The donations received by political parties has always been controversial, because, as the adage goes, “he who plays the piper calls the tune”. Donations to political parties and politicians frequently come with invisible strings attached, and often private corporations and foreign benefactors can exert undue influence on government decisions, compared to the voice of ordinary citizens which can become muted. This compromises democracy and accountability, and is a global challenge. In many countries there is a lack of transparency about such donations, with increasing demands for public disclosure, as the potential for corruption escalates.
Truth be told, the populist Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) is a tamed political party after the DA Federal Executive Council's decision on Helen Zille’s nostalgic colonial tweets. If you do not agree with me, consider the serious threats they made of ending cooperation with the DA should the outcomes of Zille’s disciplinary hearing retain her as the Premier of the Western Cape. Well the outcome was pronounced and not only unmasked the hypocrisy of the EFF but also showed the DA’s prowess in neutralising its political enemy.
Refiloe Nt’sekhe: It takes a village to raise a child, especially for a single mom with a demanding job
I raise three boys as a mother with a very demanding job or career and I believe the same is true of any single parent – whether it be mothers or fathers. So if you come to my house and find my housekeeper sleeping – please understand that looking after 3 boys is not a small job. She needs this rest.
In a widely republished opinion piece, a South African professor of political economy, Lorenzo Fioramonti, makes the astonishing claim that “growth is disappearing”. Worse, he considers this to be a good thing. Along the way, he makes many factual errors and falls for obvious fallacies.
The ANC is a venerable old party. It has a history unlike any other political party in the world. Through the last decades of colonialism and the nearly 50 years of apartheid, through massacres and dark days, through dislocation and deprivation “we, the people” clung onto it because it represented our ideals and hope. Although freedom was a long walk, its leaders embodied its ideals. They showed they were prepared to give the enemy their bodies and, “if needs be”, their lives for that ideal – but they would never surrender their souls. Never.
The type of a leadership collective the ANC needs is a leadership collective that understands the plight of our poor. The nature and character of men and women of the ANC must be equal to the task to forego personal wealth ambitions and serve the people against a very formidable moneyed class. It is a leadership that must push back against the developing political veto power the minority is establishing through our courts system.
The Public Protector, Busisiwe Mkhwebane, recommended that Section 224 of the Constitution be amended to include within the mandate of the Reserve Bank the responsibility to ensure that the socio-economic well being of the citizens are protected, in addition to its mandate of protecting the currency and ensuring price stability. The backlash she has gotten for this is curious.
Pierre de Vos: Secret Ballot Judgment: Constitutional Court schools Members of Parliament on their obligations
Any half-decent lawyer would not have been surprised that the Constitutional Court ruled earlier this week that the Speaker of the National Assembly was mistaken when she claimed she did not have the power to order a secret ballot in a vote of no confidence against President Jacob Zuma. It is also not surprising that the court – demonstrating a slightly better understanding of the separation of powers doctrine than the public protector – declined to order the Speaker to conduct the vote of no confidence via secret ballot. But the judgment does contain unexpectedly strong language about the need for Parliament (and especially the National Assembly) to hold the Executive (headed by President Zuma) accountable.
As youth development activists and practitioners we invested years, sweat and enormous resources moving South Africa away from the disparaging “lost generation” characterisation. Young people are not lost. They don't need to be found. They need quality and decolonised education which they have been calling for; they need training and economic opportunities that locate them at the centre of inclusive growth.
The Davis Tax Committee’s call for public comment on the introduction of a potential wealth tax in South Africa closed at the end of May. We can now expect public hearings to take place on the matter. Notwithstanding what sceptics would regard as a hidden agenda behind the re-emergence of government’s clamour for a wealth tax, there is merit in the need to revisit this issue.