• The ANC announced its readiness to campaign during the Covid-19 pandemic.
  • The party says it did not join the IEC’s ConCourt bid to postpone the local government elections.
  • Jessie Duarte says, while awaiting the ruling, they will be on the ground lobbying for support.  

The ANC has promised to “hit the ground” in campaigning for the local government elections.

This, as some political parties are calling for the postponement of the elections, which are scheduled for 27 October.

The party’s deputy secretary-general, Jessie Duarte, addressed the media in an impromptu press briefing on Monday night.

Duarte said the party had 25% youth representation from its ward candidates ready to participate in the elections. Duarte said:

We don’t believe a ward councillor position is an employment opportunity. Ours is to look for the generational mix, including women and youth candidates. The 25% youth representation was agreed on during our (national) conference. It has nothing to do with employment opportunities. All municipalities should create job opportunities for young people.

The party claimed it submitted its list of candidates before the 23 August, 21:00 deadline.

READ | KwaZulu-Natal ANC local govt candidates removed from list for facing criminal charges

The Constitutional Court is expected to rule on whether to grant the Electoral Commission of South Africa’s (IEC) application to postpone the elections.

The IEC has approached the court to seek a postponement of the election – to February 2022.

“We didn’t ask for a change of deadline. We didn’t ask for the deadline to be moved. The ANC didn’t instigate and ask for it. We are ready (for elections) and are waiting for the outcome of the Constitutional Court. 

READ | What does the IEC need to get October’s elections postponed by a court? We ask the experts

“We are ready for 27 October and, if there will be a postponement from the Constitutional Court, we will be very happy. If the IEC allows us to review our list, we wouldn’t mind reviewing it. If not, this is our final list,” Duarte said.

Aggrieved members

Duarte said a handful of members, of the ANC from a branch in Tshwane, staged a protest outside the IEC offices regarding the election list.

LIST | DA announces its mayoral candidates to contest municipalities

“Some members didn’t participate in the selection process. Their community chose someone that the ANC branch didn’t like,” Duarte said.

Duarte said some complaints received include members who want to be retained as ward councillors.

“The percentage of retention is very low, but high in some areas. It is about 40-45%. There is a great number of people who have not been retained. We went to communities and asked them to participate in the selection process of our candidates. Unlike other parties, we don’t announce our mayoral candidates. Our list is a product of popular vote by community members,” said Duarte.

Statement of @MYANC national executive committee on the conclusion of its candidate selection for local government elections held virtually on 21 August 2021. pic.twitter.com/FtiEs6yFH1

— African National Congress (@MYANC) August 23, 2021

Duarte said they had removed candidates facing criminal charges from their list, including Newcastle mayor Ntuthuko Mahlaba and Nkangala mayor Thembi Sarah Masilela.

Job Mokgoro

Meanwhile, Duarte emphasised that outgoing North West premier Job Mokgoro had agreed to resign.

Mokgoro had met with ANC treasurer-general Paul Mashatile to discuss his resignation.

“He is waiting for a meeting with President Cyril Ramaphosa.

“Mokgoro has promised me that he will tender his resignation. He has written to me, assuring that he will resign,” Duarte said.

Read More