A new South African dissent party was born after the force-out of president Thabo Mbeki. The South African Democratic Congress will challenge the former ruling party, the African National Congress. ABC News:
The split took place last month after ANC powerbrokers forced Thabo Mbeki to step down as president.
The new party represents the first major threat to the ANC since it won government in the first post-apartheid elections 14 years ago.
At a national convention at the weekend the new party accused the ANC of undermining South Africa’s democracy.
ANC leader Jacob Zuma has said he was confident his party would win next year’s elections.
The South African Democratic Congress is being led by Mosiuoa Lekota, the former defence minister and ANC chairman.
“We are starting on the basis that we want to become the next government, in the provinces and nationally,” Mbhazima Shilowa, one of the main dissidents and the former premier of Gauteng Province, said Sunday at a news conference meant to trumpet what the convention had accomplished.
Indeed, this weekend may go down in South African history as a watershed, a time when 6,400 delegates from around the nation charted a new political course that loosened the A.N.C.’s grip. Then again, the movement might turn out to be a flop, a lot of batting of wings without any sustained takeoff.