Pursuit of patronage weakening ANC to its knees – Ramaphosa 

ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa has acknowledged that the pursuit of patronage by the ANC members has divided and weakened the ruling party.

Speaking during his keynote opening address of the ANC policy conference in Nasrec, Johannesburg, Ramaphosa said the ruling party is at its weakest and is also in a vulnerable position since the advent of democracy due to competition over positions and pursuit of access to public resources.

Ramaphosa said: “Perhaps most strikingly, our weaknesses are evident in the divisions within our ranks. These are not divisions about policies or ideology, but are driven by the competition for positions, the contestation of structures and the pursuit of access to public resources.

“These divisions manifest themselves in patronage, gatekeeping, vote buying and manipulation of organisational processes. These divisions are driven by corruption and the need by those responsible for corruption to avoid detection and accountability.”

He said the divisions have resulted in the loss of support for the ANC as he singled out the party’s poor performance during last year’s local government elections as an example.

Ramaphosa said South Africans have become disillusioned. He said voters are frustrated and have lost trust in the ANC due to failures of service delivery and poor governance due to its internal conflicts.

“Our weaknesses are reflected in many of our branches, which are not involved in the lives of their communities but are activated only for the purpose of electing delegates for conferences or nominating candidates for public office. We can see how our divisions have weakened governance in many areas, undermined public institutions and hampered the maintenance of infrastructure and the provision of services.”

Ramaphosa also touched on the impact of these divisions in the relations between the ANC and its alliance partners such as the South African Communist Party and Cosatu.

He urged party members that have attended the policy conference to find solutions on all issues that are affecting the party and rechannel their energy towards the renewal of the party and rebuilding its programmes.

ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa has acknowledged that the pursuit of patronage by the ANC members has divided and weakened the ruling party.

Speaking during his keynote opening address of the ANC policy conference in Nasrec, Johannesburg, Ramaphosa said the ruling party is at its weakest and is also in a vulnerable position since the advent of democracy due to competition over positions and pursuit of access to public resources.

Ramaphosa said: “Perhaps most strikingly, our weaknesses are evident in the divisions within our ranks. These are not divisions about policies or ideology, but are driven by the competition for positions, the contestation of structures and the pursuit of access to public resources.

“These divisions manifest themselves in patronage, gatekeeping, vote buying and manipulation of organisational processes. These divisions are driven by corruption and the need by those responsible for corruption to avoid detection and accountability.”

He said the divisions have resulted in the loss of support for the ANC as he singled out the party’s poor performance during last year’s local government elections as an example.

Ramaphosa said South Africans have become disillusioned. He said voters are frustrated and have lost trust in the ANC due to failures of service delivery and poor governance due to its internal conflicts.

“Our weaknesses are reflected in many of our branches, which are not involved in the lives of their communities but are activated only for the purpose of electing delegates for conferences or nominating candidates for public office. We can see how our divisions have weakened governance in many areas, undermined public institutions and hampered the maintenance of infrastructure and the provision of services.”

Ramaphosa also touched on the impact of these divisions in the relations between the ANC and its alliance partners such as the South African Communist Party and Cosatu.

He urged party members that have attended the policy conference to find solutions on all issues that are affecting the party and rechannel their energy towards the renewal of the party and rebuilding its programmes.

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