Hansard: JS (HYBRID): Debate on President’s State-of-the-nation Address
House: Joint (NA + NCOP)
Date of Meeting: 16 Feb 2021
No summary available.
TUESDAY, 16 FEBRUARY 2021
PROCEEDINGS AT JOINT SITTING
Watch the video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BWUv8MA9G-Q
Members of the National Assembly and the National Council of Provinces assembled in the Chamber of the National Assembly at 14:00.
The Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces took the Chair and requested members to observe a moment of silence for prayer or meditation.
DEBATE ON THE PRESIDENT’S STATE OF THE NATION ADDRESS
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Honourable members, I have received a copy of the President’s address delivered at the Joint Sitting on 11 February 2021. The speech has since been printed in the Minutes of the Joint Sitting.
The CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY PARTY: Chairperson of the NCOP, Speaker of the National Assembly, His Excellency the President of the Republic of South Africa, the Deputy Chief Whip, hon members, leaders of all political parties in the National Assembly, special delegates from the NCOP represented by some premiers here. Let me take this opportunity to greet you all this afternoon.
The nation is mourning, mourning the loss of her citizen.
Isizwe sonke sithokombisile emva kweenyanga ezilishumi elinanye kwafika udubul’egeqa wesifo i-COVID 19. Kwavakala izijwili kumhlaba wonke. Siphumile kumanani ngoku, sibiza amagama eziduko ooDiya, ooThole, ooTshatshu, ooMadiba, ooVan der Merwe, ooKennedy, ooPatel, ooPillay, ooMokoena, ooMofokeng, Bakone bonke nabanye abaninzi asisathethi ngencukacha-manani, sithetha amagama neziduko zabantu esibaziyo.
We pray God to give us serenity to overcome and defeat COVID
19 which has caused misery to citizens.
Phephi ho lona kaofela ba leloko hobane koduwa ena le yona e tla fela ka tsatsi le leng.
Nale ntlungu izakugqitha. Alele amadoda, amaqobokazana, amawasa namawasakazi. Thuthuzelekani ke ngoko. Nale Ndlu yoWiso-mthetho yeSizwe iyantywizisa kuba iphulukene namalungu aliqela, amanye ngenxa yalo bhubhane.
The coronavirus pandemic has forced change and changed the world. We had to restructure our lives, the way we work, how we do business and the way we interact with each other. We as ANC would like to commend courageous work of frontline workers in our health care facilities. We salute retired health care professionals who came out of retirement to help and save lives.
Sima kweli qonga ngale njikalanga siyi-ANC, sisamkela ngezandla ezishushu intetho ngobume besizwe eqiqileyo ethiwe thaca kweli qonga nguMongameli ngoLwesine.
We join millions of South Africans in expressing our confidence in your government President, the government that is focused, determined and hard at work. You gave a full account of 2020 state of the nation address and crafted a clear way forward on implementation of the 2021 state of the nation address. Hon President, the spirit of your address was an appeal for resilience and courage in this time of crisis as we battle with two major challenges, which is coronavirus as well as struggling economic growth.
As I stand on this podium, I would like to call upon every member and all South African citizens to take a moment, to rededicate ourselves to honour and respect the Constitution passed by this House in December 1996. This year we celebrate a milestone of 25 years of being one nation, with our Constitution as the supreme law of the land.
Thina siyi-ANC siyawuhlonipha lo Mgaqo-siseko kwaye sizakuwukhusela ngamaxesha onke.
Upon its values, the democratic Republic of South Africa and all the institutions of the state were founded. The preamble articulates clearly the objectives of this Constitution:
heal the divisions of the past and establish a society based on democratic values, social justice and fundamental human rights
lay the foundations for a democratic and open society in which government is based on the will of the people, and in which every citizen is equally protected by law
improve the quality of life of all citizens and free the potential of each person
build a united and democratic South Africa that is able to take its rightful place as a sovereign state in the family of nations.
As historical records show, the ANC, led the process of drafting and adoption of the Constitution Act, Act108 of 1996 We have witnessed in recent times the callous use of race to deny some people of their human dignity as citizens of South
Africa. As pioneers of non-racialism, the ANC affirms the principles outlined in the Freedom Charter and in the Constitution; that: “South Africa belongs to all who live in it”. We therefore condemn the racist attacks against anyone in our society.
Ubuhlanga abunandawo kweli lizwe.
As Dr Martin Luther King Junior said, I quote:
I look to a day when people will not be judged by the colour of their skin, but by the content of their character.
Umanyano lwesizwe ngamandla.
Kopano ya setjhaba ke matla.
Hon Chair of the NCOP, I want to dedicate my input today to my predecessor of note, a leader par excellence and a people’s servant, Comrade Jackson Mphikwa Mthembu, uMvelase. May his soul rest in eternal peace. Even us as the ANC in this Parliament have laboured to sustain our oversight role under trying circumstances. We commend the efforts made by government as led by you Mr. President. It was under the late Minister Mthembu that in October 2016, the ANC Caucus made a solemn commitment declaration to the people of South Africa which I quote:
The ANC in Parliament will both in word and in deed, regain the moral high ground, vigorously advance clean governance, champion the fight against crime corruption, shun incompetence and decisively deal with ill- discipline. Ethical and moral uprightness shall serve as the guiding principles of our parliamentary work.
This pledge that we made almost five years ago still stands, for the ANC Caucus, there is no turning back.
Asigungqi kwesi sibophelelo.
The decisive moment in 2016 brought at least two oversight inquiries that had consequential outcomes. The first one was the committee that led to the dissolution of the dysfunctional board at the SABC and ushered in the process of rebuilding the national broadcaster. This was followed by the Eskom inquiry, that laid bare the depth of corruption and capture at our national power utility. All these inquiries were driven by members of this House, united by a single objective; to advance the interests of South Africa and her people. These examples showed that when we do our oversight work diligently as Parliament, using the powers vested in us by the Constitution, we are able to achieve decisive outcomes.
In honour of those who have come before us and the millions of South Africans who have entrusted the ANC with their votes, we will ensure this Sixth Parliament will remain consistent in taking decisive action against corruption and crime, regardless of who is implicated.
Nokuba ngubani na owambethe ingubo erhwexayo yobuqhophololo, ubusela nobuqhetseba, makabanjwe kuthinjwe bonke ubutyebi azenzele bona ngobusela nondlela-mnyama.
We have already demonstrated this commitment in the manner in which we have processed the Auditor-General’s first report on the expenditure of COVID-19 relief funds. [Interjections] All the oversight committees called the respective Ministers and director generals, DGs to account accordingly. I want to state it categorically that no member of the ANC, I will
repeat, no member of the ANC has ever been instructed to cover up corruption.
Elowo nalowo olisela uzakuzimela ngenkqayi elangeni, nokuba uma ngeqhiya okanye ngebotyo na kakade. [Kwaqhwatywa]
On the contrary, the directive from the Office of the Chief Whip was clear. We instructed all our committee chairs, whips and members to leave no stone unturned to hold those responsible for the deeply disturbing acts of corruption
accountable. We therefore reject the narrative that the ANC Caucus has sought to micro-manage committees to prevent them from performing their duties.
Bubuvuvu obu sityholwa ngabo.
The ANC affirms its unwavering support to the Commission of Inquiry into Allegations of State Capture led by the Deputy Chief Justice, Raymond Zondo. The commission must carry out its work and table its report without any fear or favour.
Mabangoyiki ngokoyikiswa nangubani na.
Ha re tjhetjhele morao, re mpa re sireletsa setjhaba ka kakaretso ho bobodu.
The ANC also supports all the law enforcement agencies that are fighting crime and corruption. We must also move with
speed to finalise the lifestyle audit framework, as well as guidelines on family members of politically exposed persons doing business with the state
The time has arrived for the Sixth Parliament must deliver on the national grievance of land. We will amend the Constitution in this year so that it makes explicit that which is implicit: The expropriation of land without compensation under specified conditions of law of general application. Public hearings into the actual amendments have been completed, guided by a draft ad hoc committee report. The report of these public hearings will be tabled soon in this National Assembly and further to the NCOP.
Iyasongwa intambo ngoku. Mawubuyele kubanikazi bawo umhlaba. Amasela omhlaba ayangcangcazela okwetshoba lenkomo, yiyo loo nto efuna ukubaleka aye kwiinkundla zomthetho.
At the same time an amendment of the Expropriation Bill, 2020, has been tabled. In this Expropriation Bill that the Constitution refers to as, the law of general application. As
the ANC, we support this Expropriation Bill and we are very much happy that the Portfolio Committee on Public Works and Infrastructure is dealing with that.
On electoral reforms, in June 2020 the court ruled that the current Electoral Act 73 of 1998 does not give all citizens a right to participate in elections. The matter is under scrutiny by Department of Home Affairs
Mr President, in your address, you outlined a coherent strategy ...[Interjections.] Congratulations to the first woman who has been appointed happen to be Director General, DG of the World Trade Organisation, WTO. I thank you. [Applause.]
The LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION: Hon Chairperson, this debate on the President’s state of the nation address comes at a very difficult time for South Africa. Our thoughts are with each and every South African who is struggling to make ends meet and put food on the table today. Our prayers are also with those who have lost loved ones to the COVID-19 pandemic, as well as those who are battling the virus as we speak. May you find your strength in the love and support of those closest to you.
We are facing an uncertain and potentially very bleak future, and we must acknowledge that in this House today.
More than ever before, the words spoken in this House must be frank and they must be honest. Anyone who steps up to this podium to try and sugar-coat the truth, downplay our challenges or shield the inept and the corrupt, will be doing this country and its citizens a massive disservice. If we’re to have any chance of digging ourselves out of the deep hole we’re in, we’re going to have to be honest and truthful about the scale of our problems, the mistakes that contributed to putting us in this position and, importantly, the steps we must take to rectify them.
That goes for members on both sides of the House. Whether you sit to my right or my left, our job is the same: to act in the best interest of every woman, man and child in this country and to navigate our way out of this crisis. That is our sworn duty, and we had better start doing this job for once.
We owe it to the citizens who rely on us to make their democracy work. We owe it to those who have been through hell and are looking to this House for some sense that things are
going to be okay. We owe it to the people who paid the ultimate price in this pandemic, and to the loved ones they left behind.
At a time when our country is at its lowest and its people are filled with doubt and uncertainty, we cannot mess around in this House. Our duty, first and foremost, must be to hold the executive accountable — no rubberstamping, no grandstanding, and no using of numbers to shield people from accountability.
Hon members, last week Thursday, we gathered to listen to the President’s state of the nation address, and his plans about the things we need to do to get to where we need to be. If we’re honest, the mood going into this state of the nation address was not hopeful at all.
Having sat through previous state of the nation addresses by President Ramaphosa, and then watched as every grand plan and big announcement evaporated during the course of the year, even the most loyal commentators were now looking to the 2021 state of the nation address with a sense of realism.
That once-lustrous cloak of the New Dawn three years ago has turned out to be a cheap imitation. Today it is frayed and faded, and no longer really worth taking out of the closet any more.
After three years of the Ramaphosa administration and the Covid-19 and lockdown crisis, no one was going to succumb to the Thuma Mina craze again. The Kool-Aid remained untouched.
And, it turns out, for good reason.
Aside from a few lines about COVID-19 and vaccines, this state of the nation address was more or less a repeat of those of 2018, 2019 and 2020. The same burning issues are still right there at the top of the President’s agenda. And if we just shut our eyes and cross our fingers, any day now we’re going to see a turnaround at Eskom. Any day now we’re going see properly qualified people appointed to the public service. And any day now the ANC really, really, truly this time is going to be serious about stamping out corruption.
These have all been promised at multiple state of the nation addresses before, with very little evidence of progress. But
the President wants you to know that they are still at the top of his mind and at the top of his to-do list.
The only problem is, people no longer believe it. And I’m not talking about just the members on the opposition benches; I’m talking about civil society, business, religious leaders, the press ...
There is a growing realisation that this President and his government cannot or will not tackle the big issues of the day. Paralysed by factionalism and power struggles, they are incapable of making even the most obvious decisions like suspending clearly corrupt individuals, let alone the big decisions around bringing reforms so that we revive our economy.
And it seems that this government is increasingly relegated to the role of spectator gawking helplessly at the fire that is consuming our country, instead of getting in there and putting out the flames. What many people once thought was the best chance an ANC President would ever have of turning things around has turned out to be almost no chance at all.
But what perhaps stood out most glaringly from the President’s speech last Thursday was the double-speak. The entire speech was full of massive contradictions between noble-sounding pledges and the reality of the ANC-led government’s actions.
The President repeatedly spoke of reforms, but what is clear from his actions — or rather, his inactions — is that he means for things to stay the same.
If he couldn’t get his own party to back the Finance Minister’s reform plan last year, the chances of driving a meaningful reform plan this year seem remote. But at least it sounded good in the speech.
The President spoke of fixing the public service, as he did in last year’s state of the nation address too. But what he really means is that he intends to continue with the ANC’s state capture project through the policy of cadre deployment. You can’t professionalise the state and deploy party loyalists to key government positions. It’s one or the other. But it sounded good in the speech.
The President spoke, once again, of job creation. Amen to that! He repeated, for the first time, the DA mantra that it
is the private sector that is going to able to create the bulk of these jobs.
But, while he says that, his government is doing all it can to discourage entrepreneurship and make it as hard as possible for small, medium and micro-sized enterprises to survive.
Thanks to the world’s most unreliable power supply, a set of rigid labour laws designed around the largest players at the table, and a completely incompetent state bureaucracy, South Africa continues to drop down the Ease of Doing Business Index. But giving a nod to the private sector in the speech sounded good.
The President spoke of strengthening our country’s agricultural output but, in the very same breath, he reaffirmed his government’s commitment to the expropriation of property without compensation. And, if you’re still unsure what that looks like, please take a look at the case of Mr Ivan Cloete, a coloured farmer who has been leasing – and successfully farming – a state farm in the Darling area for the past couple of years. Two weeks ago he was served with an
eviction order and told his farm was to be handed over to an MK veteran.
That is straight out of the ZANU-PF playbook!
Expropriation without compensation is the very antithesis of strengthening agricultural output. It is a massive deterrent to investment, not only in agriculture but in all sectors of our economy. But again, the contradiction doesn’t seem to matter, as long as it sounded good in the speech.
The President spoke of drawing a line in the sand on corruption, once and for all. Except it’s not once and for all, because he said it in 2018, in 2019, and in last year’s state of the nation address.
In the intervening period, the worst form of state corruption
— pandemic corruption — has been endemic across South Africa. This is because corruption is endemic in the ANC. And there is little President Ramaphosa can do about it, because it is becoming clear that he doesn’t hold any of the aces.
So instead, we get promised some superfluous body – this time an anti-corruption advisory council – to create the illusion that we are doing something.
We don’t need another council or panel or agency. What we need is to bring back the Scorpions with their 93% conviction rate. Which is most likely the reason they were disbanded in the first place ...
And the President still seems intent on rolling out a most ambitious vaccination programme, aiming to reach tens of millions of people by the end of the year. The reality though is that, as things currently stand, we will not have anywhere near the number of vaccine doses needed to do so. Not because other countries hoarded vaccine doses, but because our government was fast asleep for half a year while the other governments were getting into the queue. So, we now have to be satisfied with the scraps from around the world, beaten to the post by even a failed state like Zimbabwe.
On every single issue in his state of the nation address this year there was a gulf as wide as the Karoo sky between what
was promised and what this government is either able or willing to deliver.
Dressing up the top and tail of the speech with great stories and flowery metaphors about fiery fynbos renewal and inspirational poems by Maya Angelou failed to mask the shortcomings that were so very obvious in the body of the speech. I have no problem with using quotes in a speech. Some of you in the House may have noticed that I tend to do so myself. But then the quote has to be appropriate. It has to sound credible in the context of the rest of the message.
Imploring people, in the lovely words of Maya Angelou, to rise to face our challenging future may sound incredible. But it means nothing when it is in fact the actions and the policies of government that are actually keeping people down.
You cannot tell people to rise when it is government’s unjust and irrational decisions these past 11 months have destroyed their livelihoods and kept them pinned down.
You cannot tell people to rise when even the reformers in the Cabinet were unable to breathe life into the policies needed to move things forward.
You cannot tell people to rise when the factions of your own party have immobilised the state to such a degree that absolutely nothing gets done and the looters remain in their government positions.
People cannot rise with the boot of government on their neck.
So, that particular Maya Angelou quote used by the President was perhaps not the right quote for the occasion. Fortunately I have found something a little more appropriate. It’s a song by The Beatles. Some of you might recognise it. It starts like this:
He’s a real nowhere man
Sitting in his nowhere land
Making all his nowhere plans for nobody
Because that is essentially what last week’s state of the
nation address was all about. Plans so far removed from
reality and from ever being executed by this permanently paralysed government that they might as well not have been made at all. Nowhere plans for nobody.
