- Sep 22, 2005
https://www.news24.com/Analysis/the-fantastical-carl-niehaus-rises-again-20190613It's tempting to describe the latest addition to the ANC secretary general's office as a phoenix rising from the ashes. Nothing – not fraud, public meltdowns, or political irrelevancy – can keep Carl Niehaus down.
He is back, having started work at Luthuli House in January.
The problem with the phoenix description, however, is that he hasn't really risen very far at all. And he hasn't really risen on his own, either: it is the ANC that has come to his rescue every time, like the over-indulgent parents of an errant child.
The other problem is that, according to Niehaus, he never left at all.
"I've always been there. I've been very active… The ANC is not for me like a political party. It's like my family. I can't suddenly put distance between myself and my family," he told News24.
Things came to a head last week when, according to the Sunday Times, Niehaus allegedly helped doctor the ANC's statement in which it said that the party's recent lekgotla had resolved to expand the mandate of the South African Reserve Bank.
Niehaus denied he had any part in it, saying he was not responsible for ANC communications. His actual job description is not exactly specific, and his work is largely administrative and political, he says.
For the past eight-and-a-half years, Niehaus says he has lived in KwaZulu-Natal, "keeping the pot boiling", doing bits of consulting work and writing.
He dismissed the idea that his return to national politics was a comeback.
"Correctly, I went through a period where there were some issues that I had to deal with… But I have always been an active member of the ANC and I've always been fully involved with the ANC," he said.