New leadership have capacity to bring back the glory
Let me start by congratulating those elected to ANC top-six positions, particularly the country's Deputy President, Cyril Ramaphosa, who was elected as the 14th president of the governing party.
It has been a tough contest between Ramaphosa and Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma for the presidency. Only one person could emerge as the winner. I must admit that the top six is indeed a balanced team, completely shattering the two slates. It merges those from the dissolved top six and the new ones.
However, it is of concern that there is only one woman in this team. Jessie Duarte, who forms part of the top six, was elected to the position she occupied previously, that of deputy secretary-general. This is in contrast with the previous top six that comprised two women.
There is no development at all in terms of taking women into consideration and allowing them to occupy senior positions in the ANC.
Now is the time for the governing party to closely look at gender representation in top party structures, extending to the provinces where there are no women chairpersons.
As a matter of fact, Ramaphosa and his team have the most crucial task of uniting the organisation.
The new leadership must strategically assess and do a feasibility study to determine the possible causes of the divisions in the ANC.
I have indicated in one of my previous articles that the conference is not about the ANC, but of national interest as well. Yes, it was an ANC event but, ultimately, all the people of South Africa are affected because the new ANC president is in all likelihood going to be the president of the country should the ANC win the 2019 national general elections.
The more the governing party is divided, the more it will lose the trust and support of the people.
Factionalism, corruption and power struggle are, according to me, some of the factors that have played a key role in dividing the organisation.
My political analysis is that, the comradeship of today is on average about self-enrichment than serving the people.
It is very embarrassing that at some instances some leaders within the structures of the ANC have to end up in courts because of their battles over leadership positions.
I think those who are in leadership positions in all the structures of the ANC must always be reminded that they represent the ANC, not themselves, and that they have a mandate of serving the people and to change the unfavourable living conditions of the people. The people at branch level have spoken. Ramaphosa is the president of the ANC.
It is crucial that everybody in the organisation, including those who backed Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to be the organisation's president, to support Ramaphosa and the elected leadership of the ANC.
It is not all about individuals but all about the ANC as an organisation.
Ramaphosa's team must make use of the failures of the previous leadership as their strategy to bring back the then united ANC of the likes of Nelson Mandela and Oliver Tambo.
I strongly believe that Ramaphosa has the capacity to influence unity in the governing party.