President Jacob Zuma 
Durban, South Africa — MININGREVIEW.COM — 22 September  2010 – South Africa’s ruling African National Congress has rejected calls from its governing alliance partners to nationalise mines, a top official said at a major ANC policy-setting meeting.

Revealing this here, the official said the ANC would at least discuss the merits of nationalising mines in the world’s largest platinum-producing state during closed-door sessions at its week-long National General Council review session. But the party does not expect any action coming for years, if at all.

“We will debate it,” ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe told reporters, adding that any decision would not come before the ANC’s next major political gathering in 2012, when it also elected its leaders.

There had been speculation that President Jacob Zuma could try to adopt left-leaning policies proposed by allies, including the powerful labour federation COSATU, to help mend strained relations with the group and firm up his popular support.

Zuma risks leaving the meeting in a weakened position if he cannot win back traditional supporters on the left or find new ones among the pro-business ranks in the divided ANC, and that could hurt him over the remainder of his term expiring in 2014.