The National Executive Committee held its last scheduled meeting for the year and for the term 2007-2012, over three days, 16-18 November, 2012 at the Saint George hotel in Tshwane.
The main focus of the meeting was the final preparations for the 53rd National Conference of the African National Congress, including the report of the team led by Nkosazana Dlamini- Zuma with regards to our list process leading to the local government elections in 2011.
The NEC received a draft organisational report for discussion; this was discussed as part of the process of refining it before its presentation to conference. The NEC appreciated that the draft report constituted work in progress which must still go through two other stages before it being taken to the special NEC meeting on the 03rd December 2012.
The two stages are the provincial secretaries and league secretaries brainstorming the final draft and the drafting committee doing the final editing of the report.
Whatever was leaked therefore is just the rough draft of the report. The NEC encouraged the SGO to be candid in the reporting and analysis.
On the preparations for the conference the NEC is satisfied with progress made. The building of the marquee, which will be the actual venue for the plenary sessions, has now started.
We believe the marquee will be ready long before conference date. Accommodation has been secured both at the residences of both the Central university of Technology and the University of the Free State.
These residences at the universities will complemented with additional accommodation at the hotels in and around Mangaung.
Transportation for all delegates from all provinces throughout the country, mainly through buses, has been secured and finalised.
To avoid stampede and long queues at the registration centre of the conference, a pre-registration process in all provinces of conference delegates will start two weeks before conference. The pre-registration process will also apply to the media.
With regards to nomination process the NEC expressed satisfaction with pace of BGMs and nominations. It also endorsed the NEC team of 18 members who are actively dealing with complaints with the mandate to resolve them.
All this is intended to minimise queries in the conference itself to the barest minimum.
No delegate will be changed unless he/she submits a written confirmation that something very serious has happened and therefore is impossible to attend the conference.
All provincial nomination conferences will be completed by 30th November 2012 and all nominations will be with the Electoral Commission by the end of the first week of December 2012.
We are insisting that every branch that qualified for attending the National Conference must be in the National Conference.
During the 2011 Local Government elections the President committed the NEC to investigate all the cases where the process was manipulated or not conducted in accordance with the ANC guidelines.
As reported, a task team chaired by comrade Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma was set up. The Task Team visited all the nine provinces, regions and branches of the ANC and took time listening to all the complaints and grievances members had.
That work took much longer than the NEC anticipated because of the thoroughness of the process.
The Task Team in total investigated complaints and disputes from 419 wards. This confirms that a majority of over 3500 wards of the ANC adhered to the guidelines of the ANC and conducted themselves in accordance with ANC dictates and guidelines.
The report was discussed by the NEC and the NEC committed itself that all the recommendations of the task team will be implemented.
The report will now be taken to all the provinces and the specific recommendations will be handed over to the new NEC for implementation, including cases where the task team recommends that ANC processes be redone and those where the team recommended that the councillor be recalled and by-elections be re-done.
Also a recommendation by the Committee that those who manipulated the list processes be brought before ANC disciplinary structures, will also be taken forward by the new NEC.
The value of this report proved to be more than just the improvement of the list processes but a serious contribution to the diagnosis of organisational problems and suggested solutions to many. It is organisational and is drilling deep for solutions.
The NEC also received a report on the 2011 census. The report re-assured the NEC that progress is being made in many respects.
Progress made in the area of education, which is normally targeted for criticism, is actually massive. One of the highlights of the report is that science and mathematics remain a point of concern as there are fewer pupils and students that take these subjects.
The massive improvement in the South Africans accessing basic services must be sustained to ensure that every deserving South African has access to public essential and basic services.
We have noted the problem of backlogs in accessing clean drinking water in the more rural Eastern Cape and this needs urgent attention.
The census has confirmed in more scientific terms what we have consistently raised as the problem of inequality particularly in wage and household incomes that still disadvantages the black majority and favours white minority.
This concern is a matter that the national conference of the ANC within the context of the National Development Plan must deal with. Thus, the theme of our 53rd National Conference “Unity in action towards socio-economic freedom”.
The census report is a must read if we are to make an objective critique of the performance or lack thereof of this government. This finds confluence with the criticism of the education benchmarking we have voluntarily subjected ourselves to.
Of the sixty countries that are part of the benchmark we are now number 52 in general, and 60 in Mathematics and Science.
A point that a lot of people miss when they shout at their highest voices by saying we are number last of 60 countries, they conveniently forget that there 194 countries in the world.
A decision to voluntarily subject ourselves to a benchmark with other 60 countries is in itself indicative of our commitment to continuously improve in the education arena as this is key for our national development.
We received the report on the motion of the vote of no confidence on our President by the opposition in parliament. We are happy that the ANC in parliament has not refused to discuss the motion.
The question we are dealing with here is not refusal but a programming issue. We agree with our parliamentary caucus that there is no urgency on the matter.
We believe in the sanctity, independence and jurisdiction of Parliament, which has to be protected by all citizens including all political parties in Parliament.
By taking a purely parliamentary programming matter to court, the opposition is reducing parliament to be subsidiary of the judiciary and thereby impeding the legislative independence of Parliament.
On our part we will continue to defend the independence of Parliament even in the courts as an equal amongst the three arms of the state.
The NEC also received a detailed report on the yearlong centenary celebrations. After considering the report the meeting commended the centenary team under the leadership of Comrade Baleka Mbete for having taken the centenary celebrations to every corner of the country and some parts of the world.
The meeting decided that a full report be prepared for the national conference so that conference can mandate the incoming national leadership to continue with whatever that still needs to be done in this regard.
The meeting took time to discuss the National Development Plan and agreed that the policy outcomes of the 53rd national conference must give expression to the development framework of the National Development Plan.
Whilst this plan give the country a 20 year vision, we believe it will be incumbent upon the governing party to anchor all its policies around this plan and therefore create a cohesive and integrated implementation programme for the National Development Plan.
ANC Secretary General
African National Congress
54 Sauer Street