But here’s the thing, Mr President, wherever you may be. I know you’re in a terrible bind. I know the volatile situation in your party has left you with very little room to move. Even if you wanted to act – and I’m really willing to give you the benefit of the doubt that you do – the political sands are shifting beneath your feet every single day. The forces are amassing against you. You only need to read the tea leaves to see that that is the truth!
This means our country is essentially trapped in a bus with no driver, hurtling towards some cliff!
The truth is that we don’t have time to wait for the ANC to stop its in-fighting and for someone to grab the wheel, even if that is possible. Our problems are so pressing and so big that we have to act right now. We don’t have a moment to lose.
And so, today, I would like to propose to the President a way out — a way out where South Africans emerge as the winners.
Over the next five months, the DA will table — Bill by Bill — an agenda for reform and growth here in the House. Each of these Bills will deal with an issue critical to our economic recovery, spanning sectors such as energy, public enterprises, finance, mining, labour and small businesses. A few of them are existing Bills that we will reintroduce, but most of them are new. And we are going to need your help — the reformers in the ANC —to pass them.
We will soon be reintroducing our Cheaper Energy Bill that proposes to break Eskom up into separate generation, transmission and distribution entities, as well as allowing for cities to procure energy directly.
Then there is our Fiscal Responsibility Bill which has already been tabled. This is a Bill that will ensure that our country’s debt levels are kept down and ensure that we can control how much the government can borrow each year.
Also awaiting committee time is our Public Finance Management Amendment Bill, which was tabled last year. This Bill will go a long way towards ensuring greater transparency at our state- owned entities, SOEs.
Then, in the mining sector, we will be tabling two Private Member’s Bills. One will seek to rescind Section 100 of the Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Amendment Act — the section that contains the investment-killing Mining Charter — and the other, a Bill calling for transparency around the issuance of mining licences.
To assist small businesses and make it easier for them to operate and reduce friction costs we will be reintroducing our Red Tape Amendment Bill, which is critical if we are serious about growing jobs in that sector.
And finally, we will be submitting significant amendments to the Labour Relations Act, to prevent agreements reached at bargaining councils from being applied to businesses that weren’t even party to those negotiations.
Individually, each of these Bills could have a meaningful impact on the way business is done and public funds are managed. But together, they have the potential to kick-start our economy and start a jobs revolution in our country.
We will be tabling them not to make a political point, but to give the good men and women still left in the ANC and in this House the opportunity to vote for reform when the enemies of growth around them won’t. It’s not even necessary for the whole ANC caucus to back these Bills. If the opposition stands together, then we just need a third of the people on those benches — let’s call it 85 members. Surely that’s possible?
And, more importantly, surely it’s morally right? There must be at least 85 good men and women in the ANC benches who want to do the right thing by South Africa.
But the big issue here is urgency. We have no more time to lose. South Africa simply can’t afford to waste another year to dithering and ANC infighting.
Nowhere man, don’t worry Take your time, don’t hurry
Leave it all ’til somebody else
Lends you a hand
Mr President, we are here to lend you a hand so you can do what’s right for the country rather than what’s right by your party.
It seems inconceivable that there should even be a question mark hanging over this. Surely presidents recognise that their constitutional duty is firstly to their country.
But, things are obviously not that clear-cut in the ANC. President Ramaphosa’s predecessor famously said that, for him it was ANC first, South Africa second. And President Ramaphosa is himself on record as having said that he’d rather be seen as a weak president than split the ANC. It’s hard to imagine a leader of any other modern democracy anywhere in the world ever uttering words like these.
Being a fan of Maya Angelou, President Ramaphosa probably knows that she once said:
When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time.
Is that what the President was doing when he told us that he placed the unity of the ANC above his duty towards the country? Was he showing us who he was? Should we have believed him? I hope not, because that is the last thing this country needs.
We’re in a desperate situation on multiple fronts. We’ve never been in more urgent need of bold and courageous leadership that puts the country first. We cannot afford anything less.
The President has to give the country some kind of sign that he is that man. Because at the moment it doesn’t look like it.
He couldn’t bring himself to stand up for our Constitution and the rule of law when it was trampled all over by his party’s secretary-general and his deputy. His response, when Jacob Zuma publicly vowed to defy a Constitutional Court order to appear before the Zondo Commission, was that we should all give him some time and space. And President Ramaphosa’s silence yesterday, when former President Zuma stuck to his word and snubbed the commission, spoke volumes.
None of that sounds like someone who has decided to put the country first.
The time has now come to be show courage by making it clear that it is South Africa first. If the President supports the agenda for reform and growth when we table our Bills here in
Parliament, history will remember him as a president who stood up for his country even though it was hard to do so.
If he fails to do so, history will record him as another ANC leader who buckled under the weight of his party’s selfish goals — a president who couldn’t find the courage to do what’s right when it mattered most.
And do you know what? I don’t even care if you don’t want to back a DA Bill. If you guys want to rewrite them and then submit them under your own name ... hell, even if you want to turn them into committee Bills, that’s fine. [Interjections.] Because the name on the Bill doesn’t matter. [Interjections.] It matters that we deal with the things that fix our country. It’s about fixing the things that are holding our economy back and impoverishing our people.
But just know that the alternative to all of this does not end well for you. If you fail to implement economic reforms, and if this then accelerates our slide towards a failed state that cannot fulfil its basic obligations, the people will abandon you.
Mr President, you opened your state of the nation address with the imagery of a fynbos veld being renewed every twenty years by a hot fire. This is a good analogy for our country, but perhaps not for the reason you think. In your version, the fire is the COVID pandemic that will supposedly burn our veld clean and allow new seeds to sprout.
But that is not true. We don’t need a killer virus to level our economy and force us to start from scratch. That is such a fundamentally, deeply cynical view.
No, what will save us in South Africa is the blaze of renewal that comes from a new government. That is the hot fire that will allow the dormant seeds of our stalled economy to germinate and our country to explode into vivid colour. Just as a fynbos veld needs this to happen every couple of decades for it to thrive, so too does our country.
So, the choice is yours, Mr President. You can either help reform the economy now, or you can take your chances with the fire that will undoubtedly follow. Thank you. [Applause.]
The MINISTER OF HEALTH: Chairperson of the NCOP, hon members of this House, His Excellency, President Ramaphosa, hon Speaker, Madam hon Modise, Ladies and Gentlemen, When the African National Congress took over national governance in 1994, we did so with the express intention of dismantling the shameful legacy of apartheid. Part of this shame was the abysmal state of the public health care system that we inherited. We have done a lot to improve, and between 1994 and 2020 we have increased life expectancy; reduced the infant mortality rate, maternal mortality rate, and under-5 mortality rate; established the largest antiretroviral programme in the world and serviced 84% of the country’s public health needs.
We have also eliminated polio and death by gastroenteritis and malnutrition. Of course, this is the work of the ANC-led government and our people know it. Madam Speaker, allow me to commend His Excellency the President, Ramaphosa, for a powerful state of the nation Address. The address gave an update on previous commitments and a vision for the future and responded to the current COVID-19 crisis. The speech not only gave new information, but it brought hope during the times of deep uncertainty in our country and in the global community as well, which is quite a difficult act. The story of the fynbos is a poignant story because it is our story. We are not only
resilient as a nation, but we also have high aspirations beyond mere survival. We are visionaries and world leaders, demonstrating innovation and expertise. This has been a recurring theme in our COVID-19 response. We have been lauded for our community screening and testing campaign, which not only allowed us to identify high transmission and low transmission areas in our communities but also allowed us to communicate directly with our community members and combat misinformation when we were confronted with the novel coronavirus.
Our risk-adjusted response and differentiated approach to hotspots has given lessons to other countries that adopted the same approach we pioneered. Our centralised response strategy through the National Coronavirus Command Council became a model that was cited as one to emulate throughout the globe.
It was our scientists, enabled by the Department of Science and Innovation that discovered the 501Y.V2 variant and in the process alerted the scientists in the United Kingdom who subsequently identified the dominant variant in their country, now commonly known as the Kent variant. It is also our scientists who are currently guiding pharmaceutical companies as they adapt their vaccines to accommodate the emerging
variants. As a matter of fact, we are one of very few countries that are so precise in its vaccination approach by implementing the guidance from the genomics surveillance expertise. When we said we were investing in science and innovation, we meant it, and we knew we were investing into our future. Therefore, the future is here now, and it found us ready and prepared.
The President is very correct when he says,” there is no family, no community, and no place of work that has not lost someone they knew, worked with, and loved.”
Umangabe uMongameli ethi akunamndeni namphakathi nandawo yokusebenza engalahlekelwanga umuntu emaziyo nemuthandayo nebisebenza naye, sonke sesibuzwile ubuhlungu bokucindezelwa yizimpawu ... [Akuzwakali.] Siyazi kakhulu nezimpawu nobuhlungu bokucindezelwa ... [Akuzwakali.] nobuhlungu bokunakekela abagulayo abayizihlobo zethu kanye nomzwangedwa wokuhlala uvalelekile noma usesibhedlela ngenxa yokuthi ubhekene nalesi sifo kanye nokuzila nokulila sikhalela abadlule emhlabeni esibathanda kakhulu. Sekuyisikhathi sokuthi thina njengomphakathi kube yithina esizibambayo sisithatha
isimo ngezandla zombili sikhiphe leli gciwane liphume ezimpilweni zethu, zomphakathi nezomnotho. Ngakhoke lokho kudinga ukuthi sibambane sibe yimbumba simunye njengabobonke abaseNingizimu Afrika ukuze sikwazi ukuhlenga isizwe sakithi. Umhlaba wonke ohulumeni abahlukene babhekene nenkinga yokuhlukanisa phakathi kwesandla somthetho esiqinile ukuze sigcine izimpilo ziphephile kanye nalokho kuxegisa esikudingayo ukuze umnotho usebenze abantu baqhubeke nokuphila. Okwamanje-ke izimpilo zethu nethemba lethu selisele ekutheni sithole umkhankaso wokugoma noma ukugonywa, kuleso sikhathi sibona kubalulekile ukuthi kubekhona indlela yokuthi umzimba womuntu ukwazi ukuzivikela bese sivikelana sonke.
We will need to achieve population immunity across the world, for it will be useless if one country achieves population immunity while others are left behind. To ensure that our battle against the pandemic remains grounded on the principles of “solidarity and compassion”, our strategy is that the State will be the sole purchaser of the vaccines for the country, irrespective of the manufacturer and source.
Ngaleyo ndlela umangabe kuwuHulumeni othenga lezi zitofu zokugoma noma lemijovo yokugoma kuzobaluleka ukuthi sazi ukuthi uHulumeni uyena ozoyikhokhela kangangokuthi umuntu ozobe ejova ethola isitofu noma ethola ukugonywa noma umjovo lowo muntu akazukhokha lapho ezothola khona lolo sizo.
Kubalulekile ukuthi kungayi ngokuthi unamalini ekhukhwini kodwa kube ukuthi kubalulekile wazi ukuthi uvikelekile ngoba uyisakhamuzi sala eNingizimu Afrika.
That is one of the actions that will help us advance the ideals of universal health coverage. As government, we are actively engaging manufacturers and suppliers of the COVID-19 vaccines through different but interrelated channels. These include the COVID-19 Vaccines Global Access, COVAX, facility, bilateral arrangements with pharmaceutical companies and in this case we need to make really sure that all is done to make sure that we are ultimately able to get as much of the vaccines that we require as a country. As such, as I’ve said, vaccination will be free at the point of care.
But we are also looking at working with the African Union’s
Vaccines Financing Strategy and the Vaccine Acquisition Task
Team, who have to-date allowed us to engage with the manufacturers of multiple vaccines such as AstraZeneca, Pfizer, Johnson and Johnson, Moderna, Sinopharm, Sinovac and Sputnik V. And recently, we have also been in discussion with Cuba. So, we are engaging all of them to get the best for South Africa. We have heard the clarion call made by the people of South Africa to accelerate our capacity to develop and manufacture our own COVID-19 tools, including vaccines. We have also worked together with the Brics countries to build capacity within our country to create a Brics vaccine institute in South Africa. The recent announcement around the limited efficacy of the AstraZeneca vaccine, the so-called Covshield, which has already been procured, was certainly disappointing; however, we were determined not to be derailed from our commitment to roll out in February. I wish to once again put it on record that those AstraZeneca vaccines have not expired. The expiry date is still a few weeks away, on April 31.
So we will make sure that the wrong impression that was created is corrected because this is simply not true. However, we also want to refute categorically the speculation in media that we have returned the stock to India, we have not. The
Astra Zeneca doses we purchased have been offered to the African Union platform, of which we are part of, and they will be distributed to the countries that already indicated interest that do not have this particular challenge of this variant. [Applause.] Therefore, there will be no wasteful and fruitless expenditure. In regard to the future role of AstraZeneca - and all vaccines for that matter - will continue to be guided by the Ministerial Advisory Committee and do the kind of studies that we have indicated.
As announced by the President, we have also managed to secure successfully nine million doses of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine, and the first batch will be delivered within the course of this week and of course the announcement will be made about the start of the vaccinations. You’ve heard also that 500 000 doses are expected over the next four weeks, supplemented by 20 million from Pfizer. I can also that in discussions we have involved enough dosages to be able to cover all the people that need to be covered in South Africa.
I would like take therefore the opportunity of settling the Johnson and Johnson vaccine roll-out because it must be understood that our sole purpose is to save the lives of our
people and protect our health care workers. It is without dispute that the Johnson and Johnson vaccine has a 57% efficacy against the 501Y.V2 variant and is fully protective against serious illness or death. On that basis, therefore, Johnson and Johnson applied for Emergency Use Authorisation and it is expected that this will be granted.
In the meantime we have also registered a protocol under what we call Sisonke, this protocol will allow us to surveil the vaccination of health care workers and will further add to our understanding of the impact of mass vaccination and we are looking out for breakthrough infections just to be able to know how to prepare our nation as we move along.
The immediate roll-out of phase one vaccination with Johnson and Johnson through the Sisonke protocol has been made possible by the fact that over 300 000 doses of the now proven and efficacious Johnson and Johnson vaccine were already tested and approved by SA Health Products Regulatory Authority, SAHPRA, for use under study conditions. It was the quick thinking of the leadership of the Department of Health and the Medical Research Council, MRC. And I want to single out Professor Glenda Gray and Dr Sandile Buthelezi who have
led the teams that have worked together with us to deal with this issue.
On 3 February 2021 we launched the registration portal for the vaccinations campaign; I am pleased to say that as we speak, over 380 000 health care workers have registered. We want to salute all the health care workers who have chosen vaccination for their own protection and the protection of their colleagues, families and we will continue to call on them do work on the registration on the Electronic Vaccination Data System, EVDS, portal. We are ready to implement an effective
... [Time expired.] Thank you. [Applause.]
Mr J S MALEMA: Thank you very much, hon Chairperson. Mr President ...
Bagologolo ba rile, “Dinaka tša go rwešwa ga di gomarele hlogo.”
You are a perfect manifestation of this African idiom. You are incompetent, incapacitated and the most unreliable human
being. Perhaps it is something that you learnt when you worked as a legal officer for the Oppenheimers. Here you are pretending that you believe in South Africa’s case; yet it is a lie.
When you prematurely ascended to power in 2018, many people, including the leadership and membership of the EFF, hoped that you would bring some degree of stability. It is now three years since you took office and we can all say that you have not achieved anything that is worth mentioning. We have successfully displaced the Gupta criminal syndicate which had a lot of power under President Zuma. However, it is now evident that the Guptas have been replaced by the very powerful white capitalist capture of the Ruperts, Oppenheimers, Stephen Koseff, the Menells and all other white people who played a central role in buying the conference of the ruling party in 2017. We want to state categorically that any leader of our country that owes loyalty to colonial settlers and white state capturers is defining himself as an enemy of the people. We will isolate and ultimately defeat all puppets of the white capitalist establishment.
Despite the public relations stance and showmanship you demonstrated during the state of the nation address on
11 February 2021, there is honestly nothing to celebrate under your leadership. The reality is that the conditions of our people are getting worse, and whilst corona has worsened them it is still not to blame for your general incompetence. The only thing that your administration is competent at is the protection and benefits of the white capitalist establishment. This is evidently pay back for the fact that white people under apartheid even protected and promoted you, Mr Cyril Ramaphosa.
Hon Chairperson, you will recall that when young black people were being exiled and killed in the 70s, particularly after the June 16 uprising, Mr Cyril Ramaphosa was already serving on the boards of white companies, particularly the Urban Foundation belonging to the Oppenheimers and the Ruperts. It is no surprise that when he announced the first lockdown, he announced fake commitments of billions in donations from the Ruperts and Oppenheimers, which never reached our people.
