Bathabile Dlamini cleared to run for ANC Women's League re-election

Former ANC Women's League president Bathabile Dlamini. File photo.
Former ANC Women's League president Bathabile Dlamini. File photo.
Image: Masi Losi

The ANC Women’s League is expected to finally sit for its elective conference next month at which its former leader Bathabile Dlamini will, it is believed, be seeking re-election. 

Dlamini is expected to go against Sisisi Tolashe for the top post, while Tina Joemat-Peterson is being lobbied to run for the deputy president position.

The leadership of the league's national task team on Thursday said Dlamini had been cleared to run for any leadership position at the conference.

The league's co-ordinator, Maropene Ramokgopa, and its fundraiser Pinky Kekana said Dlamini, who was last year elected on to the coveted ANC national executive committee (NEC), had every right to contest.

Dlamini was found guilty of perjury after having been found to have lied in her testimony during an inquiry into her role in the 2017 social grants scandal. Her conviction was subject of a lot of drama in the lead-up to the 55th ANC national conference last year, where she was initially disqualified from contesting according to the party's “step aside” resolution.

That decision was, however, contested and Dlamini was elected on to the NEC.

“Comrade Bathabile, like any other member of the ANC, has every right to participate in structures of the ANC. And we’re not isolating her because any member of the ANC may be found in that situation,” said Kekana.

Added Ramokgopa: “There is nothing that tells us that allowing her to be part of a process like any other member is wrong because the ANC has already taken her through a process.”

Ramokgopa said the women’s league conference would sit from June 17-19 at the Nasrec Expo Centre under the theme “advancing decisive action towards the full liberation and emancipation of women”.

Branches will get just under a month to discuss policy and nominate their preferred candidates.

“The branch biennial general meetings (BBGMs) will be convened between May 10 and June 8, thus giving branches a month to complete this important work,” said Ramokgopa.

“In terms of Women’s League constitution we require BBGMs to be convened and reach a 70% threshold which allows the national conference to sit. The mandate of the BBGMs is to engage on policy discussions with the intention of providing a gender perspective to the resolutions of the ANC 55th national conference.”

The conference is expecting just over 2,900 branch delegates from across the country.

“The national task team commenced its audit process of the women’s league membership in the last week of February. The audit process has been concluded and signed off in all nine provinces,” said Ramokgopa.

“Based on the audit report, the national conference will have more than 2,900 branches participating from across the country. Each branch will be allocated one delegate for every 50 members in good standing and one extra delegate for each additional 100 members.”

The Dlamini-led league was disbanded in April last year and replaced with the task team that was tasked with taking the structure to its 13th national conference.


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