Threat of losing power is real - Gwede

ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe
ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe

The ANC's conference next week has to discuss the reality that its electoral support may decline to below 50% during the 2019 general elections.

This concession was made in secretary-general Gwede Mantashe's draft organisational report for the conference due to be discussed by the national executive committee meeting.

"The disturbing character of the decline is that in the successive elections we continued to decline systematically."

According to an analysis by the party's top brass, the ANC had the highest election results in 2009 and the worst was at last year's local government election where it secured 54%. "This is the lowest we can ever be, otherwise the threat of losing power is real," Mantashe noted.

The loss of electoral support has pushed some ANC leaders to call for unity in the party amid a bruising factional leadership fight.

Mantashe noted in the report that the ANC's loss of major urban centres was problematic because much of the population was concentrated in these centres.

On Friday, ANC's Mpumalanga chair David Mabuza warned the party about the possibility of losing power. This was shared by treasurer-general Zweli Mkhize, who said the party's conference was an important decider.