When he was elected as President in 2018, the unemployment rate in South Africa was 26,1% and more than 8,8 million
people, mainly black youth willing and ready to work, were unemployed. Today, the unemployment rate has increased to 30,1% and the number of unemployed people has increased to well over 10 million. Under his leadership, more than two million people with jobs when he took office no longer have jobs. This means, Mr President, that in the same way you claim victories for an increase in jobs, you must also take full responsibility when more than two million breadwinners lose their jobs.
Despite empty promises at investment summits, the economy under Mr Ramaphosa is shrinking. South Africa was already in a recession for three quarters before the outbreak of the coronavirus. The last time South Africa experienced positive quarterly economic growth was in the second quarter of 2019.
We experienced a recession well before the COVID-19 pandemic and this is made worse by the fact that government’s contribution to the GDP continues to decline due to the patently foolish and unscientific reduction of the Budget.
We warned that, despite the misleading talk by the Minister of Trade, Industry and Competition Ebrahim Patel, South Africa’s industrial capacity is not growing. Instead, it continues to
shrink as there is no coherent and cogent industrial policy for industrial expansion or localisation because of Mr Ramaphosa’s incompetence. You are incompetent ...
O a palelwa, mokgalabje.
You must accept ...
... gore o nto ya pala.
When we were confronted with the COVID-19 pandemic, we could not even manufacture the most basic of things like masks and sanitisers. South Africa has spent more than 30 billion purchasing personal protective equipment, PPEs, and this has benefited foreign companies. Even when local producers tried to produce PPEs locally, your government overlooked them and empowered foreign companies. In addition, your preference for white people is deeply hurtful and the most dangerous of all your traits. It is demonstrated by almost all strategic
positions in state-owned companies being handed over to white people and mostly males who, despite their incompetence and corruption, are protected by the capitalist media establishment.
Mr President, your energy plan is a disaster and will not bring about the necessary energy stability needed to develop South Africa’s economy. Despite your misleading commitments that Eskom will not be privatised, what you said here during the state of the nation address is essentially the gradual privatisation of energy generation, and we all know that the white capitalist establishment will again be the biggest beneficiary whilst thousands of workers will lose their jobs. Eskom’s future lies in the establishment of its own renewable energy division instead of its dependence on greedy independent power producers. The current model has failed dismally and has worsened Eskom’s financial problems.
We were told that more than 1,2 trillion in investment was marked over a period of five years, and so far the so-called raised investments are imaginary and only exist in your not so big head.
In 2018, Mr Ramaphosa committed to finalising the allocation of spectrum to reduce barriers to entry, promote competition and reduce data costs. The same commitment was repeated in February and June of 2019 and in February 2020. This process has been mismanaged so much that any effort to license the spectrum will be riddled with corruption, incompetence and not lead to the reduction of data costs.
Under your watch, Mr President, corruption is on the rise. For instance, only 26% of national and provincial departments and state-owned entities, SOEs, managed to produce quality financial statements. According to the Auditor-General, AG, the financial health of government continues to be alarming.
Irregular, wasteful and fruitless expenditure continues to increase. The COVID-19 corruption of PPEs is also evidence that you cannot deal with corruption. According to the AG’s COVID-19 special report, there is widespread corruption, fraud and abuse of power in your government, sponsored and monitored by people, including your Cabinet members. In fact, your own Ministers refuse to answer important questions from Parliament. The key example is this one who just spoke before me who pretends to know everything about this pandemic yet he knows nothing. He refused to answer questions, using
nondisclosure agreements signed with pharmaceuticals. We have written to the Speaker to demand that all details, including prices, quantities, contracted middle men and middle women in the procurement of vaccines, must be disclosed to Parliament and the people of South Africa. Everyone who stands to personally benefit from the vaccine roll-out must face public scrutiny to avoid the repeat of corruption in the roll out of PPEs.
The truth, however, is that all of this will not happen because of your incompetence, Mr Ramaphosa.
O a palelwa. O no ba nto ya pala. Ga o tsebe selo; o rata dilo. O dumetše go ba Mopresidente o tseba gore ga o na le bokgoni bja go ba moemedi wa maemo a godimo.
We have had to lodge complaints with the Public Protector about shenanigans that occurred in the Financial Sector Conduct Authority where commissioners have squandered millions of members’ pension funds. They have used these funds to enrich themselves, their own law firms and their family
members. The surpluses and unclaimed pensions should be used to procure vaccines. You could unwind the pension fund, reverse the unjustifiable legal and curator fees and utilise the remaining surpluses for the benefit of workers and all people. The reality is that in any event, these funds belong to the workers, but again, because of your incompetence, you will not use your regulatory power to save the lives of workers from the devastating impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. This inability to act is what gives way to corruption and the squandering of people’s resources by greedy officials and capitalists.
Amidst all this, under you Mr Ramaphosa, white companies are the biggest beneficiaries of state contracts. Black companies are all marginalised under the racist suspicion that they are all corrupt simply because they are black.
E sa le o eba Mopresidente ...
... all the people, including ...
... bao ba go thekgago ...
... are being pushed out. All those people who were successful in the previous administrations ...
... bao e lego borakgwebo ba bathobaso, kamoka ga bona makgowa a a ba koba, le bao ba bego ba na le diBEE - Maatlafatšo ya Bathobaso ekonoming ...
... are now being taken out of those companies because they have gained a white arrogance under your leadership and they have undermined all black people.
Se se nkgahlago kudu - se ntshegišago, ebile se ntsikiditla le bošego ke gore bathobaso bao ba go filego tšhelete le bona ...
... they are at the receiving end.
Ka gore makgowa a a ba ntšha dikgwebong, ka ge ba se sa ba
hloka, ba swere komangkanna ka ...
... the form of a President. Despite undisputed evidence that there was massive corruption in the purchase of PPEs, there is not a single public official who has been arrested and convicted by the National Director of Public Prosecutions, NDPP, whom we are told is the most competent of all. It is evident now that the only thing the current NDPP was appointed for was to withdraw criminal charges against the rogue unit led by Jamnadas who continues to control government and the media to tell lies about the President’s opponents and project him as a demigod.
Mr President, we cannot continue to bury our heads in the sand against growing, and now believable, allegations that some prominent members of the judiciary are on the payroll of the white capitalist establishment. We cannot ignore the allegations that some of the judges have received bribes through the State Security Agency’s, SSA’s, project justice as well as from CR17 donations which, by all standards and
measures, amounted to massive corruption, money laundering and racketeering. The judiciary must know that they are not above the Constitution.
O ka no ba moahlodi, efela ga o Modimo. Kamoka ga bona ga se ba ka ba lwela naga ye. Ba ile sekolong gore ba be baahlodi.
There is nothing so special that gives them powers to think they can amend this Constitution and take away people’s rights. Worse they contradicted themselves in their own judgements because they think they are untouchable. They must know that if they continue to think that they are the law but not interpreters of the law then the people will rise against those few judges who have made themselves the law and are conspiring with politicians to deal with the opponents of the current establishment.
There is an uninterrupted continuity of state capture which looks like all along you have been learning from the best. At the rate that these allegations are going we will have to establish another commission of inquiry to investigate massive
corruption under your leadership and we will have to conduct a
... [Inaudible.] ... scrutiny of our judiciary. Judges can be investigated and they need to know that they must make the law and they shouldn’t think that they are above the law.
Mr President, in your public relations efforts you continue to mention that you have made a fiscal intervention of
500 billion to fight the corona pandemic and its consequences, and that is plainly not a reflection of reality. We warned earlier on about the urban legend and failed public relations exercise that there was 500 billion injected into the fiscus as an economic response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We illustrated that the 500 billion was made up of 70 billion tax deferments, 200 billion loan guarantees used to benefit a few white businesses, 40 billion ... support business with wages paid from the Unemployment Insurance Fund, UIF, and other monies were sought from the reprioritisation of the existing Budget. The most tragic decision taken by your government was to borrow 100 billion from the International Monetary Fund, IMF, which, despite your denials, will lead to the micromanagement of South Africa’s fiscal policy. This means that under your watch Mr President, South Africa’s sovereignty against imperialist micromanagement has been compromised.
It is an illusion that we should focus our fight against corona only within the borders colonially defined as South Africa, whilst our brothers and sisters on the entire continent have nowhere to source assistance. The South African government should, as a permanent solution, build a state- owned pharmaceutical company and capacity, in collaboration with progressive countries such as Cuba and Russia because undisputed science has illustrated that the Russian vaccine has higher efficiency rates, and has possible and sound storage requirements. That is where we should refocus our attention. It is now difficult to believe that your insistence on the Johnson and Johnson vaccine is genuine because Johnson and Johnson has subcontracted your CR17 funders to be part of the manufacturers of the vaccine which does not have the necessary efficiency and capacity to insulate our people against the virus. If scientists say that the Russian vaccine is the most impactful vaccine against corona, why are we not pursuing it?
The provision of vaccines to South Africans must include an equal effort to provide vaccines to all Africans, including those from poor countries, because administering vaccines only in South Africa, when our brothers and sisters on the African
continent are not vaccinated, is meaningless. Vaccinations and access to quality health care should be a human right, not a privilege reserved for the rich and powerful.
Let me tell you Mr President, that our principle to support Africans who are here, all over the continent and in the diaspora, will never be shaken by the so-called put South Africa first. We are Africans. There is nothing called South Africa. These borders were imposed on us by the nonsensical imperialists who knew that African unity will serve as a direct threat to imperialism and colonialism. If supporting Africans means we should lose votes, then so be it. If calling for the vaccination of fellow African brothers and sisters means we lose these seats of Parliament, let me go back to Masakhane. I will not sit back and see Africans dying whilst South Africa can afford to vaccinate them because I want a vote. I call on you and your so-called liberation movement that benefitted a lot from Africa to rise and support the call of the EFF to vaccinate all of Africa, particularly the poor countries that cannot afford it, and particularly in Southern Africa because we are one community. Those borders that all of you speak about are imaginary. Look, yesterday the 15th you opened the borders, yet there was no stampede at the borders.
What does it tell you? They were already here because your gates are imaginary. They exist only in your not so big head.
We call on the Department of Health and all health regulatory bodies for the regulation, professionalisation and mainstreaming of traditional African immunisation and disease prevention mechanisms such as steaming using ...
... lengana goba “umhlonyane”. Re na re godišitšwe ke “makgonatšohle”. Re be re re ge re lwala, re rengwa ke hlogo, bakgekolo ba re fe “makgonatšohle”. Ge re be re bolawa ke mala ba be ba re fa “makgonatšohle”. Ga se re godišwe ke dipilisi tše tša makgowa tše.
Bjale re dira boipiletšo re re ge e le gore ka nnete o MoVenda wa gaborena wa go tšwa Venda wa go tseba gore dihlare tše tša rena tše le dipheko di šoma bjang, re thuše gore re šomane le selekanyo, gore dihlare tše tša gaborena tše, tšeo bomakgolo ba rena, bokoko Sara, ba re rutilego tšona pele ba eya badimong, re tšwele pele re di šomiša gore re se ke ra swarwa ke malwetši ao re sa a tsebego. A mangwe ba re a tšwa China, re sa tsebego gore re kopana kae le MaChina.
Bjale re thušeng ka gore re nyaka dihlare tše tša rena tša Sesotho di phuthelwe gabotse, le dilekanyo tša gona di bontšhwe gabotse gore di nwewa bjang - gore di se ke tša gakatša bolwetši, efela di bo okobatše ka mokgwa woo di bego di bo okobatša ka gona kgale ge re be re šomiša tšona dihlare tše le dipheko tše bakgekolo le bakgalabje ba re tlogeletšego tšona.
Makgowa ga ba di nyake, ka gore ba a tseba gore ge re ka ja mešunkwane le medi ye ya rena, ke moka dihlare tša bona tša sekgowa di ka se sa rekwa, gomme ba ka se sa dira tšhelete. Rena ga re tšhabe go bolela gore re gotše ka legare; re gotše re eja mešunkwane; re gotše re eja medu – ka gore rena ...
... we are proud Africans.
Ga re ikgantšhe ka dinaka tša go rwešwa tša go swana le tšeo wena o tsamayago o di rwele mo gare ga batho, mola o tseba le ge o robetše bošego gore ga o a lokelwa ke go ba Mopresidente.
The South African government should play a leading role in the regularisation and mainstreaming of proven scientific solutions that are part of African tradition. It is problematic, reactionary and unacceptable for the government not to provide scientific guidance on alternative African methods of disease prevention and cure whilst a large number of our people depend on these solutions.
We demand that all intellectual property rights on vaccines and generic medicines be waived because saving lives in this critical period of a deadly virus should not be in pursuit of profits. Capitalist greed and opportunism should, in this age, be replaced by the spirit of human solidarity. During the Cold War, rivals in the war collaborated to fight the pandemics of chickenpox and polio, and to a large extent succeeded. In this regard, all countries in the world should collaborate to vaccinate the whole world’s population otherwise there will never be a lasting victory over coronavirus.
We call on government to extend the provision of the basic income grant into a permanent solution for all unemployed people in South Africa. We call for the increase of social grants for all people receiving social grants. We call for the
introduction of a social and economic assistance programme that will help small and medium enterprises owned by black people because the 200 billion loan guarantees announced as part of the imaginary 500 billion package only benefitted white people.
We demand payment holidays for all people owing banks for houses and cars, and we demand payment holidays for all people paying rent. The payment holidays must be a national, compulsory resolution applied to all the people and not left to the discretion of financial institutions. No-one should, under this condition of the pandemic, be dispossessed of their houses and cars due to nonpayment because we are in a difficult situation economically and many people have lost their jobs. If banks and financial institutions continue to dispossess our people of their houses and cars, they will force us into militant and radical action against all of you.
Mr Ramaphosa, open the political space. [Inaudible.] ... activity because the banks are doing as they wish. You are also doing as you wish because you have deprived our people from occupying the space. [Inaudible] ... the political space
so that we can go back to the picket lines and demonstrate to these banks that no-one can defeat the power of the masses.
Mr President, local government elections in 2021 will not be free, fair and transparent because you have closed the political ... [Inaudible.] We cannot hold elections in ... [Time expired.]
The ACTING MINISTER IN THE PRESIDENCY: His excellency the President of the Republic of South Africa ... [Interjections.]
... Deputy President of the Republic, you know ... [Interjections.] ... hon Speaker of the National Assembly, Chairperson of the NCOP, Deputy Chairperson of the NCOP ... [Interjections.]
The DEPUTY CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY: Chairperson of the NCOP, on a point of procedure.
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Any attempt to disrupt the sitting really ... [Interjections.]
Ms H O MKHALIPHI: We are calling a point of order here.
The DEPUTY CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY: Hon Chairperson of the NCOP, thank you very much. I stand on a point of procedure.
All speakers are given an opportunity to debate in this debate. Therefore, the hon member of the EFF finished his speech and his time was over. So, can we be pleased assisted in this House that those who are trying to disrupt this debate, they must be chucked out of this platform so that other members who are ... [Interjections.] ... be allowed to speak in this House. Thank you very, hon Chairperson.
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: That point of order is sustained, we will therefore move on to the next speaker ... [Interjections.] ... hon Ntshavheni, please proceed.
The ACTING MINISTER IN THE PRESIDENCY: When President Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa stood here on Thursday, he said that this is not ordinary year and this is not ordinary state of the nation address and in the same vain, this is no ordinary ... [Interjections.] ...
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Ntshavheni, just a minute ... [Interjections.] ... I’m now going to instruct again that the microphones will be switched off. Please proceed, hon member.
Ms H O MKHALIPHI: Chair, just take a point of order and hear us out because what we are going to say ... [Interjections.]
An HON MEMBER: Can you please allow a point of order?
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon members, I can’t really understand what it is ... [Interjections.] ... the time allocated to hon Malema ... [Interjections.] ... any point of order on the question of the time allocated. Thank you very much. Please proceed, hon member.
The DEPUTY CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY: Hon Chairperson of the NCOP, can the information technology, IT, people assist us in muting those microphones. You did not do when Julius was on the platform. It must be muted so that we may proceed with the debate in the House. Thank you.
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: I request that all these other microphones be muted so that we proceed. Hon Ntshavheni, please proceed ... [Interjections.] ... Hon members, I now order that all the microphones that are on be switched off and
that we proceed with the sitting. [Applause.] Please proceed, hon Ntshavheni.
The ACTING MINISTER IN THE PRESIDENCY: We stand here today in the hybrid parliamentary session during a global pandemic that has affected us all ... [Interjections.]
Ms E N NTLANGWINI: Chairperson, on a point of order. No one must also call a point of order in the House.
