Royals in ANC succession fight

By LULAMILE FENI and ZINE GEORGE

The Eastern Cape has become a key battleground for ANC presidential hopefuls trying to garner support ahead of the party’s national conference in December.

While the ANC announced earlier this week that Cyril Ramaphosa would address supporters at Walter Sisulu’s Nelson Mandela campus in Mthatha today, another presidential hopeful, Baleka Mbete, visited Eastern Mpondoland Queen Lombekiso MaSobhuza Sigcau at Qaukeni Great Place a week ago.

Ramaphosa is the keynote speaker at the ANC’s 105th provincial birthday celebrations where premier Phumulo Masualle will deliver a welcoming address.

Former ANC Youth League president Lulu Johnson, an ANC MP, confirmed yesterday that Mbete had visited Qaukeni “where she was grilled about rumours she is being touted as an ANC presidential candidate”.

“She did confirm that she had been approached by ANC members to stand, and she has received blessings during these visits from traditional leaders,” Johnson told the Saturday Dispatch yesterday.

Mbete’s visit to Qaukeni comes a few months after she visited Western Mpondoland King Ndamase Ndamase.

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