July 15, 2006

ANC concerned about internal conflicts in KZN

Conflicts within the African National Congress in KwaZulu-Natal have become of greater concern to the party than those within its archrival, the Inkatha Freedom Party, it has emerged. Several incidents of conflict at grassroots level were cited in a State of Organisation Report presented to the ANC's provincial general council in Durban. While noting ongoing conflicts with the IFP, like that in the Umtshezi (Escourt) municipality, the report stated: "There is now less conflict between the ANC and opposition parties, conflict is now within the organisation." Internal conflicts listed in the report detailed problems throughout the province, including E-section in Durban's Umlazi township where there was dissatisfaction over ANC candidates nominated for the local government election.

Speakers at the council stressed that the unity of the tripartite alliance of the ANC, the South African Communist Party and the Congress of South African Trade Unions was not falling apart over the issue of the ANC's deputy president Jacob Zuma. The more than 1.000 delegates at the two-day council included Health Minister Manto Tshabalala-Msimang, KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) premier S'bu Ndebele and its former education minister Professor Sibusiso Bhengu. Ndebele told delegates there was no disunity within the ANC on its national leadership. He said: "I said KwaZulu-Natal supports Mbeki as its current leader, but it supports Zuma for the next leader. It was an NEC (National Executive Committee) decision to support Zuma during this difficult period." He said there were negotiations between Zuma and Mbeki, "but I am not at liberty to expand on those talks." (The Sunday Times, Johannesburg)

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