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Can I please make an appeal, hon members. Does everyone take their own sits? ... [Interjections.] ... I now order that all the microphones be switched off and that hon Ntshavheni proceed with addressing of the House. Please, proceed.
The ACTING MINISTER IN THE PRESIDENCY: Hon Chairperson of the NCOP, I need to request that the time that was taken when they were howling on my speaking time be restored, because they were not muting their microphones intentionally even when you have given them order to mute their microphones. Therefore, I need my minutes restored. Thank you.
We stand here today in a hybrid parliamentary session during a global pandemic that has affected us all. We remember those who have departed and those who continue to battle with the coronavirus. I pay my respects to a colleague, the late Minister in the Presidency, Comrade Jackson Mthembu, and fellow hon members who lost their lives due to this pandemic. We convey our deepest condolences to their families and all South Africans who lost their loved ones as the world fights the coronavirus disease 2019, Covid-19, pandemic.
Re re homotšegang.
Mr President, during the state of the nation address, you highlighted progress in the implementing of some of the commitments that you had made in the previous state of the nation addresses. The Presidency through the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation is finalising the Geo- Spatial Referencing Guidelines to ensure location mapping for all projects under implementation at any given time, and this is critical for effective monitoring and evaluation and gives us the ability to measure our progress towards the development
of our country, as set out in the Vision 2030, that is espoused in the National Development Plan. With nine years to go until 2030, you have boldly invited South Africans and everybody interested to measure the performance of your leadership in delivering against stated targets albeit under difficult conditions and an ultra-fluid environment ... [Interjections.]
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Can I make a plea to all members, especially to those who are virtual. Kindly afford us an opportunity to proceed with the sitting. Please go ahead, hon Ntshavheni.
Mr N L S KWANKWA: Chairperson, may I be recognised please ... [Interjections.] ... we can’t allow that to happen. We have a right here as Members of Parliament to express ourselves and to rise on point of orders whether you agree with that or not.
Ms H O MKHALIPHI: Deputy President, speak. Just speak Deputy President, because he is ignoring you.
Mr N F SHIVAMBU: Chairperson, we have communicated to the Table staff in Parliament, and they know very well that we
have allocated all the minutes to the President to address and we say that we will only stop once he has finished. And you are working on the basis of wrong minutes to stop him.
Therefore, his speech is not done and it is against ... [Interjections.]
An HON MEMBER: Mute all the microphones. Please IT, please mute the microphones.
Mr N F SHIVAMBU: ... for you to refuse the CIC to give the real the state of the nation address and suppressing the EFF to ... [Interjections.] ... to address.
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Yes, hon member, let’s hear you.
The CHIEF WHIP OF THE OPPOSITION: Chairperson ... of Rule 19 from the Rules of the Joint Sitting, what the EFF is doing is a distraction of the House. They are stopping the constitutional right of we and the member at the podium from allowing ... [Interjections.] ... what is going on, on the virtual platform is an acceptable and it is an embarrassment to our country. I therefore ask Chairperson of the National Council of Provinces that you now order that the Serjeant-at-
arms remove anyone who does not adhere to ... [Interjections.]
... that you ask them to be removed from the platform as we have a constitutional right to speak ... [Interjections.] ... to keep quiet. Thank you very much.
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: I now take this opportunity to clarify one more time ... [Interjections.] ...
Ms E N NTLANGWINI: Are we not in the same sitting here. Why do allow Natasha to speak? You don’t want us to speak ... not the same sitting ... she’s a white lady ... black people. We are all ... we are also Members of Parliament. You allowed Natasha to speak, and you allowed her to completely speak because she’s white woman and you scared of white people ... [Interjections.] ...
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: All the other microphones should be switched off to enable us to proceed with the sitting. Hon Ntshavheni! I now order that all the other microphones be switched off ... [Interjections.] ... I repeat again. I repeat again that I’m now ordering all the other microphones to be switched off ... [Interjections.] ... this Joint Sitting to proceed.
The CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY PARTY: Hon Chair of the NCOP,
with due respect, presiding officer, the leaders of the EFF who are on virtual platform have just informed us that they’ve communicated with the Table staff that they’ve been allocated
42 minutes and, therefore, only one person which is Mr Malema will take the entire 42 minutes. However, on the Speaker’s List here it appears that it is 21 minutes. Therefore, they are saying that they might have been a miscommunication when this was printed out. So, I just wanted to put that into records.
Mr N F SHIVAMBU: The Chief Whip of the Majority Party is correct that is what we’ve communicated to the Table staff. Therefore, you cannot stop our time before the speech has been finished. Allow the commander-in-chief, CIC, to finish the speech, and then you will allow the others. It is our minutes that we are using to address Parliament. It is not your borrowed time. It is the time that we are given by the masses of our people who voted for the EFF. Therefore, please allow the commander-in-chief to finish the speech, and then you will proceed with the other speakers according to the time that has been given. It is as simple as that.
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Thank you very much. The issue having been verified. We will proceed to give 20 minutes more to hon Malema.
Mr N L S KWANKWA: Chairperson, may I also make a point. My concern, Chairperson ... Members of Parliament who are participating and the proceeding via the virtual platform. If you give the Members of Parliament who are sitting in the House to have a right to express themselves, but you don’t. I don’t understand why ... [Interjections.] ... No, Chairperson, please. I’m also talking. I don’t understand why the EFF was not allowed to express its point of orders and they raise on a point and then you make a ruling ... [Interjections.] ...
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: I haven’t given you a permission to speak. Therefore, given the fact that the clarification has been given that hon Malema is entitled to 20 more minutes.
This is exactly what we are going to do. Please proceed.
Ms E N NTLANGWINI: Chair, please be clear, who must proceed? Be specific.
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Malema, please, proceed and
20 minutes more.
An HON MEMBER: Hon Chairperson, hon Malema has been kicked out, he can’t be access back in, please tell your people to allow him back in.
An HON MEMBER: You must tell parliamentary people or IT to allow him back in because they have removed him. They are scared of what he’s saying when he’s telling the truth and they’re scared of that.
The CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: The Chief Whip of the ANC having clarified the question and having spoken to the Table, we will now give hon Malema 20 more minutes ... [Interjections.] Please, proceed.
Mr J S MALEMA: Thank you very much Chairperson, let all political parties honestly engage in a process presided by independent electoral commission to assess whether there is a rational possibility of proceeding with local government elections in 2021, at a face of a devastating pandemic. Once we agree, that it is not possible, we will approach the
Electoral Court in the same way it was done for all postponed by-elections, to hold local government elections - while conditions permit for free, fair and transparent election to occur.
We are not scared Chairperson, because a lot of doomsayers say the EFF demands the elections to be postponed because it’s scared to loose elections. We want to remove the ANC from power, through a transparent and open contested local government elections. There is no way the ANC can come back to power.
Lastly, we wish to remind you that the historical mission started by the EFF to amend section 25 of the Constitution shall be finalised before the end of 2021. This is a programme to repossess land that was stolen from Africans by white colonial settlers who continue to own and control over 80% of South Africa’s land - it is unconstitutional. It is constitutionally permissible to change the Constitution in order to meet historical demands of our people, and anyone who denies us this democratic right, does not understand the rule of law. We know that the subjects of colonial rule and puppets will try everything in their power to delegitimise the process
of repossessing our land, but we are resolute. Our land will come back in our life time and we will never regret.
When you said Mr President you agree with the amendment of section 25, we warned much earlier that you are bluffing. The same way you said you are winning elections on transparency principle, we warned that you were bluffing, you said you are winning elections on the principle of anticorruption, we warned that you are bluffing. You did so because you stand for nothing, you’ve got no political backbone, you are a coward and that’s why even in the 70’s, you could not stand with your own generation. When they went to Robben Island, you went home. A child of an apartheid policeman, this time around we will never give you that opportunity. You are either going to agree that we take our land and restore it in the hands of rightful owners or else you are going to be kicked out of that office, even before your conference. You will be the first President of the ANC and the country who doesn’t finish the first term.
Every time we fight for our rights, every time we demand accountability, every time we articulate radical positions towards changing the economy of this country, your puppets
accuse us of a fightback strategy. We are not part of any fightback strategy. Our fight is against the corrupt ANC gangster. You are all members of a gangster and we are not part of your factions, neither are we with Zuma or are with you, the CR17 gangster. We are fighting the ANC, it’s not a fightback strategy, it’s not a secret, we are fighting the ANC and by extension we are fighting you. We want you out of power and we are going to intensify that. Your puppets must stop confusing us with factional battles of the ANC. We warned you long time ago, listen to your own comrades not a kitchen cabinet in Stellenbosch, you didn’t listen now you are swimming in a boiling water.
Di kgone! A di go je! Di be di lome le barafi!
The CHIEF WHIP OF THE MAJORITY PARTY: Hon Deputy Speaker, I am rising on a point of order. The point of order is, can all the mics be controlled on a virtual platform. Let people indicate if they want to speak, but the chaos that is happening on virtual platform is uncalled for, please [Applause.]
The DEPUTY SPEAKER: Thank you, hon members, we request order.
Hhayi kahle, kahle! Usuyaqala nawe nje, uyakhalimela la... uyaqala, awukahle, awukahle!
There will be order here, hon Minister please proceed. Hon members you don’t have to be told and reminded about the rules, you know them and they will be forcefully imposed. If you don’t agree to be with us orderly, you just switch off and turn over into your kitchen and have good drinks there [Applause.] Hon Minister, please proceed.
The ACTING MINISTER IN THE PRESIDENCY: Fellow South Africans and Mr President, during the state of the nation address, you highlighted progress in implementing some of the commitments that you had made in the previous Sonas. The Presidency through the Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation is finalizing the Geo-Spatial Referencing Guidelines to ensure location mapping for all the projects under implementation at any given time, and this is critical for effective monitoring and evaluation and gives us the ability to measure our
progress towards the development of our country, as set out in our Vision 2030 that is espoused in the National Development Plan.
With nine years to go until 2030, you have boldly invited South Africans and everybody interested to measure the performance of your leadership in delivering against this stated targets albeit under difficult conditions and an ultra- fluid environment.
The performance agreements that are drawn from the Medium-Term Strategic Framework, MTSF, that you have not only signed with the Ministers but have also made them public demonstrates your confidence in the ability of your team to deliver. For once, our performance will no longer be subject to speculation but objective measurement that relies on facts. For science teaches us that measurement is a process of associating numbers with physical quantities and phenomena. It is a based on quantitative or numerical data. So, hon Steenhuisen, the numbers tell a story but we understand your discomfort with evidence-based decision-making. This government is committed evidence-based performance monitoring.
The Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation, DPME, and the Department of Public Service and Administration are reviewing the integration of the performance management system for members of the executive and Directors-General or heads of departments to ensure full alignment and synchronisation. This is also part of the work of professionalization of the public service. In this regard, the Department of Public Service and Administration has published a National Implementation Framework towards the professionalization of the public service and some of the proposals in this framework include: The alignment of individuals to organisational performance; aligning performance management to professional bodies and industry registration; and continuing learning and professional development.
So, hon Steenhuisen, the President did not just speak about professionalising the public service, the executive is on course to deliver on the professional public service.
Hon Deputy Speaker, departments are already tabling their quarterly reports to Parliament on the implementation of their Annual Performance Plans, APPs, towards the attainment of the MTSF targets. The system of tracking the implementation of the
MTSF has matured to an extent that the DPME will now supplement these quarterly reports with biannual consolidated reports on progress with implementation of the MTSF targets and the focused areas that were announced by the President during the Sona address. In the review of the MTSF that was necessitated by the reprioritisation of the budgets and operating environment due to the pandemic, the National Planning Commission, NPC, assisted the DPME with ensuring that the revised MTSF targets are measurable. Again, it is the numbers.
Fellow South Africans, I earlier indicated that we only have nine years remaining to achieve the goals of the NDP. To this effect, the National Planning Commission has completed the Review of the NDP, which is the plan for all South Africans, and the commission will soon release the review to the public. For the first time, the commission will also release a framework to guide the implementation of the NDP but only for focused areas and strategic priorities.
Mr President, may I dare say that under your leadership, the path to a capable developmental state is much clearer because
you have defined clear goals for this country, thus making our steps bolder and the strides measurable.
We are emboldened to make this assertion because despite the challenges the economy is showing some bold green shots. The agricultural and mining sectors continue to register quarter- on-quarter growth and this is not a result of an accident but deliberate actions of government. Earlier on, in the management of the pandemic, we ensured that the agricultural sector continued to operate and provided food security for our people. When the necessary safety protocols were put in place through a partnership of both government, the mining industry and labour; the mining sector was brought back to full production capacity in line with your commitment to save both lives and livelihoods.
I bring this point forward because the resilience of these two sectors have emboldened the implementation of the SMME-focused localisation policy framework. To date, the Department of Small Business Development has introduced over 385 Small, Medium and Micro Enterprises, SMMEs, and Co-operatives to the value chains of large retailers and wholesalers and the majority of the products are agro-processed goods. In the
meantime, the mining sector continues to provide business opportunities for SMMEs in the services sector. We are working with the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy to support the participation of SMMEs in the mining value chains including primary mining activities.
In the state of the nation address, Mr President, you referred to the 1 000 products that have been identified for production by SMMEs within the localisation policy framework. We are pleased to report that we have working arrangements with standards bodies and regulatory authorities to ensure that SMMEs and co-operative manufacturers are not frustrated by regulatory protocols that are necessary to ensure quality of our products. Through these working relationships, SMMEs and co-operatives enjoy fast-tracked process for the certification and quality assurance of their products. So Mr Steenhuisen, we don’t politic about elimination of red tape, we act and the numbers will tell you that, but you are not a numbers person. [Interjections.]
Mr President, the pandemic has taught another critical lesson that the 4th Industrial Revolution is not coming but it is here. It is not the future of work but the current of work.
The economy and everything else have gone digital. The connectivity of South Africa and access to affordable fast speed broadband is no longer optional and it has become a basic service like water and electricity. When schooling was disrupted, children of those in urban areas and affluent were able to continue with their education albeit through virtual platform. Our connectivity programme therefore cannot remain focused solely on connecting schools and clinics, it must be connecting the homes, must be making it a basic service and that redefinition must be led by this House. the Department of Communications and Digital Technology is already revising the guidelines on our connectivity programme to ensure that rural areas are subsidised not only to connect but for the usage of data because data has become the new money. [Interjections.] Let us take heed of President Ramaphosa’s wise words: “People of South Africa, it is your country that calls on you to rise.” Let us intensify our collective efforts to grow South Africa.
An empty vessel makes the loudest noise, that is the first saying we were taught. So ...
Warra, mohl Malema, ge ba re wa e gapa o molato, wa e lesa o molato – ba ra wena, o kgomo ya mošate.
At least South Africans are no longer fooled by your noise. A number of SMMEs and co-operatives are not only producing surgical masks and sanitizers ... [Applause.] ... but products such as Nilotiqua, Masodi Organics, cooler boxes, hard suitcases and construction nails are in the shelves of large retailers. A young South African, black for that matter, manufactures a watch called Nkarhi, which is what I am wearing. A women-owned business called Ecogift here in Cape Town is on the verge of producing clothing for large clothing chains. These and more under the very leadership of Mr Ramaphosa.
Hon Malema, we all know that when you start to make noise against the President and the judiciary to an extent that you stop short of calling for an uprising against the judiciary, we wonder what it is that you are afraid of? [Interjections.] [Applause.]
O a di tšhaba. Re tla go leta; re tla di emela.
Vho Malema, musi vha a zwi ?ivha uri ri Vha?avhatsindi, ri ?o dzula ra lindela u swika mapholisa vha tshi swika ra kona u vhona hezwi zwine vha khou shavha, ngauri vha ri naho wa iviela bakoni mahunguvhu nn?a a ?o i vhona. A ri nga ?o tshuwiswa nga phosho ngauri ri na mushumo wa u fha?ulula Afrika Tshipembe.
You say you are not interested in the ANC factional battles but you also say you want to remove President Ramaphosa from his presidency of the ANC. Why are you interested in the ANC politics? Let the ANC sort out its own politics. We are members of the ANC and are alive. We will sort out the challenges facing our organisation. [Interjections.] We don’t need former members to assist us. Of course, if you reconsider
... I think the suspension of your membership will be up ... you are free to join and follow the provisions of the ANC. [Applause.]
Ntate Malema, ge re thoma go bolela, re be re tseba gore wena ga go na Mopresidente wa ANC yo a bušago o kilego wa mo thekga.
When it was President Mbeki, he was not good enough. You went to President Zuma and then changed to President Mbeki. Now, it’s President Ramaphosa, you go back to President Zuma. [Applause.] You said you’ll never support former President Zuma but you are now the one supporting President Zuma. He is the former president of the ANC and the former President of this country and we support him but the rule of law will apply with no fear and no favour, including you, hon Malema.
