Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) have threatened its newly elected councilors to remit 50% of their salaries to the party as already agreed or face suspension.
The party’s 761 councilors were, at the beginning of their duty after the August 3 elections, asked to forfeit 50% of their salaries for the first three months on the job to help the party service its election campaign debt.
But recent report from the party says a handful of its councilors complied to the agreement while some others had their payments for August “bounced.”
EFF secretary-general Godrich Gardee had been mandated to issue “correspondence to all provinces singling out the party’s individual councillors whose debit orders had ‘bounced’ for the 50% party levy imposed on all new councillors who assumed office after the 3 August election”.
Mpumalanga Collen Sedibe, also confirmed that the concerned councilors had been sent warning letters telling them to forfeit half their salaries to the party or be suspended.
PayScale revealed that the lowest-paid South African politician, the local councilor, earns about R510 000 per annum.
The party is said to have incurred serious debt during its local government election campaign. The party had to source funds for election material all the way down to ward level because candidates and branches had no capacity to do so.
Hence in a text from the party’s secretary general, Godrich Gardee, the party earlier this month, outlined conditions for councilors, which includes:
- Each councilor shall forfeit 50% of his salary to the organization to pay off election costs (for three months) and thereafter a 10% levy of gross salary;
- No one is permitted to owe the organization this 10% levy, and provincial secretaries should ensure all councillors pay without fail.
Party members were also charged to buy vans and not sedans to use for the party’s campaign for the national elections in 2019, as well as for servicing their constituencies.
Apparently, while some members were willing to forfeit their entire salary, others were not happy about being forced to pay at all, saying this was a full time job, and it was unreasonable to ask anyone to give up half their pay.