"Mr Mantashe is no longer at the centre of power" - political analyst

On the Midday Report yesterday EWN’s Masa Kekana quoted the ANC Secretary General Gwede Mantashe as saying that he believed the ANC Youth League’s idea for the party to hold an early elective conference was not a bad one.

He also appeared to say the party needed new leadership and a new direction after the local election results. Then later in the day Mantashe spoke to 702’s Xolani Gwala and seemed to indicate an early elective conference was indeed a possibility.

Stephen Grootes speaks to political analyst Ralph Mathekga to understand what this all means and whether Mantashe was serious about an early ANC conference.

I think he has been pushed into a corner here because the ANC Youth league seems to be wielding its power and demonstrating who is in charge.

Ralph Mathekga, political analyst

Mathekga says the NEC post election decision of taking collective responsibility seems to be crumbling.

The intentions of the ANCYL to hold early conference seem unclear, according to Mathekga.

Will it be to remove ten members form the NEC, or will it be a total overhaul of the ANC? It is not clear what the intention is at this stage.

Ralph Mathekga, political analyst

He says they are speaking "different languages", and does not believe an early conference will change much so why not wait until 2017.

If they go into a conference "with knives out", they could come out of it even more divided, he suggests.

It seems clear that Mr Mantashe is no longer at the centre of power. He has had to defend himself against ANCYL using the public media.

Ralph Mathekga, political analyst

It seems like the top 6 of ANC are no longer in unity.

Ralph Mathekga, political analyst
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