Posts Tagged ‘democratic alliance’

Maimane confronts ‘puppet’ allegations head on

April 9, 2018

DA Leader Mmusi Maimane confronted racist remarks, alleging that he is not in control of the DA and merely a puppet at the DA National Congress in Pretoria yesterday.

“They even say that I am a puppet of white people and, if we win an election, I will be replaced by a white person.

The truth is that I will never be black enough for them. Because they don’t want black people to think for themselves.

They want black people to remain trapped in the politics of race because this is what keeps the ANC in power,” said Maimane.

He criticized the ANC’s fear of a new generation of black leaders who would reject the ANC’s own nationalism and think differently.

Maimane stressed further that his blackness does not add or subtract from his humanity or define him.

He calls for a new agenda for African liberalism that prioritises social welfare and grows the economy in order to lift the majority of South Africans out of poverty.

 

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The thin blue line and the rising red tide of populism

March 27, 2018

In 2016 the Democratic Alliance (DA) achieved what was previously thought to be impossible: the political disruption of South African politics, says Athol Trollip.

Led by a capable national leadership team, elected at its elective conference one year earlier, the DA won a two thirds majority in Cape Town and emerged to lead coalition governments in Johannesburg, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay (where the DA received the largest share of the vote outside of Cape Town).

This was a resounding victory by any measure and an outright rejection of Jacob Zuma’s ANC.

In Nelson Mandela Bay the DA was elected on an offer of stopping corruption, improving service delivery and tackling unemployment.

In 19 months we have made significant progress under difficult circumstances. Achieving progress that lasts, takes time, even more so if its predecessor was chaos. Real progress is only possible when we lead with our values.

Named after our iconic President, Nelson Mandela, it was the very abandonment of his principles and values by former ANC Metro administrations and their cronies that brought Nelson Mandela Bay to its knees.

“Something is not right,” Crispian Olver writes in the opening chapter of How to Steal a City. Indeed something was terribly wrong; dishonesty, sleaze, fraud and corruption. It is precisely this that voters rejected in the 2016 election.

The abandonment of a universal set of values and principles opened the flood gates for unprecedented greed and ultimately the capture of the state for which the ANC was punished.

If political parties do not stand up for their values they will fall, and fall hard. This the voters will guarantee as they did in the biggest metros in the country in 2016.

This is an important lesson for the DA as we return to our tri-annual elective conference to elect a national leadership that will have to navigate a new political terrain post Jacob Zuma. This new terrain will require our political compass to be calibrated according to our values and principles, our true north must be our core purpose…

I firmly believe that the DA remains the only political party that is home to all South Africans from all walks of life.

We are the most diverse and representative party because people are attracted to our values of freedom, fairness and opportunity and our genuine commitment to redress, reconciliation, delivery and diversity.

We have experienced organic growth in all communities because we have stayed true to our values and been guided by our principles.

I have personally witnessed and nurtured the growth of the DA for 25 years and never shied away from a contest where I felt strongly about the future of the party. I’ve often said that the battle for integrity is worth it, even if you stand alone.

My credentials in this regard are well documented. I have faced defeat but never felt defeated because my commitment to our cause is underpinned by our values. I mean it when I say that when we lead with our values we win, even if it appears as though we’ve lost.

That is why now is not the time to succumb to the pressure of other political parties who seek to define us according to their own values and principles. This begins with the tabling of a motion of no confidence in me as executive mayor of Nelson Mandela Bay, because of the colour of my skin and our party’s position on land.

The EFF would have us abandon our principled positions on property rights and non-racialism in their bid to oust me and my colleagues in Nelson Mandela Bay. If we were to concede it would signal the death of the DA. In these difficult times we must stay true to our cause because it is an honourable and worthy one.

So, in Nelson Mandela Bay I will hold the thin blue line and stay true to these important principles as we stare down the rising red tide of populism that threatens to engulf our party as it has the ANC.

Trollip is executive mayor of Nelson Mandela Bay.

DA to formally charge de Lille in the interest of good governance

January 15, 2018

The Federal Executive of the Democratic Alliance met yesterday to deliberate on matters relating to the Mayor of Cape Town, Patricia de Lille.

In its deliberations, the Federal Executive was guided by the best interests of all the people of Cape Town and by our deep and abiding commitment to delivering clean, accountable and transparent government wherever we may govern.

