The ruling party has acknowledged that corruption – and e-tolling in Gauteng – are having a negative impact on its image, and its electorate.
The concessions were made in a planning document for the ANC’s National General Council for 2015, in which the party notes that there are political shifts among the population – particularly the middle class.
The documents and resolutions serve as planned talking points for the conference and create a framework for the South Africa the party envisages. It also contains a general overview of the current state of the country, and the ANC’s position in it.
According to the ANC, there remains a strong sentiment for social transformation in South Africa, but some of the “motive forces” in the country no longer consider the ANC representative of that change.
“There is patent impatience with the pace of change – and this expresses itself among the poorest in society as well as some African professionals and youth,” the report said.
Notably, the ANC acknowledged that while the white ‘multi-class’ has remained firm in its support of the Democratic Alliance, it has seen a section of the black middle class – including coloureds, Indians and “a small segment of Africans” – move in support of the opposition party.
This, the party said, was driven by much talked about issues such as the prevalence of corruption and current issues such as Gauteng’s e-tolls, which are influencing electoral decisions.
These “(introduce) an interesting – though still moderate – fickleness to South African politics, especially among the middle strata,” it said.
Corruption is a big problem
In the document, the ANC conceded that “repetitive poor management of allegations of corruption and patronage within high leadership echelons” have undermined the legitimacy of the ANC state.
Over the past few years, a general impression of systemic corruption has been created, specifically from “unsavoury developments” in state-owned enterprises, “strange mechanations” in security and tax authorities and “unconvincing responses” to calls for accountability.
According to the ANC, this calls into question the capacity of state institutions, and opens the party up to opposition forces challenging the legality and legitimacy of the system, and to “disrupt its stability”.
“In brief, both in terms of its formal policy positions, its organisational network in society
and the level of popular confidence reflected in elections, the ANC currently remains the only primary force capable of driving the project of social transformation,” the party said.
“However, this is dissipating. The ANC’s leadership status and role are under threat; and other political forces seek to exploit its weaknesses to dislodge it.”
The ANC will hold its 4th National General Council from 9th to 12th October 2015 at Gallagher Estate, Midrand Gauteng.