President Mbeki's Briefing Notes on Cabinet Lekgotla
27 Jul 2008
Briefing notes for President Thabo Mbeki on the outcome of the July Cabinet Lekgotla, Sunday, 27 July 2008 (
1.1 The July Cabinet lekgotla took place in
1.2 The lekgotla also welcomed Mr. Kgalema Motlanthe, who was attending the Lekgotla for the first time since his appointment as Minister in The Presidency.
1.3 The purpose of the July Cabinet Lekgotla is to conduct a mid-year review of the implementation of the Government Programme of Action (POA) and to adopt a Medium Term Strategic Framework (MTSF). This Lekgotla took into account the fact that in about 10 months, a general election will take place, ushering in a new Executive. The outcome of the Lekgotla, particularly the fifteen year review and the scenario planning process, will provide a firm foundation on which the new executive will build.
1.4 The discussions were guided by the following the framework:
The need to attend to immediate tasks pertaining to the completion of the electoral mandate.
Identification of major issues that would form part of medium-term programmes, especially those that would need to be launched immediately after the elections and those that form part of the government’s or nation’s obligations to half poverty and unemployment and poverty by 2014, including the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
2.1 The Lekgotla commenced off with a discussion on the state of the economy and how the global economic situation was affecting our economy.
2.2 The meeting noted that we were on track towards achieving the medium term goals of halving poverty and unemployment by 2014, even though many challenges still need to be tackled. Attaining high and sustained economic growth is and will continue to be a key part of our strategy to achieving these medium term goals.
2.3 Although the economy is succeeding in creating jobs (3% average since 2001), this jobs growth rate has not been at required levels to reduce the rate of unemployment. There are two measures required to reach employment and growth goals i.e. GDP growth must be closer to 7% and exports must grow 3 times faster in order to raise employment levels by 5%.
2.4 The Lekgotla also discussed the international constraints on growth which is affecting both the developed and developing countries. World growth was projected at 3.7% in 2008, down from 4.9% in 2007. At this stage, the economic slowdown appears to be concentrated in the G7 countries but developing nations are affected by the slowing demand from G7 countries and are increasingly at risk from rising inflation and higher interest rates.
2.5 The following were identified as factors pushing up prices and slowing down growth: Rising food prices (supply and demand, bio fuels subsidies, export restrictions, consumption subsidies); Oil prices (slow supply response to demand, consumption subsidies and speculative investment; Declining consumption as households purchasing power eroded; declining equity and housing markets (negative wealth effect); and Reduced credit available for corporate lending
2.6 South Africa and other developing nations with high current account deficits and high inflation face a higher risk of negative investor sentiment. One of the ways in which these countries can mitigate this risk is by increasing savings and investment to take advantage of global and continental opportunities. At this point,
2.7 The world is facing stagflation and a number of countries are starting to take firmer action to curb demand for commodities (lifting subsidies) and to contain inflation pressures (higher interest rates and currency appreciation). In
2.8 The key challenge for the South African economy is to ensure that at the end of the global economic adjustment, our economy is more productive with higher savings and investment, and with more rapid growth at sustainable current account level.
2.9 The key question facing the Lekgotla was how we respond to this global environment. Two key areas will need focussed attention. i.e. the need to build on macro-economic policy success and accelerating micro-economic reforms. The Lekgotla was of the view that economic growth will depend on macro-economic stability and a steady increase in the use of labour and capital by old and new firms. Better growth will come when the cost of using capital, labour and other input costs are stable and explicit.
2.10 South Africa has strong domestic sectors e.g. finance, wholesale, retail, construction, communications, transport, mining etc. however, we need to grow and strengthening our exports. Public investment is needed in areas such as human resources development, economic and social infrastructure, public administration and better services in order to grow the economy.
2.11 As part of preparing for the future, The Presidency has initiated a scenario planning process in order to help the country to anticipate and plan better by exploring what might be possible and probable for
2.12 The scenario planning process is entitled The ‘Future we Chose’. The process identifies story lines that are driven by the following 6 key driving forces: 1) shifts in the global economic power; 2) shifts in global political power; 3) resource constraints; 4)
2.13 It is anticipated that the scenario process will provoke introspection about government policies, planning and implementation, and about how policies can be translated into action.