The true test of any political party is what it does when confronted with serious allegations of political dysfunction, maladministration and governance failures.

Amongst a number of issues arising, the Federal Executive deliberated on the following aspects:

  • Evidence of deep divisions within the caucus of the City of Cape Town. These divisions were shown to have been a result of the Mayor’s particular leadership style which is overwhelmingly viewed as unnecessarily autocratic, divisive and misaligned to democratic principles of openness and tolerance. It became clear that this had contributed to creating a paralysing culture of fear among both elected public representatives, as well as officials in the City of Cape Town. The consequence of which was a material impact on rational, accountable and transparent decision making in the City.
  • The organisational restructuring led by the Mayor appears to have been used in certain instances to remove experienced officials in the City, with a view to replacing them with officials whose loyalty to the Mayor was prized over all else.
  • Under the Mayor’s leadership key decision making structures had been stripped of powers and functions, seemingly with a view to centralise overwhelming power in the Mayor, undercutting the authority and democratically enshrined role of the Mayoral committee, portfolio committees and sub-councils, as well as the DA’s commitment to bringing government as close to the people as possible.
  • It appears that the Mayor interfered with and manipulated appointments at a senior management level within the City and some of its entities.
  • A growing sense of a loss of confidence by the caucus in the leadership of the Mayor which affected governance in the City negatively and undermined effective service delivery.
  • In particular, the Mayor’s often irrational, autocratic and divisive leadership style was seen as especially problematic, and it was claimed saw her often overstep the boundaries of her authority and personally direct operational decisions such as the specification, awarding and timing of tenders, in an ad-hoc and highly inappropriate fashion.
  • This, in turn, had created the real risk of an impending loss of senior and skilled technical staff from the organisation, as a result of often intolerable working conditions for professionally qualified and legally mandated officials.
  • The claims made in a Protected Disclosure by Craig Kesson, the Executive Director in the Directorate of the Mayor, as it related to allegations of maladministration and serious governance irregularities, and the Mayor’s alleged role therein.

After careful consideration of these primary points of concern, the Federal Executive at the time asked the Mayor to provide reasons as to why she should not resign.

The need to act with dispatch was heightened by the prolonged drought and our desire to ensure that there was unity of purpose within both the political and administrative leadership of the City to effectively govern Cape Town and respond to this issue.

The DA is determined that we do everything possible to bring unity of purpose and cohesion to the City of Cape Town.

To build on the successes that have previously been achieved, and most importantly, in the current context do everything we can to manage the current water shortages, in collaboration with provincial and national government, who share the responsibility of ensuring that everything humanly possible is done to ensure that Cape Town does not run out of water.

This must and will be the most pressing priority of the administration of Cape Town and thus it is essential that we act swiftly.

The Federal Executive has thus resolved that the Mayor be formally charged and investigated by the Party’s Federal Legal Commission.

Council to clamp down on car guards

October 25, 2016

The days of illegal car guards are drawing to an end in Jeffreys Bay.

At a meeting with car guards at the Jeffreys Bay Police Station it was explained to them that it is illegal to be an unregistered and unqualified car guard in the Kouga.

Jeffreys Bay aloes

“We will facilitate car guards getting the basic security training through PSIRA, so that we can upgrade those who qualify to become sanctioned parking attendants in Jeffreys Bay,” said Kouga Executive Mayor Elza Van Lingen.

Once this process has been completed, any unregistered car guard will be fined R350 for being in contravention of the by-law and risks having to appear in court should they ignore the fine.

“I have instructed the Kouga Law Enforcement to start issuing fines to drunk car guards as an interim measure,” added Van Lingen.

During the meeting at the Police Station, which was attended by the main security companies in Jeffreys Bay, as well as the Kouga Municipality, it was discovered that a car guard can earn between R 80 to R 350 per day.

The feeling amongst the car guards was that they welcome the initiative and that they were happy being allocated a particular zone that they will be held responsible for.

“The Council gets regular complaints about hawkers and car guards and we will find solutions to the problems facing us,” said Van Lingen.

“We will start by ensuring only registered hawkers and parking attendants will be allowed to operate in designated zones in Jeffreys Bay.

