The choice of Mcebo Dlamini for Student Representative Council (SRC) president was not contested within the Progressive Youth Alliance (PYA) , one of the organisation’s leaders said.

“There’s no one who contested presidency, Mcebo was elected unopposed,” Wits Young Communist League secretary David Manabile told Wits Vuvuzela. The Young Communist League is part of the PYA.

Last week, Wits Vuvuzela reported that there was disagreement within the PYA over who should be SRC president. According to one of the PYA leaders interviewed in the article, there was a struggle to decide between Dlamini, Amogelang  Manganyi and Senzekahle Mbokazi for president. There was disagreement over their different levels of experience and ability to carry out their duties.

But Manabile rejected this claim and said only Dlamini was mentioned as a potential president at the PYA’s deployment committee meeting and the following branch general meeting (BGM).

“We adopted recommendations of the deployment committee as they were. The only name raised for presidency was Mcebo Dlamini,” said Manabile.

“Those faceless people you interviewed might have had a different view but rest assured in the meeting we had, no one raised any other name for presidency.”

Sharing the same view, incoming president Dlamini said PYA members who believed there was a contest for SRC president were “lying”.

“There wasn’t any contestation for presidency, the sources were lying. I do not know if they were in the same BGM that we were in,” Dlamini said.

Although presidency was uncontested, Manabile said that PYA members in the BGM, which is the organisation’s highest decision making body, had differences over who would be Dlamini’s deputy.

“We did have different views as to who must deputize him but at the end we reached consensus, we left the meeting united, believing in the leadership that the BGM has agreed upon,” said Manabile.

A deployment committee list seen by Wits Vuvuzela listed Dlamini as president and Manganyi as vice president. The house reshuffled Manganyi to deputy secretary general and Shaeera Kalla from secretary general to vice president. Mbokazi who was initially given CSO and Student governance, was moved to secretary general.

Dlamini said although the vice president and secretary general portfolios were contested, that should not be seen as though “we are fighting”.

“It’s not like we are fighting when we contest. Contestation is fine and is allowed. It’s wrong for people who were in the BGM to witness this contestation and say that there is bad blood,” said Dlamini.