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50th National Conference: Resolutions - Role of State and Governance

Programme of action for ANC

Noting that:

  1. The ANC assumed political control of the majority of municipal
    councils in the country by virtue of having approximately 8000 PR and ward councillors
    elected to office in the local elections held between November 1995 and June 1996;
  2. Much progress has been achieved in the transition towards
    democratic, developmental local government and the extension of municipal services to all
    our people;
  3. Many ANC controlled municipalities have, however, in many
    instances simply adopted the manner of operation of the previous white local authorities,
    without taking sufficient steps to restructure budgets; planning procedures and
    administrations in order to meet the basic needs of our communities, and to ensure the
    social and economic development of our communities;
  4. Generally, the ANC cadreship in local government has not to
    the fullest extent possible maximised our political power in transforming the nature and
    functioning of the local state.

Believing that:

  1. The reasons for the under-maximisation of our political power
    in local government can be ascribed to the nature of the local government transition
    process, and the fact that a new vision for a transformed and developmental local sphere
    of government has only recently been forged;
  2. The weakening of our branch structures since 1994, and the
    resulting reduction in accountability of council caucuses, has contributed to our
    undermaximisation of our power in local government;
  3. ANC councillors have not always had the benefit of a clear
    political programme of action to guide them;
  4. The new vision of a transformed and developmental local sphere
    of government should be utilised as a measure to guide our councillors, and to hold them
    accountable to their communities and uphold the principles and political programme of the

This National Conference therefore resolves:

  1. To ensure that:
    • ANC councillors meet on a regular basis as a council caucus;
    • Caucus positions are taken in line with the policy guidelines
      of the ANC and the mandates of the relevant constitutional structure; Caucus positions are
      binding on every ANC councillor, regardless of whether she or he was elected on a PR or a
      ward basis.
    • Every ANC councillor should be properly equipped, trained and
      politically educated for the role of councillor;
    • A mechanism of recall is introduced for PR councillors,
    • Ward councillors who have proven themselves unworthy of ANC
      candidacy could be barred from re-standing on an ANC ticket.
  2. That every ANC council caucus, and every ANC councillor
    individually, shall strive to achieve the following within each municipality:
  • regular reporting and consultation with the local community,
    and local ANC structures and membership;
  • the urgent drafting, consulting and implementation of
    Integrated Development Plans and the completion of land and asset audits;
  • the spatial de-segregation of our residential areas and the
    rectification of the distorted racial and economic settlement patterns in our localities
    in a broad consultative process;
  • the extension of service delivery and infrastructure to the
    poorest of the poor;
  • and the stimulation of social and economic development of the
  • the eradication of gender discrimination within the council
    and administration, the empowerment of women councillors, and the re-direction of
    municipal resources to meet the specific needs of women and children;
  • the empowerment of SMMEs, emerging contractors, NGOs and CBOs
    in regard to the consideration of different options for service delivery;
  • the reorientation of local governments operation to the needs
    and interests of the disabled amongst us;
  • the promotion of local economic development as a key component
    in the attack on poverty and inequality;
  • the drafting and adoption of municipal budgets that reflect
    the imperative to extend and cross-subsidise service delivery to the poorest of the poor;
  • the introduction and maintenance of proper systems of
    financial management; the management of municipal finances in order to achieve
    redistribution, economic growth, sustainability and poverty alleviation;
  • the building of the Masakhane campaign, national unity, and
    the ethos of a progressive constitutional democracy;
  • the collection of service payments from those individuals,
    businesses and communities who can reasonably afford to pay for services received;
  • the promotion of clean administration and the prevention and
    eradication of all forms of nepotism and corruption within municipalities;
  • the strategic appointment of progressive and well-equipped
    individuals to positions within the administration to achieve racial and gender
    representivity and maximum efficiency;
  • the review and repeal of all by-laws and standing orders that
    obstruct the council to fulfil the political programme of the ANC and the mandate of the
  • the application of the principles of cooperative government in
    regard to relations with national and provincial government departments and other
  • the active construction and maintenance of progressive
    relations of cooperation, learning and sharing between municipalities.