2.14 A total of 40 scenario planning workshops will be held around the country between (September and December) to ensure broader participation before the scenarios are finalised. The workshops will be expected to determine whether the story lines reflect plausible story scenarios.
A Fifteen Year Review
2.15 Progress report on the 15 year review process was received and endorsed. This review provides a detailed analysis of the progress, achievements and the key challenges that still face the South African society. Examples of progress include the fact that levels of poverty have decreased significantly even though the gap between the rich and poor has widened. Over 4 million homes have been electrified since 1994.
2.16 Homesteads with access to a communal tap increased from 62 % in 1996 to 88%in 2007 and access to water inside a dwelling jumped from 61 % to 70 %. Access to sanitation increased from 50 % to 71 %. Although the December 2007 target to eradicate the bucket system in formal settlements was missed, households using the bucket system declined from 609 675 to 211 508 by that date.
2.17 Participation rate in education increased dramatically. For instance, participation among six-year-olds improved from 49 % in 1996 to 70.3 % in 2006 and to 91 % in 2007. Enrolment at tertiary institutions increased from 300 000 in 1986 to 750 00 by 2005. Access to health services has also increased dramatically as well. We have built 1600 clinics and health care centres since 1994 and as a result, 95 % of South Africans now live within a five kilometre radius of a health facility.
2.18 From 1994 to the third quarter of 2007/08, 3 123 769 housing subsidies were approved and 2 358 667 units were built at a cost of R 48 .5 billion. A total of 9.9 million citizens, 53 % of whom were women, benefitted from state subsidised housing opportunities.
2.19 These are some of the highlights from the 15 year review which demonstrate without any doubt that this government is meeting its mandate by accelerating service delivery and fulfilling its commitment to moving faster towards achieving the goal of a better life for all.
2.20 The review will be published and subjected to rigorous scientific analysis. This will be the government’s contribution to the debate about the progress our society is making towards meeting the medium term goals of halving poverty and unemployment by 2014.
3 Economic Cluster
3.1 The economic cluster gave a progress report on the implementation of the programme of action with a particular focus on the Apex priorities. Overall, extensive progress is being made in many the interventions that are necessary to ensure that our economy continued to grow.
3.2 This report covers three broad areas i.e. Industrial Policy Action Plan (IPAP), global warming, energy security, ICT Interventions Land Agrarian Reform.
Industrial Action Policy Action Plan (IPAP)
3.3 Progress is being made in a number of fronts with regard to IPAP. The economic cluster has made major strides in expediting the implementation of IPAP in four key sectors. i.e. a) Metal fabrication, Capital; b) Automotives and Components; c) Chemicals and pharmaceuticals; and d) Wood Paper and Furniture.
The following progress was noted:
Metal Fabrication, Capital and Transport equipment
3.4 Key import duties were reviewed and duties on carbon and stainless steel were removed. Review of duties in the aluminium products will be finalised by the end of the year. The National Tooling initiative was launched in March 2008
Automotives and components
3.5 A replacement scheme to the Motor Industry Development Programme (MIDP) has been developed following consultations with industry players. The new plan will be unveiled in August 2008. An empowerment plan for the automotives and components sector is being finalised and will be completed by December 2008.
Chemicals, Plastics, Pharmaceuticals
3.6 The import duty on upstream chemical products has been finalised and is ready for implementation. An announcement will be made in this regard at the end of 2008. The study on increasing polypropylene value added products has been finalised and a process of to promote investment in the sector has begun.
3.7 Investment has been secured for fluoro-chemicals expansion initiative and the next step is to secure sufficient land for the project.
Wood, Paper and Furniture
3.8 New afforestation targets have been set in collaboration with the Department of Water Affairs and Forestry (DWAF) and ASGISA-EC (Ltd). In the
3.9 A service provider as been appointed to collect data on small scale saw milling industry in
3.10 A draft strategy has been completed on the expansion of the furniture industry and to this end, a furniture incubator is scheduled to start operating in November 2008.
Clothing and Textiles
3.11 The overall objective is to raise productivity, upgrade capital and technology, and address illegal imports, upscale skills and to systematically review input costs.
3.12 Measures have been implemented to recapture and stabilise the domestic clothing and textile market. Country of origin labelling has been in place since July 2007. Quotas for certain Chinese imports have been in place since January 2007. The Interim Textile and Clothing Development Programme (ITCDP), formerly known as the Duty Credit Certificate Scheme, has been extended until March 2009 with limited tradability.
