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Cyril’s close ally who was suspected to open a new Party is now challenging his 2nd term. See him

David Mabuza's supporters are African National Congress (ANC) members who have recently been accused of creating an entirely new political organization. 

Not for the first time, it appears that Mabuza's support is coming from outside the ANC's formal structures, and it is unlikely that this will be the last time. A non-governmental group called Practical Radical Economic Transformation of South Africa (PretSA), which was founded by Mabuza's then-associate and businessman Themba Sigudla, provided support to Mabuza while he was serving his third term as the ANC's chairperson in Mpumalanga. As of that point, Mabuza was still undecided as to whether or not he would be included in the NEC (NEC). 

An ex-Ehlanzeni regional leader who was sacked earlier this month launched the campaign in Block B in Malelane this week. Archive photo 

Former chairperson of the Ehlanzeni regional chairwoman Ngrayi Ngwenya, who is currently on suspension, began the campaign this week in Block B of the Nkomazi subregion, which is adjacent to Malelane. 

As expected, Ngwenya is expected to nominate independent candidates to contest against the ANC at the next by-elections in this region. When it comes to Johan Mkhatshwa, the mayor of Nkomazi Local Municipality, Ngwenya has been the driving force. In the November local government elections, Mkhatshwa defeated the NEC's pick of mayor by combining rogue party councillors and the EFF to elect him for a second term. Mkhatshwa's obstinacy has been attributed to Ngwenya. Mpumalanga's African National Congress (ANC) hasn't given up on its goal of taking control of the city. 

It appears that Mkhatshwa and five councillors from Nkomazi have been expelled from the party by the party's provincial executive committee (PEC). There will be by-elections in the near future because three of them had previously served as ward councillors in their respective wards. He has filed a petition to overturn his expulsion from the school. 

Until this month, Mabuza's side had held the reins of power in Mpumalanga, but this month Mandla Ndlovu was elected as the new chairwoman of the province. There was a strong link between Mabuza and the faction of Ngwenya and Mkhatshwa. This year's provincial ANC chairperson, Mandla Ndlovu, has been chosen. They lost the provincial conference as well as the three areas of Ehlanzeni, Gert Sibande, and Nkangala after their Ngci group was routed by Ndlovu's Focus faction. 

Ngwenya told his supporters at a recent rally that he didn't care if he was removed from the ANC or not. There were already rumblings about the formation of a new political party as a result of this. A five-year suspension has been imposed on him because of accusations relating to his aid in preventing former President Jacob Zuma from being imprisoned for contempt of court last year. Because of his role in this operation, he has been charged with these crimes. 

Ngwenya is well-liked in Nkomazi because of the philanthropic work he has done, particularly during the tough Covid-19 lockdown, when he donated food packets to families in need. During the meeting, which was conducted in a room that was nearly full, he said to the audience: 

DD Mabuza will be South Africa's president, regardless of the wishes of the people. The ANC wants to make it difficult for Mabuza to run for president, therefore they expelled me. A majority of the ANC's Nkomazi branches will endorse him as their candidate for president. I don't care if I'm kicked out of the party permanently. For the sake of the people of Nkomazi, I'm willing to give my life. 

Even though Mabuza has declared that he plans to continue in his role as deputy president, he has been uncharacteristically silent in recent weeks as a number of provinces, including Mpumalanga, have voiced their support for President Cyril Ramaphosa's campaign for a second term in office. Some provinces, particularly Limpopo and the Eastern Cape, have urged that Paul Mashatile, the current treasurer of the ANC, should run for vice president. Ramaphosa has the backing of Ndlovu, but the vice presidential campaign will be competitive, according to Ndlovu. 

Non-related Ngelosi Ndlovu, an ANC Mpumalanga spokeswoman, said the PEC had not yet announced whether or not it would endorse Ramaphosa and Mabuza in their roles. Ndlovu says we haven't discussed positions since we've been preoccupied with preparing for the policy conference in June. 

In Mpumalanga, an influential ANC member cautioned that Ngwenya's influence should not be underestimated. 

"The support he has received from Nkomazi has allowed him to move forward with DD's purpose." It's impossible to predict what he'll do when he's at his weakest, he said. You cannot rule out anything because the odds are stacked against you. DD's character dictates that he keep quiet when the odds are stacked against him. 

"What Ngwenya described about the campaign is right, since DD sends him to distribute his messages," a member of the NEC from the province of Mpumalanga, who expressed his confidence that Mabuza would not be able to win this election, said. 

It's unlikely that DD will make a comeback after the December meeting, in other words. 

ANC institutions in Mpumalanga were less vociferous in their support for a Mabuza deputy presidency before to the national ANC conference in 2017. Members of the branch were alarmed, fearing that the party's initiatives would become increasingly centered around PretSA. 

Mpumalanga's young people were addressed by Mabuza and Sigudla, who used their platforms to compel private enterprises to open up procurement processes to the unemployed. Young people in the province of Mpumalanga were addressed by both Mabuza and Sigudla. The South African National Congress of Traditional Authority was created by Sigudla after he and Mabuza had a disagreement, however the organization was unable to have a substantial impact on the 2019 general elections.


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ANC African National Congress Cyril David Mabuza Ehlanzeni


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