Ramaphosa signs bill to lay bare political party funding

2019-01-22 20:07
President Cyril Ramaphosa speaks. (Jeffrey Abrahams, Gallo Images, file)

President Cyril Ramaphosa speaks. (Jeffrey Abrahams, Gallo Images, file)

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The Party Funding Bill, which is viewed as a step that will improve transparency in the murky world of party funding, has been signed by President Cyril Ramaphosa.

In a statement on Tuesday in response to the signing, the African National Congress said it welcomed the move.  "The ANC has consistently supported the principle of regulating funding for political parties.  We view this as an important milestone in strengthening our democracy and enhancing transparency as a cornerstone of our democracy," the statement reads. 

"We are encouraged that this law is a practical expression of the ANC’s unwavering commitment to the constitutional values of fairness, equity, accountability and transparency. We have no doubt that this law provides the country with an opportunity to deepen our democracy and usher in a new culture of transparent funding for political parties."

The Presidency did not release a statement and Ramaphosa's spokesperson could not be reached for comment.

Ramaphosa is currently at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. 

My Vote Counts and other civil society organisations have been putting pressure on Ramaphosa to enact the Bill.

READ: Concourt ruling on political party funding could prevent more state capture

The Bill was to be enacted at least six months before an election to be in effect for that election.

In terms of the Bill, a donation of less than R100 000 doesn't need to be declared and there is a cap of R15m that one person can donate to a party per year.

The Bill also states that a party may not accept a donation "that it knows or ought reasonably to have known, or suspected, originates from the proceeds of crime and must report that knowledge or suspicion to the [Electoral] Commission".

Section 10 of the Party Funding Bill states that "no person or entity may deliver a donation to a member of a political party other than for party political purposes" and a member of a political party may only receive such a donation "on behalf of the party".

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Read more on:    anc  |  cyril ramapahosa  |  politics  |  elections
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