Thieves steal ANC branch member details

Police are investigating a “mysterious” car break-in which saw the theft of two computers containing confidential information of ANC membership.

The lost membership information involves about 20 branches, which may have an impact on the upcoming provincial congress and the party’s national policy conference.

However, officials said most of the information had been backed up, and was expected to be recovered.

The incident occurred in King William’s Town last Thursday afternoon, when a group of ANC national auditors parked their car to have lunch at a restaurant.

They were on a visit to the province to audit ANC membership for all regions in preparation for the July provincial conference, as well as the national policy conference scheduled for next month in Midrand. ANC provincial secretary Oscar Mabuyane said “someone had smashed one of the windows and stole two computers, memory sticks and a bag containing notes taken during the auditing process, as well as a pair of sneakers which were in the same bag”.

“What remains mysterious is that only two computers which contained information on verification of membership captured in areas such as Chris Hani and Alfred Nzo were stolen from the car.

“This was where the auditors went last to correct registered mistakes identified during preliminary auditing processes,” Mabuyane said.

King William’s Town police spokeswoman Siphokazi Mawisa confirmed yesterday they were investigating a “case of theft out of a motor vehicle. Two laptops were stolen,” added Mawisa.

Mabuyane said indications were that information from about 20 branches was missing.

The burglary comes as preparations for the ANC’s highly-contested provincial elective conference in July reach a peak.

Every branch member counts as this informs the number of delegates per branch who qualify to take part in the conference.

Any missing information will disadvantage the branch, as those who have less than 100 verified members are disqualified from sending voting delegates to the conference.

The Saturday Dispatch reported last week that preliminary audit outcomes show that the Eastern Cape ANC will send the second biggest delegation to the national policy conference next month, as more than 420 branches passed the audit.

In total the province qualifies to send 457 delegates while KZN will be sending 508.

Mabuyane said the auditors have reassured the party that most of the information on the two computers had been backed up.

“It’s just a case of identifying all the branches whose information is now missing, and going back and redoing the corrections at the affected areas,” he said.

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