3.13 A Textiles Engineering Centre of Excellence has been established at the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)
3.14 Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) is being implemented. For example; 9 projects have been approved, 9 132 jobs have been created and R 658 million investment has been made. A global player in this sector, TeleTech, has been secured to invest in
3.15 Funding has been committed and secured for the Monyetla Training Programme and to this end, 30 000 learners will be trained over a four year period.
3.16 On the Tourism front, the Tourism Support Programme is in place and applications were opened on 21 July 2008. The National Tourism Safety and Awareness Strategy is being implemented at provincial level. The Tourism sector Skills Plan and the Licensing criteria for Bio fuels have been finalised. The next steps include the finalisation of financial mechanisms and the incentives to support production. The issuing of Licenses is scheduled for the end of 2008.
Other sectors developments
A draft framework for the national Food Control Agency has been completed and for consultation.
The revised rebate for foreign and local film and TV production was launched in March
The Jewellery Manufacturing Precinct (JMP) at
3.17 The priorities for the economic sector are to finalise the climate change response policy and an implementation plan on reducing gas house emissions.
3.19 International negotiations on mitigation actions were launched in
3.20 The following six broad policy direction themes were supported by the Lekgotla:
Greenhouse gas emissions reductions and limits
Build on, strengthen and or scale up current initiatives
Implement the “ Business Unseal” call for action
Preparing for the future
Vulnerability and adaptation
Alignment, coordination and cooperation
3.21 Our work in this regard will be informed by, monitored and measured against the following emissions decline trajectory:
Greenhouse gas emissions stop growing and start to plateau in 2020-2025
Gashouse emissions begin to decline in absolute terms 2030-2035 and
Long-term greenhouse gas emissions levels reduces to 300 Mt CO2-eq by 2050-60
3.22 A National Climate Change response Policy development Summit will be held in February 2009 to adopt a framework which will be followed by further consultation. The next step will be the publication of a Green Paper in April 2010 and the policy will be finalised at the end of 2010. That policy will be translated into a legislative, regulatory and fiscal package for implementation
3.23 Our immediate task is to start now by accelerating energy efficiency and conservation across all sectors of our economy; invest in ambitious research and development targets which focus on carbon friendly technologies.
3.24 Government will launch a comprehensive awareness programme to inform our citizens and all stakeholders to support the process to save our planet.
Human Resources Development Strategy.
3.25 The revised Human Resources Development Strategy for the period 2009-2014 was approved. One of the critical challenges that this government has been addressing was to make sure that there is proper alignment between the skills that the education and training system produces on the one hand and the needs of a developing society and the economy on the other.
3.26 The aim of this strategy is to achieve articulation between the sub-systems (public-private and across government), for optimal achievement of systemic outcomes; to facilitate a continuing analysis of HRD and the functioning of the labour market. The intended outcomes will include improvements in the Human Resources Development Index (HDI) and country ranking; improvement in the measure and ranking of economic competitiveness; reduction of the Gini co-efficient and improvement in social cohesion.
3.27 The strategy includes the following commitments: acceleration of training outputs in priority areas to achieve accelerated and shared economic growth; ensure universal access to high quality and relevant education; improve technological and innovation capability in the public and private sectors; and establish efficient planning capabilities in the relevant departments and entities for the successful implementation of the HRD strategy for South Africa.
3.28 A monitoring and evaluation system will be put in place with clear indicators to monitor the implementation of the strategy. A major review based on systematic evaluation studies and impact assessments will be conducted every five years.
3.29 The Minister of Education will embark on consultations with stakeholders on the strategy and the strategy will be implemented on the 1 April 2008.
4. International Relations
4.1 The International Relations, Peace and Security (IRPS) Cluster tabled a report on the work of the cluster. The following were the highlights of the report and decisions taken by the Lekgotla:
4.2 On the international front, the Lekgotla was briefed on the developments in
4.3 The meeting welcomed the signing of the MOU as marking a significant milestone that will surely bring Zimbabweans closer to the goal of finding a lasting political settlement that will lead to political stability and economic recovery. The meeting expressed its appreciation to the mediating team, Minister Mufamadi (Minister of Provincial and Local Government), Dr Frank Chikane (Director General in the Presidency) and Ms
4.4 The meeting expressed confidence in the SADC backed mediation process and in the talks that were taking place between the ZANU (PF) and the representatives of the MDC.
