30/09/2017 07:35 SAST | Updated 30/09/2017 12:17 SAST

ANC Leadership In KZN Is High Up On The Agenda At This Weekend's NEC Meeting

"There will be an item on the KZN conference that is a stand-alone item on the agenda of the NEC."

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The future of the ANC leadership in KwaZulu-Natal will be determined during the national executive committee (NEC) meeting at the weekend, ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe said on Friday.

"There will be an item on the KZN conference that is a stand-alone item on the agenda of the NEC," said Mantashe.

Mantashe was speaking on the sidelines of the last ordinary scheduled NEC meeting at St Georges Hotel in Irene.

The ANC in KwaZulu-Natal was plunged into turmoil when the High Court in Pietermaritzburg ruled that a conference in 2015, at which Sihle Zikalala was elected chairperson, was unlawful.

On Thursday, the provincial executive committee (PEC) announced its decision to appeal the ruling after waiting for consultations with the NEC.

Last week, the NEC said it wanted legal opinion, which Mantashe revealed it had since received, before pushing ahead with the appeal.

He declined to reveal what the opinion was.

Mantashe said: "The court gave us 15 days to appeal and that ended yesterday. What KZN did was to err on the side of caution. The outcome of this meeting will determine what goes on."

StatsSA 'must not interpret statistics'
Among other issues, the meeting was expected to deal with the tabling of reports of all the work that the organisation has done, the national policy conference and the uMkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans' Association conference.

President Jacob Zuma presented a political overview to the last sitting of the term, Mantashe said.

Responding to the latest statistics released by statistician-general Pali Lehohla on Thursday, Mantashe said: "I would advise StatsSA not to try and engage in a discussion that interprets their statistics because that confuses society.

"StatsSA must release statistics and leave society to interpret their statistics. That is where the mistake is, they release their statistics and give their own interpretation of their own statistics."

Mantashe said the lack of employment and low economic growth were problems that preoccupied the ANC.

"It is important to think about what keeps us out of recession – agriculture and mining. These primary sectors have kept us out of a recession. It is important for us to perform in other sectors such as manufacturing and services sector as well."

He said an economy that was not growing was a disaster for society.

Hanekom needs to be 'more responsible'
Speaking about disciplinary proceedings against ANC MP Derek Hanekom, Mantashe emphasised that no disciplinary action was taken against the MP.

"What we have been discussing with Derek Hanekom, is that he is a chairperson of the disciplinary committee who tweets all the time. We said to him, he needs to be more responsible... if he has running commentary on everything, he is compromising the position of the chairperson of the disciplinary committee."

Mantashe said the issue was whether Hanekom should continue being the chairperson of the disciplinary committee or not "because he tweets".

ANC treasurer-general Zweli Mkhize also addressed the media.

He welcomed a Western Cape High Court ruling by Judge Yasmin Shenaz that Parliament had 18 months to rectify "inconsistencies" in the Promotion of Access to Information Act, following an application from non-profit organisation My Vote Counts.

He said the ruling would ensure that parties reflect their own will and were "not open to manipulation by some unscrupulous donors who may be posing at the back and taking advantage of the fact that they can assist parties that are struggling".

The ANC is expected to brief the media on Monday on the outcomes of the NEC meeting. -- News24