STATEMENT OF THE AFRICAN NATIONAL CONGRESS FOLLOWING THE MEETING OF THE NATIONAL EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE FROM THE 23RD TO THE 25TH MARCH 2018
25 March 2018
The National Executive Committee (NEC) of the African National Congress (ANC) held a scheduled meeting from the 23rd to the 25th March 2018 at the Protea Fire and Ice Hotel, in Cape Town, Western Cape. The NEC received the political overview delivered by the President, Comrade Cyril Ramaphosa, and a report of the National Working Committee (NWC) since the last NEC meeting. The meeting further received presentations on Land Reform and Expropriation and the ANC’s state of readiness for the General Elections.
The National Executive Committee deliberated at length on the matters raised in the Political Overview by President Ramaphosa, which included the critical tasks of renewal and unity; reconnecting the ANC with the people, strengthening our branches and structures, and restoring the values and integrity of our movement.
The overview tasked the NEC to give substance and concrete expression to the ‘new dawn’, in the context of 54th National Conference resolutions, including commitments in the January 8 statement and the State of the Nation Address on an urgent national plan of economic recovery, tackling youth unemployment and increasing investments in the real economy, and unification of all South Africans - regardless of race and gender - around a shared vision of radical socio-economic transformation.
The NEC further reflected on the centenary celebrations of Comrade Madiba and Ma Sisulu and how to most effectively to mobilise South Africans and the international community, to honor these giants of our liberation struggle - including consideration of renaming national facilities after these icons. Moreover, how the ANC may use other national days to educate new generations about our history, and the contemporary tasks and responsibilities we all have.
On initiatives geared towards economy recovery, the NEC welcomed the decision by Moody’s Investor Service to confirm South Africa’s credit rating at investment grade and to change our outlook from negative to stable. Further welcomed the imminent launch of the Youth Employment Service (YES) this coming week. This initiative is a partnership between government and the private sector and aims to see 1 million young South Africans being offered paid work experience over the next three years.
The NEC noted the anticipated delays in the implementation of the National Minimum Wage and called on Parliament to fast-track the legislative process, ensuring that it is as rigorous and as inclusive as possible. Consultations with organized labour should continue in order to ensure that the process is properly managed.
The NEC further called on government to accelerate the review of the list of VAT exempted items as part of the efforts to mitigate against the adverse effects of the increase of the VAT rate.
ON CORRUPTION AND STATE CAPTURE
The NEC reaffirmed the ANC as the leader of society and a strategic centre of power which must continue to act a reference point for all conventions that enjoy high regard in society.
As mandated by the 54th National Conference, the NEC recommitted itself to continue with the campaign to restore the integrity and dignity of the state and of the ANC as an organization and further that the fight against all manifestations of corruption and state capture should be intensified.
The NEC appreciates that, in the context of this campaign, some members and leaders of the movement may find themselves called to account by law-enforcement agencies, the legislatures and the Judicial Commission of Inquiry dealing with the matter of state of capture.
The ANC wishes to reiterate its principled approach that persons so implicated, should be presumed innocent until and unless proven otherwise.
Individual members of the ANC and society have the right to express their sympathy and solidarity with the effected persons in their individual capacity, and not through any structures of the movement including the ANC Leagues and the MKMVA.
Members involved in such actions are discouraged from displaying ANC’s paraphernalia and thus creating the false impression that the ANC as organization identifies with, or approve of, the misdemeanors of which any any member or leader maybe accused.
In welcoming the concerted efforts of the Executive led by the President, as well as the legislatures, to put the sad chapter of systemic corruption and state capture behind us, we wish to emphasize that cadres of the movement, wherever they may be deployed, should see it as their responsibility to cooperate with these efforts; and not to seek to obstruct legitimate actions to eliminate these scourges.
The NEC has further directed the NWC to finalize terms of reference as well as setting up of the Integrity commission and to report to the next NEC meeting for finality.