4.5 The Lekgotla expressed hope that the Zimbabwean parties will act with urgency to ensure that a settlement is reached sooner.
4.7 As the chair of SADC,
Enhance regional political cohesion
Advance SADC regional economic integration (Focus on SACU)
Intensify efforts towards infrastructure development
Advance the undersea cable initiative to expedite the continent’s access to the information highway
Advance food security issues in the region
Identify opportunities for the region that are linked to the 2010 FIFA World Cup
Strengthen the capacity of the SADC secretariat
Advancing the African Agenda
4.8 The government will continue to advance the agenda of working with our sister countries towards building a better Africa and a better world. The Lekgotla noted the progress we are making in strengthening our diplomatic work in the African continent, including the extensive work undertaken under the SA-DRC Bi-national commission.
4.9 The meeting also noted that extensive work was being done to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the bi-lateral relationship with
5 Social Cluster
5.1 The Social Cluster discussion covered work being done in the following areas; launch of the War on Poverty campaign; Social Cohesion; Social Security and Retirement Reform and rising food prices.
5.2 The War on Poverty campaign will be launched in all the provinces during August 2008. The most deprived wards and households have been identified and will be visited periodically by a team of professionals and community workers to identify needs and to accelerate access to government services and to provide safety nets. The long term goal is that poorest households should receive assistance and support in a coordinated and sustained way. This campaign is coordinated and championed by the office of the Deputy President. A war room on poverty has also been established.
5.3 The social cohesion initiative is work in progress by the social cluster. Its objective is to provide material basis for social cohesion and social justice. The following areas are receiving attention: addressing of poverty; unemployment; deprivation; lack of access to basic services and opportunities; elimination of racism, sexism, xenophobia and other forms of intolerance. A draft National Family Policy has been developed to provide guidelines for integrated services to promote the functionality of families. A Policy for People with Disabilities has been drafted to enhance the integration and mainstreaming for the disabled; and to ensure that the disabled poor receive adequate services and support. A draft framework for Moral Regeneration is being finalised.
5.4 A progress report on the reform of the social security and retirement was noted. An Inter-Ministerial Committee has been set up. The task of the committee includes: reviewing social assistance grants; the design of contributory retirement system; social security governance and system framework; coordination of administrative agencies; National Health Insurance and the regulation of the complimentary social insurance reforms. The next steps include finalisation and consolidation of discussion document which will be published for public comments towards the end of 2008.
6 Governance and Administration
6.1 The Governance and Administration cluster presented a progress report on measures taken to improve the performance of the public service.
6.2 The report included on specific projects such as monitoring of vacancies, performance evaluation processes, ID smart cards, a new passport system; skills audit; and the establishment of a strategic planning capacity within government; budgeting for concurrent functions and the review of local and provincial government structures. With regard to the smart cards, each department will identify information needs that could be incorporated into the microchip when the cards become operational.
6.3 Government will continue to strengthen administrative systems in order to implement the principle of Batho Pele. Compulsory capacity building programmes for HR professionals will be implemented by March 2009. Departments will be supported to improve the quality of information on Persal.
6.4 The policy review process on provincial and local government was tabled and discussed. The review process presents options for institutional reform and other interventions to improve the effectiveness of the system of government across all three spheres of government. The review covers the following topics; mandate of provinces and local government; effectiveness of the current system; strengths and weaknesses of the current structures; spatial development planning; intergovernmental relations; and whether the current three tier system should be retained.
6.5 The review report on provincial and local government was noted and referred back to Cabinet for further consideration.
6.6 Challenges identified included some budgeting for concurrent functions. The concurrent system provides for dual executive and legislative authority which leads to multiple stages of decision making on policy and budgets. Examples of the challenges in this regard include the fact that national priorities sometimes fail due to funding being diverted to other areas of spending by either local or provincial sphere of government. The matter of budgeting for the concurrent functions was noted for further discussion in the cluster.
