ANC seeks more party funding

2014-07-27 15:53
ANC logo (Supplied)

ANC logo (Supplied)

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Johannesburg - The ANC wants more money for political parties and is working on a national law that will govern the funding of those parties represented in Parliament, City Press reports.

ANC chief whip Stone Sizani confirmed this to City Press on Friday.

The matter also featured on the agenda at the ANC’s caucus lekgotla.

“The ANC has already taken a decision to create legislation, a framework legislation for everybody, for all legislatures and local government structures, so that funding for political parties should be such that parties are able to do the work they ought to be doing,” Sizani said.

But the DA expressed reservations, saying the legislation would put further strain on the country’s tax coffers.

Gauteng and KwaZulu-Natal became the first provinces to enact a Political Party Fund Act.

Four other provinces followed suit.

It was reported last year that provincial legislatures had pumped close to R1bn into the coffers of political parties since 2007.

Calculations done by the Mail & Guardian last year estimated that Gauteng, the Eastern Cape, Limpopo and Kwa-Zulu-Natal had allocated a combined R850m to political parties.

At present, parties represented in Parliament receive financial allocations from the legislature, as well as the Independent Electoral Commission, to support their administrative functions and run constituency offices.

They also raise funds from private donors or have investment vehicles like the governing party’s controversial Chancellor House.

On top of this, each MP receives about R12 000 a month to run a constituency office. There are 400 such offices around the country and parties want this amount increased.

DA federal executive chairperson James Selfe said his party would scrutinise such legislation carefully, once it had been drafted, to ensure that the taxpayer was not providing luxury funding to political parties.

“You need to strike a balance between resourcing political parties so they can fulfil a democracy function and give people the opportunity to exercise a democratic choice and, on the other side, making the taxpayer pay for political activity for politicians whose salaries they already pay,” said Selfe.

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  james selfe  |  stone sizani  |  local government  |  politics
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