Finance row halts ANC's poll

19 May 2019 - 00:00 By THABO MOKONE

The ANC in the Western Cape has postponed next month's provincial electoral conference as deep divisions in its leadership emerged this week.
At the heart of the battle for the soul of the party in the Western Cape, which has been fraught with factional clashes for years, appears to be control of the party's finances.
It emerged last week that some sections of the party's provincial executive committee (PEC) may have defied an instruction from ANC bosses in Luthuli House to return a R1m donation from controversial businessman Iqbal Survé.
When Luthuli House gave the order, it emerged that provincial treasurer Maurencia Gillion had transferred the amount to the province's six regions.
But some regions said their structures never received the funds, which they said might have been paid into the bank accounts of individual members, suggesting an abuse of party funds.
Gillion was earlier this week suspended over the matter by the provincial working committee after ANC Western Cape elections chief Ebrahim Rasool said he had been misled about the Survé donation.
But at a meeting on Friday of the PEC - in which Gillion and her ally, provincial secretary Faiez Jacobs, enjoy majority support - her suspension was overturned with immediate effect.
In a statement, the PEC said the provincial conference had been postponed from June to September because the party had been unable to do "preparatory work" as it was busy with the election campaign.
But those familiar with the matter said leadership cracks were also to blame for the deferment.
Jacobs' office also created shock waves yesterday when it announced that Lionel Adendorf - seen as a Rasool ally - had been removed as spokesperson.
"All official ANC communications will come from the office of provincial secretary Faiez Jacobs. Comrade Adendorf does not speak on behalf of the ANC," said a statement from Jacobs' office issued in the name of media officer Dennis Cruywagen.
Adendorf rejected this. "The PEC meeting … never made any such decision … I've been appointed by the PEC to be the spokesperson and [Cruywagen] has not been," he said.
Jacobs was not available for comment yesterday.

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