The Eastern Cape ANC chair says the governing party faces its deepest crisis yet.
Phumulo Masualle lamented the state of the ANC as he delivered his opening address to a packed hall of the eighth Eastern Cape provincial conference at the East London International Convention Centre on Friday evening.
“It is needless to say that we meet at this conference when our organisation, the movement that led our people, faces its deepest crisis post-1994. This conference is taking place three months before the 54th national conference. So being here, in this moment makes this event a very significant event if it is interpreted very well,” Masualle said.
Today, Masualle is expected to table a detailed political report during a closed session of the conference.
Masualle said most people in the province, and the country, looked at the conference with great anticipation.
“The onus is on us as conference to rise to the occasion and not let that opportunity go begging. The national executive committee [NEC], through the secretary-general at the national policy conference, presented a diagnostic organisational report. I am happy that that report is contained in the packages of this conference. The report was considered by the NEC as the most piercing introspection on the state of our organisation,” he said.
During the national policy conference it was reported that ANC members sympathetic to President Jacob Zuma had fought against ANC Secretary-General Gwede Mantashe presenting the report, arguing that the policy conference was not the appropriate platform for it.
Masualle said in as much as that was seen as out of the ordinary, he supported its tabling because it was not the first time it had been done.
He said that what hurt was that on all accounts such reports were not really adhered to or changed little in the behaviour of members.
“The report painted a perilous state within the organisation, but on all accounts these reports of expositions go unheeded. Even when we spoke about the diagnostic report, you would think that having said so much to ourselves about ourselves that it would mitigate our behaviour after that. The truth is that it has not. It’s important that we do not let the opportunity of this conference go begging at this historic hour of our movement,” Masualle said.