News / South Africa

Warren Thompson
1 minute read
26 Jan 2017
3:54 pm

ANC Youth League launch political campaign against Absa

Warren Thompson

Protests at Durban branch, floods call centres; Absa to consider memorandum from the youth league.

The ANC Youth League has launched its first shot across the bow in the political and propaganda campaign being fought between the pro-Gupta and anti-Gupta factions in the ANC, by marching on the Durban branch of Absa on Thursday.

The Youth League wants Absa to pay back the R2.25 billion it says the bank benefitted from, when the Reserve Bank intervened to assist the distressed Bankorp between 1985 to 1995. This is based on the preliminary findings of a report by the Public Protector that was leaked to the Mail & Guardian a few weeks ago. Absa bought Bankorp in 1992, but maintains the price it paid incorporated this benefit.

Absa was the first bank to close the accounts of the Guptas last year. TV News Channel, ANN7, which is owned by the Guptas, was apparently first on the scene. We are told by people present that there is a large police presence and there has been no violence, but the situation is tense.

ALSO READ:  Mandela put an end to Absa report, says former British spy

In a statement later on Thursday, Absa confirmed that the ANC Youth League marched to Anton Lembede Street branch in Durban “and that our call centres fielded a number of calls in relation to the Public Protector’s Provisional Report.

“The incident at our Durban branch had minimal impact and we were able to continue serving customers at the branch and to field calls from customers at our call centres without disruption.”

READ MORE: LISTEN: Mbeki’s ‘confrontational’ interview with Thuli over Absa bailout 

The bank said it has accepted a memorandum from the ANCYL and “will give it due consideration”.


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