Participatory structures of


  • That the ANC-led Alliance led the struggle of all South
    Africans that resulted in the democratic breakthrough of 1994;
  • That the ANC and the Alliance pioneered the representative
    structures of participation and consultation, such as community policy forums (CPF) and
    local economic development forums (LEDF);
  • The serious attempts by counter-revolutionary forces to usurp
    the role of the ANC and the Alliance and utilise these structures against the ANC, the
    objectives of the National Democratic Revolution, and in general for narrow political
    purposes or for economic gain;

This Conference resolves that:

  • All ANC structures must ensure that the ANC and its cadres
    play a leading role in these structures of governance;
  • The ANC prioritises the CPFs to ensure that crime and violence
    are dealt with and the LEDFs to ensure that economic opportunities are opened up for all
    our people;
  • the ANC should ensure that the agenda of these forums is in
    support of the objectives of the NDR and specifically is in line with the Constitution and
    the law;
  • the ANC should ensure that the necessary capacity is created
    to facilitate the involvement of people in these structures;
  • the ANC ensures that special emphasis is placed on ensuring
    that these measures result in the increased participation of rural people, Black women,
    disabled people and youth in these structures.

Policy coordination within

Noting that:

  1. New policies are often set at national level without
    consideration to:
  • organisational,
  • financial,
  • service delivery,
  • human resource capacity,
  • implications in provinces and local spheres;
  • There are gaps in communication of policies between national
    departments and their provincial counterparts, and that;
  • Many national and provincial departments are not monitoring
    the performance of services they deliver;
  • The conference resolves that government should ensure that:

    1. National departments provide clear leadership to their
      provincial counterparts;
    2. National departments cost the implications of new policies and
      phase in implementation to allow provincial departments and municipal administrations to
      incorporate new priorities into their activities and budgets, and further resolves that...
    3. National and provincial departments continually monitor their
      performance against policy and financial objectives;
    4. The Coordination and Implementation Unit in the Presidency be
      reviewed to ensure it fulfils the function of coordinating and monitoring the
      implementation and achievement of national policy priorities. This structure must be
      duplicated at provincial level;
    5. The Cabinet Secretariat should be strengthened to manage
      Cabinet business.

    Accountability for performance
    within the Public Service

    Noting that:

    • Misconduct is widespread within the public service;
    • and There is a general lack of discipline;
    • A culture is evident where individuals lack accountability and
      responsibility for the performance of their jobs.

    This conference resolves that:

    • Measures be put in place within the Public Service which
      ensure fraud, corruption and misconduct can be dealt with promptly; and
    • Such acts must be punished urgently, appropriately and through
      disciplinary procedures.

    Relationship of political and
    administrative heads within government

    Noting that:

    • There is poor definition of the different roles of political
      and administrative heads;
    • Confusion results in good governance being undermined by the
      political activities of administrators; and
    • Confusion may also result in the inappropriate and unwanted
      involvement in administrative activities by politicians;

    This conference resolves that:

    • The roles of the Political and Administrative heads be clearly
    • A protocol is adopted to regulate the relationship and lines
      of accountability between Ministers, Premiers, MECs, HODs, DGs and CEOs;
    • Processes are put in place to ensure that such roles are
      observed by all stakeholders.

    Financial management in the Public

    Noting that:

    In some spheres of the financial management in the Public

    • Staff do not have sufficient skills, and consequently;
    • fraud, maladministration and corruption is often not detected;
    • financial management systems are not adequate to meet the
      challenges of the new model of governance;
    • budgets are not prioritised in accordance with policy
    • the state`s assets are not being managed adequately.

    The conference calls upon government:

    • To develop the capacity of financial and general managers in
      order to maximise the state`s resources in the best interests of the people;
    • and to develop and adopt financial management systems which
      are appropriate to the present model of governance

    Role of Provincial Directors

    Noting that:

    • The role of the Director General in provinces has been to
      serve as Accounting Officer for all provincial departments;
    • The devolution of powers to executing authorities will result
      in the delegation of powers to administrative heads;
    • there is a need for the recognition of provincial departments
      and their heads in terms of the Public Service Act;

    The conference resolves that government ensures:

    The new role of Provincial Directors General should include:

    1. To assist the premier to exercise her/his powers and
    2. to assist EXCO in the exercise of its powers and the
      performance of its functions;
    3. to coordinate the functions of the provincial administration
      and its departments;
    4. to coordinate the administration of national legislation in
      their respective provinces.

