ANC election list fraud

Party says its Khayelitsha ward 93 councillor will be made to resign as soon as elected

Photo of shacks

Site C in Khayelitsha. Photo: Masixole Feni

By Kayla Molander

28 June 2016

The ANC is investigating fraud in Khayelitsha’s ward 93. This comes after the name of the community-selected candidate for this safe ANC ward, Thando Pimpi, was replaced with another, Ntombebala Mquqwana. Yet a party official says the ANC can only rectify the problem after the August local elections, by having a by-election.

For a week, there were recurring protests in Khayelitsha by residents over the ANC ward councillor candidate list for the upcoming August local elections.

Burning tyres blocked Jeff Masemola Road on the afternoon of 10 June. Four people were arrested on 15 June for public violence during protests. According to several eyewitnesses, the police used tear gas and rubber bullets to disperse the crowd. Police have yet to confirm this. A court date is set for 15 July.

Then in the early hours of 17 June, councillor for ward 93 Amos Komeni says an attempt was made to petrol bomb his home. Luckily, the bomb landed in an old washing machine outside his house and the explosion was contained. No one has been arrested for the incident.

Residents say they elected Thando Pimpi as their representative at an ANC meeting in 15 March. At a second meeting on 26 March, attended by residents regardless of party affiliation, Pimpi was again endorsed by the community.

Somewhere between the March meeting and the list being submitted to the IEC (for which the cut off date was 2 June), Pimpi’s name was apparently removed from the list. Ntombebala Mquqwana’s name was submitted.

The IEC will be make lists public on Friday 1 July.

Pimpi did not wish to comment.

Residents began protesting what they see as fraud. Residents demanded answers, which the provincial committee promised before 9 June. When 10 June came and there had been no statement, residents burned tyres and rubbish on Lansdowne Road.

Protests only stopped after a meeting with the ANC at which the Provincial Executive Committee (PEC) acknowledged that Pimpi’s name was removed from the list fraudulently, and the ANC would investigate.

According to Jabu Mfusi, ANC Provincial Executive Committee Western Cape Head of Communication, at a meeting on 16 June, the PEC promised to remedy the situation. Since the IEC cannot make changes to the list, the PEC has said that if the ANC is elected on 3 August, the candidate will step down on 4 August, and Pimpi will take her place after a by-election. 

In the 2011 local election, the ANC had 92% of the vote in ward 93.

Yonela Diko, spokesperson for the ANC Western Cape, explained that the community does not have the deciding vote in who becomes the candidate. There is an “independent” body of members who decide on a list of four candidates in an order of preference. That list is taken to the community for their input before the final decision is made. The opinion of the community is taken into account, but, ultimately, the decision of who will represent the people is made by the ANC branch.

Diko also confirmed that the ANC is conducting an investigation to see if candidate lists were “changed” after being decided on by the branch committees. The results of that investigation will be shared with the community in a meeting at an unspecified future date.

GroundUp has been unable to contact Mquqwana.