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Integrity commission should go on

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It must be argued that the commission’s findings should be binding, and not only be restricted to making recommendations to the national executive committee

Picture: Phill Magakoe/African News Agency (ANA)

The ANC’s integrity commission is not a perfect body, but it is the only structure that can assist the party to rid itself of tainted leaders.

Made up of party veterans such as Andrew Mlangeni, the integrity commission was formed in 2012 after the Mangaung conference to help the party deal with corruption within its ranks.

Following its unpopular recommendation that certain leaders should resign their parliamentary seats after the May 8 elections, the commission has become the most despised structure of the ANC right now.

ANC leaders like Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans Association president Kebby Maphatsoe and MKMVA spokesperson Carl Niehaus have slammed the commission, saying it was selectively targeting certain leaders. They have also accused the commission of getting involved in the party’s factional disputes.

However, these allegations should not discourage its members, led by party stalwart George Mashamba, from continuing with its work with vigour. Only leaders with something to hide can question the existence of this structure.

In fact, it must be argued that the commission’s findings should be binding, and not only be restricted to making recommendations to the national executive committee.

Part of giving the commission more teeth includes making sure that the body has clear terms of reference and a defined mandate that regulates its operations. This will give a clear message that the ANC is serious about fighting corruption by stopping the deployment of tainted leaders into public office.

Otherwise, the public will soon realise that the commission’s formation only served the purpose of giving false hope that the party was committed to deal with corrupt leaders.