    And further resolves that government ensures:

    1. Heads of Department be held accountable for the financial and
      human resource management issues for their provincial depart ments;
    2. Heads of Department be appointed on contract like
    3. All managers in the public service (i.e. Directors and higher)
      be placed on contract as a performance management measure.

    Masakhane Campaign

    Noting that:

    1. The National Masakhane Campaign was launched in February 1995;
    2. The campaign was incorrectly projected as a call on black
      people to pay for municipal services;
    3. The MDM Masakhane Summit of October 1996 as well as January 8
      Statement of 1997, emphasised that Masakhane is about the active participation of our
      people in, and their ownership of, the reconstruction and development of our country;
    4. National government departments; some provincial governments;
      and some municipalities took certain pro-active steps in 1997 to revitalise the campaign;
    5. A vast number of our people continue to suffer from poverty
      and a lack of means to address their basic needs;
    6. A vast number of people, from both the previously advantaged
      and disadvantaged communities, receive and enjoy municipal services for which they refuse
      to pay;
    7. Local government`s precarious financial situation is partly
      because of the unacceptably low level of payment for services.

    Believing that:

    1. Despite successes achieved thus far in the running of the
      campaign, the progress made up to this point does not match the effort that has gone into
      running and publicising the campaign;
    2. ANC structures, and in particular ANC branches, as well as the
      democratic movement generally have not sufficiently organised and mobilised within our
      communities to popularise the core message of Masakhane;
    3. The Masakhane Campaign`s complete success is partly dependent
      on all national and provincial government departments, and all municipalities, combining
      in a concerted effort, to emphasise effective and efficient delivery of services to our
    4. Many white South Africans from middle class residential areas
      do not perceive Masakhane as having any bearing on them;
    5. The Masakhane Campaign needs to be understood as an integral
      component of the process of addressing poverty and inequality in our society; as well as
      building a single South African nation-hood that will bind our communities and society

    This national conference therefore resolves:

    1. To ensure the hastening of delivery of basic services to all
      our people, and in particular the poorest of the poor;
    2. That the ANC, all its constitutional structures and all its
      members, re-affirm and deepen our commitment to the Masakhane campaign;
    3. To ensure that each ANC branch will take up Masakhane as an
      instrument to achieve people-driven development; and that specific attention will be
      focused on engaging the community in participatory budgeting processes at the local level;
    4. To ensure that the campaign is understood as having a bearing
      on each and every South African; black and white, rich and poor;
    5. To ensure that all members of Parliament, provincial
      legislatures, municipal councils, and all employees within national, provincial and local
      government publicly pledge themselves to the full and regular payment of municipal service
      charges; where possible by means of stop-orders;
    6. To call on individuals and businesses who can pay for
      municipal services to do so without fail;
    7. To support individual municipal councils that take reasonable
      steps, where necessary, to compel individuals and businesses to pay for municipal services
    8. To call on each South African to join in a voluntary community
      campaign, such as a clean-up operation, or the building of a school or a clinic; and
    9. To ensure that each and every ANC Member of Parliament, Member
      of a Provincial Legislature and each and every ANC councillor publicly joins in such a
      community campaign.

    Traditional leadership

    Noting that:

    1. The institution of traditional leadership was an integral
      component of the historical form of social organisation of the African people prior to the
      colonisation of the South African territory;
    2. The colonial oppression of the African people, and the violent
      acquisition of land by colonial forces, had an immensely disruptive impact on the social
      forms of organisation of African communities;
    3. The initial colonial forces, and later the apartheid state,
      consistently used the institution of traditional leadership to control, divide, repress
      and rule African communities;
    4. Many traditional leaders were indeed co-opted and corrupted by
      the colonial forces;
    5. As part of the process of colonisation legitimate leader were
      deposed and replaced by substitutes chosen by the colonialists. These illegitimate
      substitutes increased the numbers of those designated as chiefs;
    6. Some traditional leaders played a heroic role in leading
      African communities in the struggle for freedom from colonial oppression;
    7. The strengthening of the Apartheid state and the rapid
      building of the capitalist economy in the 20th century, fundamentally and irrevocably
      altered the manner in which African communities lived, and accordingly the role that
      traditional leadership played prior to colonisation;
    8. The institution of traditional leadership has continued to
      play a role in, specifically, the rural areas of our country;
    9. Women in many traditional African communities do not enjoy
      equal rights in such matters as community decision-making, marriage, divorce, inheritance
      and land allocation;
    10. The lack of clarity on the definition of roles has been the
      primary cause of the friction between certain traditional leaders and democratically
      elected local councils in rural areas;
    11. The ANC was voted into power by, amongst others, the
      overwhelming majority of African people, and that it was mandated to further implement the
      programme of the national democratic revolution within the framework of a democratic
      constitutional state and a Bill of Rights, founded on the principles of freedom, equality,
      nonracial ism and non-sexism;
    12. The vision of an African Renaissance demands of us to
      construct a progressive African state with a democratic form of governance that is
      indigenous to our land and our continent.

