Cape Town - The ANC in the Western Cape should pay its rent and settle its debt before devising strategies to win back the province in 2014, says the DA.
The DA announced on Monday that it had paid R4 million in cash for its provincial headquarters on the seventh floor at 42 Burg Street.
“This is the most visible sign that the DA is growing in this province,” said Ivan Meyer, the DA’s provincial leader.
He was responding to ANC provincial leader Marius Fransman’s announcement on Sunday that 5 000 volunteers would be recruited by May to go on a 12-month unpaid sabbatical “to defeat the DA in the Western Cape” next year.
Western Cape ANC staff were nearly evicted from their provincial offices at Sahara House in Thibault Square in November when their party failed to pay its rent.
The ANC also owes the Cape Town International Conventional Centre R1.7m for the provincial conference it held there in February 2011, at which Fransman was elected the party’s Western Cape chairman.
Meyer said the ANC should “get its organisation and offices in order” before planning a “comeback” in the Western Cape.
“The DA is growing by between 20 and 30 people a day in this province,” he said.
“The ANC’s numbers have declined sharply.
“They must first pay their rent and debt before hoping to get people to support their cause.”
ANC provincial treasurer Fezile Calana said the party had made arrangements with the owners of Sahara House about any outstanding rent.
“We are paying our rent and have made arrangements,” Calana said. “About that debt, the DA is putting pressure on the CTICC to take action against us. We are raising funds to settle it.”
Meanwhile, the ANC Youth League has pledged to support the ANC’s provincial leadership in its quest to recruit 5 000 volunteers in a bid to take back the Western Cape “street by street”.
Each of the league’s 91 ward branches in Cape Town would “rally and mobilise” young people to be part of the ANC’s “sabbatical to defeat the DA” in the Western Cape, said Khaya Yozi, chairman of the league’s Dullah Omar (metro) region.
Meetings would also be held with student bodies and ANC branches at UWC, UCT and all Cape Peninsula University of Technology campuses.
“All students will be mobilised to advance the cause of the ANC in the Western Cape,” Yozi said.
“The youth will be an important part of this fight. We must improve young people’s lives through education, looking at health provision and jobs. We will continue advancing this agenda until our needs - of a better life and economic freedom - are achieved.”
Yozi said the league had more than 1 300 members in the metro area alone.