In the ANC there is a New Dawn of rhetoric about fighting corruption, but there is still the shadowy practice of selling access to the party's leaders - most of them in government - to raise funds. There's a difference in style, but much of the substance of the ANC's annual January 8th gala dinner remains the same.
Dozens of dressed-up guests were made to listen to President Cyril Ramaphosa's speech in the spacious Nkosi Albert Luthuli Hall at Durban's International Convention Centre on Friday night while standing by the doors. They were late and would have disturbed those who were already seated, tucking into their starters of a duo of chicken terrine and smoked chicken breast, served with sautéed carrot florets, pickled broccoli and avocado mousse. Paying guests - there were 2,000, an organiser said - forked out upwards of R5,000 to be there, so they would have wanted it classy. Those with a bit more money could share a table with Deputy President David Mabuza for R500,000 or negotiate a price to dine with the president.
Despite the New Dawn and promises to crack down on shady practices, the ANC continues to make money off charging for access...
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