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Cablegate: Anc Nominations Process Outlined

VZCZCXRO0427
RR RUEHBZ RUEHDU RUEHJO RUEHMR RUEHRN
DE RUEHSA #3764/01 2981443
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 251443Z OCT 07 ZDK
FM AMEMBASSY PRETORIA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 2426
INFO RUCNSAD/SOUTHERN AF DEVELOPMENT COMMUNITY COLLECTIVE
RUEHTN/AMCONSUL CAPE TOWN 4992
RUEHDU/AMCONSUL DURBAN 9300
RHEHNSC/NSC WASHDC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC
RHEFDIA/DIA WASHINGTON DC

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 PRETORIA 003764

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV SF
SUBJECT: ANC NOMINATIONS PROCESS OUTLINED

REF: A. 06 PRETORIA 2545

B. PRETORIA 3328

PRETORIA 00003764 001.4 OF 002


1. (U) The ANC unveiled in detail on 17 October the mechanics
of the nomination process leading up to the party's 52nd
National Conference 16-20 December (see www.anc.org.za). ANC
branches, ANC provincial general councils, the ANC Women's
League, and the ANC Youth League will all meet between now
and 26 November to nominate candidates for what the ANC calls
"Official Positions": President, Deputy President, National
Chairperson, Secretary General, Deputy Secretary General, and
Treasurer General. Candidates for the 60-member National
Executive Committee (NEC) will also be selected. The list
for the NEC must include at least one-third women, but there
is no such requirement for the top six official positions.
(NOTE: Mission will transmit a separate message on delegate
distribution and selection. END NOTE)

-------------------------
STRICT OVERSIGHT PROVIDED
-------------------------

2. (SBU) The NEC has appointed Henry Makgothi, Ruth Mompati,
Mochubela Seekoe, Laloo Chiba, Ben Turok, Benson Fihla, Essop
Jassat, Bertha Gxowa, Rosalia Morutuoa, Makho Njobe, Rashaka
Ratshitanga, and Gertrude Shope as members of the Electoral
Commission (EC) in accordance with Rule 14 of the ANC
Constitution. Ebrahim Fakir of Center for Policy Studies
told PolOff that the NEC purposefully selected older ANC
stalwarts, known for being independent thinkers. EC members
cannot make themselves available for election. An
independent electoral agency -- press reports describe it as
a capacity building NGO -- also has been appointed to oversee
(in conjunction with the EC) the final elections in December.


-------------------------
BRANCH NOMINATION PROCESS
-------------------------

3. (U) The 2,700 ANC branches in good standing as of 30 June
2007 will hold branch general meetings to decide on their
preferred candidates for each of the six leadership slots
(Ref B). A series of votes will be held until only two
candidates remain for each position, at which time branch
members will vote again with the candidate receiving more
than 50 percent of the votes winning the nomination.
Branches also nominate up to 60 names for the NEC. Only
those candidates who receive more than 50 percent of the vote
will be nominated. Completed branch nominations are placed
in sealed envelopes and placed in a sealed box at the
provincial office.

----------------------
PROVINCIAL NOMINATIONS
----------------------

4. (SBU) Provinces will hold Provincial General Councils
(PGCs) to consolidate and finalize nominations after branches
have met. Delegates to the PGC should be the same delegates
who will go on to vote at the national conference. The
process will begin after the independent agency and
provincial monitors open the sealed boxes containing branch
nominations and count all ballots for both Official Positions
and the NEC. According to the ANC, "the provincial
nominations process will be based on a democratic process
that uses the branch nominations as a basis." For example,
for the NEC, the top 60 names should automatically become the
provincial nominees. However, PGC delegates may add or
delete names "that would enhance representivity or other
leadership criteria" for the NEC provided 50 percent of
delegates agree to the change, and for the top six positions
provided, 25 percent of delegates must agree. Voting will be
done by secret ballot.

Q
--------------------------------
GENDER PARITY NOT MANDATORY, YET
--------------------------------

5. (U) According to the ANC's current constitution, the NEC
candidate list must include at least one-third females. If
not, the top 20 females will be added to the list, regardless
of their overall ranking. There is no such criteria for the
top six leadership positions, which are currently held
entirely by men. (NOTE: During the ANC's policy conference
in June 2007, it was widely agreed that the party would amend
the constitution to allow for gender parity in all ANC

PRETORIA 00003764 002.4 OF 002


structures, but this will not affect the current election.
END NOTE)

--------------------------------------------- -----------
YOUTH AND WOMEN'S LEAGUES QUASI-PROVINCE WITH MORE VOTES
--------------------------------------------- -----------

6. (U) The nomination process by the ANC Women's League and
ANC Youth League follows the same procedure as above, but
with National League Nominations Conferences taking the place
of Provincial Nominations Conferences. The Youth League and
Women's League each will have 68 voting delegates to the
National Conference, whereas provinces will send 22 delegates
each (septel). The remaining 3,675 delegates will come from
branches.

-------------------
NATIONAL CONFERENCE
-------------------

7. (SBU) Between 26 November, when provincial and League
nominations are due, and 14 December, the real horsetrading
process will begin, according to UNISA Professor Dirk Kotze.
The independent agency and the EC will compile the top 200
candidates for the NEC (providing for 33% women) and the top
three names for each of the Official Positions. Candidates
may be nominated for more than one position. New names may
be added to a ballot during the conference provided the
nomination is supported by 25 percent of delegates (i.e., at
least 1,000 delegates). New candidates for the NEC may also
be added not to exceed two additional persons per province.

8. (U) Delegates will be notified of the ballot on the first
day of the conference. Delegates "are not bound by their
branch, province, or League and who may be influenced by
debates and other nominations that occur at the conference."


-------
COMMENT
-------

9. (SBU) It is impossible to predict how the election will
turn out based on process alone. The fact that provincial
delegates can override branch wishes could benefit President
Mbeki slightly since he controls many of the provincial
structures. However, voting delegates are free to both
nominate from the floor and vote independently of their
branch, province, or League, which could neutralize this
advantage. Regardless, it appears that both Mbeki and ANC
Deputy President Jacob Zuma will likely appear on the final
ballot. With the Electoral Commission stacked with respected
ANC stalwarts, combined with the outside monitoring agency,
the actual election also will most likely be free. However,
what will influence the outcome the most is the
behind-the-scenes horsetrading -- what will be promised or
threatened and by whom -- that will ensue between 26 November
and 15 December.
BOST

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