7 Justice Crime Prevention and Security
7.1 The safety and security of all South Africans remains a top priority for this government and will occupy the centre stage, especially as we get closer to the hosting of the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
7.2 Tremendous progress is being made in a number of fronts in the fight
against crime. The recently published crime statistics indicate a sharp decrease in some crimes and an increase in other crimes.
7.3 Reducing the crime rate by 7-10% remains the target for the
remainder of the term. This target related to 8 priority crimes i.e.
Murder; attempted murder; rape; serious and violent assault, common assault; indecent assault; robbery with aggravated circumstances and common robbery.
7.4 The average decrease of 6.4 % in serious violent crimes was below the 7 % target but higher than in the 2006/07 financial year. The trend of serious crimes happening among people who know one another continues to be a characteristic of violent crimes. Further, the report shows that street robbery continues to be the biggest subcategory of serious and violent robbery.
7.5 Organised crime is another key challenge government is focussing on. Work in this regard includes legislative and structural changes to increase the state/s capacity to deal decisively with organised crime.
7.6 The capacity of the SA Police Service (SAPS) to investigate organised crime will be enhanced through the creation of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation. The meeting noted that Parliament will be holding public hearings on the Bills for the incorporation of the Directorate of Special Operations (Scorpions). The hearings will be held on 5-15 August 2008 in Parliament and the provinces.
7.7 The matter of children in conflict with the law remains one of the major challenges that are receiving attention by the cluster. There are 3 478 children in detention (1 669-places of safely; 820 in correctional facilities; sentenced detainees at correctional facilities). This is a matter that will receive priority attention of both the JCPS and the social clusters.
7.8 The meeting noted that the study on the causes of the violent nature of crimes in South Africa, which is being conducted by the Centre For the Study of Violence and Reconciliation was in the process of being finalised by the end of the year and will be discussed at the January Cabinet Lekgotla..
7.9 The review of the Criminal Justice System (CJS) is on track. A
Coordinating committee has been set up to oversee the review of the CJS. I have appointed Mr Johnny de Lange, the Deputy Minister of Justice and Constitutional Development, as the champion of the Criminal Justice review process with immediate effect.
The review of the Community Policing forum has begun which is aimed at giving these for a requisite power to coordinate, as autonomous bodies, the relationship between the communities and the police services. The possibility of establishing community safety fora to interact with the integrated CJS will also be explored.
8 2010 Preparations
8.1 A detailed report on the preparations for the hosting of the 2010 FIFA World Cup, largest sport event on earth, was tabled and discussed. The Lekgotla was satisfied that all the preparations for hosting this event were on track.
8.2 Delivery of essential infrastructure was on track to meet the FIFA deadlines. The transport plan was submitted to FIFA within the deadline of 31 March 2008. Even though difficulties were experienced with the Nelson Mandela stadium, all other venues will be ready for the hosting of the 2009 Confederations Cup and the 2010 finals.
8.3 The Schools World Cup was successfully launched in May 2008 to raise awareness among youth and students. This competition is being coordinated by the departments of sports and education. The next challenge is to mobilise the rest of society to support and participate in the preparations for the world cup. The volunteer programme is progressing according to plan.
8.4 Government and the Local Organising Committee will have to step up communication efforts to profile progress and our readiness to host the best world cup ever on the African continent. Government and the people of
8.5 We will continue to work with our neighbouring countries and the rest of the continent to ensure that the 2010 FIFA World Cup finals can promote the continent for tourism and trade.
9. The overall assessment is that we are have made major strides in improving the lives of millions of South Africans, and we will continue working hard, in a ‘business unusual’ mode, to ensure that we fulfil our electoral mandate. We will use the next 10 months to accelerate delivery because our people expect no less from this government.
Industrial Policy Action Plan (Project 1)
The progress report is in the main briefing notes
Set up an investment call centre (Project 2)
Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) is being implemented. For example; 9 projects have been approved, 9 132 jobs have been created and R 658 million investment has been made. A global player in this sector, TeleTech, has been secured to invest in
Work on the construction of the submarine cable has advanced considerably. The Intergovernmental Assembly (IGA) of countries that are parties to the NEPAD control have met and have agreed on the representative of the IGA on the Baharicom Development Company Board and have agreed to set up a Trust Fund which will hold shares of participating countries. The main objective of the Trust Fund is to support the development of ICT’s on the continent with a particular focus on education and health projects. The completion of the west coast cable from
Speeding up ICT interventions to provide cheap platforms (Project 3)
The Sentech wireless broadband network will be rolled out as the backbone for Apex Priority 3. The primary objective of this priority is to increase uptake and usage of ICT’s by government and individuals. An Information Society and Development (ISAD) Cluster ahs been established. Sentech is finalising plan to provide connectivity to 235 of the 500 Dinaledi schools This connectivity will cover health centres, heritage sites, police stations, government offices, libraries and post offices.
