ANC removes '20 plus people' from its party lists ahead of IEC deadline
12 March 2019
Political parties have a day left to submit their candidate lists for the National Assembly and provincial legislatures to the Independent Electoral Commission of South Africa ahead of its Wednesday deadline.
And the governing party, the ANC, is seemingly still scrambling to ensure its lists are up to standard.
News24 understands the composition of the lists was the only item on the ANC national working committee's (NWC) agenda when it met on Monday.
The ANC's national list committee is expected to finalise the list on Tuesday.
Acting national spokesperson Dakota Legoete told News24 20 people had appeared before the top six group of leaders to state their case for selection.
"These are people with minor transgressions like traffic fines or maintenance issues. Those with serious court findings against them have been removed," said Legoete.
'Very secretive process'
He said the party spent most of Monday focusing on issues of compliance and guidelines.
"This was to check if guidelines were met in the process. A number of people had also been referred to engage with the top six," Legoete told News24.
An NWC member who did not want to be named said 38 people had been removed from the list but that their names were not known to all members.
"This is a very secretive process. Even I can't say for sure who has been removed. I understand some still need to be spoken to," said the NWC member.
When asked how many people had been removed from the list Legoete refused to commit to a number, only saying "20 plus people" had been affected.
Another NWC member said only 15 names had been removed from the ANC's list of party officials to be deployed to the National Assembly.
'Mandela funeral money' officials affected
This member said the selection criteria focused on three aspects – the person's criminal record, the ANC's own constitution on illegibility and its "through the eye of the needle" document, which determined if they have "impeccable credentials".
"The 15 names [on the National Assembly list] will be replaced by additional names to make up the numbers and [ensure] the lists have 50% gender parity and 20% youth representation," said the ANC insider.
News24 also understands party members who were embroiled in the Nelson Mandela funeral money scandal in the Eastern Cape are some of those affected by the party's decision.
Some of those removed from the list will be informed of the party's decision on Tuesday.
Lists from the embattled North West are going to be "politically managed", said the party insider.
The ANC in the North West is currently embarking on a project to unite the fractured membership in the platinum-rich province following a series of intense and sometimes public leadership battles, including two court cases.
The party's provincial task team and the provincial executive committee (PEC) have since merged to become a single interim structure.
One task team member told News24 that a group led by former ANC North West chairperson Supra Mahumapelo had tried to get their list absorbed into the already existing lists compiled at the province's list conference earlier this year.
"But there was no way they were going to get that, to get 50% of their names added on the list as the names already there are democratically elected by members through a process they themselves participated in," said the task team member.
The provincial leader said it wasn't only members of the ANC in the North West who were unhappy, but alliance partners as well.
One of the NWC members who spoke to News24 confirmed this, saying the list, which returns to the national list committee, has to have more names added to it.
"Because they are undergoing the unity process, the ANC has to help ensure the lists accommodate some of the old PEC members, but the alliance is also not happy," said the insider.
Mabuyakhulu exit leaves vacuum
"They can only add around three names – very little that can be done there – and those names must include people from Cosatu, which is not very happy," added the NWC member.
News24 understands that the alliance in the North West was in back-to-back meetings with Mahumapelo last week in an effort to finalise the lists.
"Cosatu provincial leadership were arguing for a more pronounced inclusion," a source said.
Meanwhile, in KwaZulu-Natal, ANC deputy chairperson Mike Mabuyakhulu removed himself from the provincial list last week after consulting with the provincial working committee.
Along with 16 co-accused, Mabuyakhulu is facing criminal charges of fraud amounting to R28m.
Provincial secretary Mdumiseni Ntuli said Mabuyakhulu had been the only one on the provincial list facing criminal charges. Ntuli said this would create a vacuum in the provincial legislature list.