He also said he wants the commission to reconsider its widely circulated report.
By Lehlohonolo Lehana.
President Cyril Ramaphosa did not take kindly to criticism from the ANC integrity commission (IC) about his failure to co-operate with the veterans.
It has emerged that Ramaphosa wrote a scathing letter to the commission in which he objected to its leaked report about his alleged conduct.
In a letter dated December 22 that Fullview has seen, Ramaphosa bemoaned that the commission’s report portrays him as a "delinquent" who repeatedly refused to appear for almost two years.
In interviews after the ruling party's annual January 8 statement, Ramaphosa on Saturday commended the commission for taking a hardline against him.
He said: "They chastised me in their leaked commission report and I accepted the chastisement."
However, the tone of his letter to the commission suggests he did not accept the chastisement and wants the report reconsidered.
Ramaphosa's letter comes after a report by the commission was leaked last month in which it airs its frustrations with him for delaying his appearance, citing that the CR17 campaign matter was still before courts.
In his letter, Ramaphosa tells commission chairperson George Mashamba the report misrepresents events that took place before his appearance.
The commission first requested Ramaphosa’s audience in 2018, at the height of the controversy related to his CR17 campaign and the public protector’s investigation into whether he misled parliament about donations from Bosasa towards the campaign.
In its report, the commission said it was disappointed when Ramaphosa said he could not honour the invite as the CR17 campaign funding was still before the courts.
The report quotes Ramaphosa as having told the commission that the ANC needs to accept that campaigning is part of the modern way in which political parties operate‚ but that it has to be regulated.
According to the report he explained that contestation became an issue in the ANC after the dawn of democracy. Before its unbanning‚ people were asked to make themselves available for election but after 1994‚ the introduction of money was linked to access to resources and to government positions‚ among other things.
Ramaphosa said many conferences have taken resolutions on the issue‚ yet the practice has become one in which the use of money underpins leadership contests.
An end to factionalism would require a new approach to leadership contestation‚ he suggested‚ adding that without clear guidelines‚ contestation would continue to occur in the shadows‚ encouraging factionalism.
Ramaphosa also called on the ANC to clearly distinguish between permissible forms of campaigning and those that are not‚ with the intention to ensure legitimacy‚ transparency and accountability.
According to the report‚ the commission maintained a view that raising and using money for individual leadership campaigns at all levels of the organisation should be strictly prohibited.
The matter of the CR17 campaign funds is before the Constitutional Court after public protector Busisiwe Mkhwebane investigated the movement of money raised for Ramaphosa's campaign between different accounts. She found there was merit in suspicions about money laundering.
The high court set aside her report in its entirety‚ and sternly rebuked her for some of her findings. Mkhwebane‚ supported by the EFF‚ then applied to the Constitutional Court to overturn the high court order.
In his bid to rid the ANC of corruption and corrupt-accused leaders, Ramaphosa has repeatedly called on every party deployee accused of wrongdoing or facing criminal charges to appear before the commission without delay, failing which they could face suspension.
He claims he requested a postponement for his appearance, saying he needed his legal battles with the Public Protector on his CR17 campaign to be concluded before appearing and said commission chair George Mashamba agreed.