ON DISCIPLINE AND THE CONDUCT OF ANC CAUCUSES
The NEC resolved, as part of the implementation of the resolutions of the 54th National Conference, to conduct a review of the Conference itself and deal decisively with remnants of divisions in a systematic manner. This must include the dismantling of pre-conference lobby groups and engaging all our structures around unity of purpose and action.
All ANC caucuses across legislatures are expected to submit to greater cohesion and maximum discipline including asserting and defending the hegemony of the ANC.
The NEC has directed all its structures to act decisively against instances that openly undermine the unity of the movement and immediately whip into line deployed cadres who openly advance divisive counter-revolutionary agendas to overthrow ANC administrations by aligning themselves with frivolous motions of no confidence from the opposition against fellow ANC Deployees.
The ANC NEC through its full time Elections Machinery has observed that divisive instances undermine public confidence and project the ANC as a movement that is at war with itself. The ANC has an open door policy and sufficient platforms to allow all of its Cadres to ventilate and find common ground.
ON THE NEXT GENERAL ELECTIONS
The ANC is in the process of preparing its structures to participate fully in all aspects that lead to the success of the next general elections.
The ANC NEC reiterate its call to first voters, primarily youth, to register, and for those who are registered, to check and confirm their registration details including residential addresses and that the key focus area for the next general elections should be an inclusive voters roll as set out in our constitution.
The ANC will engage Home Affairs and the IEC through the the Party Liaison Committee (PLC) to intensify Registration of new voters and the verification of all details on the voters roll over the next three months.
The review instruments for ANC public representatives (MPs and MPLs) and members of the executive (Ministers, Deputies, Premiers) have been finalized.
The NEC also adopted the List of Guidelines for selection of public representatives for the coming elections, and the branches will start nominations in due course.
The NEC has ratified the decision to elect Comrades Refilwe Mtsweni and Sisi Ntombela as Premiers of Mpumalanga and the Free State respectively. This decision gives effect to the ANC’s intention to build a non-sexist society and ensure that women continue to occupy positions of responsibility in all areas of endeavor
ON PROVINCIAL CONFERENCES
The NEC has resolved that a Special NEC shall be convened, following engagement with all provinces, to assess the feasibility of convening Regional and Provincial Conferences ahead of the forth coming general elections.
The NEC noted the report of the Task Team led by Comrade Sbu Ndebele into matters relating to the 2017 Eastern Cape Provincial Conference. A process of engagement with the province to find a political solution will be initiated and led by the SGO.
30th ANNIVERSARY OF CUITO CUANAVALE
On Friday the 23rd of March, the ANC joined the international community in observing this historic encounter since the battle of Cuito Cuinavale in 1988.
The battle of Cuito Cuanavale was pursued against the apartheid regime leading to the ultimate defeat of the apartheid forces by the Angolan Army together with the Cuban forces who collectively deployed over 300, 000 troops in defence of the Republic of Angola.
The momentous victory on the battle of Cuito Cuanavale against the then South African Defence Force marked a turning point in the struggle for liberation and it forced the apartheid regime to sign the peace accords in 1988 in Angola, Cuba, South Africa and the United States.
The ANC extended best wishes to the people of Angola, Cuba and Namibia on the occasion of the 30th anniversary. The ANC salutes cadres of MK who sacrificed for the advancement of Independence in Southern Africa.
The NEC noted and engaged on recent international developments including the historic signing of the African Continental Free Trade Area, the Kigali Declaration and the Protocol on Free Movement of People, ongoing engagements to normalise relations between South Africa and Rwanda; the hosting of the BRICS Summit later this year and the visits to neighboring countries in the region to strengthen relations.
The NEC reaffirmed the ANC’s solidarity with the struggles of Western Sahara and Palestine. BRICS countries will also be engaged to raise the plight of both the Saharawi and Palestinian people at the forthcoming United Nations General Assembly.
Statement issued by Ace Magashule, Secretary General: African National Congress, 25 March 2018