- Cosatu has admitted to receiving payments from the CR17 campaign
- They say they supported Cyril Ramaphosa at the 2017 Nasrec conference
- The organisation insists that there was nothing shady about the payment, however
Cosatu has confirmed that they also received payments from a bank account linked to Cyril Ramaphosa's CR17 campaign.
Cosatu secretary general Bheki Ntshalintshali said they approached the campaign to ask for funds in order to lobby on Ramaphosa's behalf.
They said they did this because they supported Ramaphosa as the next ANC leader.
However, Ntshalintshali insisted that there was nothing shady or below board about the financing, Briefly.co.za has gathered.
"The money we received was never secret," he told Newzroom Afrika.
This follows a report by the Sunday Independent which revealed some of how the CR17 fund spent its money. The report alleges that the campaign made payments to Fikile Mbalula and Zizi Kodwa, among others, although both Mbalula and Kodwa deny that they were paid to campaign for Ramaphosa.
The report has continued to cause political headaches for a number of those involved, particularly Ramaphosa. Specifically, political analyst Dr Somadoda Fikeni says the issue highlights the problem of "money politics" in the ANC.
In a recent interview with CapeTalk's Bongani Bingwa, Fikeni said that disproportionate power within the ANC is wielded by those with money and connections. He said that this undermines party democracy.
Additionally, he pointed out that the allegations of misspending of campaign funds may hurt Ramaphosa's image as a clean governance candidate and a reformer.
"The political and integrity damage is the main one because he campaigned on the basis of cleaning the very corruption he is accused of," Fikeni says.
However, other political analysts such as Dirk Coetzee have pointed out that the issue of campaign payments is a grey area and that there is no clear legislation governing the use of campaign funds. They say that while the CR17 bank statements may be bad PR for Ramaphosa, they are not evidence of any improper conduct.
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