O se ke wa re tšhošetša. Batho ba Afrika-Borwa ga ba sa go theeletša, ebile ga ba sa go tšhaba. Efela ye ya mmušo wa selegae re swanetše re boledišane. Re a leboga. [Legoswi.] [Tšhwahlelo.]
Prince M G BUTHELEZI: Hon Deputy Speaker, hon Ministers present, hon Deputy Ministers present, hon members of the NCOP and the hon members of the National Assembly, when we rose to
debate the state of the nation address one year ago, we were debating a different country, that was not South Africa as we now know it. It was South Africa pre-COVID-19. We stand now on the other side, devastated by loss and scrambling with the rest of the world to find a way out of this pandemic.
Tragically, the South Africa that went into this pandemic was
already in crisis. At last year’s state of the nation address,
Your Excellency bravely pulled back the curtains on the window-dressing of our so-called, telling a good story. You
pointed to the stark reality of economic stagnation, deepening unemployment, an energy crisis and severe poverty.
You lamented that, despite everything that had been done to try to put our country back on track, it was not enough. With what can rightly be called 20-20 hindsight, that was a devastating moment to reveal defeat, for we were about to be plunged into a new battle that would decimate both our resources and decimate our hope. Nevertheless, we are grateful that government went into this battle under no illusions. The Director-General in the Treasury had told us that the coffers of state were empty.
We were no longer pretending that this country can go on as though resources are endless. The problem, Your Excellency, is the same problem I pointed to in last year’s debate. The problem is corruption. I know it, you know it, sir, and South Africa knows it. Despite the admission that South Africa is in economic crisis, there were still those who saw the pandemic as the chance to get rich. The level of corruption and fraud that has assailed our fight against COVID-19 is unthinkable.
It is seen by the world and felt by our people. With every death, a finger of blame falls on corruption. It is not merely COVID-19 that we are fighting. Yet, I suspect, hon Deputy Speaker that, our fight against COVID-19 has a greater chance of success than our fight against corruption, and that is a terrible indictment, if I may say so. South Africa has repeatedly raised concerns at the World Health Organisation, WHO. In May 2020 they warned that our leaders should not politicise this pandemic and engage in corruption.
Now, they are worried about our decision to halt the rollout of the AstraZeneca, the Oxford University vaccine, and we are racing against time. Our people are desperate for a vaccine. We are pleased to hear that the first 80 000 doses arrived
today. But in a country of almost 60 million people, it offers very little hope. How will the vaccine be accessed by ordinary people? When will it be available to everyone? In the absence of details, and in the presence of corruption, our nation has very little to trust.
I must repeat the insistent call for the vaccine rollout tender process to be overseen by Parliament’s Standing Committee on Public Accounts. Parliament must be enabled to perform its constitutional responsibility of oversight. We must halt the ‘business as usual’ of maladministration and fraud. Hon Deputy Speaker, Your Excellency and hon members, I am not a fan of the decision to keep the theme for state of the nation address 2021, the same as the theme for 2020.
It suggests that everything has been put on hold over the past year, and that this is acceptable. Of course, the pandemic has demanded our focus, but for our people, it has not been possible to put life on hold. Poverty has not halted its onslaught, waiting for the pandemic to be over. Hunger will not abate and disease will not be paused. We cannot wait for the day that our masks come off before we deal with the
struggles of our people. Mere hopes and expectations are not enough.
How does government predict a strong recovery in employment by the end of the year, when further lockdowns are unpredictable? Even Your Excellency hesitated when saying this, as though thinking, by when? The end of the year? Even once the labour market has recovered from the pandemic, it must still recover from the past 26 years of indecisive economic policies in our country. We have a long road ahead of us indeed. Turning to local government, the SA Broadcasting Corporation, SABC, news headline spoke volumes. It read: “Ramaphosa says the days of messing up are over”.
Finally, municipalities will be staffed with people who can actually do the job. If this were WhatsApp, hon members, we would put an emoji right here. Unfortunately, hon Deputy Speaker, training courses and programmes will not magically create ethics in the civil service. To create a civil service that prides itself on ethical integrity, one needs to make integrity a job requirement, together with competence. This brings us back to corruption.
The Zondo Commission has shown us much more than a compromised criminal justice system. It has left us questioning how deeply the rot actually goes. The government is now in the unenviable position of having to resuscitate an economy that was already headed for the trauma ward, if I may put it that way, long before COVID-19. How will it perform the balancing act of reviving the economy while pouring resources into the fight for lives?
Hon Deputy Speaker, in this moment, our thoughts naturally turn to the many who have suffered loss, the deeply painful loss of loved ones, the loss of income and opportunity, as well as the loss of our members in this very House. We stand in solidarity with all those in the tourism and hospitality industry, as well as with our performing artists, whose very livelihood has been devastated.
As we mourn the loss of greats like Dr Sibongile Khumalo, Mr Joseph Shabalala, Ms Mary Twala and many others, let us not neglect the greats of tomorrow. There are many who deserve our thanks for what they have done over the past year, and for what they continue to do under extreme circumstances. I want to thank every teacher who is back in the classroom today,
despite the risk or fear. I want to thank all our frontline workers, those in essential services, and particularly our healthcare workers, including mental health.
I also want to thank those who support our healthcare workers; organisations, like the CHIVA Africa which, under the leadership of Dr Karyn Moshal, is supporting our rural healthcare workers as they continue to fight HIV-Aids in the midst of the pandemic. As a nation, we must thank the Serum Institute of India for its commitment to making Covishield available to the developing world. It seems almost prescient now, Your Excellency, that I urged you in last year’s state of the nation address debate to equip South Africa to become a centre of medical innovation and research.
We have great capacity and skills available in our country. Both now and beyond this pandemic, we must empower our scientists, researchers and innovators. My deepest wish is that future generations will look back on this time as the darkest night that preceded the dawn, or as the President put it, the fire before new life blooms. May there be new life for South Africa. It can still happen, hon Cornelius. We can bring
it to pass, but it is going to take a shared effort with every one of us being afforded a role to play.
South Africans deserve nothing less than the right to participate in the making of their own future. Your Excellency, I cannot allow this opportunity to pass without pleading with you again to resume our discussions on reconciliation between the ANC and IFP. This too cannot be placed on hold, awaiting the end of the pandemic. With every funeral I attend, I fear that we are losing the men and women who knew the truth about the past.
The death of the hon Dr Meshack Radebe must really ring alarm bells for all of us. Will the truth die with them, or will we do what must be done within my lifetime? My President, will you make me close my eyes in death in peace? Will you enable me to sing a song, like another old man, Simeon, in the New Testament, let your servant depart in peace? Finally, I wish to thank you, Mr President, for your good wishes privileged to the King of the Zulu Nation and thank your Minister, Minister of Health, we thank you.
On this side of the isle I am not saying that just because we are in the opposition we should stop opposing. It is our duty to oppose you. But I say that at this time of gloom and doom, it is really yes and childish for us to split hairs in trying to score political points. We are all grateful for the improvement on the King’s position. I thank you, sir. I thank you, colleagues
Dr P J GROENEWALD: Agb Adjunkspeaker, deur u na die agb President.
When we talk about corruption, it was said that the ANC is accused number one. Your words. Hon President, you are number one of accused number one. The question remains: What did you do to prevent corruption of accused number one? The reason why I am asking that question is that in 2015, when you were part of the top six of the ANC, Popo Molefe submitted to you a report on the corruption in Prasa. What did you do? What did the top six do as far as that corruption was concerned? I am asking you this because you are now number one of accused number one.
Hon President, in 2018, former Member of Parliament, Sydney Mufamadi, submitted to you an extensive report on the corruption in the State Security Agency - allegations of serious crimes, paying a former President more than R1 million of taxpayers’ money extra, besides his quite high salary. What did you do? You say that you want to fight corruption, but what did you do about that?
That brings me to Zuma. Hon President, when you were asked about the fact that Zuma refused to appear before the Zondo Commission, your remarks were: Let us give Zuma space and time to think. Hon President, the only space that Zuma needs is the space provided by a prison cell. The only time he needs is a couple of years determined by a judge. I can assure you that will be ample time for him to think.
I am asking you a very serious question this afternoon. Hon President, are you considering presidential pardon for Zuma. You are on record saying that you would rather be seen as a weak President but you will do everything to save the ANC. Zuma, at this moment, is busy politically putting pressure on the ANC and he knows that you can give him presidential pardon.
Ek wil vandag vir die agb President sê dat as u enigsins vir Zuma presidensiële kwytskelding gee, dan is u ’n medepligtige aan misdaad en dan moet u weet dat u medepligtig is die steel van belastingbetalers se geld en dat die misdadiger skotvry daarvan afkom.
So you should answer the people of South Africa whether you consider presidential pardon.
I want to give you a quote from Ayn Rand and I quote: When the law no longer protects you from the corrupt, but it protects the corrupt from you, you know your nation is doomed.
Dit is die uitdaging waarvoor die agb President staan.
Agb President, deel van u herstelplan ...
You Economic Recovery Plan is about black economic empowerment. You put your focus on that.
In last year’s speech, I gave you an example of Eskom paying R900 for a florescent tube light of about R65 because of black economic empowerment. Now just like the covid-19 virus has different mutations, I want to give you another mutation of black economic empowerment and I want to use the Klein Harts River Municipality in the North West. The community had to go to court to empower them to take over the water works and the sanitation, to ensure that the community get some water to drink and wash their hands. What emerged from that was that the ANC government in that local municipality deliberately sabotaged the water system for years so that contracts could be given for water tanks and the supply of water, under BEE. That is economic terrorism. It is fraud and the question is: What are you going to do about it.
Hon President, I also want to talk about race relations in South Africa. You are on record on numerous occasions where you referred for instance to black economic empowerment and that that is the opportunity to ensure and enhance black economic empowerment. When we look at the grants given specifically if you look at the tourism grant, the equity grant, you exclude whites. Why? The irony is that there are white business people who employ 5, 10 or 20 black employees,
but you don’t want to assist them, to ensure that they keep
their employees in service. That is discrimination.
If you look for instance at the municipality in Durban. They put out an advertisement for an auction of motor vehicles but explicitly say they are excluding Indian people from that auction. If you look at Brackenfell where mainly brown people are in that school and where parents protect them, then you are on record to say that it is unfair and that people must be allowed to have peaceful demonstrations. The fact of the matter is that it was not peaceful demonstrations.
If we look in South Africa ... In my limited time I also want to say that because of covid-19, and because of black economic empowerment as a smokescreen, billions of rands were stolen from the taxpayer.
I want to tell the government today to take note. Next week when we hear the Budget from the Minister of Finance, and when he is going to increase personal tax, you must expect a tax revolt instituted by the government and instigated by the government. You must take note that the people of South Africa
are fed up with draconian irrational regulations because of the covid-19 pandemic.
You must take note that the government with those measures are instigating civil disobedience. Don’t be surprised when it happens. In fact, the e-toll saga is proof of what can happen. Take not of what I said. I thank you.
The CHIEF WHIP OF THE NCOP: Deputy Speaker, hon members, fellow South Africans. As the President has stressed, this state of the nation address debate takes place in the midst of the deadly COVID-19 pandemic that continues to inflict untold social, economic and human suffering to our people; especially the poorest of the poor and the working class. Hon President, it is therefore fitting to join you in saluting our people for their collective resilience and patriotism in the midst of this turbulent time. This period has demonstrated once more that, South Africans, across all different sectors; organized labour, big business, the religious fraternity, organs of civil society and political formations across all ideological differences, can rise to the occasion and seize the moment in defence of our common destiny.
As we steadily rise from the shackles of COVID-19 to begin a new trajectory of economic reconstruction and recovery, we must constantly remind ourselves that we have faced and defeated worse challenges. The decisive intervention of government to mitigate the miseries of our people during the COVID-19 pandemic has actually demonstrated the capacity of the ANC to live true to the ideal of being a caring government. Precisely because we emerge from this pandemic with the state of unemployment, poverty and inequality worse than before. The road ahead will be defined by constant struggle between hope and despair that will seek a permanent place in the minds of our people about the better future we seek to construct.
Hon President, in your inaugural state of the nation address three years ago, you identified strategic priorities for the current term of government. These are appropriate policy measures necessary to accelerate the reconstruction and development of our country. They were appropriate then, they are even more appropriate today. As the ANC, we are greatly inspired to join you in declaring that it must be business unusual this year. We reaffirm our support for your bold pledge to the people of South Africa that and I quote:
The year ahead must be a time for change, for progress and for rebirth. It must be a year in which we rise. This is no ordinary year, and this is no ordinary state of the nation address. And that, we must defeat the coronavirus pandemic. We must accelerate our economic recovery, we must implement economic reforms to create sustainable jobs and drive inclusive growth. And finally, that we must fight corruption and strengthen the state.
Contrary to some insignificant sentiments in this chamber, the ANC welcomes the state of the nation address as representing continuity in change in the protracted struggle to achieve a better quality of life for all. The need for economic reconstruction and recovery is even more urgent to cure the ills of an economy that benefits a few.
Hon President, we must not be defocused by those amongst us here who conceal their lack of capacity to provide an alternative vision to the ANC behind empty slogans which effectively dismiss the state of the nation address as something that is not new. South Africans are waiting with keen interests to hear something new from them, and they will certainly be disappointed to hear the same old slogans with no
relevance to the conditions of life of the overwhelming majority of our people. No understanding, no vision, no concrete alternatives! You just hear many of them, that they have changed platform, even on the virtual, the EFF earlier – they are populist talking narrow economies. That’s what opposition behind all their noise amount to!
Hon President, your address is consistent with both our historic mission and our electoral mandate to push back the frontiers of poverty, unemployment and inequality. We are not apologetic for stating these facts over and over again. In doing this, we draw inspiration and courage from the Freedom Charter which proclaims:
THESE FREEDOMS WE WILL FIGHT FOR, SIDE BY SIDE, THROUGHOUT OUR LIVES, UNTIL WE HAVE WON OUR LIBERTY.
What is fast becoming clear is that we can only inspire our people through credible policies and effective implementation, not through slogans. When will the opposition learn this?
The ANC has always made it clear that for us to realise the vision we have set for the country, we need to build a capable
and developmental state with an integrated co-operative governance system. This is important in order to position our local government at the cutting edge of service delivery, local economic development and the transformation of the apartheid spatial development patterns. In this regard, the National Development Plan correctly identified the persistence of fragmented planning and poor coordination between our three spheres of government as one of the critical challenges of governance in the postapartheid South Africa. It may be useful to restate what we have said before that:
The more we build a developmental state, the more we create the conditions for a more integrated cooperative governance system. And the more we strengthen the cooperative governance system, the more we create the conditions for a developmental state. There is a mutually reinforcing relationship between a developmental state and cooperative governance.
In his state of the nation address of 2020; the President acknowledged the following amongst others that:
For the effective implementation of our seven priorities, the structures of government will need to function with maximum coordination and cooperation as it is envisaged in our Constitution. The truth is that lack of coordination between national and provincial governments, between departments and particularly at local government level, has not served us.
Pursuant to this strategic task of strengthening our evolving system of integrated co-operative governance, the cabinet adopted a framework on District Development Model. The main objective of the District Development Model is to ensure greater alignment, coordination and integration of planning and resource allocation between the three spheres of government. The model is being piloted in some municipalities and we are confident that the roll out of this model country wide will enhance greater co-operation, coordination and joint planning. This will in turn assist to address the uneven capacity and development between the different provinces by enhancing coordination of support and monitoring of local government by the national and provincial government.
We agree that leaving the apartheid spatial development patterns intact is tantamount to perpetuating the apartheid
legacy of racial segregation which subjected the vast majority of our people to underdeveloped, underserviced and densely populated settlements that are located far away from economic activity. It is precisely for this reason that the ANC welcomes the President’s vision on the transformation of the apartheid spatial development patterns through the creation of the postapartheid smart cities. This is long overdue! Since you first announced this initiative Hon President, we are proud that South Africa will soon see its first smart city in Lanseria – located in the west of Johannesburg. It is our strongest view that the smart city initiative should not be isolated from the agenda of the integrated urban renewal and development, but be integral part to it.
We need to equally demonstrate a commitment to transform old townships of South Africa such as Soweto - of course although remarkable Soweto has made great progress, Mdantsane, Botshabelo, Gugulethu, Mitchells Plain, Umlazi and many others into liveable spaces that uphold the dignity of our people.
There is indeed a need for greater investment in the upgrading of old townships and intensifying of efforts to integrate human settlement planning and development. This will require coordinated efforts between our spheres of government through
the District Development Model. However, we will need to build stronger local government in order to achieve this. We cannot over-emphasize the need for strong, ethical and decisive leadership as well as coordinated support and monitoring of local government.
