Mcebo Dlamini is ready to lead the ANCYL

Mcebo Dlamini feels he would be failing young people who want to nominate him if he did not stand for elections. / ALON SKUY
Mcebo Dlamini feels he would be failing young people who want to nominate him if he did not stand for elections. / ALON SKUY

Controversial FeesMustFall activist Mcebo Dlamini is ready to lead the ANC Youth League (ANCYL).

He has been approached by several ANCYL branches around the country to contest the president position, which is already being eyed by the league's KwaZulu-Natal secretary-general Thanduxolo Sabelo and national treasurer Reggie Nkabinde.

The ANCYL elective conference is expected to be held from October 18 to 21 at Nasrec Expo Centre in Johannesburg after it had been postponed several times.

Dlamini told Sowetan yesterday several young people have asked him to stand. "I felt that I would be failing them by not standing when they say 'we believe in you and we want you to lead' so I eventually succumbed," he said.

"There isn't any province that has not approached me. When I looked at the number of people and branches . I couldn't say no."

But, outgoing league president Collen Maine has been accused of attempting to prevent the conference from sitting.

Dlamini believes it is time to relaunch an ANCYL that would deal with youth issues. "The time of the youth league being a launching pad for people to be billionaires is over. As leaders we must eat last and the masses must eat first."

Bandile Mdlangaso from the Eastern Cape Amathole region said Dlamini was the "perfect" candidate to revive the league. "Out of all candidates that are contesting the presidency, we believe that comrade Mcebo doesn't just theorise issues, he walks the talk.

"Other candidates are imposed on us but he is owned by the branches of the ANCYL."

Simphiwe Shungube of ward 22 in eMalahleni, Mpumalanga, echoed Mdlangaso's views, saying Dlamini remained relevant on the ground compared to his counterparts.

"It's no secret that the ANCYL is in ICU for a very long time and we. feel the time has come for leaders such as Mcebo Dlamini to revive the youth league. We need an ANCYL that is relevant, radical and will address issues of unemployment."

Sello Maebele from ward 73 in Hammanskraal, Tshwane, said: "We no longer have the voice of reason in terms of the challenges the youth faces so we felt the person who can be able to deal with this is Mcebo".

Dlamini, 31, is facing charges of violating a court order, public violence, assault, theft, and damage to property related to the 2016 protests against "colonised" tertiary education at Wits University. His trial date is on October 19.

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