PARTY

Cape Town Press Club shouldn't accept MPs as members - ANC

Party says Van Dalen's membership symptomatic of an institution founded on questionable grounds

ANC STATEMENT ON THE CAPE TOWN PRESS CLUB

The African National Congress is extremely disturbed by the discovery that the Cape Town Press Club has amongst its members, a person who is a public representative for a political party.

This refers to Mr. Pieter Van Dalen who is a DA member and its representative in the National Assembly. This anomaly is symptomatic of an institution that is founded on questionable grounds given the fact that generally the membership of a press club is a preserve of professionals in the media space who are expected to be objective and non-partisan when it comes to party politics.

What we have now discovered in the Cape Town Press Club is that it cannot be regarded as neutral ground for parties that have no presence in the club. This has been vindicated by the partisan attitude demonstrated by Chairperson of the National Press Club Mr. Yusuf Abramjee and the Chairman of the Cape Town Press Club Mr. Donwald Pressley towards Minister Tina Joemat-Pieterson's protestation against this anomaly.

We would like to take this opportunity to call on both the National Press Club and the Cape Town Press Club to reconsider their position of political parties having a presence in a body that supposedly embodies integrity, neutrality and objectivity. If these bodies continue to operate in this manner they run the risk of alienating themselves.

Statement issued by Jackson Mthembu, ANC National Spokesperson, May 7 2012

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