The resources of national, provincial and local government must be harnessed towards the revitalisation of factories and the building of new ones in the municipalities. There are already emerging pockets of excellence in this regard upon which we should build moving forward. For instance, the Industrial Parks Revitalisation Programme designed to refurbish state owned industrial parks located predominately in South African townships and former homelands is being implemented across the country. I state this without fear of contradiction because the people of Botshabelo in Free State are beneficiaries of this important intervention. The partnership between the Free State Development Corporation, Mangaung Metropolitan Municipality, Development Bank of Southern Africa and the Department of International Trade and Industry has started revitalising the old Botshabelo Industrial Area. This initiative aims to create more than
5 000 direct job opportunities currently, as well as other
indirect job opportunities for the community of Botshabelo and surrounding areas.
At the core of these interventions must be a deliberate centering of young people; there can never be development unless it is located in the hands of young people as custodians of the future. In our recent NCOP local government focus week, we came across many alarming allegations of mismanagement and corruption which deprive our people of basic services. The employment of incompetent and unqualified officials, illegal awarding of tenders, non-payment of service providers is amongst the challenges faced by local government. For instance, most municipalities particularly in the Free State, North West and also parts in the Eastern Cape owe billions of rands to Electricity Supply Commission, Eskom, and Water Utilities thus threatening the capacity to provide these basic services to communities. We believe that some of these issues – as we are informed that they are being followed up by law enforcement institutions, progress will be made where such cases are reported.
The debate is raging in the public about the effectiveness of parliament in discharging its oversight function. We raise
this because without effective and robust parliamentary oversight, the state cannot fulfil all the priorities it has set for itself. This is even more important in the context of deteriorating state of local government. As a House that is located at the intersection of the three spheres of our system of governance, the NCOP has a critical role to oversee and monitor the compliance with this constitutional injunction. In this regard, the NCOP will strengthen systems to improve capacity to exercise its oversight mandate. The following areas of operation will certainly be looked out without failure; Local Government Week, our provincial week, and the programme of taking Parliament to the people will be meaningfully strengthened.
In conclusion, allow me Madam Speaker to thank the President for his pointed and straight forward call for action to change the quality of life of our people. I thank you.
Me C LABUSCHAGNE: Agb Adjunkspeaker, die SA Polisiediens en die Staatsveiligheidsagentskap, oftewel die intelligensiediens, se hoofdoel in terme van die Grondwet is om hierdie land en veral sy mense te beskerm. Dit is nie wat
ons sien nie. Terwyl die intelligensiediens die land teen interne en eksterne bedreigings moes beskerm, het R9 miljard se bates skoonveld verdwyn. Terwyl dié verantwoordelik vir oorsig hiervoor of in die donker gehou is, of gesit en slaap het, of medepligtig was, is dit stadig verander in ’n propagandamasjien in die styl van Connie Mulder en PW Botha, wat selfs op u, mnr die President, gespioneer het. Hulle het politiek gespeel en geplunder terwyl hulle hierdie land en sy mense moes beveilig. Terwyl ’n jong man van Bishop Lavis, wat sy familie se hoop en trots was, deur bendes ingesluk word, mnr die President, het hierdie sogenaamde polisiediens cowboys en crooks op Clifton se strand gespeel. Terwyl ’n boer van oor die 90, wat niemand meer skade kan doen nie en sy deel doen deur vir hierdie land kos te produseer, in sy voorkamer pap geslaan is, het julle polisiediens by hul stasies gesit omdat hulle nie voertuie het om meer as voetpatrolies te doen nie.
Terwyl ’n jong meisie van Alexandra se liggaam vermink is met ’n stukkende bottel nadat sy met dieselfde objek verkrag is, het jou polisiediens ’n jong vrou voor haar ma aangerand omdat sy nie ’n masker gedra het nie. Terwyl die eggenote en kinders van die handjie vol goeie polisielede wat ons het by die huis gesit het in afwagting op die nuus dat hulle hul dapper pa nooit weer sal sien nie omdat hy in diens van sy land dood is,
het jou Minister van Polisie met groot bravade sy gesag probeer afdwing vanuit sy rusbank onder lugverkoeling.
Mnr die President, daar is groot fout met ons veiligheidsdienste. Die fout is dat hulle ons nie meer beskerm soos wat die Grondwet vra nie. Die oplossing? ’n Totale verandering in die kultuur en funksionering van hierdie instansies om dit te verdemokratiseer. ’n Fokusverskuiwing van die beskerming van die ANC en sy kaders na die beskermers van die mense. ’n Goeie vertrekpunt sal wetgewende hervorming wees.
U regering is tans besig met die herstrukturering van die polisiediens deur wetgewing. Dit is ’n gulde geleentheid, maar u beweeg in die verkeerde rigting. Meer sentralisering van die polisie gaan nie die probleem oplos nie. Daar moet gesorg word dat die polisie so naby as moontlik aan die mense wat hulle verantwoordbaar kan hou, gebring word. Premier Winde se aanbod om in die verband te help staan nog, maar twee jaar en duisende moorde op die Kaapse Vlakte later word sy aanbod steeds verwerp. As ons die Grondwet dan moet verander om voorsiening te maak vir sterker desentralisering van die polisie, kom ons doen dit dan. Ek sal eerder die Grondwet
verander om Suid-Afrikaners te beveilig as wat ons die Grondwet verander om hul fundamentele reg tot eiendom van hulle weg te neem, soos wat die ANC dit wil doen.
Van die ander voor-die-hand-liggende oplossings op die tafel, maar wat deur u regering geïgnoreer word, is die diemilitarisering van die polisie. Sommige leiers hoef nie hul gesag met geweld af te dwing nie. Die polisie moet weer die vertroue van die mense wen. Befonds die Valke, Onafhanklike
Polisieondersoekdirektoraat, Opod, en gespesialiseerde eenhede om misdaad te bekamp en van die vrot generaals en offisiere in die polisie ontslae te raak. Rus die polisie toe met die nodige hulpbronne en kennis om hul werk te kan doen. Raak ontslae van dié wat daar is vir ’n rang en begin fokus op die mans en vrouens op stasievlak wat daar is omdat hulle iets vir hul gemeenskap wil beteken. Hulle is onderbefonds, gedemoraliseer en gedemotiveer.
Mnr die President, in 2010 het die Britse Parlement vasgeskop teen die wyse waarop hul intelligensiediens aan die Parlement verslag oor die 7 Julie terreuraanvalle gedoen het. MI5 het slegs dit wat hul gedink het die Parlement hoef te weet aan hulle blootgestel. Die lede op hul intelligensiekommitee is
slegs gevoer wat vir hulle opgedis is en selfs daaroor mag hulle nie praat nie. Dit is toe vergelyk met die oorsig wat die Amerikaanse kongres oor die 11 September terreuraanvalle gehad het, waar die Central Intelligence Agency, CIA – een van die wêreld se grootste en mees professionele intelligensiedienste – ’n hele boek oor hul bevindinge vrygestel het. Dít, het die Britse Parlement aangevoer, is deursigtigheid in ’n demokratiese bestel. Wat gevolg het is ’n totale hervorming van die wyse waarop die Britse intelligensiediens funksioneer en verslag aan die Parlement doen.
In Suid-Afrika mag ons nie eers weet hoeveel potlode die intelligensiediens aangekoop het nie, terwyl die wêreld se voorste demokrasieë hul parlemente en hul mense in hul vertroue neem sonder om die veiligheid van die land in gevaar te stel. Dit is al gedoen. Daar is geen verskonings vir sulke fundamentele en basiese hervorming nie. Maar ek vrees, agb Adjunkspeaker, dat daar baie meer logiese redes is hoekom die ANC nie in staat is tot hierdie fundamentele verdemokratisering nie. Ses-en-twintig jaar na die aanbreek van demokrasie, sukkel die ANC steeds om die kopskuif van ’n bevrydingsbeweging na ’n regerende party te maak; ’n
Bevrydingsbeweging waar ons op mekaar spioneer en gesag met geweld afdwing wanneer jy die gesag van die organisasie – die ANC – uitdaag. Die veiligheidsdienste is daar ter verdediging van die ANC, nie die mense nie.
Wat nodig is vir die demokratisering van hierdie instansies is ’n regerende party wat die fundamentele beginsels van ’n liberale demokrasie uitleef as deel van hul ideologiese uitkyk. In 1994 het ons daardie hoop gehad maar dit was van korte duur. [Tyd verstreke.]
Rev K R J MESHOE: Deputy Speaker, during the state of the nations address President Ramaphosa said that government’s four priorities are to overcome the coronavirus pandemic; to accelerate our economic recovery; to implement economic reforms to create sustainable jobs and drive inclusive growth; and to fight corruption and strengthen the state. With the exception of the first stated priority the rest are a repeat of what he said before with little or no details given. In terms of overcoming the pandemic the ACDP find it incomprehensible that doctors are not permitted to prescribe ivermectin without having to follow a tedious and costly application process for each patient. The ACDP believes that
the so-called ivermectin controlled compassionate-use programme was never intended to provide access to medicine demonstrating no political will to be compassionate at all given the regulatory obstacles the programme presents. This is graceful and a flagrant violation of the fundamental human rights of patients and doctors. This is the reason that the ACDP and others including many doctors have had to appeal to the High Court for urgent relieve so that lives can be saved.
While the ACDP welcomes the upgrade on the economic recovery plan, we are nevertheless concerned that the upcoming Great Reset World Economic Forum in August will jeopardise government’s economic recovery plan. On the face of it are National Development Plan and the World Economic Forums Great Reset have one major goal in common. They both claim to aim for equality by 2030. However, there are huge disparities between the two. One of the strategies of the National Development Plan, NDP, is to broaden ownership of assets to the historically disadvantaged groups. In order to increase their standard of living the poor need to increase both their incomes and their assets. In our view owning property is empowering while losing one’s possessions is disempowering.
Yet according to the evasion’s Great Reset for 2030, and I
quote: “You will own nothing and you will be happy.” How is that possible? Why these great reseters aim to see everyone equally poor and owning nothing yet they expect them to be happy?
Those who support the goals of the NDP, including the ACDP, want to see property ownership protected and accessible to all. We want to see prosperity to all. As President Ramaphosa has publicly said that he supports the goals of the new world order I want him to tell the nation whether or not he intends to embrace the aims of the Great Reset that I believe would void our NDP goals and destroy the creation of jobs we so desperately need.
Finally, the President mentioned that South Africa is a second largest exporter of citrus worldwide. It was our farmers and their workers who ensured food security during the hard lock down period and continued to do so this despite receiving no state subsidies, farmer tax and great policy uncertainty including the expropriation of land without compensation. [Time expired.]
Mr B H HOLOMISA: Deputy Speaker, Mr President and hon members, in 2016 the former Public Protector Thuli Madonsela had the guts to lance the filthy boil of state capture. She has the thanks of this nation. Since 2018, explosive testimony has confirmed many suspicions and revealed that what we concussively knew of state capture in 2016, was but the tip of the iceberg. For many years some in power have committed corruption and some have allowed it to flourish. State resources have actively been diverted away from the people to lying personal and political party pockets.
Mr President, there is more to uncover and we must allow the Zondo commission time and resources to finish its job.
Ultimately, the money that was stolen must be returned to the people and the guilty must go to jail. South Africa needs a competent government that can create decent living condition and can advance the livelihoods of all our people, but especially the poor.
The UDM believes that we should have a government of integrity and service delivery. We therefore say, “Mayibuye iNingizimu Afrikha yethu emaseleni, mayibuye!”
With respect, Mr President, South Africa is filthy. We and our children encounter drain sewage, rotten food, dirty nappies and used needles. Much of the blame is to be laid at shoddy service delivery at municipal level and lax enforcements of
by-laws. There is no excuse of this.
peaking of living environment and shoddy service delivery, I would like to call your attention to the plight of the people of Forest Village in Eerste River, who have been dumped there from different areas. They are without a school, clinic, old age home or police station and they need work. Also, are the residents of Samora Machel, Khayelitsha, Delft, Mfuleni, Nyanga, Gugulethu and Ocean View. Please, hear their cries about their unemployment, so on and so on.
With respect, Mr President, regarding the COVID-19 response, co-ordination amongst ministries and the signage between various regulations that were needed to brace the economy were lacking. We have paid and we will continue to pay a hefty price for these blunders. [Time expired.]
Dr N P NKABANE: Deputy Speaker, we owe it to our forebears when they met in what became known as the Congress of the
People in Kliptown in 1955. The foresight that they had was tremendous. The foresight took us from deep in the pitch black forest with all kinds of dangerous animals where it seemed that there was no escape route. Hear our forebears when they say in the Freedom Charter, “there shall be work and security”. It states that, “all who work shall be free to form trade unions, to elect their officers and to make wage agreements with their employers”. They did not decree it, workers were organised, trade unions were established, and workers under the banner of the trade unions fought. They did not fight for any other things, hon members, they fought to end all unjust laws and they fought for fairness. Men and women bravely and boldly led carrying bright torches to get us out of that pitch black forest.
Babeyibiza ngamahlathi amnyama.
They led saying, “forward ever, backward never” because ...
... yimbi le ndawo esikuyo.
It is at this point that I am reminded of this social psychologist who studied effort justification. He said, effort justification is, “when people make sacrifices to pursue the goal where the effort is often rationalised by elevating the attractiveness of the goal”.
We are indebted to the workers struggle as South Africans because selfless men and women suffered in order for us to be where we are today. Based on the above background, the ANC-led government has formed partnerships with social partners in trying to address social injustices of the past, comrade Steenhuisen knows better. To rethink, to redefine and redesign the future of work by looking holistically at the technological innovations, the human factor and human intelligence in order to change its approach to creativity and innovation and to co-ordinate all government efforts including entities and strategic partners in the labour market; to create jobs, to preserve jobs, secure employment and to reduce unemployment. I am sure our forebears will be happy to know that what they had foresight for sacrifice and struggled to achieve; it is a reality today under the ANC government. The Republic of South Africa has a Constitution which is
referenced positively by the entire world. Section 23 of the Constitution stipulated unambiguously that, “everyone has the right to fair labour practices”; “every worker has the right form and join a trade union and to participate in the activities and programmes of a trade union”.
The Basic Conditions of Employment Act is in place because what the Constitution instructs must happen. The Basic Conditions of Employment Act gives effect to the right to fair labour practices as referred to in section 23 of the Constitution and further provides for the promulgation of the sectoral determinations, which establish conditions of employment for employers in the specific sectors of the economy.
As we continue to find that some of our labour laws are not consistent with the Constitution, we shall amend them. This has been done in the past and we are going to do it today. As we speak, Employment Equity is in Parliament for amendment, so is the Compensation to Occupational Injuries and Disease law. It must be clear to everyone that we made all these laws including labour laws for amongst others; to promote economic growth; for fair labour practices; for the transformation of
the country; for peace; for democracy; for social development, and it should be noted that we will continue to refuse to be blackmailed by the DA and the FF Plus. Those who are forcing us to return to conditions of merciless exploitation of the workers we say to them, we cannot insult our forebears.
The national minimum wage came into effect on 1 January 2019 under the leadership of the ANC. The initial research by the National Minimum Wage Commission revealed that the national minimum wage did not place any undue burden on employers or led to job losses in its first year of implementation. As to what you’re saying, this is contrary to the expectations of the doomsayers like the DA and please, can they shelve their scarecrows now. We are sick and tired of their fear mongering and conspiracy theories. They must also know that there’s just no one who will stop the ANC-led government as we continue to demonstrate and showcase our care for all South Africans to advance transformation and to entrench democracy.
The national minimum wage for each ordinary hour worked has been adjusted under this government. This will come into effect from the 1 March 2021. It is well-known that South Africa remains an unequal society in the world with slow
economic growth resulting in low job growth with high rate regional human mobility, which is motivated by the pull and push factors. There is a dire need to develop a balanced and holistic approach to address this predicament without being viewed as being as xenophobic, as the EFF would say, or afrophobic and without compromising the supreme power or authority of this country. The EFF has to rethink their open border policy and add a science before they can sponsor that debate.
There are tremendous strides that have been made by this government. In 2020 the hon President His Excellency, Mr Ramaphosa, in the Joint Sitting in this House, announced a R100 billion employment stimulus package as government’s commitment to support and create over 800 000 employment opportunities over the next three years.
