MANGAUNG – A new internal integrity committee will be the ANC’s primary weapon to fight corruption in its ranks.
The organisation will also introduce a new cadre policy and a special training programme to ensure that cadres can perform the functions they are assigned to.
This was the first decision to be agreed on at the ANC’s Elective Conference in Mangaung. All these new initiatives are based on similar ones in the ruling Chinese CPC party.
As an aside, in Transparency International’s Corruption Perception Index, South Africa was ranked 64th out of 183 countries in 2011. China was 75th.
The new National Executive Committee of the ANC will have three months to set up and constitute the integrity body. This committee will have the authority to remove any member or deployed cadre from his or her position if they have acted unethically or without the necessary integrity.
David Makhura, the ANC’s Gauteng provincial secretary said party veterans whose integrity is beyond reproach would serve on the committee. “This will be our primary weapon in our fight against corruption. It is a very important body and will be able to call anyone in the ANC to appear before it.
“Leaders of the ANC and public representatives who are doing unethical things will be targeted. These individuals must adhere to the code of conduct and the core values of the ANC, and of course the laws of he country.”
The establishment of such a committee was first mooted in 2010 and was reiterated at the ANC’s policy conference held in Midrand earlier this year.
The ANC has adopted a new cadre policy that will govern the deployment of ANC members in the public sector. This policy is aimed at deploying members that are capable and well suited to the roles in which they are appointed.
Makhura said the problem with the current deployment of cadres who are not fit to perform the jobs they have been allocated, stems from the absence of a proper policy. “There is no policy and this resulted in unqualified and unsuitable individuals being appointed into positions,” he added.
The key of this policy is to ensure that a skills assessment is done before ANC members are appointed to government.
“This is an urgent task for the NEC. We need to ensure that our members and public representatives change their profile during the next ten years.”
The ANC will also embark on broad political training for its members.
Febe Potgieter-Gqubule, a member of the previous NEC, said on top of ethical and academic training, all public representatives would receive basic economic and public finance education.
“We send counsellors into municipalities to make major decision on budgets, where they are not adequately prepared to understand the implications of those decisions. We cannot afford that going forward.
“We cannot assign a councillor to be part of a finance committee when they do not know anything about finances,” she said.