The KwaZulu-Natal ANC Provincial General Council (PGC) has closed with an appeal from presidential hopeful Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to delegates that they ensure that the party’s national elective conference is peaceful and free of violence.

The former African Union Commission (AU) chairperson also called on them to make sure that the governing party remained “intact” after the conference, which begins at Nasrec on December 16, despite the tensions and polarisation which have marked the build up to the elective meet.

Dlamini-Zuma, who was greeted with a standing ovation and chants of “Zuma Zuma” as she arrived at Durban’s Olive Convention Centre — where the PGC sat at the conclusion of the final plenary session — was nominated by the province as their presidential candidate. Dlamini-Zuma received nomination from 454 branches, compared with 193 which backed sitting deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa as party president.

Addressing the branches as “the most important people” in the ANC, Dlamini-Zuma said they had a responsibility to ensure that the party remained united post conference.

She said delegates should be ‘robust’ but also ‘respectful’ and ‘disciplined.’

“When our families release us to go to conference they must not have worries about our safety inside the conference.
People must be safe…we are comrades of the same organisation,” Dlamini-Zuma said.

She called on delegates to abide by the conference rules banning caps, t-shirts, placards and songs punting any of the presidential candidates, saying they needed to stick with behaviour that promoted unity, rather than individuals.

In his closing address ANC KwaZulu-Natal chairperson Sihle Zikalala said delegates needed to ensure they elected a leadership that would implement conference resolutions, unlike others which had failed to do so through “ill discipline or sabotage”.

He said that after 2012, Treasury had failed to implement resolutions around a state bank, while those around a state mining company and a state pharmaceutical company had not been implemented either.

In a swipe at them, he said: “Are we serving the ANC or do we have other people who are not represented by the resolutions of the ANC.”

Delegates, he said, must elect a leadership that “mirrors the programme we want”.