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The ANC has opened up its annual January 8 celebrations to spectators, but the number of attendees will be capped at 2,000, the party announced on Tuesday. 

The governing party’s 110th birthday celebrations will be held at Peter Mokaba Stadium in Polokwane.

Party president Cyril Ramaphosa will deliver his fifth January 8 statement ahead of the party’s elective conference, which is set to take place at the end of 2022. The annual statement is the party’s programme of action for the year.

The address also comes at a time when factionalism in the party is resurfacing as factions prepare for the elective conference. It also comes a few months after the ANC lost key metros to oppositions parties in 2021’s local government elections. Analysts and political observers say if the trend continues, the ruling party could also struggle to hold its own in the 2024 general elections.

The ANC’s birthday celebrations are usually accompanied by a weeklong programme, where the party’s leadership interact with ordinary people. It is still unclear if this will take place in January. 

In 2020, the January 8 celebrations were cancelled due to Covid-19 and the 2021 anniversary rally was, for the first time in a democratic SA, held virtually due to the pandemic. 



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