Ahead of its national elective conference in just over a week, the ANC has highlighted all the problems it believes it faces within the organisation –– and the list is long.
The party will debate and try to find solutions to issues of corruption, nepotism and factionalism, among others, when its delegates meet in Nasrec on December 16. From these discussions, new policies will be constructed around organisational renewal.
Addressing the media at the ANC's headquarters on Thursday, Police Minister Fikile Mbalula –– in his role as the chairperson of the ANC national executive committee's subcommittee on organisational renewal –– listed some of the problems up for discussion.
"In the main, the ANC's diagnosis and self-critique identified sharp weaknesses especially in the state and in the conduct of its membership and leadership," he said.
The most important weaknesses listed were: social distance between leaders and the people they lead, public-sector corruption, nepotism, arrogance –– perceived and real –– elitism, factionalism, manipulating organisational processes, abuse of state power, and putting self-interest above the people.
"The seeds of incumbency are deeply entrenched in our movement [sic]. We have identified these weaknesses as key to understand, acknowledge and deal with... A loss of confidence by the people in the ANC is the most serious challenge we experience," Mbalula said.
"There are many critics of the ANC and of our leadership, and we are eroding influence over students, young intellectuals and the black middle class. The negative practices of slates and vote buying have delivered leaders who have difficulty in driving our programmes and getting respect from society and supporters."
He admitted that the party has not managed to address issues surrounding economic growth, education and crime.
"Loss of trust in the organisational integrity –– especially the membership system and election process –– [is] because of practices such as membership and vote buying, factions using state institutions against each other, and factional violence and killings. All of the above factors caused a decline in credibility and support," he said.