In a bid to halt a decline in voter support and salvage itself from the looming destruction, the African National Congress (ANC) has reiterated its readiness to uproot corruption and division among party members.
In a policy document report distributed by the party on Sunday, the ANC lamented that the party which has ruled virtually unopposed since the end of apartheid in 1994 now faces “declining fortunes.”
In addition, the party admitted that it is in the grip of the “insidious impact of” factional fighting, and urged party members to give peace and unity a chance.
Minister in the Presidency and ANC head of policy Jeff Radebe also expressed worry with the deepening antagonism between South Africans and the ANC.
Radebe also admitted that the ANC is increasingly losing the trust of the people, as illustrated by declining electoral performance and intense public criticism.
“The organisation must act urgently to restore its moral character, to win back the trust of the people and ensure that the ANC is structured optimally to remain the leader of the forces for change,” he said.
Radebe asserted that the “social distance between leaders and members, widespread corruption, poor performance in government and abuse of organisational processes for personal gain” could lead to the demise of the party.
The document comes as the ANC prepares to select a successor to President Jacob Zuma towards the end of the year and months before its June policy conference.
On land matters, the policy document urged the government to accelerate a process for updated land legislation.
“The success of land redistribution will be improved if there is greater oversight over land, farming equipment and technical skills transfer to the beneficiaries of land reform,” it said.
Before now, the Zuma-led administration often reiterates that the African National Congress (ANC) has taken a strong stance to root out corruption, many still believe that the party has done little or nothing to take up such responsibility.
But the ruling party has rather been further damaged by deep discontent over high unemployment as well as scandals surrounding Zuma, who was implicated in Madonsela’s Stare of Capture report in 2016. Therein, he was found to have granted undue influence over his cabinet and state companies to the Gupta family.
His scandal-plagued government has been fingered for ANC’s freefalls in last year’s municipal elections, including losing grips on its traditional bases including Pretoria and Johannesburg.
The infighting in the party is apparently tied to the next leadership figure that will replace President Zuma. While Zuma is widely expected to back outgoing African Union chairwoman, and his ex-wife, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma for ANC president some party members regard Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa as the rightful heir. This disparity had led to divisions in many regional structures.
No doubt, the ANC faces waning support and fortunes but at the same time, the party has the key to secure its hard-fought freedom.