ANC, Parly mum on Jordan's replacement

Cape Town - The ANC in Parliament and the institution itself could not confirm on Thursday that Nick Koornhof, who joined the ruling party ahead of this year's elections, would be taking up a seat in the National Assembly.

According to reports, he is next in line on the ANC's national list to become an MP, following the resignation of Pallo Jordan.

However, ANC parliamentary spokesperson Moloto Mothapo told Sapa he did not have such information.

"I have not checked who is going to come in... I can't give confirmation of the name of the person," he said.

On the ruling party's National Assembly candidate list, Koornhof is number 129.

Parliamentary spokesperson Luzuko Jacobs, asked if he could confirm whether Koornhof would be replacing Jordan, said he would first check with the Speaker's office. He did so, and responded: "There is no official information in the possession of Parliament about that."

Die Burger newspaper on Thursday reported that Koornhof - who was one of three Cope MPs to resign from the party and join the ANC before the May elections - was preparing to return to Parliament.

It quoted Koornhof saying that Jordan had to first formally resign as an MP, and the correct procedures be followed, "but they [Parliament] have confirmed I am next on the ANC list".

On Monday, ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe said in a statement Jordan had resigned from Parliament and had apologised to the ANC after reports that his qualifications were false.

His resignation followed a Sunday Times report earlier this month that no evidence could be found that Jordan, who goes by the title "Dr", had ever had a doctorate bestowed on him.

Jordan had no degrees or diplomas from the University of Wisconsin-Madison or the London School of Economics (LSE), the two institutions cited on his CV.

He had no formal tertiary academic qualifications whatsoever, the publication reported.

Asked on Thursday whether Jordan's resignation as an MP had been officially accepted by Parliament, Moloto referred Sapa back to the Speaker's office.

"I last checked on Tuesday, and they had not received it [Jordan's resignation] then, so I don't know," Moloto said.