05/09/2017 17:40 SAST | Updated 06/09/2017 06:27 SAST

Here's The 4 Most Important Things Gwede Mantashe Said About The Leadership NEC And Other Issues

"Harsh action will be taken against any form of ill-discipline."

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ANC Secretary-General Gwede Mantashe.

The ANC on Tuesday held a media conference to provide details about its 54th national executive committee (NEC) leadership conference taking place from December 16 to 20.

New leadership -- and a new party president -- will be chosen at this much-anticipated conference. The likes of Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, Cyril Ramaphosa and Lindiwe Sisulu are some of the big contenders set on potentially becoming South Africa's next state president.

Here are some of the things Gwede Mantashe, the ANC's secretary-general, had to say:

1. The ANC will not tolerate any kind of intimidation at the NEC

Mantashe said the party would take stringent action against people who were trying to disrupt the free electoral process. He said the Independent Electoral Commission would be keeping a close eye on the voting process.

"Harsh action will be taken against any form ill discipline," he said.

He also confirmed that watertight guidelines for the voting process had been established.

2. The NEC conference will be a platform to address issues faced by South Africans

Landlessness, unemployment, inequality and poverty will be high up on the party's agenda. Mantashe also spoke about GDP growth, saying that, while the party had to work harder to curb these issues, there had been some growth in primary sectors such as agriculture and mining.

"The national conference must be seized with the work of advancing the strides we have made to improve the lives of our people."

3. Shade was thrown -- Mugabe is a liar!

The party slammed Robert Mugabe for saying the ANC's policies have failed South Africans. Mantashe said independent research stood to differ with the Zimbabwean president's claims.

Mantashe said he had spoken to a member of Zanu-PF (Zimbabwe's governing party), saying: "Your president is all over Madiba, but the reality of the matter is that [Mugabe has] destroyed the economy of your country."

4. The Moerane Commission of Enquiry

The party sent its condolences to the family of former ANC Youth League secretary-general and ANC councillor Sindiso Magaqa, who died on Monday night. Magaqa, along with two other ANC councillors, were shot in uMzimkhulu in a suspected hit in July. Mantashe said law enforcement should be working tirelessly to ensure that Magaqa's killers faced the wrath of the law.

He also spoke about the killings in KwaZulu-Natal in a general sense, saying South Africans should await recommendations based on the testimonies that were given during the commission.

"Let's see what recommendations can come out of that commission that can guide us with dealing with these assassinations."

He said the police should deal with the killings.