The African National Congress has dismissed as "fabricated" a media report on its national policy conference in Midrand last week, reports

The report in the Sunday Times was "wholly and deliberately fabricated", the ANC charged in a statement released late on Sunday night.

"Not only does the report fundamentally misrepresent important resolutions of the conference, it makes false and insulting claims about the integrity and discipline of the ANC's senior leaders," the party claimed.

Under the headline, Mbeki defies ANC, the newspaper reported that President Thabo Mbeki had insisted he could still stand for a third term as ANC president, despite overwhelming opposition from delegates at the policy conference.

However, the ANC described the claim of defiance as "ludicrous".

Conference delegates had been "emphatic" in their support of a united ANC, it said.

"No amount of inaccurate and malicious reporting can reverse the positions of ANC members."

The ANC said there was general agreement at the conference that the ANC president "preferably" be its candidate for the country's presidency, but there was a strong view that this not be made a principle.

It was also resolved that the right of any member to elect or be elected to any position in the movement be upheld.

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