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SPEECH ABOUT OR TAMBO SCHOOL OF LEADERSHIP: at the Launch of OR Tambo School of Leadership 11 April 2019, Gallagher Estate, Midrand Delivered by Dr David Masondo (Founding Principal)

President of the ANC and President of the Republic of South Africa, Cde Cyril Ramaphosa
Chairperson of the Board of the OR Tambo School of Leadership, Cde Kgalema Motlanthe,
Former State and ANC President, Cde Jacob Zuma,
Members of the ANC National Executive Committee,
embers of the Board,
Cde Dali Tambo, representing the Tambo family,
Leaders of the ANC Women’s League, Veterans League and Youth League,
Representatives of the SACP, COSATU and SANCO,
Representatives of the Progressive Youth Alliance
Leaders of former national liberation movements and fraternal parties,
Members of the Diplomatic Corps,
Distinguished Guests,
Comrades and Friends,

My task is to share a few facts about OR Tambo School of Leadership. Essentially, it is to share with you the nuts and bolts about the School. In doing so, I will say a few words about: who we are, as OR Tambo School? What do we do? How we intend to do what we have been established for? How you can contact us?

Who are we?

OR Tambo School of Leadership is an ANC school. The School is named after Oliver Reginald Tambo who led the ANC in different capacities, including being the longest President of our exiled ANC for three decades. It is a virtual school. We do not have a building yet.

The School is operationally independent, but strategically subordinate to the ANC vision and strategy and Tactics. Legally, the School is a Non-Profit Company with its own Board of Directors chaired by Cde  Kgalema Montlante. The Board members are Alison Bengtson, Aubrey Mokadi, Cassel Mathale, David Masondo, Derrick Swartz, Dipuo Mvelase, Douglas Ramaphosa, Fébé Potgieter-Gqubule, Jabulani Sithole, John Pamapallis, Joshua Maluleke, Kwazikwenkosi Mshengu, Mahlengi Bhengu, Marissa van Rensburg, Ronald Lamola, Sarah Mokwebo, Shafee Verachia , Thandeka Ntshangase and Zingisa Losi.

The role of the School

The primary role of the school is to facilitate political education mainly in the ANC and the democratic movement as a whole.

The ANC-led movement has strong traditions of political education since the 1920s and 1930s – starting with the party schools and political education sessions in various sites such as MK camps, Robben Island, Lenin School in Moscow, UDF and trade unions. Through political education, the ANC-led movement has produced the best leaders and cadres who played a key role in the defeat of  the apartheid regime.

Building on the best traditions and practices of the ANC-led movement’s cadre development, the school aspires to be the Center of Excellence for Political Education for Social Change

The school is intended to massify, institutionalize, modernize and professionalize political education. It will continue with developing cadres for social change as our mission dictates. OR Tambo School will offer action oriented and ideologically grounded political education to change society in all respects.

School curriculum

The School curriculum is divided into three focus areas.

The first area of focus is Strategic Studies and Action, in which we offer thirteen introductory courses, namely (1) Tools of Analysis, (2)Political Ethics and Integrity, (3) ANC Vision, Principles and Values,  (4)Political Ideologies: Liberalism, Social Democracy and Socialism; (5) Political Economy of the Modern Economy and Development, (6) State Forms and Developmental state, (7) South African Constitution, (8) Africa in the Global Economy,  (9) South African History, (10) ANC History, (11) Historical Foundation and Relevance of the ANC-SACP and COSATU Alliance, (12) Gender and Women Emancipation, and (13) Revolutions and Progressive Democratic Movements in State Power.

The second part of the curriculum focuses on Policy Studies and Action. Here we will focus on how policies for the economy, health, education, environment, foreign relations are developed and ought to be implemented. We will also tease out  their ideological and theoretical basis as well as practical implications thereof on how to tackle inequality, unemployment and poverty.

The third part of the school curriculum focuses on Organizational Skills  and Action. This entails practical organizational capacity building in areas such organizational administration, communication (writing and speaking) and media skills, research and data analysis, how to run a campaign, how to chair a meeting, how to draft minutes, conflict resolutions and negotiations amongst others

Who does the school ought to serve ? Who is it for?

We believe that the ANC can only serve South Africa better if it has  well equipped cadres and members who understand how the world works; and how to effect change to make it a better world for all. For this reason, the school’s immediate and main beneficiaries or participants will be drawn amongst ANC members and leaders, ANC-aligned youth and student structures as well as alliance partners (COSATU, SANCO and SACP).  However, anyone interested in enrolling for courses we offer can visit our website:

Curriculum delivery methods and platforms

We intend to roll-out the curriculum in July 2019 starting with ANC Structures. The delivery of the school educational programs will be online and face-to-face interaction between students and facilitators.

University partnership

We have established a solid partnership with the University of Johannesburg. To this end, we have signed a Memorandum of Co-operation around common educational and research programs.

Word of Thanks

I would to thank the ANC Political Education Sub-Committee, ANC NEC and ANC officials for your continuous guidance.

I also wish to thank the OR Tambo Board of Directors for their time they continue to dedicate to the School.

My gratitude also goes to FES and its Director Heinz. Your solidarity is highly appreciated.

My sincere thanks goes to Lorraine Hlapolosa, the Chief Operating Officer of the School, and your team for your hard work to drive us to where we are.

Thanks to all who have made financial contributions towards the establishment of this school.

I must thank the ANC Staff, particularly Communications, International Relations, Accreditation, Secretary-General’s office, Presidency and Treasurer-General and general staff for your support.

Most importantly, I would like to thank ANC members in different ANC conferences for taking the resolution to establish an ANC Political School. Here it is today, please use and support it to the best of your ability.

I would also like to the following South Africans who have provided their respective expertise and personal time to assist with us setting up OR Tambo School of Leadership on a pro bono (a) JP Louw (Umrabulo Editor) for communication (b) Thomas Chauke of Makandu Chartered Accountants for helping the school with all financial issues; (c) Jack Phalane of  Fluxman Attorneys for assisting with legal matters associated with the establishment of the School and (d) Gaba Tabane for facilitating the school’s strategic planning session.”

Whatever challenges, imperfections and teething-problems we might have had in building and executing the mandate of the school, we know that with your support we will make the OR Tambo School of Leadership a Center of Excellence for Political Education for Social Change.

Contact Details and Financial Support

For more details about our  school; and if you would also like  to donate through monthly debit order or once off, visit our website on

I would like to thank all for taking your time to attend the launch. We will rely on your future support. In the spirit of volunteerism and Thuma Mina, please make your contribution in whatever way you can.

Let us make Political Education Fashionable to Renew the ANC in order to serve South Africa, our African continent and the world better !

Thank you! Thank you !

Amandla ! Matimba! Matlaa!

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