Constitution of the ANC Youth League, 1944


The name of the Organisation shall be "African National Congress Youth League" hereinafter styled: C.Y.L.



(a) To arouse and encourage national consciousness and unity among African Youth

(b) To assist, support and reinforce the African National Congress, in its struggle for National Liberation of the African people.

(c) To study political, economic and social problems of Africa and the world.

(d) To strive and work for educational, moral and cultural advancement of African Youth.



(a) Officials shall be as follows:- President, Vice President, Secretary, Vice-Secretary, Treasurer and Officer of Organisation and Propaganda (herein styled O.P.O.)

(b) Honorary Officials: Speaker and Deputy Speaker.


(a) President:

(i) He shall preside in the Executive meetings.

(ii) He shall be responsible for due performance of duty by each official.

(iii) He shall supervise the carrying out of the decisions and resolutions of the Executive Committee as well as those of the Conference.

(iv) He shall be co-signatory of all cheques.

(b) Vice President:

In the unavoidable absence of the President, the Vice President shall enjoy the same rights, exercise the same power and discharge the same duties as the President.

(c) Secretary:

(i) He shall call all meetings by letter or any other approved method.

(ii) Shall take and keep the minutes of the Conference as well as of the Executive Committee meetings.

(iii) He shall read the minutes of a previous Conference or meeting and move that such minutes be accepted by the Conference or meeting as a correct record of a previous conference or meeting.

(iv) He shall receive and keep all letters etc. addressed to C.Y.L. and write and dispatch all letters to the press, individuals or bodies but those dealing with organisational matters must go through the Officer for Propaganda and Organisation.


(i) He shall read in Conference or meeting official letters received.

(ii) He shall keep copies of all official letters written unless and until the Executive decides otherwise.

(iii) He shall immediately hand over to the Treasurer all monies received on behalf of the C.Y.L.

(iv) He shall be a co-signatory to all cheques.

(d) Vice-Secretary:

In the unavoidable absence of the Secretary the Vice Secretary shall enjoy the same rights, discharge the same duties, exercise the same powers as the Secretary.

(e) Treasurer:

(i) He shall collect, receive and bank all monies belonging to the C.Y.L.

(ii) He shall issue receipts to all payers.

(iii) He shall lay before the meeting of Conference plans for raising funds for the C.Y.L.

(iv) He shall sign all cheques on behalf of the C.Y.L.

(v) He shall present to the Executive Committee at the end of each year an audited revenue and expenditure account and a balance sheet made out for the year; the same shall be presented to the Conference by the Executive Committee.

(f) 0. P. 0.:

(i) He shall see to it that the true attitude and p8ftcy of the C.Y.L. is well reflected in the press and in public.

(ii) He shall send articles at least once a month to the press unless the executive deems it harmful or prejudicial to the interests of the C.Y.L.

(iii) He shall organise the branches of the C.Y.L. and report in the Executive Committee meetings, in conference and in the press about his organisational activities.

(iv) He shall hand over to the Treasurer all monies that he may receive on behalf of the C.Y.L.



(a) Constitution:

The Executive Committee shall consist of the Officials and five additional members; all shall be elected by Conference. Vacancies shall be filled by co-option by the Executive Committee.

(b) Duties of the Executive Committee:

(i) To promote and implement the aims of the C.Y.L.

(ii) To initiate and speak on measures and proposals and to arrange a definite programme and agenda before Conference.

(iii) To carry out the wishes and decisions of the Conference.

(iv) To report all its activities in every general Conference.

(v) To appoint or elect officials other than the President from among the 10 elected members of the Executive.

(vi) To expel, or cause to resign, any official if it deems it aright in the interests of the C.Y.L.

(vii) The Branch and Provincial Executive Committees shall meet every second week of the month. The National Executive shall meet once every three months. Emergency meetings may be convened at any time.



(a) Provincial Conference will meet twice a year and the National Conference, annually.

(b) Only members shall have the right to vote;

(c) Conference shall discuss anything connected with the C.Y.L.

(d) If the Conference has lost confidence of the President, he and his Executive Committee must resign and the Speaker must immediately conduct election.

