2017-01-10 21:14

Johannesburg – The African National Congress has more important issues to deal with than who should become its next leader, its stalwarts said on Tuesday.

“The issues are more important than auditioning for leadership,” former safety and security minister Sidney Mufamadi told reporters in Johannesburg.

Members should first discuss the party’s principles and its values and its leaders must be seen to be an embodiment of these.

Earlier, the steering committee of a group of over 100 ANC stalwarts discussed processes they wanted to see unfolding ahead of a consultative conference to discuss the state of the party.

The stalwarts were expected to meet the ANC’s top six officials on Monday to discuss plans for the consultative conference. The party had already agreed to hold one, but wanted to lump it together with its policy conference in June.

The senior members, however, want the two to be held separately.

“It’s critically important that we also look at the electoral process internal to the ANC. You can’t limit it to the considerations of the ANC and how it is led,” Mufamadi said.

The party needed to review whether its current systems prevented it from remaining true to its principles of good governance and responsiveness to society.

Another stalwart, Murphy Morobe, said they had set short, medium and long-term goals. Short-term goals included encouraging ANC members to discuss how the party had reached its present state.

The other two goals related to the party’s elective conference in December this year, and the national elections in 2019.

The leadership elected at the conference needed to take the ANC onto a different trajectory, Morobe said.