Glitches aside, Western Cape ANC ready for an intensive election campaign
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Cape Town - Despite ongoing glitches with candidate lists and still no announcement about who the party’s mayoral candidates will be in the province, the ANC has said it is gearing itself up for an intensive election campaign in the Western Cape.
Briefing the media regarding the ANC’s plans and strategies for the local government election campaign, provincial convener Lerumo Kalako said the party had learnt some tough lessons from the 2016 election in which ANC won only one municipality out of the 30 across the province.
“The nightmare of the 2016 local government elections will not be repeated. We believe that our recent by-election victories show voters see we have learnt a lesson and are willing to forgive us and also give us another chance.
“Our internal vetting processes have also led to some of our comrades having to be removed from the lists due to pending cases and other matters which have been identified by the integrity committee as well as the electoral committee.”
As an example, Lerumo pointed to the arrest of its regional chairperson and current Beaufort West mayor Quinton Louw and Central Karoo District Municipality speaker Mkhululi Hangana.
He said that while the ANC respects the principle of assumption of innocence until proven guilty, those under a cloud would have to step aside from their responsibilities within the organisation.
As well as Louw and Hangana, the provincial ANC has also had to deal with the problem of one of its councillors in Khayelitsha, Xolisa Peter, facing crimen injuria charges after publicly shouting at another party member that she had HIV during a heated altercation captured on video.
There have also been safety concerns, especially after the killing of ANC councillor Nokuthula Bolitye, who was shot outside her home in Crossroads, and the attack last month on Khayelitsha Ward 93 councillor Thando Pimpi when gunmen opened fire on his house.
With regard to the delays the party has faced and ongoing disputes over the parties list, ANC provincial head of elections Cameron Dugmore said none would be left unattended.
“I don’t think the delays have affected our campaigns at all. On Monday we registered all our candidates. Obviously there have been developments which require some changes and those will be effected before 5pm today.
“The ANC has registered candidates in each and every one of the 406 wards in the Western Cape. There is absolutely no truth to any statement that says we are not contesting each and every ward.
“Even though we went through a tough process, from an election point of view the unity on the ground over this past registration weekend really gives us hope because people have an understanding of the process we went through and the fact that disputes submitted are going to be dealt with politically.”
Dugmore said the ANC’s national elections structure would release the local government elections manifesto on September 27.