Digital migration is on track was on track to meet the November! 2008
digital switch on date. The development strategy for the manufacturing of
Set Top boxes is under way. Set Top box specifications have been
submitted to SABS for final approval.
In addition to the construction of submarine cables to increase access and reduce ICT costs, a benchmarking exercise for telecommunication costs will be launched during the second part of the year. This exercise will include countries such as
Implement intensive campaign on energy security (Project 4)
The departments of Minerals and Energy and Public enterprises have implemented a national response Plan. This plan addresses both demand and supply side measures. The objective of the campaign is to restore a reasonable reserve margin; to reduce levels of unplanned outages to below 2500 MW per day; to replenish depleted coal stockpiles; fast tracking cogeneration and to focus on fast-tracking Eskom’s new build programme.
A power conservation programme has been launched which seeks to change behaviour and to achieve a 10 % savings target by both households and industries. We are still a long way towards achieving the 10 % savings target. We are currently at about 4 % on average with key industrial customers at around 7 % percent. Communication has now been centralised and coordinated by the Government Communication System and a communication campaign is currently being implemented with full support and participation of business, business, Government and individual households.
Resolving organisational issues on skills development (Project 5)
The objectives of this priority have been achieved. The Department of Education has been selected as the lead department. A Human Resources development has been finalised.
The revised Human Resources Development Strategy for the period 2009-2014 was agreed to. One of the critical challenges that this government has been tackling was to making sure that there is proper alignment between the skills that the education and training system produces on the one hand and the needs of a developing society and the economy on the other.
The aim of this strategy is to achieve articulation between the sub-systems (public-private and across government), for optimal achievement of systemic outcomes; to facilitate a continuing analysis of HRD and the functioning of the labour market. The intended outcomes will include improvements in the Human Resources Development Index (HDI) and country ranking; improvement in the measure and ranking of economic competitiveness; reduction of the Gini co-efficient and improvement in social cohesion.
The strategy includes the following commitments: acceleration of training outputs in priority areas to achieve accelerated and shared economic growth; ensure universal access to high quality and relevant education; improve technological and innovation capability in the public and private sectors; and establish efficient planning capabilities in the relevant departments and entities for the successful implementation of the HRD strategy for South Africa.
A monitoring and evaluation system will be put in place with clear indicators to monitors the implementation of the strategy. A major review based on systematic evaluation studies and impact assessments will be conducted every five years.
The Minister of Education will embark on consultations with stakeholders on the strategy and the strategy will be implemented on the 1 April 2008.
Resource poor schools and monitors learning (Project 6)
An audit was conducted to establish the needs of schools that were selected to participate in this programme. In the
An additional 1 million library books will be provided to 3000 schools. 2000 schools will receive 2.2 million reading books in 11 languages. 1500 reading toolkits in four languages have been distributed to 1000 schools.
A progress report on the reform of the social security and retirement was
noted. An Inter-Ministerial Committee has been set up. The task of the
committee includes: reviewing social assistance grants; the design of
contributory retirement system; social security governance and system
framework; coordination of administrative agencies; national health
insurance and regulation of the complimentary social insurance reforms.
The next steps include finalisation and consolidation of discussion
document which will be published for public comments towards the end of
Speeding up land and agrarian reform Land and Agrarian Reform Project (Project 7)
The objective of this priority are to redistribute 5 million hectares of white owned agricultural land to 10 000 new agricultural prodders; increase Black entrepreneurs in the agribusiness industry by 1 %; to provide universal access to agricultural services to the target groups; to increase agricultural production by 10-15 % under the LETSEMA-ILIMA Campaign; and increase agricultural trade by 10-15 % for the target groups.
