ANC in spat over un­paid ho­tel bill

Mem­ber blows whis­tle over in­voice for R125 000 in Boland branch’s name

Weekend Argus (Saturday Edition) - - FRONT PAGE - CARYN DOLLEY

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.”

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