ANC electoral process a huge mess – Mbalula

Fikile Mbalula (File, Netwerk24)

Fikile Mbalula (File, Netwerk24)

Johannesburg – The ANC has proposed again that an electoral college be formed to screen candidates in an attempt to rid its electoral process of gatekeeping, manipulation and slate voting.

“This is a political, non-partisan structure of people who have no interest about who should be a leader, except being guided by principles of the movement,” chair of the ANC NEC’S sub committee on organisational renewal Fikile Mbalula said.

The ANC is looking at a more open contest, he added, allowing for candidates to engage with party members.

These are some of the proposals made ahead of the June policy conference.

However, they will not be introduced before the December elective conference.  ANC structures still have to discuss policy proposals which will only be adopted at the elective conference to be held in Gauteng.

Mbalula, who led the drafting of the organisational renewal document, has described the current electoral process an “absolute mess”.

The electoral college, should it be adopted, would become an ANC constitutional structure and would kick in after branches had nominated people for leadership position ahead of the party elections.

It would be able to interview the nominated candidates.

It will vet the people politically, in terms of their track record in the party, Mbalula said.

“We keep crying foul over the people that are being elected, factionalism takes over – dominant factions that have resources, not political influence – and in the process, good leaders disappear. That is what we want to prevent,” Mbalula said.

“We need something like a jury to fight factionalism and to allow quality growth in the organisation.”

Mbalula admitted that the electoral college proposal is not new and was proposed ahead of the ANC 2007 elective conference held in Polokwane.

“If you follow ANC renewal from Polokwane, this is not a new thing, we have simply dusted it off… and brought it back with new perfume,” Mbalula said.