“Once the project is up and running in Jeffreys Bay, we will look at expanding it to other towns in Kouga,” she concluded.

Vote DA for CHANGE that will move South Africa forward again

April 18, 2016

The ANC has changed. It is no longer the party of Nelson Mandela.

nelson mandela

Unemployment is rising, corruption that steals from the poor is rampant, and many people are denied the services they need to live a life of dignity.

The DA’s offer is simple. We want to bring CHANGE that will get South Africa moving forward again.

This is change that creates more jobs, deliver better services to all our people, and stops corruption from taking place.

This is because we love South Africa and we want all our people, especially those stuck in poverty, to live a better life.

The DA is for all South Africans and we deliver to all South Africans, where we govern.

The DA is the most diverse political party in South Africa. We represent all South Africans who share our value of One Nation, One Future built on freedom, fairness and opportunity.

The DA firmly supports the provision of social grants. We believe that the state should provide a social safety net to protect vulnerable South Africans from extreme poverty and hunger. Social grants must help lift people out of poverty.

The DA will continue to distribute social grants when we are in national government. We will continue to pay social grants to help the poor.

The DA will make job creation the top priority wherever we govern. For those who are able to work, a job is the best way to support your family and is a ladder out of poverty.

The DA does not believe that current social grants are sufficient. In his budget speech in February, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan announced modest increases to social grants.

These are, however, completely inadequate to offset the drastic increase in food prices. The DA will promote a significant increase in social grants during the mid-term budget adjustments to mitigate the effects of rising food inflation on the poor.

Creating jobs is the best way to lift our people out of poverty. Social grants currently benefit children, people with disabilities, the aged, and war veterans.

However, social grants currently provide no support to adults who do not have children, who have never been employed or who have been unemployed for long periods of time.

To support adult South Africans who are actively seeking employment, the DA will:

 Use the Youth Wage Subsidy to help young work-seekers gain valuable job experience;

 Help young people to fund further studies or to start a small business through an Opportunity Voucher Scheme;

 Provide job-seekers with integrated support services at Opportunity Centres across the country; and

 The DA will make Expanded Public Works Programmes (EPWP) opportunities available to more South Africans.

More people should be able to work and earn money to support themselves and their families.

Nevertheless, the DA recognises that vulnerable South Africans who are unable to work should have a social safety net to prevent them from slipping into extreme poverty.

Zuma is more important than the Constitution says the ANC

April 6, 2016

Yesterday, 233 MP’s that represent YOU, voted AGAINST the impeachment of President Zuma and AGAINST the Constitution.

today the anc

It is now clear that for the ANC, Jacob Zuma comes first, and the people of South Africa and the Constitution come last.

YOU hold the power. Vote for CHANGE!

The judgment handed down by Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng should have been enough to secure President Zuma’s fate.

When the highest court in the land ruled that the man occupying the highest office violated the Constitution, it should have been the end of President Zuma.

Because the Constitutional Court judgment removes any doubt that the President has forsaken his oath of office.

On Friday evening, the 1st of April, South Africans across the land dismissed President Zuma’s hollow apology with contempt. Today, the anger in our country remains palpable.

The people of this country don’t like being taken for fools. And that is what President Zuma and Gwede Mantashe did on Friday night.

They told us that all the years of lies and evasion were just a misunderstanding.

They said that the President was badly advised.

They said that he was always going to comply with the Public Protector’s report.

Basically, they said, it’s no big deal.

South Africans know that our nation can be so much better than this.

We can have a government that respects the law, takes its oath of office seriously, defends the Constitution, and serves the people.

We can have a government that respects the people’s power to elect it, and remove it.

We can have a party in government that believes that, when a President breaks the law, he is no longer fit to be President.

And with this government comes a commitment to creating jobs, to cutting corruption and to delivering basic services for all.

This year – whether it is in Nelson Mandela Bay, or Tshwane, or Johannesburg or in Kouga – voters have a chance to make a change.

DA to challenge Rustenburg municipal manager’s suspension in court

December 21, 2015

The Democratic Alliance (DA) is planning to turn to the courts in an attempt to overturn decisions taken at a special Rustenburg council meeting in which municipal manager, Bheki Khenisa, was suspended, the party said on Monday.

