Despite often going head to head with the Presidency and the Minister of Health, Zackie Achmat is still a card carrying member of the ANC. Indeed in my one brief conversation I had with him a while ago he seemed upbeat on the ANC, believing the TAC’s issues with government were more the fault of Mbeki/Msimang than the policy of the ANC itself.
So it’s suprising to see that Achmat (along with the TAC) is so far opposed to Local Government MEC Richard Diyanti’s move to restructure the Cape Town Council calling it “undemocratic”. He even went so far as to call it “the ANC’s attempt at a power grab”, so perhaps he’s grown a bit tiresome of the ANC since I last spoke to him.
But it seems to be getting even worse for Diyanti with SACTWU one of the larger COSATU unions asking to have a meeting with Diyanti to ask about the proposed changes, although I’m unsure of whether they’re actually opposed to the changes or just ticked off because they were not consulted beforehand.
The Sunday Times has an interesting article on Ranette Taljaard, the one time DA MP and rapidly rising star of SA politics. She tries to be diplomatic but her opinions on various topics come through clearly. Here she is on Tony Leon:
She refuses to put Leon in a bad light, she says. But since leaving Parliament, she has been “absolutely delighted to reclaim my intellectual independence. That, to me, was the biggest sacrifice.”
On South Africa’s proportional parliamentary system with it’s pseudo constituencies.
Ask any MP how easy it is to parachute into an area that didn’t elect you and where there may be four other MPs from four other political parities doing exactly what you’re doing in an alleged constituency. It’s farcical, I’m sorry. It’s a farcical system.
Ranette is now director of the Helen Suzman Foundation.
And speaking of now gone political rising stars, where the hell is Roelf Meyer?