Jan 19, 2022

Understanding ANC Funding Within The Economy

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At the ANC NEC lekgotla held last week, the party disclosed that it cannot afford to make ‘big plans’ because there is no money.

FILE PHOTO: ANC NEC meeting descended into chaos as members from two faction hurled insults. PHOTOGRAPH: ALON SKUY

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The ruling party’s financial woes are creating a volatile political environment within the country. With confidence in the ANC waning, speaking to Kaya FM, political analyst Mr Dumisani Tembe unpack the party’s funding within the economy.

In August the party was ridiculed for launching a crowdfunding campaign to mobilise members and supporters to donate towards the ANC’s campaigns and activities.

Party spokesperson, Mr Pule Mabe said that the Political Party Fund Act requires the declaration of all donations of R100,000 and above, and the ANC will declare such donations to the IEC.

At the ANC NEC lekgotla held last week, the party disclosed that it cannot afford to make ‘big plans’ because there is no money.

From staff members who haven’t been paid for almost 3-months to Mr Cyril Ramaphosa’s push for an “affordable” roll-out of a basic income grant to combat poverty, it remains clear that the ANC’s problems are mounting.

But what does it all mean in the political landscape and for the average South African?

Former DA leader, Mr Mmusi Maimane used a simple analogy to explain it when he said that it’s basically like the ruling party taking SA voters to a tavern and didn’t pay the bill.

As the country approaches the municipal elections in October, new funding disclosure rules may serve as a deterrent to donors. Mr Tembe explained that donors are no longer donating to the entire party but rather to factions within the party that they are in support of.

Funding the internal leadership race within the ANC and once this is done, they can then fund the party in the forthcoming elections. He explained that it’s not really funding but more investment but there is an expectation of return.

“There is a problem in the country where people fight for state resources and fund individuals instead of factions and the organisation then suffers,” Mr Tembe said.

Is there another way for the ANC to raise money other than crowdfunding?

The ruling party’s biggest challenges are:

  1. A lack of internal discipline
  2. No internal cohesion

As a result the party has ceased to be a collective and instead functions as a set of lobby groups within one organisation that is lacking organisational values.

“How can you have a governing party that is broke?” the presenter asked as this is the question on most South African’s minds.

According to Mr Tembe, a broke ruling party is bad for the country because the party is vulnerable to being captured which in turn will result in the state being captured.

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