Khenisa was suspended at the special council meeting on Monday after being charged with misconduct related to unspent conditional grants.

da values

In the previous special council meeting held on December 11, opposition parties staged a walkout in protest at the motion to suspend Khenisa. They were joined by some ANC councillors, who also walked out of the session.

This resulted in the meeting not being able proceed as it did not have the required number of councillors. The special council meeting was then convened on Monday.

The DA and other opposition parties boycotted that meeting too. DA caucus leader Gert du Plessis said the party could not attend as some councillors only received the agenda on Saturday, while other councillors did not get agendas at all.

“According to the rules of order, councillors must receive the agenda four or two days before the meeting. In this case the rules of order were not followed,” he said.

“Again the Speaker in the last meeting indicated that there will be no other meeting this year. DA councillors were already on holiday when we informed of the meeting…”

Rollover for third consecutive year

He said the DA would approach the court to seek an interdict to set aside all decisions taken at the December 21 meeting.

“We are not opposed to investigations that are instituted against the municipal manager, [but] our opinion is that he could not be the only person carrying the blame.

“The mayor, the chief financial officer, directors and unit managers are to be blamed. They are the ones who must spend the grant, but they are restricted because if they spent the conditional grant there would have been no money in the account,” Du Plessis said.

The Rustenburg local municipality did not spend conditional grants from national treasury amounting to R426.9m.

The municipality applied to Treasury to roll over the unspent grants, but the application was rejected.

National Treasury, in a letter, said the rollover application was rejected because the municipality had requested the rollover for public transport infrastructure grant (PTIG) and municipal infrastructure grant (MIG) for the third consecutive year.

For the integrated national electrification programme (INEP) and expanded public works programme (EPWP), the rollover requests were more than the 2014/15 allocations.

News 24

Training tenders awarded to SACP owned company

November 30, 2015

The revelation by Rapport today that a private training college, Lesatsi – partly owned by the South African Communist Party (SACP)’s investment wing, Masincazelane – has benefited to the tune of R235 million from tenders funded by the National Skills Fund (NSF) and the Services SETA (Sseta), both under control of the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET), is greatly concerning.

da values

According to the Rapport, the contracts were awarded to LHR Solutions, trading as Letsatsi, since 2009 when SACP General-Secretary, Blade Nzimande, became the Minister of Higher Education and Training. Letsatsi has since been accused of poor service delivery and non-performance.

Nzimande must account for this serious conflict of interest and fully disclose the details relating to the tender process as well as the extent to which the SACP benefitted. As the head of the DHET and the SACP he must take responsibility for any impropriety.

This latest scandal is another clear example of how the ANC and its alliance partners use their position of power for personal enrichment as opposed to serving the needs of ordinary South Africans.

The numerous links between the SACP, Masincazelane, and Letsatsi represent a clear conflict of interest, similar to those seen in the awarding of Eskom contracts to Hitachi, which was partly owned by the ANC’s investment wing, Chancellor House.

In recent months South Africa has experienced a wave of protests by students against their financial exclusion from institutions of higher education as a result of the chronic underfunding of the system by the DHET. Just last week the ANC voted down 26 amendments to the budget set to reallocate wasteful expenditure in favour of prioritising that money for students.

All the while Minster Nzimande has been inconspicuous in his absence, denying that the situation is even a crisis, and falling far short of providing any leadership to address the matter.

The corruption of the ANC government is costing the South African economy billions every year and impacting negatively on the lives of all citizens by denying them basic services and opportunities. The DA will continue to fight for clean and effective government that puts the needs of citizens first.

7 key ANC decisions you need to know about

October 12, 2015

The ruling African National Congress (ANC) drafted an ambitious to-do list at this weekend’s national general council (NGC) meeting.

Below are some key resolutions adopted during the mid-term review conference in Midrand.

Ditch the International Criminal Court (ICC)

The ANC wants South Africa to withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC), saying it believes that court has lost its direction. This comes against the back-drop of the arrest saga around Sudanese President Omar Al-Bashir.

“The principles that led us to be members [of the ICC] remain valid and relevant… however the ICC has lost its direction unfortunately and is no longer pursuing that principle of an instrument that is fair for everybody,” international relations subcommittee chair Obed Bapela said.

