ANC in spat over unpaid hotel bill
Member blows whistle over invoice for R125 000 in Boland branch’s name
A HOTEL bill of almost R125 000, allegedly run up by a local ANC region, remains unpaid after more than a year.
The bill, for a two-night stay at a popular hotel in the CBD, is attributed to the ANC’s Boland region. The debacle has led to much finger-pointing within the party.
Provincial ANC leader Marius Fransman said yesterday he hoped that Jonton Snyman, the ANC Boland regional secretary who was convicted of fraud and who Fransman claimed had concocted a plot to oust him, was not responsible for the bill.
In an unrelated matter, Snyman has been accused of owing a catering company more than R60 000 for food provided three years ago for a programme he ran involving disabled students.
Snyman appeared in the civil claims court in Worcester for this matter on Thursday.
“It’s clear that while Snyman is heading up the Boland and being protected (by other ANC structures) there will always be scandals like this,” Fransman said.
Snyman has denied knowledge of the hotel stay and the unpaid bill, and did not respond when asked to comment on the claims of owing money to the catering company.
The hotel bill was run up in the lead-up to the ANC’s provincial conference last year and appears to have involved scores of ANC Boland members staying over and dining.
A copy of a hotel invoice detailing costs racked up dur- ing the stay and dated June 24 last year, was leaked to Weekend Argus via an ANC member.
The bill came to to a total of R124 250 under “company” and “guests” it said “ANC Boland Region.”
The arrival date of guests was May 25 last year and the departure two days later. According to the invoice, 50 rooms, at a cost of R85 000, were booked.
Other accommodation, according to the invoice, totalled R18 700, while dinner for 90 people cost R13 050. A conference room, booked over three days, cost R7 500.
The invoice listed the method of payment as “prepayment”.
But this week a source in the ANC with knowledge of what happened said the hotel had not been prepaid.
The source said a close friend of a prominent ANC member had arranged with a hotel employee that the bill was to be settled “at a later stage”.
This friend did not respond to Weekend Argus’s queries.
The source said an individual working in the Human Settlements Ministry was to have paid the hotel bill at a later stage.
“He’s now under threat of losing his job,” the source said.
When Weekend Argus contacted the hotel this week and quoted the reservation number stated on the invoice, an employee who took the call immediately referred to it as “the ANC Boland matter”.
Another employee declined to comment, saying: “A lot is at stake here.”
The hotel manager did not respond to an official query and did not return calls for comment.
ANC Boland regional chairman Pat Marran said this week it had never arranged for a place for its members to stay.
“Our events will never be outside the boundaries of our region and therefore it can never be the case,” he said. “Members who might have arranged accommodation… might have done so in their personal capacities, which we don’t have control over.”