Battle for ANCYL's soul as officials banned
A TUG-of-war for the heart and soul of the ANC Youth League has ensued between the Gauteng provincial executive and the league's embattled national leadership.
This comes after the provincial executive committee boldly but quietly disbanded the youth league's Johannesburg regional executive.
An insider confirmed the decision to disband the regional governing structure to Sowetan yesterday.
It is understood that the decision was taken following a meeting between the PEC and provincial working committee throughout Tuesday night.
Central to the impasse, it is understood, is the much anticipated ANC elective conference in Mangaung in the Free State later this year.
The youth league insider said the decision to disband the regional executive was informed by perceptions, among some PEC members, that regional leaders were "controlled" by the national leadership - which has made known its intentions to unseat President Jacob Zuma when the ruling party gathers to elect its preferred leaders.
The insider further accused regional leaders of "killing" politics in Johannesburg, pointing out that the only meaningful political activity the region had undertaken was the "poorly attended" rally in Kliptown, Soweto, about three weeks ago.
It is not exactly clear which side of the fence the provincial executive stands in the purported battle between Zuma and his deputy Kgalema Motlanthe.
The insider accused the national leadership of seeking to gain control of Gauteng through the regional structure, adding that this would place expelled youth league president Julius Malema and his supporters in prime position to boot out Zuma as ANC leader.
"This man (Malema) is trying to get the province and the region to speak with one voice," the source said.
"Gauteng is the one province that has not gone along with national (leadership)."
Currently, Mpumalanga, KwaZulu-Natal and Western Cape executives were disbanded by national leadership. The Gauteng move may lead to ANCYL national disbanding the province which is led by Lebohang Maile.
Suspended youth league spokesman Floyd Shivambu denied knowledge of the Johannesburg region's disbandment.
"It has not been brought to our attention. Once we get a report from the provincial executive working committee and we are satisfied, we will uphold the decision. But if we are not happy, we will reinstate the executive," he said.
"It all depends on the political basis upon which the decision was made."
Shivambu would not say whether the provincial executive could or would be disbanded if the national leadership was not satisfied.