In his closing address at the NGC on Sunday, President Jacob Zuma said the ANC disagreed with the ICC’s “double-standard and selective actions”.

press release

Hit the media hard

The ANC wants to deal with the negative way in which it is being portrayed in the media and will accelerate a parliamentary inquiry into establishing a Media Appeals Tribunal. It wants the parliamentary inquiry into the tribunal to start as soon as possible.

“The feeling is… the ANC as a liberation movement, and as a ruling party, is being relegated either to the back pages or, if anything, a lot of what is reported is something which is only on the side of the negative,” communications subcommittee member Lindiwe Zulu said.

Fewer provinces

The ANC again resolved that the number of provinces should be reviewed and said the implementation of a presidential commission looking into this needed to be fast tracked.

Give half of farmland to workers

The ANC wants the government to strengthen the security of tenure for farm workers. The party proposed that commercial farmers give 50% of their equity to their workers and replace the “willing buyer, willing seller” land distribution policy with the Property Valuation Act of 2014.

The Act would regulate the valuation of property identified for land reform as well as property identified for acquisition or disposal by the Land and Rural Development Department.

mmusi bokamosa

Clamp down on school governing bodies

The ANC wants the powers of school governing bodies reviewed and for inspectors to be reintroduced in schools. The ruling party will engage with the South African Democratic Teachers Union (Sadtu) on issues like teachers being at school on time and in class and teaching for at least seven hours a day.

Although not an ANC NGC decision, the ANC Women’s League (ANCWL) called for the review and regulation of private schools.

“The issue of not regulating is a problem, because there are so many private schools mushrooming up everywhere,” ANCWL secretary general Moego Matuba, who has a child in a private school, told News24.

“We want the government to regulate them, because it is not about money. Whatever they teach should be in line with the Department of Education.”

Get National Health Insurance faster

While not clear on how quickly this would be done, the ANC wants to fast track the implementation of the National Health Insurance. According to the party’s subcommittee on health and education, a lack of funding was slowing down the NHI’s roll-out.

“It was [the delegates’] view treasury should be encouraged strongly to ensure resources are available and NHI financing was finalised so the NHI white paper can be put into the public domain,” committee member Naledi Pandor said.

Root out corruption

The ruling party resolved to root out corruption in government and the private sector, with the NGC proposing four recommendations:

* Periodically rotate civil servants, including those in the security cluster, to different employment sites to circumvent unprofessional and frequently corrupt relationships; * Expedite the vetting process for government employees and its related entities;

* Implement a single state vetting agency to vet all “strategically” placed civil servants, including those in state-owned enterprises, and people who turn down a promotion even though it comes with an improved remuneration package and

* The ANC deployment committee must ensure proper vetting prior to cadre deployment.

The ruling party challenged the private sector to subject itself to financial interest disclosure, vetting and lifestyle audits.

News 24

 

DA makes changes to shadow cabinet

October 3, 2015

The Democratic Alliance shadow minister of police, Diane Kohler Barnard, has been removed from her position, the official opposition party announced on Saturday.

registered to vote

Kohler Barnard has been moved to shadow deputy minister of public works in a reshuffle that saw several big names moving within the party.

A social media storm erupted this week after it emerged the member of Parliament had, about two weeks ago, shared a Facebook post by journalist Paul Kirk, in which he declared: “Please come back PW Botha – you were far more honest than any of these [African National Congress] rogues, and you provided a far better service to the public…”.

Speaking to News24, acting spokesperson for DA leader Musi Maimane, Graham Charters, said while the move was part of the party’s “strategic alignment” for the upcoming elections, the announcement came early.

“We were meant to make the announcement at a slightly later date, but with the recent controversies we felt it best to make the announcement early. We believe going forward the people in their respective positions are optimal for the party’s future.”

Kohler Barnard will be replaced by Zakhele Mbhele as the party’s shadow minister of police. Marius Redelinghuys will take up a position as his deputy.

Other big changes included Gavin Davis as the party’s new shadow minister of basic education. Phumzile van Damme takes over the communications portfolio.

Thomas Hadebe becomes shadow minister of environmental affairs‚ Natasha Mazzone has been named as shadow minister of public enterprises‚ and Erik Marais as shadow minister in the presidency.

Annette Lovemore assumes the role of shadow minister of public service and administration while Patricia Kopane is the new shadow minister of public works.

Bridget Masango the new shadow minister of social development.

News 24