The ANC has accused Ezulweni Investments of a politically motivated need to cause a spectacle.
This comes after the printing company, which is owed more than R150 million by the ANC for the 2019 elections campaign material, in spite of the Constitutional Court challenge by the ruling party, continued to send the sheriff of the court to attach ANC assets on Monday morning.
JUST IN: ANC officials have this morning prevented the sheriff of the court from attaching assets belonging to the party in line with the recent court order.— The Star (@TheStar_news) December 4, 2023
Picture: Itumeleng English/ Independent Newspapers. pic.twitter.com/lVyj5KZqb8
ANC national spokesperson Mahlengi Bhengu-Motsiri addressed members of the media following the failed attempt to attach its assets after the sheriff of the court was turned away at the ANC headquarters on Monday morning.
“The ANC as early as last week indicated in their communication, that it is now taking the matter to the Constitutional Court which, in effect, postpones the execution of the SCA decision in accordance with relevant legislation.
“The ANC therefore finds it curious that despite our legal team communicating with their counterparts in Ezulweni to stay their execution of the court order pending our appeal, failed attempts were made to proceed with the attachment order. We can only conclude that this is an attempt to create a spectacle where none is warranted,” Bhengu-Motsiri said.
However, speaking to “The Star”, the founder of Ezulweni Investments, Renash Ramdas, said he had expected the ANC would defy the court order of the SCA ruling, resulting in the failed bid to attach ANC assets.
On Friday last week, the SCA dismissed, with costs, the ANC’s appeal against a high court judgment that the party was responsible for the outstanding amount of R150m for election materials in 2019. However, the ANC subsequently applied to the Constitutional Court to appeal against the recent ruling.
The SCA also rejected the party’s recent application to lead new evidence during its appeal in the form of a forensic report, ostensibly done by EMS Forensics into the procurement of the highly contentious contract.
This was after the ANC had gone to the SCA to appeal against the judgment of the Gauteng High Court, Johannesburg, that ordered the party to reimburse Ezulweni Investments’ money used to supply posters and banners for the party. Ramdas accused the ANC of playing delay tactics, adding that sooner or later, the party will have to pay what is due to him.
“This is yet another delay tactic by the ANC. The ANC has lost every case in court and this is their last card that they are using. We knew that they were going to come out with this. But the fact of the matter is that this matter is not a Constitutional Court matter. Legally, they are allowed to exhaust every opportunity.
“Our legal team is going to oppose their application to the Constitutional Court. Yes, the sheriff was not allowed to attach anything, we knew that from the beginning, but we are prepared to go all the way, and we will oppose the appeal to the Concourt,” Ramdas said.
Ramdas said, after having had to wait for more than four years to be paid, they are hopeful that the ANC will be forced to pay or face liquidation before the elections.
“They have been making promises and negotiating in bad faith. They have used every trick in the book… Refusing the sheriff of the court is contempt of court, but because they have lodged an appeal with the Constitutional Court, we are legally unable to attach pending the outcome of the Concourt. We will come back again at a later stage. For now they have managed to save the day,” he said.
Speaking to Newzroom Afrika, last week, Ezulweni’s legal counsel, Shafique Sarlie, indicated that the ANC could face liquidation if it fails to pay what is due to his client.
“We can bring in insolvency proceedings against the party, and that does not bode well for a party going into the elections. Arguably, the IEC could exclude it from the elections,” Sarlie said.
On the issue of a possible liquidation of the ANC, Bhengu-Motsiri said she was confident that this will not happen, adding that the party has instituted a forensic investigation over the irregular issuing of the disputed contract.
“The ANC does not stand any threat of liquidation. The ANC is in a healthy and progressive financial position. This is because the ANC also has members and ordinary branch members who want to help save our organisation,” she said.