ANC suspends Western Cape treasurer over Iqbal Survé's R1m donation
The Western Cape ANC has suspended its treasurer Maurencia Gillion while investigating her role in a controversial R1m donation from businessman Iqbal Survé.
Gillion is being investigated for her role in soliciting the donation, distributing the money, and failing to return it despite being instructed to do so by the party.
ANC provincial spokesperson Lionel Adendorf said the party's provincial working committee met on Wednesday and affirmed the decision of the party's provincial office bearers to return the donation.
Gillion's phone rang unanswered on Wednesday afternoon. She has previously refused to comment on the matter, saying she doesn't hang the ANC's washing in the media.
Ebrahim Rasool, the ANC's elections head in the Western Cape, told the Sunday Times last week that Gillion did not attend a meeting of office bearers that was convened by acting chair Khaya Magaxa last Tuesday. The meeting was to discuss how the money was solicited and what should happen to it.
While that meeting sat, Gillion was allegedly transferring the money to ANC regions in the province.
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The saga began when the Western Cape ANC announced two Sundays ago that Survé's Sekunjalo Group was giving the party financial help to get its voters out to vote, and invited journalists to attend the event where the donation was being made.
But less than 48 hours later, the party announced that it had taken a decision to return the money because it would be inappropriate to accept money from an entity that was implicated in the alleged plundering of the Public Investment Corporation (PIC).
"We appreciate Dr Iqbal as a long-serving member of the ANC. He is one of us but the reality is his name and his company is implicated in the looting of the PIC," said Magaxa at the time. "We would be benefiting in our election campaign from that money. PIC is pensioners' money, we can't take it," he added.
When Survé donated the money to the ANC, he said he expected "absolutely nothing in return" but that for the party it was important to deepen democracy and to get people from outlying areas to go to voting stations.
Rasool told the Sunday Times last week that his provincial comrades had kept him in the dark about the donation and that he attended Survé's event expecting that Survé's other company, Premier Fishing, would be donating food to the ANC and not cash.
"Donors had been donating in kind to the ANC and mostly donating food that the party cooked for its volunteers in the province as it no longer bought them KFC," he said.
He said he was told nothing about the R1m but had read about it in the media.