Former president Nelson Mandela has distanced himself from the ongoing wrangles within the ANC.
In a message to the ANC read by his daughter, Zindzi, at the ruling party's manifesto launch at Absa Stadium in East London, Mandela, pictured, said while he remained a loyal member of the party, he did not want to take sides in fights involving ANC members.
"There had been a lot of speculation about my position with regards to recent events within the organisation. I have chosen - and made that publicly known - not to become involved in those or other political matters," Mandela said.
It was the task of the new generation to lead and take responsibility - "ours has done as well as it could in its time".
The Nobel Peace Prize winner said South Africans were looking up to the ANC to provide leadership in creating circumstances "for our people to enjoy and exercise the democratic rights for which we all fought for so bravely and with so much sacrifice".
"Let our organisation at all times conduct itself with the dignity in keeping with its proud history," he said.
During his manifesto speech, ANC president Jacob Zuma urged supporters not to pay attention to reports suggesting that Mandela's message disapproved the way the leadership was managing the party. - Sapa