15 June 2016
The DA today opened a formal case against the ANC in Kimberley for the abuse of state property for campaigning purposes.
This comes after the ANC was last week caught red handed pasting their posters at the government premises on the corner of Matanzima and Lecholo Streets in Galeshewe, where the Northern Cape Department of Social Development’s offices, as well as the Thusong Service Centre and SASSA’s Tlhokomelo local office, are situated.
The abuse of government property for party purposes is in contravention of section 9 (e) of the Electoral Code of Conduct, which prohibits registered parties and candidates to “abuse a position of power, privilege or influence, including … employment authority to influence the conduct or outcome of an election”. Contravention of the Code constitutes a criminal offence in terms of section 97 of the Electoral Act.
It is clear that the ANC is becoming desperate to cling onto power and is abusing public property and resources to assist their struggling election campaign.
The abuse of state resources for the benefit of the ANC is illegal. Public resources are intended for the delivery of services, not for political campaigning. The convenient conflation of party and state therefore cannot be allowed to continue unabated.
All registered political parties signed the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) Code of Conduct, which is in place to ensure that the election campaign is conducted in a free and fair manner, and that the law is respected. At the same time, registered parties bound by the Code may not contravene or fail to comply with a provision of this Code.
The case we have highlighted is currently one of three instances of the abuse of state resources that the DA is currently aware of.
In the first incident, vehicles belonging to the Northern Cape Departments of Education and Roads and Public Works were abused to ferry ANC supporters to and from registration points during a voter registration weekend in the Upinton area. In response to this incident, a question for oral reply was submitted to the MEC of Roads and Public Works, who also oversees the Fleet Management Trading Entity, and is awaiting reply.
The second incident occurred in the Springbok area two weekends ago and again involved the abuse of vehicles belonging to the Roads and Public Works Department. A formal case was opened and the matter was also reported to the IEC.
The DA will not permit the abuse of public resources for ANC campaigning purposes to continue without being exposed and challenged. We have reported the latest incident to the IEC and will continue to act to keep this election free and fair.
DA Northern Cape Provincial Leader
082 383 6914
Shelley De Witt
082 847 1387