The ANC has summarily dismissed Carl Niehaus as its employee, citing an irretrievable breakdown of their employment relationship.
ANC General Manager Febe Potgieter sent Niehaus his dismissal letter on Thursday evening (9 September).
Potgieter had earlier given Niehaus until 16h00 on Thursday to explain why the party should not terminate his employment. This after he invited the media to “witness” him laying criminal charges against the party’s top 6 leaders over unpaid salaries.
In his response letter, the controversial spokesperson of the disbanded MKMVA said the threat to summarily dismiss him was “illegal.” He wrote, “The threat to terminate my employment with the ANC without further notice, and without a disciplinary hearing, is illegal.
“The short notice of a mere two and a half hours to provide reasons why I should not be dismissed summarily is draconian, and most unreasonable. It is contrary to all the laws of natural justice. It is my contention that this is constructive dismissal.”
ANC dismisses Carl Niehaus
However, Potgieter fired back in the dismissal letter. “In your written representations, you have not provided any cogent reasons for the ANC to arrive at any conclusion other than that the employment relationship between you and the organisation has completely and irretrievably broken down,” she wrote.
“Accordingly, this letter serves as notice of your summary dismissal as an employee of the ANC. You can collect your personal belongings from ANC security at Luthuli House tomorrow between 10am and 11am.”
She said the ANC had repeatedly warned Niehaus of his conduct and public pronouncements “which sought to undermine it as your employer,” but he persisted.
“On October 12 2020 and January 19 2021, you were issued with written warnings for behaviour which demonstrated your total disregard, refusal and neglect to comply with the terms of your employment agreement with the ANC and which conduct was inconsistent with the code of conduct and level of discipline expected of staff members of the ANC,” Potgieter added.
Niehaus also faces disciplinary action as an ANC member following his public pronouncements outside the Nkandla home of former President Jacob Zuma in July.
In a televised press conference at the time, he warned of civil unrest if Zuma’s arrest went ahead.
ANC Deputy Secretary-General Jessie Duarte subsequently suspended him from the party, pending disciplinary process, for bring the party into disrepute.
Before his dismissal, Niehaus worked in suspended ANC Secretary-General Ace Magashule’s office, but his role was unclear. He is known as a staunch support of both Zuma and Magashule.