The mass protest action and pending motion of no confidence against a democratically elected president are occurring because South Africa has a crisis of accountability. President Jacob Zuma has shielded himself in a super presidency and believes that his constitutional powers indemnify him from having to account to the people he took an oath to serve. But the contagion has gone far beyond Zuma – Parliament cannot hold him or his ministers to account and the electorate cannot hold Members of Parliament to account. The ANC in its state of paralysis cannot hold any of its deployees in the state to account. Save for matters dragged to court, the state is operating under the cover of darkness. By RANJENI MUNUSAMY.
There is a long history to Zuma’s betrayal of the ANC and South Africa. But the brutal, inescapable truth is that his Cabinet reshuffle in the early hours of 31 March 2017 will be remembered as the day he finally sold his soul to forces outside the ANC. This leaves us with no choice but to act, and to act decisively. By SIPHO M. PITYANA.
Almost six weeks after Parliament unanimously voted to adopt the new FICA Bill, President Jacob Zuma has yet to sign it into law. This means that we are just weeks away from being rated in the same category as North Korea, Syria and Iraq by the international financial community, yet another step towards the moral bankruptcy of South Africa. By MAGDA WIERZYCKA.
To secret ballot or not to secret ballot? In the high-stakes political machinations around the opposition’s motion of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma, that is the question. A secret ballot would shield ANC MPs wanting to express their dissatisfaction with the current state of the party and presidential reshuffle by voting for the motion that would remove Zuma and his executive from office, if successful in Parliament. But the ANC has closed ranks following last week’s national working committee (NWC), giving its MPs their marching orders to vote against. On Tuesday opposition parties called for a postponement of the no confidence debate, currently scheduled for April 18, until after the Constitutional Court has dealt with the secret ballot matter. By MARIANNE MERTEN.
Former Director-general of Social Development Zane Dangor says he warned in October last year that it might be “immoral” to extend the social grants payment contract with Cash Paymaster Services (CPS) because of concerns about deductions from social grants. But Minister of Social Development Bathabile Dlamini did not heed his warning. By Alide Dasnois for GROUNDUP.
On Monday, suspended ANC Western Cape chair Marius Fransman arrived at the party's downtown Cape Town provincial headquarters ostensibly to consult with “elders”. His supporters on social media soon triumphantly announced “Marius Fransman is back as Provincial Chairperson!!!” The reason for their misguided good cheer is a decision by the ANC's National Disciplinary Committee of Appeal to refer Fransman's five-year suspension back to the party's National Disciplinary Committee. By MARIANNE THAMM.
President Jacob Zuma used his address at Monday’s memorial for SACP leader Chris Hani to tell the nation that the remainder of his presidency will see government gunning hard for “radical socio-economic transformation”. Is such talk a populist attempt to deflect from current leadership scandals? Is it an attempt to co-opt the rhetoric of the EFF? Or is it the logical evolution of the ANC’s principled stance since democracy? REBECCA DAVIS takes a look.
Looking for any upsides to the current political turmoil in South Africa? One could be that South Africa’s plans to withdraw from the International Criminal Court has fallen off government’s immediate to-do list. Instead the country has taken part in constructive engagement at The Hague recently. By CARIEN DU PLESSIS.
Political pressure prevented the senior executives at South African Social Security Agency (Sassa) and the Department of Social Development from “doing the right thing” about the grant payment system, says MP Themba Godi. But Parliament should have done more. By Barbara Maregele for GROUNDUP.
Much of the discourse of civil society in South Africa — whether it’s related to the cost and curriculums of higher education, the current political crisis we find ourselves in or whatever else one feels we must change — is oriented to a vertical axis that describes the rise and fall of society. We need to find a new grammar to describe the predicaments of today. By DAVID REIERSGORD.
Members of Parliament (MPs), each elected to this position by the people as a whole, and never by individual political parties, including their own, must act in Parliament as the voice of the people, not the voice of the political parties to which they might belong. By THABO MBEKI.
The home of opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema was attacked by Zambian security forces early on Tuesday morning. Hichilema and his family retreated to a safe room in the house, but have sustained injuries. Hichilema spoke to SIMON ALLISON from his safe room.
Murray Ingram: The SuperSport Rugby Festivals are a good idea, but miss the boat on holistic transformation
It’s essentially just the Vodacom Cup repackaged, and while its community focus does offer a pathway for transformation box-ticking, it still misses a few key points on ensuring this process is holistic, tangible and, more importantly, sustainable.
South Africa’s newest Minister of Finance, Malusi Gigaba, will have to steer the economy through many rapids, including President Jacob Zuma’s patronage networks, the ruling party’s latest policy direction (radical economic transformation) and serious international investor disillusionment. It is an almost impossible task. Zuma has, however, not appointed him to be a successful chief of the country’s finances – he was appointed to implement the wishes of a specific clique around Zuma, now and in future. In this regard, Gigaba will be well advised to remember that he is the fourth minister of finance since May 2014.
Yonela Diko: Uncle Kathy Memorials: Why I accept criticism from SACP, Cosatu and Gordhan, but reject it from SaveSA
SaveSA and their cabal’s march is neither about a declining ANC nor about their middle-class members, because they have never held Zuma in high regard and have not done particularly badly under his rule. It’s simply about a validation of their long-held prejudices.
The Speaker has the discretion to decide what voting procedure should be followed. She can decide to direct that voting should be conducted by secret ballot, if she so wished. Her claim to the contrary is false. Not only the Speaker but also MPs as a collective can enforce a secret ballot if they wish to do so.
by Ilgin KARLIDAG Suspected Stockholm truck attacker Rakhmat Akilov, a 39-year-old Uzbek and jihadist sympathiser, admitted Tuesday to committing a "terrorist crime" by mowing down pedestrians on a busy street, killing four people and injuring 15 others.