‘War room was no secret’

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‘War room was no secret’

Ernest Mabuza and TMG DIGITAL | 2017-01-26 06:53:53.0

Shaka Sisulu. File photo.

Image by: MIKE DIPETSOE

The ANC’s election war-room saga continued yesterday with Shaka Sisulu confirming that he worked briefly as part of the media team, but dismissed the claim that it was a covert operation.

He released a statement yesterday after being named in reports as a central figure in the ANC’s so-called R50-million “war room” that was set up to influence last year’s local government elections.

Sisulu said the reports were “inherently false, exaggerated” and intended to discredit him.

“I shall never be apologetic for any contribution I make to the ANC.”

The reports of the ANC’s war room emerged ahead of a court attempt on Tuesday by Sihle Bolani Communications to claw back the money it is allegedly owed by turning to the High Court in Johannesburg.

Sihle Bolani Communications managing director Bolani claims she is owed R2.2-million for work done by her company during the campaign.

She said in court papers the task team was put together by Joseph Nkadimeng, a businessman with ties to the ANC, and Sisulu, whose grandfather was Walter Sisulu.

Sisulu said yesterday that he did “work briefly with the complainant”, Bolani, and claimed that if given the opportunity to represent himself in the matter he would be able to “dispel many of the spurious allegations”.

The campaign focused on enhancing the ANC’s presence on social media.

Chris Vick, a media strategist and journalist, tweeted: “This is just the tip of the iceberg.”

He followed this on Tuesday with: “I was ‘approached’. I declined.

“They were amateurs. We didn’t get into detail – just that they would pay for tweets and retweets. I don’t roll that way.”

Former talkshow host Kay Sexwale told Radio 702 yesterday that claims that she was involved – made on Twitter by someone known as “Razo” – were “sour grapes”.

Sisulu on Tuesday described the amaBhungane report that was published by News24 as “grossly misleading deliberately” but turned down numerous requests for comment – until yesterday’s statement.



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