Sunday, 10 April 2022 21:37

Zandile Gumede wins ANC eThekwini leadership race.

By Lehlohonolo Lehana.

@GalloImages.

Former eThekwini Mayor Zandile Gumede was on Sunday evening elected ANC regional chairperson at the party's regional conference held in Durban.

Gumede, who is facing corruption charges, defeated ANC eThekwini Municipality Speaker, Thabani Nyawose, who was contesting for the same position.

She is part of the ANC radical economic transformation (RET) faction which includes former president Jacob Zuma and suspended ANC secretary general, Ace Magashule.

The faction is opposed to President Cyril Ramaphosa  getting a second term at the upcoming ANC national conference scheduled  to take place in December.

Gumede's slate were also elected, including deputy chairperson Tembo Ntuli, provincial secretary Musa Nciki, deputy secretary Nkosenhle Madlala and Zoe Shabalala as treasurer.

Of the 395 delegates, Gumede received 210 votes.

The eThekwini ANC regional conference was left hanging in the balance and on the verge of collapse earlier today until it was salvaged by a provincial party steering committee.

This impasse was negotiated and according to insiders the youth league's 12 votes would be split evenly between the Nyawose and Gumede slates. The women's league's 12 votes would go to Gumede.

There was then debate over the regional task team and whether they would be allowed to vote, given that the regional task team (RTT) had convened the conference and were now participating.

This was resolved when the steering committee decided that they would not vote.

The ANC's eThekwini region is the largest and most influential region in the party and has a bearing on the ANC's provincial and national elective conference, scheduled for July and December.

A win for Gumede's slate is seen as a massive win for former health minister Zweli Mkhize, who is gunning for a position at the helm of the party.

He, together with suspended Magashule and beleaguered ANC Women's League president Bathabile Dlamini, were in Durban rallying delegates who support Gumede.

eThekwini is the ANC’s biggest region, while KwaZulu-Natal traditionally sends the largest delegation to the national conference.