We are also proud to announce that the ANC government under Mr Ramaphosa is monitoring closely the implementation of the Presidential Jobs Summit commitments by social partners to create new jobs and to preserve existing jobs. Today we are chuffed to announce that the implementation of the employment stimulus package has already commenced. Amongst the key ANC-
led government interventions is to improve South Africa’s ranking in the global competitiveness index and to contribute to the implementation of the Reconstruction and Recovery Plan with the focus on industrialisation, localisation, skills development, job preservation and to joined up government with the aim of reviewing and integrating government support for formal and informal small, medium and micro enterprises, SMMEs, start-ups and co-operatives to improve the accessibility and to reduce overheads for SMME support facilities. However – I hope you are listening – as far a localisation is concerned, the ANC government has a balanced approach that takes into cognisance of both localisation and international trading in order to increase the capabilities of the local companies and to grow the economy of the country.
The DA has to understand that informal trading contributes in growing the economy. Where they govern here in the city of Cape Town, informal trading is very restricted, you hardly see people selling on the streets. You must stop your racist approach of oppressing our marginalised black and coloured communities. [Applause.] The caring ANC government has extended the Unemployed Insurance Fund, UIF COVID-19 Temporary Employer/Employee Relief Scheme, TERS, until 15 March 2021.
There is no denial that as the lockdown levels continue ... [Time expired.] The people of South Africa love you. [Interjections.]
Mr G G HILL-LEWIS: Deputy Chairperson, leadership is felt most acutely in its absence. And we, in South Africa, are feeling that absence.
We have an economic crisis because we have a leadership crisis in our country. [Interjections.]
AN HON MEMBER: Malibongwe! [Interjections.]
Mr D BERGMAN: Point of order. Mute that delinquent.
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Can there be order please! Who is calling for a point of order?
AN HON MEMBER: Deputy Chair, it’s from the platform.
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Who is there on the platform? Can you identify yourself?
Mr D BERGMAN: Chair, it’s hon Bergman speaking.
Nk M S KHAWULA: Yithatha lenu! Yithatha lenu!
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Can we have order, please!
Mr D BERGMAN: One of the ANC speakers is shouting while one of our members is speaking and is disrupting our member from the electronic platform.
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: That’s not a point of
order. You may continue, hon Hill-Lewis.
Mr G G HILL-LEWIS: Madam Deputy Chair, the President is simply not able to lead his party to embrace the economic reforms necessary to save our economy. So, speech after speech, year after year, we have the language of reform, with absolutely no progress to speak of. We have a government which says it wants to do everything, but isn’t doing anything.
The government just isn’t working.
The President’s state of the nation address could have been a refreshing moment of honesty about what has gone wrong, and what’s the government’s credible plan to resuscitate his Presidency and our economy. Instead, what we got last Thursday were platitudes, fantasies and stale reheated promises that no one can take seriously anymore.
The government surely isn’t working, but it is spinning.
Last year I asked the President to supply a detailed list of the R250 billion in new investments in ‘implementation phase’ that he trumpeted in his Sona. The list he sent in response includes, for example, the purchase of a minority equity share in Hollard Insurance for R5 billion.
That is not foreign direct investment; it’s just spin.
The amount includes R79,6 billion in so-called ‘staying in business’ spending by Anglo American, which they literally have to spend just to keep the mines open. That’s like saying that every shop owner who pays their electricity bill is ‘investing’.
It’s all spin.
Last week, in his address, he told us that pledged investment is now an incredible R773 billion. What are these investments? Where are they? Look around, Mr President. Businesses are closing by the thousands. Nearly two million more people are unemployed. If there were R773 billion in real investments in South Africa, every city skyline would be dotted with dozens of cranes. Workers would be queuing to collect their hardhats, ready for work. But there are no cranes. And the only queues we see are the ones that the Minister coming now to speak, doused with her water canon as they waited for their Covid-19 grant.
The fact is that these ‘investments’ are smoke and mirrors. There aren’t any investments because this government isn’t working.
We have all seen the factories with the dusty broken windows shut for months as businesses have moved out. We’ve seen the shop windows covered in signs saying, “to let” vacant space, waiting for new owners who just aren’t coming.
South Africa is tired of waiting for this reform programme. And South Africans are tired of being spoken to as if it’s their fault.
The President and his Finance Minister keep speaking to us as if they are spectators sitting in the stadium, watching the game. The Minister sends out his daily Twitter homilies about opportunity costs and the dangers of debt, and then presents a budget with much more debt. Stop telling us about it, and do something about it.
The President ended his speech by telling us, “your country calls on you to rise”. I could say the same to him. Your country has been waiting for you to rise, Mr President! You are not a spectator; You are the President. Do something! But now the country is done waiting.
South Africans can’t look to you for leadership in turning this around. And we, here, love this country too much to just watch it decline. So, we are going to get on and fix it ourselves. We’ve got to find ways to reform in spite of the inaction of this government. We need fresh thinking, new ideas, and real leadership.
That is why – as my colleague said - we will table an agenda for change, bringing to this House every reform that South Africa needs to make government work, and get South Africans into work. We can show South Africa what is possible if government actually worked.
Working governments are not just implementers of national government policy, but innovative hubs of fresh ideas and city-led development. Working governments will end load- shedding over time to protect residents from Eskom. Working governments will be the engine of our national economic recovery. Working governments love small business and nurture enterprise.
If you run a food stall, or a clothing stall, or if you sell traditional medicine at the bus stop, this government harasses you, takes your goods, and sees you as a problem to be stamped out. We, here, call you a budding entrepreneur, and we want to help you grow. It is entrepreneurs like you, and not the government, who are going to turn South Africa around.
When last did the President actually talk to a small business owner and ask what he can do to help? It has never happened.
Well, this morning I spent time talking with small business owners here in Cape Town who are going through an unbelievably difficult time. And I want to say to them and small business owners everywhere today, you’ve used every cent of your savings to carry on paying the bills.
You’ve leaned on friends and family to keep the doors open. You’ve moved heaven and earth to save every job you can. Our country owes you as much a debt of gratitude as it does to the frontline workers who have nursed the sick. You are the reason I know South Africa can prosper one day.
Madam Deputy Chair, the reforms we need to save our beloved country won’t happen because the government has given up on the founding vision of the new South Africa. The idea of a united, prosperous South Africa where every person has a chance to live a life of dignity and free of poverty.
That is the vision of our Constitution which inspires us still
– on this side of the House - and which we are still dedicated to building. But it will take leadership to reaffirm our founding values and courage to see it through when the going gets tough, as it’s so tough now.
That is why we can and we will lead the economic reform agenda here in Parliament, with or without you. That is why our local and provincial governments can and will lead the reform agenda where we govern, with or without you. That is the wellspring of a new sense of possibility and hope in South Africa. And that is what should inspire every South African who has gone through this year of incredible difficulty, that the future can be much better despite this government.
That is the wellspring and the sense of possibility of hope because in the end, the choice facing South Africa is between the government that works and the government that doesn’t work. And we, here, are the government that works. Thank you very much. [Applause.]
The MINISTER OF SOCIAL DEVELOPMENT: Deputy Chairperson, it’s such a pleasure to be back in this House, albeit for a very short time. I wish to say on these people on my left that ...
... ugogo uma engikhulisa wayethi, “Lindiwe ake uyeke ukuthi uma ngikhuluma nawe kungene ngapha kuphume ngapha”. Manje la uMongameli ekhona kufuneka ahlale azi ukuthi ngeke kuze
kushintshe lutho noma bangakhuluma kangakanani laba bantu esibabiza ondlebezikhanyilanga, kuzongenangapha kuphume ngapha. Ngakhoke, wena Steenhuisen, okokuqala ... [Ubuwelewele.] [Akuzwakali.] kusho wena uthi ... ukucaphuna okukhethile ... ngiyajabula ukuthi usuyakwazi ukucaphuna, usukwazi ukucaphuna nabantu abamnyama, kumnandi.
You are quoting and you say that you have visibly continuously demonstrated your self-service stance. Because of the choice of the quote that you have quoted today, clearly demonstrated that, and indeed as you said, and I quote: “When someone shows you who they are, believe them the first time, as they never believed that you have ever stood for them.”
Futhi-ke nina nithanda ukubanga umsindo ngento engekho ngoba umangabe ningaya la engangikhona ... ake nihambe niye e- Taiwan, ake nihambe niye e-Khayelitsha, ake nihambe niye eMasiphumelele, lapho mina ngihambe ngalezi zami izinyawo. U- MEC wenu esaba ukungena khona. Ngakhoke, ngicela nje ukuthi nike ukuthi ukungiyeka nje kancane ngike ngithi ukuphendula lento engiyizele la. [Ubuwelewele.] Angigibelanga ibhanoyi
ukusuka le eGoli ngize la ngizolalelana nani. Ngize la ukuzokhuluma ngenkulumo ethulwe uMongameli u-Cyril Ramaphosa la kule-podium. [Ihlombe.]
Ngifuna nje ukusho ukuthi umbuso wentando yeningi umnandi kodwa ngoba uMongameli yena akakwazi ukuzikhethela Nkosi Yami, kuzofuneka ukuthi uma efika la aniphendule nonke. Ngakhoke, mina ngicela nike ningiyeke. [Ubuwelele.] Futhi wena obanga umsindo ngesifutho ...
... you keep on repeating one and the same thing ...
... nazi kahle ukuthi mina loLindiwe Zulu, umntwana kaSguqa, wuye owaphuma wathi kumaphoyisa, “yekani ukufutha abantu”.
Ngoba nina yinto enihlale niyihlalele ngaso sonke isikhathi ukuthi nje sifuna ukubona ukuthi iphutha balenze kuphi nigibele phezu kwalo, sifuna nje ukubona ukuthi iphutha balenze kuphi bagibele ... yinto eniyihlalele, yinto eniyaziyo leyo. Thina ngeke sinilalele, uMongameli uzonilalela. Yebo!
Mhlonishwa ... ngiyabonga kakhulu, mhlonishwa la uhleli khona usilalele khona manje, nakhu okumnandi.
As I recognise this year as the year of pioneering social transformation activist, Charlotte Maxeke, an intellectual, the founding President of the Bantu Women’s League who led the women’s march against pass laws ...
... imithetho yamapasi yenu futhi ...
... in 1913 in Mangaung. She was a freedom fighter and she was a diplomat. Please allow me to pay homage to all the women of South Africa, including the young lions who are here. So, if you think that some of us where we are, these young lions are not looking at us ...
... yibona abazothatha izintambo la esikhona namhlanje.
So, don’t think that the ANC is about to die ...
... you don’t know what the ANC members are made of, the young
people will show you that. Secondly, Mr President ...
... la ukhona, namhlanje mina ngijabule kabi ...
... because, I also have on behalf of the women of the Continent, to congratulate Ngozi Okonjo Iweala, economist and international development expert of African origin, in her recent appointment as the seventh Director-General of the World Trade Organisation, WTO. In the same vein, Mr President, may I also take the same opportunity to thank the ambassador, Nardos Bekele-Thomas ...
... abamazi nokuthi ubani loyo. [Ubuwelewele.]
... for working together with our government because, women are leading in the African Continent, and for that to happen, the road was opened by this ANC, that fought for the rights of women and continues to fight for the rights of women even today.
Nina nje ake nizibhekeni nje. Abekho nabantu abamnyama la phakathi kwenu angazi nibashiye kuphi.
Mr President, we are here to translate your plans into action, and those of the government of the ANC, that you so eloquently presented to this House. The Sixth Administration of our democratic South Africa, is steadfast to carry out these plans in fulfilment of the aspirations of the South Africans amidst the worst pandemic. This we will do, working together as people, public, and private partnership driven by the Batho Pele principle, which has been our DNA since 1994.
... aniyazi nina leyonto leyo.
Not only did you deliver this speech on the day that the former President, nelson Mandela, was released from prison three decades later ...
... yinina enanimvalele futhi.
The hardships that we are all experiencing during this period, make the spirit with which Charlotte Maxeke focused on transformation of our individual behaviours ... [Interjections.]
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Can we just remember that we should not be heckling so loud.
UNGQONGQOSHE WEZOKUTHUTHUKISWA KOMPHAKATHI: Hhayi!
Bangilingene Sihlalo, ungazihluphi ngabo ... [Ubuwelewele.]
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Please continue.
UNGQONGQOSHE WEZOKUTHUTHUKISWA KOMPHAKATHI: Bangilingene,
Today’s Cabinet on issues of social transformation, is the Cabinet’s protection on community human settlement cluster, is seized with undoing our country’s multiple and complex social transformation challenges. It is our quest to strengthen intergovernmental relations through the district development model and thereby serve the people where they live. Therefore, this government is continuously working towards attaining meaningful benefit for ordinary people through its priorities. Today, a call is being made for a people-public-private partnership noteworthy, especially the faith-based organisations and community-based organisation for their agility and responsiveness. This is what happened. They didn’t do what these guys are doing. All those people that I am talking about, when the President called them to meetings to deal with COVID-19, they rose to the occasion. They didn’t keep on making the noise that is being made on the other side. In fact, this side ...
... ikhona lento yabo ... angiyazi lento yabo yesifundazwe, bacabanga ukuthi isifundazwe sabo yizwe lonke.
So, government support in the form of social protection measures includes, social grants, Unemployment Insurance Fund, UIF, and tax relief, amongst others. To this end, last April, President Cyril Ramaphosa announced government unprecedented measures that have resulted in us investing R500 billion or 10% of South Africa’s Gross Domestic Product, GDP, towards the introduction of extraordinary measures that are targeted at cushioning ordinary South Africans.
Nina anibazi nalabo bantu esikhuluma ngabo. Thina silithibile izinga lomonakalo, bawulindile futhi u-R350, bawuthola futhi lo-R350, wakumemezela uMongameli futhi lokho. Uphi owenu u- R350?
This president, who made one of the best contribution since he became a President. From the very beginning when COVID-19
started, he took responsibility. He called us into a team and said: “I need you to think, I need you to be quick, I need you to be agile to make sure that we respond to a pandemic that has never been seen by anybody else.
Manje nihleli la kumnandi, kumnandi ngoba ...
... we were able to be agile and bring the changes that we have made. [Applause.] So, the very same President ... [Interjections.]
The LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION: Deputy Chairperson.
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon member, on what are you rising on?
The LEADER OF THE OPPOSITION: Can the Minister answer the question. If you did part of the rules, why was she busked for not wearing her musk?
UNGQONGQOSHE WEZOKUTHUTHUKISWA KOMPHAKATHI: Angisabi lutho
kulokhu okubuzayo, futhi nje angikutshele wena Steenhuisen ... [Ubuwelewele.] wena uhlele endlini yakho uvikelekile, mina ngiseNyanga, ngise-Taiwan, ngise-Khayelitsha, ngikuzo zonke lezi zindawo la kufuneka kuhanjwe kuzona ngoba ngiyasebenza, wena uhleli ngaphansi kwesimo esiphephile ngakho ke ungazongicasula anginaso isikhathi sakho mina. [Uhleko.] Umongameli lo esikhuluma ngaye ...
... you can read his speech, you’ll find that he talks around issues of SA Revenue Services, SARS, what we have done; Tourism, what we have done; Sports and Culture, what we have done; agriculture, what we have done; temporary employer and employee relief, what we have done. Let me also tell you ...
... uyabona wena Steenhuisen ... [Uhleko.] yazi kubuhlungu ukuba uwena ngoba impilo yakho yonke yiphupho, yiphupho ... [Ubuwelewele.] uyabona uma wazi ukuthi sisuka kuphi, uma uwazi wena Steenhuisen ukuthi impilo esiyiphilile thina ... [Ubuwelewele.], le ekwenze wena ukwazi ukuthi uzohlala la
ePhalamende sikuyeke, sikwethembe ngoba uyazi yini Steenhuisen, neqembu lakho ...
... we want you to be part and parcel of finding solutions to the country of South Africa, but you haven’t. We want you not to not only moan, groan and cry all the time. We want you to stand up and say, as South Africans, we are under a very difficult situation that is strenuous, and this situation needs us to come together as South Africans and put aside our differences.
Ngakhoke, uyabona mina, Steenhuisen, abantu bakho bekomidi lami engisebenza nabo ngisebenza kahle nabo, ufike wena ubashintshe ingqondo ubatshele ukuthi ningameseki loya Ngqongqoshe. Nina futhi ngoba nithanda ukubanga umsindo, ngoba nithanda ukubanga umsindo ...
... you never chase the truth about us. You never ask yourselves the question, what actually happened? Even when we
explain to you, because you’ve got a different political
... kungena ngapha kuphuma ngapha ngenxa yalokho sizoniyeka nithoseke la nihleli khona, i-ANC yona ibe iqhubeka ngomsebenzi wayo ... [Ubuwelewele.]
Mr G G HILL-LEWIS: Madam Chair, I can refresh her memory about what happened if she wants. She lectured the poor with Nyala and then sprayed them with water. At least take the chance to own it. [Interjections.]
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Sit down, you are not asked for. Sit down, please. Hon ... [Interjections.] Order.