Planning for the implementation of the LARP is at an advanced stage. A national Intergovernmental Forum For Agriculture and Land Reform (NIFAL) and an Intergovernmental Technical Committee have been established to coordinate the implementation of the project. Similar structures will be established at a provincial level to coordinate implementation at provincial level while district committees will assume planning and decision making responsibilities regarding individual LARP projects.
A total of 2.5 million ha of land will be delivered by the end of March 2009 and the other 2.5 million ha will be delivered by the end of the 2009/10 financial year. Land reform grants have been revised to facilitate land acquisition in the light of increases in land prices. Additional posts (1220) have been created and are in the process of being filled in the provinces to speed up the process.
War against Poverty (Project 8)
The War on Poverty campaign will be launched in all the provinces during
August 2008. The most deprived wards and household have been
identified and will be visited periodically by a team of professionals and
community workers to identify needs and to accelerate access to
government services and to provide safety nets. The long term goal is the
poorest households can receive assistance and support in a coordinated
and sustained way. This campaign is coordinated and championed by the
office of the Deputy President. A war room has been established
Speed Up community infrastructure programme (Priority 10)
The Lekgotla approved that provinces and Municipalities dedicate resources for the maintenance and proper assessment of (e.g. refurbishment and replacement of existing infrastructure) as well as address bulk infrastructure.
Implementation of the ECD Programme (Project 11)
Training for ECD practitioners is continuing according to plan. 6340 practitioners have been trained. A plan will be is being considered to move the 60 000 care givers from receiving a stipend to paying them a minimum wage. The next key challenge is to focus on examining the quality of ECD programmes to ensure that these programmes provide a good foundation for children.
Assistance to SMME’s (Project 13)
A business case for the establishment of the call centre was completed in May 2008. A call Request for proposals has been issued to identify and select a suitable service provider and the implementation of the call centre is scheduled for March 2009
Implement social cohesion (Project 14)
The social cohesion initiative is work in progress by the social cluster. Its objective is to provide material basis for social cohesion and social justice. The following areas are receiving attention: addressing of poverty; unemployment; deprivation; lack of access to basic services and opportunities; elimination of racism, sexism, xenophobia and other forms of intolerance. A draft National Family Policy has been developed to provide guidelines for integrated services to promote the functionality of families. A Policy for People with Disabilities has been drafted to enhance the integration and mainstreaming for the disabled; and to ensure that the disabled poor receive adequate services and support. A draft framework for on Moral Regeneration is being finalised.
Regularise employment and KPA’s (project 15)
By July 2008, only 91 % of the departments had responded to the survey and the results revealed that 66 % of managers at national level had signed KPA’s and only 53 % at provincial level. 4 DG posts were vacant (3 National and 1 provincial). 38 out of 207 DDG posts were vacant, and 13 out of 59 provincial DDG posts were vacant. At Local level, the vacancy level among municipal managers was between 12-14 %, and the vacancy rate was 74 %.
Integrated Planning across all spheres (Project 16)
The January Lekgotla approved the setting up of the planning capacity in the Presidency. This capacity will enable government to develop a Strategic National Development Plan. The policy Unit in the Presidency is coordinating this unit.
Improve civic services (project 17)
The report included on specific projects such as monitoring of vacancies, performance evaluation processes, ID smart cards, a new passport system; skills audit; and the establishment of a strategic planning capacity within government; budgeting for concurrent functions and the review of local and provincial government structures. .With regard to the smart cards, each department will identify information needs that could be incorporated into the microchip when the cards become operational.
Implement Special Crime combating and security initiatives (Project 18)
The capacity of the SA Police Service (SAPS) to investigate organised crime will be enhanced through the creation of the Directorate for Priority Crime Investigation. The meeting noted that Parliament will be holding public hearings on the Bills for the incorporation of the Directorate of Special Operations (Scorpions). The hearings will be held on 5-15 August 2008 in Parliament and the provinces.
Reduce number of cases pending trial (Project 19)
The cluster is developing policies and procedures and protocols aimed at reducing overcrowding in correctional facilities and police cell. This framework will be finalised by December 2008 following a study on international trends on the management of remand and detention. Eleven remand detention centres have been established at Pietermaritzburg, Durban Medium A,
Facilitate the resolution of the political challenges facing
See main body of the briefing notes
Consolidate advances relating to peace and reconstruction in the
See main body of the briefing notes for progress report.
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