NPOs are break­ing the law

CityPress - - News - ANDISIWE MAK­I­NANA andisiwe.mak­i­nana@city­press.co.za ZINHLE MAPUMULO zinhle.mapumulo@city­press.co.za

Less than a month af­ter the newly elected Western Cape ANC lead­er­ship pledged unity and promised to re­vi­talise the or­gan­i­sa­tion ahead of lo­cal gov­ern­ment elec­tions next year, it seems to be un­rav­el­ling.

In a per­sonal tit for tat ex­change of letters, di­vi­sions within the pro­vin­cial struc­ture have emerged.

In an ex­change of letters that City Press has seen, a mem­ber of the ANC’s pro­vin­cial ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee is ac­cused of telling ANC na­tional ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee mem­ber Nomvula Mokonyane that the Western Cape ANC would not sup­port Pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma at the na­tional gen­eral coun­cil later this year.

In cor­re­spon­dence with pro­vin­cial sec­re­tary Faiez Ja­cobs af­ter the un­veil­ing of the Clan­william Dam Pro­ject, Danville Smith, the trea­surer of the ANC in the west coast re­gion, ac­cuses pro­vin­cial ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee mem­ber Mag­da­lene Ti­tus of sup­port­ing moves to oust Zuma at the na­tional gen­eral coun­cil.

In his let­ter of com­plaint, Smith wrote that Ti­tus told Mokonyane that the newly elected Western Cape pro­vin­cial ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee was go­ing to sup­port a process to have Zuma re­moved at the na­tional gen­eral coun­cil.

Smith ac­cuses Ti­tus of fur­ther stat­ing to Mokonyane that com­mu­ni­ties were un­happy with Zuma and that even some struc­tures don’t want the pres­i­dent. Ac­cord­ing to Smith’s let­ter, Mokonyane rep­ri­manded Ti­tus for her re­marks.

“I can­not re­call or re­mem­ber that this mat­ter or the po­si­tion ar­tic­u­lated was dis­cussed in any of our branches, re­gional con­fer­ence or pro­vin­cial con­fer­ence,” wrote Smith.

Ti­tus sub­se­quently de­nied this in a let­ter, say­ing she never spoke about the re­moval of the pres­i­dent.

How­ever, she con­firmed that she had told Mokonyane “some com­mu­ni­ties are very un­happy with our pres­i­dent and I even sug­gested that the pres­i­dent should visit those com­mu­ni­ties”.

“I then also sug­gested that if the pres­i­dent and the ANC do not en­gage with those com­mu­ni­ties di­rectly, we might lose sup­port in the next lo­cal gov­ern­ment elec­tions.

“I would, how­ever, in­sist that this dis­cus­sion was pri­vate, per­sonal and be­tween the min­is­ter and I. To sup­port this claim, the con­ver­sa­tion was even whis­pered,” she wrote.

“The com­plainant chose to re­port se­lec­tively on what he heard through eavesdropping as he was not part of the dis­cus­sion and por­trayed the dis­cus­sion as about a sin­gle mat­ter while it was var­ied,” wrote Ti­tus, adding that her com­ments were not made from the stage through a mi­cro­phone but were pre­sented in a pri­vate po­lit­i­cal dis­cus­sion.

This comes as the po­lit­i­cal grapevine is abuzz with ru­mours of a fall­out be­tween Ja­cobs and his boss, pro­vin­cial chair­per­son Mar­ius Frans­man, with ANC sources claim­ing that the re­la­tion­ship be­tween them was strained to a point that Ja­cobs – and pro­vin­cial trea­surer Mau­ren­cia Gil­lion – did not at­tend a meet­ing of the ANC’s top five pro­vin­cial of­fi­cials this week.

Ja­cobs, how­ever, told City Press that he did not at­tend the meet­ing be­cause he was ill.

Ja­cobs said there was no truth to the al­le­ga­tions that he was fight­ing with Frans­man, adding that the dif­fer­ences be­tween them were “mi­nor” and “not ide­o­log­i­cal”.

“We are work­ing to­gether with Com­rade Mar­ius to build the ANC and to bring unity to the ANC in this province. We were in Matzikamma yesterday, where the ANC won the by-elec­tion,” he said on Thurs­day morn­ing.

