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The cash-strapped Limpopo ANC, which has received R17 million of the R20m allocated for party funding from the Limpopo legislature, has failed to pay its employees for the second time since January.
The Star can on Tuesday reveal that the provincial ANC has left about 16 of its staff members high and dry because it is broke after it allegedly misused its money.
Three well-placed ANC sources and relatives of the affected staff members told The Star at the weekend that provincial ANC employees have not received their August salaries, due on the 25th, and that the party gave them the run-around when they raised the matter.
The affected employees are mainly administrators and other junior and middle managers employed by the party in the province.
Ironically, senior party officials, including provincial secretary Soviet Lekganyane, have not been affected.
This was because they receive their salaries from the ruling party’s Luthuli House headquarters by virtue of occupying full-time positions.
Like any other political party represented in the National Assembly or in any of the provincial legislatures, including the opposition, the Limpopo ANC receives millions of rand of taxpayers’ money in terms of the Public Funding of Represented Parties Act 103 of 1997.
It pocketed R17m from the Limpopo legislature because it won 43 of the 49 seats at the last general election.
In addition, parties receive donations and funding worth millions of rand from businessmen, individuals and companies that usually prefer to have their identities kept secret.
Other sources of income include constituency funds received from Parliament.
But sources say provincial party bosses have left employees to starve.
An ANC source said the problem has affected only those who are paid by the province, and Lekganyane was aware of it.
“Yes, they have not been paid and nobody has told them anything. That is how things are. The same thing happened in January, and they were later paid. It is sad. The ANC just say there is no money, but do not say what happened to it,” he said.
A relative of one of the employees said the party had sent staff members from pillar to post.
“He doesn’t know why he has not been paid. They [ANC] just say there is no money. He is in trouble. Now there is no food at home and he was forced to borrow money for his children to go to school,” said the relative.
Another well-placed source said the employees were “just trying not to be depressed, but it is very difficult for them”.
ANC Limpopo spokesman Makonde Mathivha refused to comment, saying the matter was confidential because it touched employee-employer relations.
“The matter of the employer and employee cannot be discussed in the media until such time you have all parties agreeing to it. Even if they are not paid, we can’t talk about it because these are our employees and we are still going to work with them,” Mathivha said.
He denied that the province had misused its funds: “Misused on what? There is a general statement that anyone who alleges must prove. If they say the money was misused, they must say on what.”
ANC national spokesman Keith Khoza said Luthuli House was not aware that the party’s Limpopo employees had not been paid.
“I do not know. It is a matter that the province must deal with. They enter into contracts with employees, and Luthuli wouldn’t know when they are unable to pay them,” Khoza said.
He said he did not know about allegations that the Limpopo ANC had misused its funds.
And it was party secretary-general Gwede Mantashe’s decision whether Luthuli House would intervene, Khoza added.
Several attempts to get comment from Lekganyane were unsuccessful.
In January, Limpopo ANC employees complained about unpaid salaries.- The Star