The African National Congress (ANC) has released the discussion points for its 5th National Policy Conference. Stating that an overhaul in the organisation’s image is needed so as to recapture lost ground, acknowledging that fragmentation has been left unfettered.
In a document released publicly on Sunday, the ANC cited that the party “acknowledges [its] own internal challenges, such as social distance between leaders and members, widespread corruption, poor performance and abuse of organizational processes for personal gain”.
Fragmentation of the party in recent years has thrown the liberation movement in uncertain waters heading towards crucial elections in 2019 when current president, Jacob Zuma, will not be able to re-present himself on the ballot sheet.
The document’s focus lies primarily in regaining the trust of the electorate. A difficult task which would see the party having to regain close to 8% of the vote lost from the previous two national elections and a considerable amount more lost in the provincial election of 2016.
Alongside old promises to deal with corruption and improve education to better the opportunities of South African voters, the party has also begun thinking of its internal bureaucracy proposing party structural changes as well.
“The paper proposes that the size of the NEC should be reduced and that the organisation must limit the number of NEC- members that serve in government; ensuring that ANC leaders are spread throughout all sectors of society”.
The party’s growing emphasis on land reform will also be a main talking point during the conference as divisions exists on whether land redistribution should occur with or without compensation.
The ANC will look to this conference as cross-roads for leadership and a watershed for its members.