The Journey towards the 2017 54th National Conference of the ANC has been very interesting and should give an opportunity for deep reflections on organisational renewal. The journey to December must allow those who care to worry about the strength of the organisation that must carry the organisation forward beyond the conference to do so deeply. Because beyond Conference there is an organisation that must continue to inspire confidence to the masses of our people. This means in everything we do now, we must be concerned about the unity of the movement and ensure we defend our gains and the very foundation this organisation was built on.
As we lobby for our preferred candidates, we must not allow wrong elements to find expression and to get entrenched. We need to guard against wrong tendencies that manifest themselves in the name of lobbying for our preferred candidates. We must fight against patriarchy, tribalism, corruption, dispensing of patronage to members in exchange for support, factionalism, anti factionalism - factionalism and purging of those who hold different views among the many wrong tendencies that are eating the soul of the people`s movement.
A lot of wrong things are happening and reproducing themselves in the name of lobbying, and the closer we get to Conference the more the tendencies get intensified. The structure of campaigns, the liberal candidates pages and websites, un-organisational t-shirts and regalia bearing faces and names of candidates and the criss-crossing of the Country obviously come at serious costs hence this offering debunking the commercialisation of organisational processes which in my view creates limitations to democracy in the ANC. The different campaign regalia and material dont only come at a heavy costs but also weaken the unity of the ANC.
I suspect there is a space for lobbyists and campaign managers among us who make a hundreds of thousands of Rands out of hefty campaign budgets mobilised to prepare a vicious battle against comrades who don`t hold the same views. We need to interrogate the role of lobbyists and campaign managers especially those who are not in structures of the movement, what role do they play against the unity of the organisation? I was shocked to learn that there are people who own a fleet of cars branded with ANC colours and logos and use them for mobilisation at a price, so they mobilise masses at a cost and our leaders go to address. Now even mobilisation is tenderised, this is a sad state of affairs for any pro poor revolutionary organisation. The goodwill and brand of the ANC is used by these people who own these cars they hire out to our leaders at the expense of the ANC and its unity.