WATCH: Inside the ANC's election 'war room' – proudly brought to you by Bosasa

2019-02-27 06:06

Election "war rooms" for the African National Congress were set up at the Krugersdorp headquarters of corruption-accused company Bosasa in the run up to at least three previous elections, without the party having to carry any of the costs.

It included two local government elections and a national election campaign at an average cost of, according to a well-placed Bosasa source, R2m per election.

News24 has obtained a short video clip of the "war room" set up at Bosasa for the ANC in 2014 which shows a massive screen wall displaying a live map of the election results, TV screens and around 30 cubicles, each with a computer and a telephone.

According to the sources' breakdown of costs , the video wall cost Bosasa in excess of R400 000, the brand new computers and software licensing cost around R450 000 for 32 new PCs and Bosasa picked up the tab for the phone bills, roughly R14 000 a week for four weeks.

Costs also included R210 000 for software development, meals and special refreshments daily for more than 70 volunteers at a cost of roughly R19 000 a day or R570 000 a month, special security additions to secure the offices, as well as payment for the volunteers, which amounted to around R700 000.

Anc , Bosasa

A screenshot of the short video showing the Bosasa sponsored ANC '"war room" and the cubicles where volunteers worked the phone lines ahead of the 2014 national elections. 

Last week, former treasurer general of the ANC Zweli Mkhize confirmed that the party accepted donations from Bosasa "directly or in kind".

This came as he was confronted with a 2014 photograph of himself with a Bosasa delegation, including CEO Gavin Watson, at Luthuli House.

ALSO READ: ANC accepted Bosasa millions for years

Mkhize claimed the meeting was "introductory" and that he regularly met with business people from all walks of life.

At the time, News24 reported that sources claimed Bosasa had donated, conservatively, R40m to the ANC over the years and in the run up to the 2014 national elections, R6m.

bosasa

Bosasa directors (from left) Papa Leshabane, Thandi Makoko, Gavin Watson, Joe Gumede with former ANC treasurer general Zweli Mkhize (centre) and politically connected fixer Sesinyi Seopela (far right) during a meeting at Luthuli House in 2014. (Supplied)

The video of the war room, showing 2014 ANC elections posters as screensavers on the computers, provides further evidence that the ANC's relationship with Bosasa was far closer than the party is willing to admit.

At the time of writing ANC national spokesperson Dakota Legoete, had not responded to detailed questions over the Bosasa "war room", including questions over who managed the volunteers from the ANC, why Bosasa carried the costs for the party and why the ANC did not have infrastructure of this sort already and permanently in place. The questions were sent on Monday afternoon.

Watson was unreachable on Tuesday, while former Bosasa director Papa Leshabane read but did not respond to text messages News24 sent.

READ: Bosasa employees return to work following panic over liquidator's letter

News24 understands that neither Leshabane nor Watson can speak on behalf of the company since the appointment of liquidator Cloete Murray on Friday last week.

Murray was not immediately available.

Bosasa was placed under voluntary liquidation last week following a decision by two banks to close the company's accounts.

The Bosasa board has now been dissolved in accordance with the Companies Act, and Murray is now responsible for winding up its affairs.

On Monday this week, an unknown number of employees received termination notices, sparking a small protest outside its offices.

Bosasa, war room, ANC

A large screen wall with a live elections map inside the "war room" for the ANC elections team at Bosasa offices in Krugersdorp.

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Read more on:    bosasa  |  anc  |  politics  |  state capture inquiry  |  state capture  |  corruption
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