    This National Conference therefore resolves that:

    1. The institution of traditional leaders needs to be transformed
      so as to achieve full legitimacy, democracy, and accordingly respect and acceptance by all
      the people of our land; and that as such it has an important and integral role to play in
      the building of our new constitutional order;
    2. While the Constitution entitles any individual to stand for
      political office, the institution of traditional leaders should not enter the
      party-political arena, and should strive to build unity;
    3. Local government in rural areas will be restructured in order
      to achieve a clear definition of roles between elected councils and legitimate traditional
      leaders in a manner that eliminates existing uncertainty and friction, that allocates the
      performance of municipal functions to elected local government; that upholds the principle
      of democratic government and that extends the notion of democratic governance to include
      the constructive role to be played by legitimate traditional leaders;
    4. National legislation should provide for a possible
      "ceremonial" role for traditional leaders in municipal matters and a
      constructive and full role in consultative processes on local development matters;
    5. Traditional leaders have a particular role to play as
      custodians of culture and custom, the promotion of unity, the promotion of consensus
      around development projects and plans, and the administration of justice in democratically
      transformed community courts. These traditional culture and customs should be subject to
      the provisions of the Constitution, in particular the principle of gender equality;
    6. The communal land tenure system be reformed in order to meet
      the following objectives: ensuring the legal recognition of rights by the actual users of
      the land, the attraction of investment to those areas; ensuring that local government can
      access land for development; and ensuring that local government can play the necessary
      regulatory and planning role over land;
    7. An audit be conducted as to the status of women in communities
      where traditional leadership is practiced, so as to ascertain, for example, their access
      to land and the extent to which they are subjected to discriminatory and sexist conduct;
    8. The Council and Houses of Traditional Leaders should advise
      and assist the national and provincial government respectively on matters that have a
      bearing on traditional communities, and that these institutions conduct their affairs in
      manner transparent to the public;
    9. An audit of and research into the current traditional leaders
      is undertaken to ascertain the authenticity of those claiming to be traditional leaders,
      and that those traditional leaders deposed by the apartheid regime be reinstated to their
      previous position.

    Transformation of Local


    1. The great advances made in the democratisation and
      stabilisation of local government since 1994;
    2. That the current system of local government continues,
      however, to be essentially based on what was inherited from the minority regime;
    3. The extreme poverty, inequality and backlogs in service
      delivery in historically underdeveloped areas, specifically in the rural areas; and
    4. The racially and economically skewed settlement patterns,
      spatial segregation and disparities between towns and townships, and the urban sprawl that
      continues to scar the living environment of our people.

    Believing that:

    1. The fundamental transformation of local government into a
      democratic, developmental and accountable component of state is not yet complete, and that
      the current system contains dysfunctional characteristics that are at odds with our
      political principles and programme;
    2. The imminent ending of the "interim phase" of the
      local government transition, and the current drafting of the Local Government White Paper
      process, grants us a unique opportunity to transform the local state;
    3. A transformed and developmental system of local government
      ultimately needs to function as truly accountable, effective, efficient sphere of
      government that plays a key role in the war on poverty, the guaranteeing of equality in
      municipal service provision, and the active promotion of the social and economic
      development, and spatial integration, of our communities;
    4. The transformation of local government must be understood as
      an integral component of the democratisation and transformation of the South African
      state, and the overall implementation of the principles of people-driven and integrated

    This National Conference therefore resolves:

    To ensure that the following objectives guide the local
    government transformation process:

    1. The creation of a developmental, and restructured sphere of
      local government, the formulation of minimum requirements for the establishment of
      individual municipalities, and accordingly a substantial reduction in the number of
      municipalities from the existing number of 842;
    2. A system wherein councillors are sufficiently remunerated and
      assisted administratively, and a concomitant substantial reduction in the number of
      councillors from the present approximately 11,000;
    3. Account is taken of human settlement patterns as the point of
      departure in the design of different types of municipalities;
    4. The establishment of three different kinds of municipality on
      a primary level within the districts; namely urban, rural and amalgamated municipalities,
      depending on the particularity of the locality;
    5. The establishment of a single tier of local government in
      metropolitan areas, with the aim of ensuring a far greater level of integrated and
      co-ordinated planning, service delivery, infrastructure development, and redistribution
      within our metropolitan areas, with the understanding that where necessary, this new
      system needs to be phased in appropriately;
    6. The creation of a new type of district government, to ensure
      integrated and co-ordinated planning, service delivery, infrastructure development, and
      redistribution within specifically the rural areas of our country;
    7. The restructuring of municipal budgets and administrations so
      as to meet the basic needs of our people, in particular the poorest of the poor;
    8. The rigorous implementation of steps to ensure the financial
      health and sustainability of municipal finance generally;
    9. Ensuring that municipalities have the necessary sources of
      revenue to fulfil their functions, and that, amongst others, consideration be given to the
      introduction of an agricultural land tax in the rural areas;
    10. Finalisation of a predictable inter-governmental grant system
      based on a calculation of the equitable share of revenue raised nationally, which should
      take into account the functions local government is constitutionally obliged to perform,
      as well as the differing levels of poverty within our society; as well as the possible
      establishment of national and provincial equity funds to assist municipalities in
      addressing service backlogs;
    11. The strengthening of integrated development planning as a tool
      to achieve integrated service delivery;
    12. That no unfunded mandates shall be devolved to local
      government by national or provincial government;
    13. A clearer definition of roles between national, provincial and
      local government as regards the meeting of basic needs and the stimulation of economic
    14. The establishment of mechanisms by which local government can
      participate in provincial legislative and budgetary procedures insofar as they have impact
      on local government;
    15. A well defined set of procedures whereby national but
      specifically provincial government can intervene in the functioning of a municipality when
      it does not, and cannot meet its constitutional obligations;
    16. The further development of a policy and legislative framework
      defining the role of the private sector and community based organisations in the delivery
      of municipal services in a manner that ensures public accountability and control over
      service delivery, affordability, and efficiency, consultation with all stakeholders and
      the avoidance of job losses;
    17. The restructuring of the electricity industry in a manner
      which does not detrimentally affect local government finances, local government current
      responsibilities to ensure delivery, or capacity to implement credit control measures;
    18. The development of a national tariff policy setting out
      national guidelines for the development of locally adopted subsidisation policies,
      provided that proper consultation take place with other spheres of government prior to
      tariff increases;
    19. The promotion of a system of inter-municipal co-operation,
      aimed at the sharing of good practice, skills, resources and experience;
    20. A more vigorous intervention by municipalities in addressing
      the legacy of racially segregated and economically unviable living environments;
    21. A performance measuring system to ascertain whether individual
      municipalities are restructuring their budgets, planning procedures and administration to
      meet the basic needs of their communities and fostering social and economic development
      within their localities;
    22. The holding of local elections to take place on the same day
      throughout the country; and that if feasible, the election day to be declared a public
    23. The continued combination of direct and proportional electoral
      systems of representation, and the employment of the PR component to ensure appropriate
      levels as regards gender representation;
    24. The empowerment of councillors to politically lead
      municipalities and municipal administrations; the promotion of the principle of collective
      leadership; the clear definition of the role of municipal administration in order to
      ensure accountability to the council; and the merging of the role of the chair of the
      executive council and the mayoral position;
    25. The drafting of a progressive code of conduct for councillors
      and municipal employees aimed at ensuring the implementation of the constitutional
      principles of public administration within local government; and the introduction of a
      recall mechanism as part of such a code of conduct;
    26. The prioritisation of human resource development and training
      for both councillors and personnel to meet the needs of Reconstruction and Development;
    27. The appointment of all CEOs and senior officials on a contract

    Relationship between ANC
    constitutional structures and institutions of governance

