Defence Minister Masouia Lekota continues to suprise. In a conference before the SADTU conference Lekota stated that even though the government he is part of is arresting his ‘comrades’ all are equal before the law as envisaged in the Freedom Charter.
Is it just me but does anyone else think this could be the start of a stealth campaign for the presidency for Lekota? He seems to placing himself squarely in the Mbeki camp and is lately making statements he knows the press will report on in a positive light.
As we get closer to the ANC NEC I expect a whole lot more of these unofficial campaign speeches by the various contenders for the presidency.
In October 2005 Minister of Communication Ivy Masepe-Casaburri said that she would quit if the telecoms market was deemed to be a failure and asked to do so by the president.
Most people however, do not agree. Here are few choice quotes from Dr Paul Cole on the state of SA’s telecoms market.
I won’t hold it against the president if he does, but I don’t think the telecoms sector is in shambles
...according to the ITU Digital Access Index, SA dropped six places, indicating the divide has widened.
...there has been a 300% increase in the cost of a local three-minute call, making South African telecoms among the most expensive in the world.
Such a monopoly indicated market failure…
...you are dealing with a very serious problem here.
I’d call that a shambles, and it’s not getting any better with ICASAs pathetic job on ADSL regulations. It’s time for Thabo to ask and it’s time for Ivy to go.
Oh this is rich. Minister of Health Manto Tshabalala-Msimang’s proclamations on the benefits of beetroot, lemon and olive oil as an effective treatment for AIDS is possibly a crime.
The South African Medical Association has asked the minister to stop making claims that have not been tested by the Medicines Control Council and that ”...until that is done, you cannot go onto public fora and claim that it is therapeutic”. So who’s going to take a bet on what happens first? Manto’s censure (or possible arrest) or the “reorganisation” of the MCC and the further ignoring of SAMA by the health deparment?
- Abolishing provincial legislatures while retaining current administrations with an elected executive;
- Abolishing provincial legislatures while retaining current administrations, with an executive appointed by the national government;
- Abolishing provincial legislatures with no appointed or elected executive, with the current administration retained;
- Abolishing legislatures as well as provincial administrations.
Of the current nine provinces, only four or five would remain. ‘Problem’ provinces such as the Northern Cape, Limpopo, North West Province and Mpumalanga would be amalgamated with the stronger provinces. Although suprisingly (or rather unsuprisingly if you consider this is an ANC led government) the Eastern Cape, a definite problem province, will remain untouched. If this decision is accepted it is expected to be implemented by the 2009 elections.
Now abolishing provinces is a pretty radical proposal. First of all there is no guarantee that this will help with service delivery. Secondly if this is done it will potentially be very embarassing for the ANC, an admittal that they have not delivered in the past 15 years. Thirdly it’s going to cost a lot of money. If the thought of changing the names of a few towns and roads got you hot under the collar then the cost associated with reorganising the entire country will likely give you a major coronary.
And there is the fact that over and above the costs related to the scrapping of some of the provinces is the fact that if carried out basically all the funds allocated in the past twelve years for provincial governments, legislature and administrative infrastructure might as well have been taken out to the middle of the Karoo, dumped in a large pile, doused in petrol and burnt.
Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu has urged Jacob Zuma to give up his pursuit of the presidency, stating:
I for one would not be able to hold my head high if a person with such supporters were to become my president…
This isn’t the first time Tutu has commented on the internal affairs of the ANC. In November 2004 Tutu and the ANC got into a war of words after he called them “unthinking, uncritical, kowtowing” yes men. At the time COSATU/SACP came out in support of Tutu’s statements.
Now that Tutu is criticising their man their response is a bit more muted. The SACP has stated that Tutu has “a right to air his views”. Even the ANCYL were suprisingly restrained with KZN leader Nhlakanipho Ntimbela saying that he was suprised but Tutu can “raise his opnions”. COSATU even used the opportunity to give themselves an out by claiming to never have actually endorsed Zuma in the first place.
This is all a bit strange I was expecting a full on attack mode response from COSATU/SACP/ANYL. Perhaps Zuma isn’t worth the effort to argue anymore?
After questioning affirmative action (Warning! 300KB link!) and questioning Jacob Zuma Minister of Defence Mosiuoa Lekota has suprised once again! After the newly appointed Director of Military Prosecution Brigadier General Ernest Zwane was revealed to have had two fraud counts against him (and a conviction of possession of an unlicenses firearm) I was expecting nothing much to happen about it.
Except ‘Terror’ stepped up and proved why people call him that name by firing him, no questions asked.
Can we clone this guy and put Terror1 through Terror400 in the National Assembly?
After having his final petition to appeal dismissed by the Court of Appeals, fired Cape Town city manager Wallace Mgoqi will finally have to vacate his office on the 5th floor of the Civic Centre.
Despite being it’s ‘ancestral homeland’ and pouring lots of money into the area the Eastern Cape continues to be a problem child for the ANC. ANC infighting is so rife that three of the six largest municipalities still do not have mayors(!) despite municipal elections being held six months ago. It took less than a month for the DA to rustle up a very politically diverse coalition to elect Helen Zille as mayor of Cape Town, while the Eastern Cape ANC branch can’t decide amongst themselves who to choose without the ensuing screaming match.
It’s getting so bad Thabo Mbeki has to personally fly down and hand out a few verbal snotklaps to try and get everyone to do what they were elected to do.
Proving that he believed in equal opportunity bribing the DA has admitted to receiving R500 000 from murdered businessman (and probable fraudster) Brett Kebble. That amount is a mere fraction of the R25 million the ANC received but it does illustrate how no one in SA politics is immune from dirty money.
This again illustrates the need for revised political party funding laws in SA . Almost all political parties however are reluctant to do so. The ANC does not want to suddenly ask the kinds of questions it has to answer about Kebble and the DA and other small parties doesn’t want to open it’s donor books for fear that it’s donors will be discriminated against in some way by the ANC.
The only loser here is the voting public.
Almost three years after being convicted, ex-ANC Chief Whip (and discounted Merc recipient) Tony Yengeni is finally going to jail. He has 72 hours to report to Pollsmoor Prison, on the Constantia/Tokai border so Tony never has to feel he’s truly slumming it, where he will begin serving his sentence. Yengeni’s lawyer believes his client will serve about 8 months before hopefully being released on good behaviour.
Update: Rumour has it Yengeni will rather be going to a prison in Malmesbury that is less crowded and gangster ridden as Pollsmoor.