Former presidency director general Frank Chikane has warned that the ANC may lose voters if it does not heal its divisions following the national conference in Mangaung, Business Day reported on Wednesday.
"You can come here and dance and win but actually the masses will judge you," Chikane told the paper in the run-up to Tuesday's election.
He said the party had to move away from factionalism as it was costing the ANC good leaders and skills.
Mpumalanga premier and provincial chairperson David Mabuza told the paper that talks to create leadership consensus and unity started "too late".
"We thought we will discuss leadership after nominations, but the delayed conferences derailed us," Mabuza said.
He called on Zuma to bring the party together and tolerate contrary opinions.
"We will always have differences but that does not mean we must part ways," Mabuza said.