Ja­cobs added that the group of di­verse peo­ple who were re­cently elected were still try­ing to find each other. Frans­man could not be reached for com­ment. Smith, who wrote the let­ter com­plain­ing about the pro­vin­cial ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee mem­ber’s com­ments to Mokonyane, con­firmed au­thor­ing the let­ter when City Press con­tacted him for com­ment, but re­fused to dis­cuss its con­tents, say­ing it was an in­ter­nal mat­ter.

Ti­tus told City Press that she had al­ways sup­ported Zuma and the na­tional ex­ec­u­tive com­mit­tee and had can­vassed for this lead­er­ship both at the ANC’s Man­gaung and Polok­wane con­fer­ences.

“I will op­pose any at­tempts to re­place the pres­i­dent at any na­tional gen­eral coun­cil and will even con­sider sup­port­ing him even if he is avail­able for a third term as ANC pres­i­dent,” she said.

“The in­sin­u­a­tion and lies spread are hurt­ful, but what did we ex­pect from peo­ple who lost the con­fer­ence and are now mo­ti­vated by bit­ter­ness, ha­tred and jeal­ousy?”

Ti­tus ex­plained that as a coun­cil­lor who works in com­mu­ni­ties in the south­ern Cape, some of these com­mu­ni­ties and sup­port­ers were con­cerned about Nkandla and some of them threat­ened to with­hold their sup­port from the ANC in the lo­cal gov­ern­ment elec­tions. Not-for-profit or­gan­i­sa­tions (NPOs) run by Pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma’s im­me­di­ate fam­ily are not the only ones not com­ply­ing with the law.

Other high-pro­file not-for-profit or­gan­i­sa­tions, in­clud­ing the Treat­ment Ac­tion Cam­paign (TAC) and Equal Ed­u­ca­tion, are just as guilty.

City Press has learnt that the TAC and Equal Ed­u­ca­tion have also not sub­mit­ted their fi­nan­cial state­ments to the depart­ment of so­cial de­vel­op­ment for at least two years.

By law, NPOs are re­quired to file fi­nan­cial state­ments ev­ery year to give the public the op­por­tu­nity to scru­ti­nise the or­gan­i­sa­tion’s donors and how the funds were spent.

News24 re­vealed this week that more than half of the coun­try’s reg­is­tered NPOs had failed to sub­mit their fi­nan­cial state­ments to the depart­ment as re­quired by law. The news wire ser­vice re­ported that five out of the six Zuma-linked char­i­ties were among the thou­sands that were not com­ply­ing.

Equal Ed­u­ca­tion, which fights for qual­ity and equal­ity in ed­u­ca­tion, has not filed a fi­nan­cial state­ment since 2013.

Yoni Bass, head of fundrais­ing and de­vel­op­ment at Equal Ed­u­ca­tion, said as far as he knows, the or­gan­i­sa­tion sub­mits its fi­nan­cial re­ports to the depart­ment of so­cial de­vel­op­ment ev­ery year.

When con­fronted with records show­ing that the group’s last sub­mis­sion was in 2012, he said: “I know that doc­u­ments were sub­mit­ted to the depart­ment early, but I am not sure if they in­clude the two miss­ing years.”

The TAC, which fights for the rights of peo­ple with HIV and Aids, last filed two years ago.

Con­tacted for com­ment, spokesper­son Mary-Jane Mat­solo said she could not get the right peo­ple to pro­vide an ex­pla­na­tion.

So­cial de­vel­op­ment spokesper­son Lumka Oliphant said the depart­ment could not dis­close third party in­for­ma­tion. But she did say “that 87 565 of the 140 513 reg­is­tered NPOs are not com­pli­ant with the pro­vi­sions of the Non­profit Or­gan­i­sa­tions Act”.

The law com­pels the depart­ment of so­cial de­vel­op­ment to dereg­is­ter NPOs that are not com­ply­ing – but the depart­ment has not done this.

Oliphant said it was be­cause of a mora­to­rium im­posed by So­cial De­vel­op­ment Min­is­ter Batha­bile Dlamini, bar­ring the dereg­is­tra­tion of non­com­pli­ant NPOs to help them to com­ply with the act.

PHOTO: LINDILE MBONTSI

NEW BROOMS The ANC’s newly elected Western Cape sec­re­tary, Faiez Ja­cobs, and chair Mar­ius Frans­man speak to the media in Cape Town on Tues­day af­ter­noon

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