ANC paid Shivambu's legal fees: Report

By Drum Digital
25 June 2012

The ANC has paid a punitive costs award against suspended ANCYL spokesman Floyd Shivambu, arising from a recent hate speech case in the Equality Court, the Star newspaper reported on Monday.

"We have been funding that case from day one," African National Congress treasurer general Mathews Phosa told the newspaper.

"We [the ANC] fund all the youth league cases," he said.

The case against Shivambu related to an incident in May 2010 when he called political journalist Carien du Plessis a "white bitch" in an sms.

Phosa said he had been contacted by the sheriff of the court about Shivambu's failure to settle the punitive costs award made against him in the case.

"I never phoned the messenger of court, he called me. He said, 'I have a warrant of execution [against Shivambu]' and I said 'no, let's try and do it another way to avoid embarrassment'," he said.

Shivambu told the Sunday Independent he did not know about Phosa's payment, which was made earlier this month.

"No one told me about it. I was not making an arrangement to pay it because I did not owe anybody. No one ever contacted me to tell me that I owed money."

He told the newspaper he would call Phosa to withdraw the payment because he had not made an agreement with him in this respect.

Du Plessis was suing Shivambu for R100,000 in damages on hate speech charges she brought against him following an sms exchange in May 2010.

In the SMS he wrote: "You must learn to respect people. I don't comment on ANCYL issues and please stop being stupid. I wouldn't want to earn respect from white bitches, so dream on."

However, in April they reached an out of court settlement, which included an admission and apology by Shivambu.

Although it contained no monetary component, it stipulated that Shivambu pay Du Plessis' "taxed party and party costs in respect of the trial which was set down for 24 April 2012".

Shivambu was suspended from the ANC and ANC Youth League president Julius Malema was expelled from the party earlier this year after lengthy disciplinary action by the ANC.

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