    • Recognising the necessity for the ANC to provide political
      direction to the institutions of governance without undermining their integrity;
    • Acknowledging that there is only one ANC irrespective of areas
      of operation; that the ANC and its structures are central to the management and
      co-ordination of all processes of governance and that the ANC needs to be transformed to
      enable it to meet the demands of governance;
    • Notwithstanding that the electoral lists for members of the
      National and Provincial Legislatures have included members of the ANC, its Alliance
      partners and other Patriotic Front and Mass Democratic formations;
    • Realising the legislatures are composed of the directly and
      indirectly elected representatives of our people and provide the institutional framework
      for implementation of ANC policies;
    • Considering that the constitution provides that the executive
      be accountable to the Legislature, and requires the establishment of a participatory
      democracy with interaction with the public and their involvement in the law-making
    • Reaffirming the ANC tradition of collective leadership;

    Resolves that:

    • An ANC Caucus meet regularly in each Legislature and function
      under the discipline and overall political direction of the ANC Constitutional Structures;
    • The Caucus shall be responsible for ensuring that all
      legislation that is enacted conforms to ANC policies and our transformatory objectives;
    • The Caucus shall participate in the formulation and
      development of ANC policies through such policy-making structures as are established;
    • The Caucus shall be consulted on decisions which affect the
    • The appropriate Caucus shall participate in the monitoring and
      evaluation of the deployment of elected representatives in geographic and sectoral
    • All MPs and MPLs including Presiding Officers, Cabinet
      Ministers, Premiers and MECs shall:
      • be required to participate in the Caucus;
      • contribute to the development of ANC policies through
        participation in study groups;
      • be accountable to their constituencies, reporting regularly on
        developments in the legislature and executive;and taking up issues raised by constituents
        and addressing the needs of their constituencies;
    • in their capacity as legislatures assist in enforcing
      financial accountability of all government departments and public funded institutions;
    • the NEC shall make provision for committees with
      representatives of the Executive, the Legislature and the constitutional structures to
      give overall political direction, to provide a forum for consultation and mediation for
      all those deployed to office in the institutions of governance. The NEC shall further
      provide mechanisms for resolving matters that cannot be finalised locally.


    Noting that:

    • corruption may be understood to be the abuse of power for
      illegitimate and illegal gain or profit; whether it be exercised in the private or in the
      public domain;
    • corruption leads to losses in efficiency and opportunity, and
      to increased production costs.
    • Hence, it adversely affects development and, as a consequence,
      results in poverty becoming more prevalent; there are alarmingly high levels of corruption
      in the private sector.


    • that corruption undermines the objectives of the National
      Democratic Revolution;


    • of the political opportunism of the enemies of the ANC in
      defining all mismanagement as corruption; and


    • that the ANC-led government inherited institutions with an
      ethos of corruption and personnel engaged in corrupt practices, functioning within a
      society lacking in morality;

    Therefore resolves that:

    1. The elimination of corruption should be placed high on the
      agenda of the ANC, by ensuring that:
      • branches and members are educated on the various forms of
        corruption, the necessity for its eradication, and the difference between corruption and
      • a nationwide anti-corruption campaign, including a media
        campaign, be initiated; mechanisms be developed to build a link between state intervention
        on corruption, and our movement`s own initiatives and responses to the matter;
      • prompt disciplinary action be taken against any member,
        regardless of office, who is guilty of any corrupt practice.
    2. The government should ensure that:
      • legislation and regulations are introduced to deter corruption
        through punitive measures;
      • steps are taken to review institutions fighting corruption,
      • and to increase their resources and effectiveness;
      • the necessary capacity for financial management is created.

    Human Resource Development in
    the Public Sector


    • The legacy of Apartheid, colonialism and patriarchy in the
      public sector and institutions of governance;
    • The need for training of new entrants in the public service,
      and the retraining of public service managers and other functionaries.

    Resolves that:

    • A comprehensive, compulsory training and retraining of all
      public servants, public sector managers and parliamentary service at national, provincial
      and local government, as well as in parastatals, must be undertaken;
    • This training be tied contractually to a commitment of service
      for a specified period.

    ANC Policy Process


    1. That policy processes within the ANC have been fundamentally
      affected by the ANC`s ascension to office in 1994;
    2. That since 1994, the point of gravity as regards policy
      development appears to have shifted to government and away from ANC constitutional
    3. The recent revitalisation of ANC national policy processes, as
      manifested by the holding of the ANC Policy Conference in November 1997.

