‘Women sexually harassed by ANC big wigs don’t get justice’: EFF
22 July 2016 - 13:51
The African National Congress (ANC) appears to be at odds with its own head of elections‚ Nomvula Mokonyane.Mokonyane surprised observers when she announced at an election roadshow in Cape Town‚ attended by President Jacob Zuma‚ that embattled provincial ANC leader Marius Fransman was back in his job – despite a sexual harassment scandal hanging over his head."He is back in the ANC as a chair. The issues have been resolved‚" she said.The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) said on Friday that it was "disgusted" by the news that Fransman had been reinstated.Party spokesman Mbuyiseni Ndlozi said: "Fransman’s re-emergence into public space was right next to Zuma which serves as a clear validation of his position despite the sexual harassment case."Fransman was pictured smiling broadly as he shook Zuma's hand during the event‚ a gesture the EFF found was offensive to victims of sexual harassment. "Reinstating Fransman must demonstrate to all women and feminists that the ANC has no interests of advancing a women-emancipation agenda. Women who get sexually harassed by ANC big wigs will never report such crimes anymore because they do not get protected and supported; neither do they get justice‚" said Ndlozi."Instead‚ their offenders‚ like Fransman‚ get to be endorsed by the head of the party. Victims of sexual abuse have no support‚ whist perpetrators get to be publicly validated‚ sharing the stage with the president."But‚ according to ANC spokesman Zizi Kodwa‚ Fransman has not been reinstated.Kodwa told radio station CapeTalk on Friday that Fransman was not currently provincial chairman of the party.“The simple answer is no‚” said Kodwa‚ who could not explain why Mokonyane made the announcement.“I’m just stating the official position of the ANC. I can’t speak on her behalf. The matter is before the national disciplinary committee of the ANC‚” he said.Fransman was asked to “step aside” from politics earlier this year‚ facing a sexual harassment scandal involving his former personal assistant‚ Louisa Wynand.She opened a criminal case of sexual harassment‚ accusing him of touching her inappropriately during a trip to Rustenburg to attend the ANC's 104th birthday celebrations. Fransman has denied the allegation but it was internally investigated by the ANC’s Integrity Commission.City Press published a "leaked" version of the internal investigation report which stated that he should immediately relinquish all politically elected positions he held in the ANC. But the contents of the report were disputed by the ANC.Kodwa said that the report of the Integrity Commission was still before the party’s national disciplinary committee and‚ as such‚ Fransman could not be reinstated.