Johannesburg - It's clear there's no love from the ANC Women's League for Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.
His name is nowhere on the league's list of 223 members nominated for the all-powerful National Executive Committee.
The league is backing Ramaphosa’s rival Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma in the party’s presidential campaign that comes to a head at the December elective conference in just four weeks.
Spokesperson for the league, Thoko Xasa says Ramaphosa was not nominated by any of their branches for their preferred candidate NEC list.
The elected NEC is the highest decision making body between conferences.
"Our list is a consolidation of branch nominations. Only one province [Northern Cape] nominated Ramaphosa for presidency and his name fell off because it was not in the majority. But none of the branches nominated him for the NEC,” Xasa told News24.
However, four other presidential hopefuls Lindiwe Sisulu, Dr Zweli Mkhize, Jeff Radebe and Baleka Mbete have made the cut.
"The women were always on our original list from our January NEC meeting. As women we wanted to be part of the party's leadership, the others were nominated by branches," Xasa said.
Xasa said an election agency oversaw the process as per ANC guidelines.
For conference, the women's league and the other two leagues – youth and veterans - are recognised as provinces and are allocated voting delegates.
League president Bathabile Dlamini, deputy president Sisi Ntombela and secretary general Meokgo Matuba top the long list.
Xasa said names on the list are ranked on popularity, based on the number of nominations from the branches.
Other notable names include those of convicted fraudster Carl Niehaus who is currently the spokesperson for Umkonto WeSizwe Military Veterans’ Association.
The MKMVA are also backing Dlamini-Zuma.
Also making the women's league cut are Mineral Resource Minister Mosebenzi Zwane, former Gauteng MEC Humphrey Mmemezi, Dlamini-Zuma’s former aide at the African Union Febe Potgieter-Gqubule, Youth League secretary general Njabulo Nzuza, former Tshwane Mayor Sputla Ramokgopa and former MP Pule Mabe.
And disgraced former SABC chair Ellen Tshabalala, who was forced to step down after failing to produce her tertiary qualification, is also a surprise addition.
Those seen to be backing Ramaphosa who also made the list include current NEC members - Health Minister Aaron Motsoaledi, current Secretary General Gwede Mantashe, former Women’s League president Angie Motshekga and former Tourism Minister Derek Hanekom.
An insider to the Dlamini-Zuma campaign quipped it’s a "unity list".
Notably absent was parliamentary Chief Whip Jackson Mthembu. Even former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan made the cut at number 204 - the current NEC has 80 members.