‘Fund­ing must be trans­par­ent’

The Star Early Edition - - POLITICS -

PO­LIT­I­CAL party fi­nances must be open to pub­lic scru­tiny and sup­port trans­parency, ac­count­abil­ity and the strength­en­ing of democ­racy, ANC trea­surer-gen­eral Zweli Mkhize said yes­ter­day.

The ANC had, in line with the in­vi­ta­tion of the par­lia­men­tary ad hoc com­mit­tee on the fund­ing of po­lit­i­cal par­ties, made a sub­mis­sion re­lat­ing to the re­view and strength­en­ing of po­lit­i­cal party fund­ing, Mkhize said.

“In our sub­mis­sion and in ac­cor­dance with the ANC’s 52nd and 53rd na­tional con­fer­ence res­o­lu­tions, the ANC calls for the reg­u­la­tion of pri­vate fi­nanc­ing of po­lit­i­cal par­ties, fi­nan­cial trans­parency of po­lit­i­cal par­ties, and en­hanced pub­lic fund­ing for ac­tiv­i­ties that pro­mote and sup­port democ­racy,” he said. The cur­rent over-re­liance by po­lit­i­cal par­ties on pri­vate do­na­tions and the se­crecy that clouded party fi­nanc­ing fu­elled per­cep­tions that anony­mous do­na­tions from “masked sources” sub­verted demo­cratic pro­cesses, lead­ing to a ma­nip­u­la­tion of pub­lic pol­icy po­si­tions in favour of pri­vate in­ter­ests and di­lut­ing the voice of cit­i­zens.

Trans­parency, there­fore, was nec­es­sary to in­crease pub­lic con­fi­dence in the demo­cratic sys­tem and to al­low par­ties to re­main fi­nan­cially sus­tain­able in an eth­i­cal man­ner, he said.

“Party fi­nances must be open to pub­lic scru­tiny and dis­cus­sions be held on the de­sir­abil­ity of do­na­tions from, among other cat­e­gories, for­eign in­ter­ests or com­pa­nies that con­duct busi­ness with the state.”

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