The ANC Veterans League support Conference Resolutions of Unity and Renewal of the Organisation
The 54th Conference of the ANC grabbed the nation’s attention and anxiety. It took place against the backdrop of judicial and political havoc. This gave rise to the rational fear that the conference might not be held to a successful conclusion. That it ended the way it did, hiccups along the way notwithstanding, is testimony to the determination of our members to restore the ANC into a position which earned it the respect of many, at home and abroard.
The newly elected National Executive Committee, led by Comrade Cyril Ramaphosa, can count on the support of the ANC Veterans League as it goes about building on the firm foundations of renewal established by conference. The aftertaste suggests that we are still mired in troubling times:-
- We remain mired in troubling times as shown by the ongoing work of the Moerane Commission which is investigating serious incidents of violent conflict in Kwa-Zulu-Natal;
- We are found wanting when expected to deliver basic health care service to the poor. The Esidimeni hearing by the retired Judge Moseneke has revealed shocking details of how incompetent ,unskilled and non caring bureaucrats attended to the urgent and basics needs of vulnerable patients. Those responsible should be held to account.
- We continue to see the smouldering disputes over the authenticity of our membership records which which are alleged prone to factionalist manipulation;
- The credibility of our internal dispute resolution mechanisms have fallen into disuse as members increasingly prefer to use the courts as mechanisms of first instance.
Bearing the aforegoing in mind, the Veterans League tabled a proposal at the 54th conference which has the following salient elements:-
- Elected leaders must avail themselves for a suitability test done in terms of the ANC document: “Through the Eye of the Needle”;
- Urgent steps must be taken to identify information communication technology and management sciences that will enable us to put in place a dependable membership system.
- Act to urgently introduce a Code of Practice which will enjoin members, including those in state apparatus, to conduct themselves in accordance with the ethic of service to the people.
- Take urgent steps to forge a healthy functional relationship with our strategic allies the SACP, COSATU, SANCO as well as with organisations of civil society;
- Take steps to improve the efficiency and efficacy of the Integrity Commission by ensuring that it has the constitutional authority for all its findings to be binding;
- The integrity of the membership system having been restored, we should consider allowing all members of the ANC to participate directly in the election of the NEC;
- To preserve the integrity of the NEC, the number of NEC members deployed in Government must be capped. This will allow the NEC to adequately supervise the work of the deployees.
Finally, we urge the newly elected NEC to consider convening a Special Consultative conference to reflect on the political problems which gave rise to such unprecedented levels of factionalism and find solutions thereto.
We propose that the Special Consultative Conference should take place not later than before the end of February 2018. As a Veterans League we are ready to advance Items of Discussion in that Conference.
We should make an effort to convince society that we can self correct and are determined to deliver on our set objectives.
ANC Veterans League President.