ANC Reviewing Political Party Funding Act not about lack of transparency

The African National Congress’ (ANC) 55th national conference said a call to review the Political Party Funding Act was not an attempt to shirk transparency, nor to be secret about its funding sources.

The party is desperately trying to boost its coffers amid a serious financial crunch that saw it unable to pay staff salaries last year.

National Executive Committee (NEC) member Joe Maswanganyi said new laws to avoid being greylisted by the financial action task force may also have the unintended consequence of further restricting donations.

The party wrapped up its conference in the Free State on Friday morning.

Maswanganyi said the party was looking into selling off some of its property assets, increasing its membership fee, and expanding its investments, to bolster its finances.

But at the heart of the problem, the party believes, is the stringent reporting mechanism through the Political Party Funding Act, which was enacted two years ago.

The conference tasked Department of Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi to review the law.

“Not in a manner that we are going to shut down transparency, we can’t. We have to account to the public. It’s taxpayers’ money. But it can’t be in a manner that it’s repulsive to other sources that we are receiving money from.”

Maswanganyi said recently passed legislation to combat money laundering may also impact foreign donations.

“There was a good intention to pass this legislation. But it has come with unintended consequences.”

Maswanganyi added that even if the act is not amended, the State should increase budget allocations to political parties.


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