ANCYL marches to Luthuli House to get 'old people' out

ANC youth league (ANCYL) branches across the country are embarking on marches to ANC head offices, calling for the dissolving of structures where older generations are in positions of power to look after South Africa's youth. 

ANCYL convenor Kolobe Mamabolo told The Citizen that in Johannesburg, the marchers are currently in Gandhi Square, and are making their way to Walter Sisulu House. 

Mamabolo said the ANC is led by "older people", and despite the youth league's members having to be between the ages of 14 and 35, many people within the party are overstaying their welcome. 

He explained that dissolving the old structure "is better for the youth… The ANC with old people is not taking us anywhere."

He said the ANCYL's members are appealing for the ANC to "do the right thing, and give the youth what they need". 

"We are saying to old people that they've got too much on their plate, and not enough time to deal with the issues affecting young people. The youth are the voice." 

Mamabolo said that since the Covid-19 pandemic hit, there have been no statements on how the virus has affected the youth, and that issues such as rising unemployment levels affect younger generations. But these issues cannot be resolved if they are not prioritised, he explained. 

"They are not focused. They cannot lead every structure and give it their full attention. We want to give the youth a mechanism to focus on what concerns them. We need the ANC to intervene as a mother body and remove the old people to give the youth a chance." 

The youth league wrote a letter to ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule calling for the removal of all people above 35 years of age, because their continued occupation of their positions is unconstitutional. 

The league also demanded that the national youth task team be disbanded, and to place all youth matters in the hands of their "rightful owners". The task team was established after the league failed to go to conference, and was mandated to take them to conference early this year. 

The letter, signed by 107 youth league members, demanded that Magashule respond by 2 September. 

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