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Task team finds ANC member system was manipulated

Sapa

An ANC task team probing irregularities in local government elections candidate lists found that the party's membership system had been manipulated.

According to the Sunday Independent, the ANC candidate lists were changed and tampered with.(Smanga Mchunu, M&G)

The report showed that in many instances candidates for municipal elections preferred by branches were not selected for no apparent reason, the Sunday Independent reported.

This created divisions, tensions and disillusionment among party members.

The task team, headed by now African Union Commission chairwoman Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, investigated 419 ANC wards across the country. The team handed over its report to the national executive committee at its meeting this weekend.

Before last year's May 18 local government elections, the ANC announced a new process allowing communities to select their candidates. There were several protests around the country when popular candidates were removed from the candidate lists.

According to the newspaper, the candidate lists were changed and tampered with, and unknown candidates were imposed on members.

Some candidates only joined the ANC after they were nominated. The task team also found that government services were withheld from communities that did not select the councillors.

"Certain ward councillors misuse their positions to purge those members of the branch who preferred other candidates and prioritise delivery of services and jobs to those sections of community that preferred them," the newspaper quoted from the report.

“The use of patronage and manipulation of tenders and projects by councillors in order to mobilise support was a frequent feature of the complaints investigated by the task team.

"The task team also came across instances of corruption where councillors demand bribes to facilitate the rendering of services."

It was recommended that criminal charges and disciplinary action be taken. The team also recommended that ANC processes in 125 wards be redone. – Sapa

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