Alliance between SASCO and ANCYL breaks down ahead of Fort Hare SRC Elections

BY YOLANDA PALEZWENI - APRIL 6, 2017
Alliance between SASCO and ANCYL breaks down ahead of Fort Hare SRC Elections

The traditional alliance between the South African Student Congress (SASCO) and the African National Congress' Youth League (ANCYL) has broken down at the University of Fort Hare's East London campus where the two organisations will field separate candidates in the upcoming Student Representative Council (SRC) elections.

SASCO has long enjoyed the support of the ANC and the ANCYL on campus, but on Monday it revealed that things were not ok in the alliance at the institution when it recalled three key deployees from the SRC after they decided to contest it on ANCYL tickets.

According to SASCO Branch secretary, Nanilethu Mvumvu, the three are SRC President at East London campus, Sonwabiso Mamkeli; General Secretary, Ntokozo Ntseto; and Deputy Secretary, Dineo Selemela. 

“The 2015 congress resolution simply state that once a member decides to contest the organisation, he/she is automatically expelled from the organisation, and the three has decided to go against that rule,” Mvumvu told RNEWS.

He claimed that among the reasons that led to the break down of the allaince is that the ANCYL has always bullied SASCO "and always demanded things to go their way".

However, the ANCYL claims that the separation was bound to occur as there has been number of disputes and division among the two bodies.

While refusing to state the disputes that led to the breaking down of the allaince, ANCYL secretary, Siphesande Bekiswa, said that the organisation is still debating the issue.

“There are many issues between SASCO and ANCYL, but one thing that is for a fact is we will be contesting next week SRC elections," Bekiswa said. 

He hinted that one of the issues of contestation was that the ANCYL was not happy with SASCO's list of candidates for the upcoming elections.

SASCO has since replaced Mamkeli with acting SRC President, Ahlomile Mafu.

Mafu said they were working to ensure students are still represented and as a result a mass meeting was called to address thems about the new developments and the way forward.

“Students won't suffer, we will catered for more especially those with financial needs and still in need of accommodation,” she said.

Mafu added that the axed members failed to serve the students as they always missed SRC meetings and took students needs for granted. 

Also speaking to RNEWS, University of Fort Hare student, Busisiwe Mgandela, said that the quarrels between the two bodies will affect their chances of winning the upcoming SRC elections against the Democratic Alliance's Student Organisation (DASO), which has won the elections at the university once already, and it is confusing students.

“The timing of recalling the leaders was not appropriate because we already facing serious issues like accommodation and National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) issue, we still need to unite to make sure our demands are met,” said Mgandela.

The SRC elections will be held next week on the 12th of April, 2017.