Home South African ANC staff plan to haul party to court after salaries not paid

ANC staff plan to haul party to court after salaries not paid

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The party informed employees it would not be able to pay staff salaries on time due to continued financial difficulties, therefore the exact date of payment of salaries was uncertain for the next three to six months

SOURCES within the ANC say they have been left with no choice but to seek alternative intervention as the party allegedly failed to meet its obligation to pay its staff salaries.

In a letter issued by ANC general manager Febe Potgieter-Gqubule, the party informed staff it would not be able to pay staff salaries on time due to continued financial difficulties, therefore the exact date of payment of salaries was uncertain for the next three to six months.

Frustrated employees at Luthuli House said the letter on the salary issue was only sent a week after the party had failed to remunerate them. A source, who spoke to Independent Media on condition of anonymity, said the fact that the letter provided no indication as to when salaries could be expected to be paid was a serious concern.

“This letter is not usable to take to creditors, especially the banks and landlords. It is going to be rejected because it provides no assurance that the matter is being attended to,” said the source.

One of the staffers added that while staff members adhered to the party’s legal employment contractual commitments, the party appeared to have washed its hands of the situation and failed to provide concrete support to staff, resulting in staff credit records being destroyed.

According to the staffer, employees were instructed not to speak to the media or lawyers, and would be suspended if they did so. However, she and other staff were currently briefing their lawyers to take legal action, and also intended to lay criminal charges of fraud against senior ANC management.

“Although there is a sense of fear and intimidation among staff, some of us have decided to challenge our own party and take legal action. We simply can’t carry on like this. We are suffering,” said another staffer.

She claimed the ANC and its management were guilty of incompetence and gross mismanagement, which led to this instability, because the party allowed the financial situation to become progressively worse over long periods of time, and failed to hold those responsible to account.

The source within Luthuli House said the staff’s Medshield medical aid was suspended because contributions were apparently not paid on time.

“This happened throughout the Covid-19 pandemic,” said the source.

The managers apparently did not respond to enquiries from concerned staff members until media houses started getting involved.

Approached for comment, Potgieter-Gqubule said she could not comment on personal issues of the ANC.

In March this year, the party was faced with a similar situation when it failed to pay the February salaries of staff. The same transpired in December 2019 and again in June 2020, when it alerted staff that it would not be able to fulfil its obligation to pay salaries on the 25th day of those months.

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