If you want to be an ANC MP just make sure you have no convictions

According to eNCA ANC deputy secretary general Jesse Duarte has stated that so long as ANC candidates for parliament haven’t been convicted of anything, the party isn’t ruling them out of the running.

“Where a person hasn’t been judged criminally, and there’s no decision by a judge finding him/her guilty or has been sentenced to a jail term. There’s very little that we do, in term of the broader perspective that might emerge around particular individuals.”

My Take

There is a lot of stuff other than outright criminality that should preclude somebody from a job in government.

If you look at the SARS inquiry and the firing of Tom Moyane, Moyane wasn’t found to be corrupt per se, whatever motivated his decisions kind of came second to the fact that they were awful decisions.

His results were reason enough to fire him, without getting into any potential corruption under his watch.

Now we have Duarte saying something very telling about the current ANC – that their standard is so low it takes a criminal conviction to exclude candidates from their lists.

What about incompetence? That isn’t a matter of law, that is a matter of whether somebody is capable of doing the job, and Duarte just said, “There’s very little that we do, in term of the broader perspective that might emerge around particular individuals.”

Duarte I don’t think will be found guilty of corruption any time soon, but she isn’t exactly spotless in her own record when we take that broader perspective.

In 2016 she joined Mosebenzi Zwane in questioning the value of the reserve bank’s independence according to IOL.

What we learned last year was that Zwane was threatening the banks’ licenses over the fact that they didn’t want to deal with the Gupta family.  These threats fell flat in part because government doesn’t grant those licenses, they’re granted by the reserve bank which is independent.

Of course if Zwane had the power to revoke Nedbank’s banking license, and he did it, a big chunk of our businesses and people would lose their bank accounts in the ensuing run on the bank. The results wouldn’t be good.

So here comes Duarte in 2016 talking about how the reserve bank’s independence makes things “difficult”.

There is a reason she figures “the broader perspective that might emerge around particular individuals” shouldn’t disqualify those individuals from representing the ANC in Parliament.


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