(e) Conference shall elect the President and his Committee.

(f) Conference shall be presided over by Speaker or deputy-Speaker.

(g) Conference shall make rules for the running and management of the meetings.



(a) Membership is open to all African men and women between the ages of 12 and 40.

(b) Members shall pay a registration fee of 21- for Adults, 6d. for children under 17, who have read and understood and made pledge to abide by the C.Y.L.'s creed.

(c) Those above the age of 40 may be honorary members with no right to vote.

(d) Young members of the other sections of the community who live like and with Africans and whose general outlook on life is similar to that of Africans may become full members with age limits as in (a).

(e) There shall be a ceremony for admitting new members.

(f) Members above 17 years of age become automatically members of the African National Congress and become liable to 2/6d annual subscription of that body.

(g) Annual subscriptions are due in January of each year and a member

who is in arrears with his or her annual subscriptions for the current year ceases to be a member on the sixth day of April of that year.



(a) Registration Fee 21 - paid by each member on joining the C.Y.L.

(b) Annual subscription per member shall be 2/6d. which is due in January of each year; out of the 2/6d, I/-accrues to the African National Congress and the C.Y.L. retains the l/6d.

(c) Funds may also be raised by donations, street collections, concerts, dinner parties, bazaars.

(d) The Branches are entitled to 6d out of the 2/6d annual subscription of each member.

(e) The National Executive Committee shall appoint, at its first meeting of the year, an auditor.

(f) Treasurer shall appoint a Financial Committee from among the Executive to plan ways and means of raising funds. This Committee shall be answerable to the Executive and shall have power to co-opt persons outside the Executive.



(a) 15 members or more may found a Branch of the C.Y.L.

(b) In any area where a branch of the African National Congress exists, a branch of the C.Y.L. may be established, provided

(i) the finances of the A.N.C. Branch concerned are not disturbed or adversely affected;

(ii) C.Y.L. members shall not pay any additional annual subscription except a registration fee of 21- paid once on joining the C.Y.L.

(c) C.Y.L. members under the age of 17 shall pay an annual subscription of 2/6d to the C.Y.L.

(d) In an area where no A.N.C. branch exists a C.Y.L. branch shall for purposes of finance, be taken and regarded as an A.N.C. branch.

(e) Should an A.N.C. branch be later established in an area described in sub-section (d) the provisions of subsections (a), (b) and (c) shall apply.

(f) In any locality where there exists several branches, a District Committee may be formed from the executives of respective branches to act as a co-ordinating committee, providing always that the approval of the C.Y.L. Executive is acquired.

(g) Each branch shall be entitled to be represented at a provincial conference by one delegate for each 25 members or part thereof; but not less than 15 members. Only delegates shall have a right to move resolutions or to vote.

(h) Each province shall send 1 delegate for every 10 branches to the National Conference and, in addition, a branch may send 1 delegate for every 50 members in the Branch.



(a) The National Executive Committee shall immediately upon election instruct the President to appoint a Working Committee of seven members provided that the said members of the Working Committee are resident within 50 miles radius of the President's place of abode and provided further that where a sufficient number cannot be obtained from the members of the National Executive, the President, with or without consultation with other Executive Committee Members shall have the right to co-opt additional C.Y.L. members to make up the required number.

(b) The Working Committee shall be responsible to the National Executive.

(c) The Working Committee shall be given by the National Executive an outline policy and programme of action and immediately upon receipt of this, the Working Committee shall set to work to carry this or these out.

(d) The Working Committee shall submit the reports to the National Executive once every three months.

(e) The Working Committee shall hold its routine meetings once every month but may meet at any other time should circumstances demand.



If any member wishes to resign from the Executive Committee, he shall give a written notice of his resignation to the Executive except in the case of a vote of no confidence in which case an immediate resignation is the result.



Two-thirds majority of vote by members in a special session of the National Youth Conference shall be required for any amendment or repeal of this Constitution.



If any matter arises for which this Constitution makes no provision, the constitution of the African National Congress shall be used to provide for the necessary information.