NEWS

Bell Pottinger: The ANC Sticks Its Head In The Sand

The party will not comment on the PR firm's apology and the damage they have now admittedly caused.

07/07/2017 12:32 SAST | Updated 07/07/2017 12:32 SAST
Andrew Cowie/AFP/Getty Images

The ANC will not respond to any questions involving Bell Pottinger.

The party's national spokesperson Khusela Sangoni, when asked for the party's reaction to the public relations firm's apology and the implications their actions have had in South Africa, abruptly put a halt to the conversation.

"We have nothing to do with Bell Pottinger," Sangoni said repeatedly.

She would not take any further questions.

The UK-based company on Thursday apologised for the impact from the work they did for Gupta-owned firm, Oakbay Investments. The company said a review conducted by an independent international law firm, Herbert Smith Freehills LLP, revealed that a social media campaign for the Guptas highlights "the issue of economic emancipation" in a way that the PR firm now sees to be "inappropriate and offensive".

Leaked emails from within the Gupta empire suggest Bell Pottinger helped the MK Military Veterans Association and the African National Congress Youth League in their campaigns to discredit anti-Zuma press and campaigns and Gupta critics.

Bell Pottinger is also accused of using social media to propagate the ideology of white monopoly capital as a diversion from scandals surrounding the Gupta family.

Bell Pottinger said it has since dismissed a lead partner and suspended three others involved. But the Democratic Alliance and Save SA said this is not enough.

They are both calling for full disclosure of all dealings with the Guptas and Zuma.