    Believing that:

    1. Sustaining a continuous cycle of ANC policy development,
      implementation and monitoring is a critical political imperative for a revolutionary
      movement with a democratic and progressive character such as ours;
    2. The generation of robust policy discussion and decision-making
      processes within the constitutional structures needs to be under stood as an integral
      component of the building of our movement, the empowerment of the ANC cadre generally, as
      well as the preparation of an election platform to contest the 1999 general elections;
    3. Whereas the ANC policy process should not attempt to cover the
      finer detail that government departments need to deal with, the ANC should build and
      maintain sufficient capacity to take the lead in the development of ANC policy to be
      implemented in the central, provincial and local spheres;
    4. We require a system where constitutional structures on
      national, provincial and local levels systematically and constructively relate to
      government in national, provincial and local spheres as regards policy development,
      implementation and monitoring;
    5. Systematic and pro-active discussion and debates around our
      policies with our Alliance partners need to be appreciated as an integral component for
      the advance and strengthening of the Tripartite Alliance.

    This 50th national conference therefore resolves:

    To direct the incoming NEC to take the following steps:

    1. To enhance the depth and extent of ANC capacity to sustain an
      on-going cycle of policy development, implementation and monitoring;
    2. To rally as far as possible all constitutional structures into
      an intelligible and functional system of policy development, implementation and
    3. To ensure continuous and pro-active interaction and discussion
      between the ANC and its Alliance partners;
    4. To place emphasis on re-establishing and strengthening
      networks and links with progressive organs of civil society, NGOs, popular fora and CBOs
      in order to assist and enrich general policy processes within the ANC;
    5. To clarify the role of the ANC Policy Department within the
      above context, as well as its relation to the NEC, NEC sub-committees and within the ANC`s
      constitutional structures.

    Further believing:

    • That whilst Conference cannot adopt as policy a diagrammatic
      aid to a better understanding of the ANC policy process, Conference broadly endorses the
      next set of diagrams produced by the national policy conference referred to above.

    Transformation of
    the State

    • Noting the need for the state to play a developmental role in
      effecting socio-economic transformation.
    • Recognising that the institutions of the state still contain
      some remnants of apartheid and patriarchal culture, ethos and practices. Their mode is
      still geared towards maintaining old discriminatory relations in society.
    • Their personnel need to adopt the people-centred,
      delivery-orientated approach inherent in the developmental state for which we are

    Resolves that:

    • The fundamental transformation of the state be considered a
      priority objective of the NDR.
    • That transformation should be carried through with minimum
      interruption of our ability to continue to administer to the needs of all our citizens;
    • The said transformation be aimed at ensuring state resources
      are marshalled in order to further advance and consolidate gains made thus far;
    • The state should make institutional interventions that bring
      about development and structural transformation in society;
    • A detailed, coordinated programme that implements this vision
      be led by the political structures of the ANC;
    • The NEC ensures that appropriate co-ordination mechanisms are
      set up by the political structures in government to achieve the strategic objective of the
      ANC in relation to the state and its role in governance;
    • The NEC begins a review of the state and all institutions of
      governance that considers:
      1. the extent to which they serve our strategic objectives;
      2. the degree of overlap and duplication;
      3. and designs new appropriate institutions that will ensure that
        the relevant functions of government are managed at the most effective level within one
        system of cooperative governance and administration;
    • The NEC sets in motion a process that determines the
      appropriate standards, best practice models, regulations, departments and staffing to
      carry out the functions of the state in the national democratic revolution.


    Noting that:

    • Governance is about the collective, democratic management of
      our people`s lives, and extends beyond government;
    • Good governance requires the involvement of civil society
      including labour and business in the decision-making and development of society.


    That government take steps to promote participatory democracy
    and the culture of liberation in all institutions of governance, and further that:

    • These steps should accommodate the need for the effective
      involvement and participation of men and women, of those who are not literate as well as
      those with literacy, the rural poor, the working people and the disabled;
    • mechanisms and strategies for determining a clear role for
      appropriate organs of civil society in promoting participatory democracy be devised;
    • resources be made available for the expansion and
      consolidation of democracy.