the winning slate, such an outcome will simply accelerate the decline of the ANC.”

Consideration should also be given to inviting senior and respected veterans of the movement, and other “progressive forces” like the South African Council of Churches.

“Let us be prepared to listen to those whose criticism of us is motivated by a genuine concern about the future of our movement and our country, and not by petty personality hatreds or an inveterate anti-ANC position.”