UNGQONGQOSHE WEZOKUTHUTHUKISWA KOMPHAKATHI: Uthathe isikhathi
sami. Uthathe isikhathi sami wena mfana ndini. Uthathe isikhathi sami.
HON MEMBER: DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON, I am standing on a point of order.
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Who is calling for a point of order? Hon member, what is the point of order? There is no point of order. Can you continue.
UNGQONGQOSHE WEZOKUTHUTHUKISWA KOMPHAKATHI: Uyabona lo
ongicasulayo ezongitshela ngeNyala ungikhumbuza izinto zakudala ngeNyala.
So let me tell you. I went in there because I needed something to use to speak to the people so that I can ask them to keep the distance and all, and the only available communication was that Nyala. Just because you are always so negative, and you always lack ideas, you sit here and all you think of ...
... nina nihlala la, into eniyenzayo nje ... ANC, ANC, ANC, ANC ... [Ubuwelewele.]
Quite frankly you mobilise for us.
Qhubekani nicule nithi, “ANC, ANC”.
The PREMIER OF THE EASTERN CAPE: Deputy Chairperson of the NCOP, all Presiding Officers, His Excellency President Cyril Ramaphosa, hon members and fellow South Africans, good afternoon.
Mongameli ohloniphekileyo, qho xa uthetha nabantu beli lizwe, uyabaphilisa kuba umela inyaniso ngalo lonke ixesha, Baninzi abantu abomoleleyo yintetho yakho nabafumene ithemba.
We therefore welcome the state of the nation address and congratulate you for this ability. You must not be distracted; these contradictions are meant to propel us forward.
Sekela Sihlalo we-NCOP, siliphondo kunye nesizwe siphantsi kwelifu elimnyama lokushiywa kwethu ...
... by one of our legends, ...
... ubawo uMzimasi Mnguni obesincedisa kakhulu kuphuhliso kwicandelo lezemidlalo ngakumbi amanqindi. Izandla zakhe zikhuphe iintshatsheli zehlabathi eziliqela ezize nendumasi kwilizwe lethu. Wanga umoya wakhe ungamphumla ngoxolo.
Mr. President, we also welcome your decision to grant him special provincial official funeral category two. Mr President, it is true that you delivered this year's state of the nation address at a very difficult time in our country.
Indeed, as you stated, our country has experienced a sharp decline in growth and a significant increase in unemployment, poverty is on the rise, inequality is deepening. These are challenges President that pre-existed the crisis of COVID-19, which are legacies of the greatest sin of our land dispossession that was committed in our country
In the Eastern Cape we have deep scars of nine wars of resistance that were fought against settlers in 100 years. The sons of our province Chief Maqoma, Aah! Jong’umsobomvu! and
Makhanda ka Nxele, were imprisoned here in Robben Island for their courageous role to defend our land against settlers in our country. They fought courageously against colonial conquest and land dispossession that entrenched what the National Liberation Movement characterized as racialized patterns in land and spatial disparities, infrastructure and service backlogs, and in concentrated structures of ownership and control. This is why the organization entrusted by the overwhelming majority to govern in South Africa, resolved to expropriate land without compensation as one of the key mechanisms available to government to give effect to land reform and redistribution.
As a result, Mr. President, we were pleased to listen to the progress the democratic government has made in carrying out the work of land reform which is based on increased security of tenure, land restitution and land redistribution. Mr.
President, all South Africans listened to you so eagerly as you outlined the concrete interventions that are required to improve the functioning of all these three elements of land reform, which allow the land to be shared amongst those work it.
Lilungelo lawo wonke ummi welizwe ukuba ngumnini womhlaba nokuwusebenzisa njengesixhobo sokuvelisa ukutya, intlutha, nobutyebi, ungahlali usisacholo sokuhomba nokubukwa.
Hon Steenhuisen, the case of Mr Cloete is a case that the department has attended to. Mr Cloete voluntarily requested to leave the farm and requested a place of safety. The department facilitated that because of his domestic issues. We are not going to discuss that in Parliament.
Therefore, the amendment of section 25 of the Constitution is a principal mission ahead of us to restore the dignity of our people, to give them access to land as a social and economic asset. As such, the new Expropriation Bill was gazetted in 2020 and should be passed into law in the next financial year.
Mr. President, the state of the nation address had a good focus on agrarian reform and transformation goals as part of the plans to stimulate economic reconstruction and recovery to serve our people. In this regard, I will deal with land reform
and agricultural development noting that these two, go hand in hand
Deputy Chairperson of the NCOP, the land reform process is crucial in the fundamental transformation of our society and is set to accelerate in 2021. To this effect, the President highlighted considerable progress on land redistribution and restitution where he indicated that, and I quote:
To date, government has redistributed over 5 million hectares of land, totalling around 5 500 farms, to more than 300 000 beneficiaries. This is in addition to the land restitution process, which has benefited over 2 million land claimants and resulted in the transfer of around 2,7 million hectares.
Of particular importance in this regard was the announcement that, during the course of the next financial year, government will establish a land and agrarian reform agency to fast-track the land reform. At its Fifty-fourth National Conference, the ANC resolved that the government should focus on government- owned land and should prioritize the redistribution of vacant, unused and underutilized state land. This financial year alone, government released 700 000 hectares, with a further
2 million hectares to be released in 2021 We would like to see urgent attention given to the formal titling of customary land in the former homelands that would enable large scale investment in agriculture and other sectors. This is a critical aspect of investment facilitation that has not yet received the urgent attention that it requires.
Hon Chair of the NCOP, it is clear that our resolve to build a new and more equal economy will be based partly on land reform and agricultural development. The agricultural sector has performed remarkably well in 2020, despite the pandemic. We are now the world’s second largest exporter of citrus and there has been strong export growth in wine, maize, nuts, deciduous fruit and sugar cane.
Xa sithetha ngezi ziqhamo, sithetha ngeziqhamo uninzi lwazo ezivela eMpuma Koloni. Yilonto xa sisebenza singurhulumente kwaye sicela ukuba abatyali zimali baye, asikwazi ukuvelisa iziqhamo kodwa singakwazi ukuvelisa iziselo eziphuma kwezo ziqhamo.
In an article he wrote last month in the Farmers Weekly, Mr. Wandile Sihlobo, the Chief Agricultural Economist at the Agricultural Business Chamber of South Africa said: “Farming can change the fortunes of rural South Africa”. We agree fully with his assertion; hence we are now placing stronger focus on bringing the vast tracts of highly arable communal land in provinces such as the Eastern Cape into the mainstream economy.
In my experience, an effective way to do this is through genuine partnerships models involving communal land owners, government, the private sector and traditional leadership. I have seen this partnership model working phenomenally in our province through an initiative that is being done by Whiphold in the rural areas of Centane. These are initiatives that are succeeding, bringing in capital investment even while we work to resolve issues of land tenure challenges. The focus on communal land should not only be on primary production, but also downstream agro processing opportunities. To do that, our first point of departure is on affirming subsistent and emerging farmers in rural areas across the country and we must be aggressive in assisting them.
Ndithetha ngobawo uMntshilibe, ubawo uMpukane phaya eSinqumeni eDutywa ukuba afumane ifama. Baninzi, baneegusha eziqabeleyo kwi-1000. Bahleli neegusha zabo elalini kwaye zibangela i...
...soil erosion, because ...
... eza gusha zenza i...
Urhulumenete usebenza kuloo ntoo ...
... to affirm those people and make sure that they move forward.
Secondly, we must create local industries for agro processing to ensure beneficiation and massive jobs creation in our local
communities. This is why our government prioritized 15 Farmer Production Support Units in this current financial year through the first leg of the Agri-Parks Programme across the country.
Ndithetha ngooQamata, ooBilatye nezinye.
These Farmer Production Support Units were provided support with much needed infrastructure to enhance productivity. In this regard, government is planning to utilize Special Economic Zones, SEZs for the second leg of the Agri-Parks Programme We also need to shorten supply chains into rural areas and attract crowding in agricultural assets, infrastructure, production and processing. To do this, we will build strong partnerships between government and the private sector, and strengthen the integration and coordination of government departments, such as Department of Transport, Department of Public Works and Infrastructure, Department of Public Enterprises and the Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services, to ensure that we improve infrastructure network on roads, rail and ports. We also need to modernize
agriculture in our country by investing in the Information and Communication Technology, ICT or else we will be left behind by other countries.
Future inclusive growth of the sector is likely to emerge from various master plans that are being developed as part of the social compact between government, labour, business and communities. The President reported on two master plans that are already yielding results. I will assist the Hon Members of the opposition benches who conveniently claim they did not hear the President. Mr. President, I can understand those who joined the state of the nation address sitting virtually as they might have lost network during your speech, but I can't understand those who were seated here in the House but went outside to say they did not hear you announcing any economic reforms.
The Poultry Master Plan has already facilitated new investments totalling R800 million and additional productive capacity of 1 million chickens per week. The Sugar Master Plan has also enabled increased production, reduced imports and stabilised an industry employing 85 000 people the government
is doing something hon Hill-Lewis. The DA must learn to give credit where it is due.
Over and above these two Master Plans, we further have the draft Agriculture and Agro processing Masterplan which aims to achieve a massification of production and inclusion of three hundred to seven hundred thousand black farmers and
2,5 million rural households. Mr. President, these are clear plans to reconstruct, recover and grow the economy to serve the people.
There are also plans to realize the economic benefits from our Cannabis plant, which would transform our poor rural regions of our country, such as Pondoland in the Eastern Cape Province. To this effect, the relevant departments are working on legislation to commercialise Cannabis production. Moreover, the process of passing the Bill on the use of Cannabis for private use purposes is currently being considered by this august House.
In our province we have also developed and adopted the Ocean Economy Master Plan, which is expected to inject a projected R10,4 billion into the provincial economy and create jobs by
taking advantage of our 800km coastline. Already in the Coega SEZ, we are establishing an aquaculture farm. Furthermore, we are building a Marine Tilapia Industry that will create fulltime employment of more than 4 000 people and over 150 000 small scale farmers, who will supply feedstock for the fish feed once developed. Through the Presidency's Infrastructure unit, the building of the Mbhashe’s Aquaculture Incubator should break soil in the third quarter of the new financial year.
Mr. President, you correctly explained that water initiatives are relevant to high potential irrigated horticulture. In the province we are revitalizing and launching new ... [Time Expired.] Thank you very much Chair. [Applause]
Ms S GWARUBE: The SONA of 2021 was no ordinary event in the parliamentary calendar. It was an address delivered during a moment in history; a time where tragedy had hit the world and left carnage in its wake. It called for the President to address a nation that is gripped by a deadly pandemic — a nation in crisis and a people in mourning. It required the captain of this ship to demonstrate an appreciation of the crossroads we find ourselves in where over 1,2 million health
care workers have thrown themselves in the frontlines of this battle. Where over 50 million South Africans are in paralysing angst waiting for the news of the next loved one that has succumbed to COVID-19 like the 48 000 people who have died in the last 11 months. A nation that desperately needed to hear a plan to steer us out of these deadly waters.
But this did not happen. Instead we got a vacuous account of the past year and platitudes instead of concrete plans. We got obfuscation instead of accountability. South Africans are left none the wiser about the most critical intervention needed in this pandemic — a vaccine.
On Thursday night the President missed a critical opportunity to tell this House about three things: Government's plan to acquire vaccines for 40 million South Africans - kitted with specifics on the manufacturers, the amounts and exact time lines; government's plan to ready our health system for the rollout of the vaccine; and the measures in place to ensure that every cent of public money is spent on saving lives instead of lining pockets of corrupt politicians.
Mr President, your party and the government you lead has a corruption problem and you, sir, have a credibility problem because the people around you stole public money that is meant for personal protective equipment, PPE, to line their own pockets.
The only acceptable announcement that you could have made on Thursday is how you commit to support the criminal justice system to ensure that we jail those who leech public resources but you couldn’t and you will not because it would mean standing up against some of your closest allies. It would have meant that you chose South Africa over the ANC.
The very week where we heard the devastating news that South Africa had bought vaccines that are ineffective against 501Y.V2 variant the President chose to provide dinner table commentary instead of providing leadership. Because in reality, to do so, he would have had to take accountability for the litany of avoidable delays we have had throughout this process thus far.
South Africa was slow off the start to acquire vaccines. We relied solely on the COVAX facility and watched the world
vaccinate thousands daily against COVID-19. We began bilateral negotiations so late in the game that we are subjected to inflated prices, expired vaccines and throttled supply. And so now we sit in the middle of February without a single jab in a single arm. That, sir, rests squarely on your door-step.
In our critique we must and we will always acknowledge the role played by the emergence of the new variant and the constantly evolving scientific data. What we cannot do is excuse tardiness, recklessness and the lack urgency that has characterised this government’s vaccine strategy and now the role of Parliament has never been more critical.
We should never make a mockery of this hard-earned democracy that Minister Lindiwe Zulu speaks of by being bench-warmers. And yes, women and men, we must question and demand excellence for the people who sent us here. We start doing that by agreeing to establishing an ad hoc committee that will be chaired by the opposition and that will oversee the work of the Inter-Ministerial Committee, IMC, chaired by the Deputy President.
This IMC represents 16 Ministries which should be matched by their legislative counter-parts to ensure speedy, efficient and corruption-free vaccine rollout. This IMC should report to the ad hoc committee on a weekly basis; prioritise securing the vaccine; prioritise making sure that the procurement process is transparent for scrutiny so that we can make sure that public money is spent on its people; and ensure that every single distribution site and clinic in every corner of the country has the cold storage capacity, the IT infrastructure and the staffing requirements needed to make this a success.
We must ensure that the Special Investigating Unit, SIU, reports are released urgently so that every single company found of wrongdoing is black-listed from this process. Guilty politicians, regardless of their seniority in the ANC, must go to jail. Strong public campaigns are needed to reach all South Africans about the importance of an effective vaccine that will protect our health care workers and the most vulnerable against this virus.
And lastly, we need to urgently rollout this vaccine to cushion the country against the effects of a third wave that
hangs over us like the grim reaper. Because if we fail to act quickly, South Africa will be stuck in a recurring nightmare for years to come where we contend with repeated mutations of this virus.
And now to the people at home: Every South African has personally experienced the devastating effects of this pandemic whether through deaths of loved ones, the loss of an income or the indignity of being sunk deeper into the depths of poverty. I intimately know the grief that has set in every corner of our country. I know the helplessness, the anxiety and the deep concern people have for our own families and the country.
I want to assure you that, as the official opposition in this House, we will never abandon our station. We will continue to ask the questions, to demand better and insist on government that will do all that is possible to save lives and your livelihoods.
There has never been a time in democratic South Africa where leadership is needed more. Leadership that is not limited to
the seat of the executive in the Union Buildings, but in this very House and in your communities.
The chips are down, South Africa. But it is at times like this where we must not give in to our deepest fears but do what is most courageous — hope. Let us hope that you will put your hope in your elected officials. Let them do the hard yards, represent you, fight for you and ultimately deliver for you.
Thank you. [Applause.]
Mr V ZUNGULA: Deputy Chairperson, to Mr President, one thing we cannot allow is for you to use COVID-19 as an excuse.
Corruption, unemployment and a poor performing economy were there even before COVID-19 with the realities of majority of citizens being unemployed and in poverty.
Priority must be getting citizens economically active. We cannot accept that the fate of South Africans is to sleep outside post offices for R350. South Africans are able to work and own businesses. The economy is there but the government does not prioritise citizens.
We still say restore the R400 billion informal economy to the citizens in order to have an immediate impact on the reduction of unemployment and poverty. It can’t be that more than 70% of the most basic level of the economy is in the hands of non- citizens. Prioritising citizens in the informal economy and jobs is long overdue. When South Africans can’t get priority in their own country ...
... uthi masiye phi na? Hayi inene, ndiyabuza Mongameli, uthi masiye phi na?
Faith-based organisations must be allowed to open as they play a very important role in the wellbeing of the people.
Traditional councils must be allowed to operate just like the courts. There is lawlessness in the villages and the social structure of rural communities is disrupted, yet the focus is only on urban communities.
You still allow evergreen contracts to dominate Eskom. There is no way you can fix Eskom without first dealing with those evergreen contracts. Your government still spends more than
80% of its budget on big business yet there are small businesses that can do the work. Your government is responsible for the death of many small, medium and micro enterprises, SMMEs.
Your admission that we have millions of undocumented people in our country shows that your government is complicit in all the crimes committed by such untraceable people, and you have no care on the risks this poses on national security. Your lack of interest in traditional and indigenous medicine to fight COVID-19 shows that your interest is not a South Africa that is self-reliant; you want a South Africa that is permanently in the mercy of International Monetary Fund, IMF, World Bank and world superpowers. You are out of touch with the realities of millions of ordinary citizens. People do not have basics like water, shelter and sanitation yet ...
... ungxamele i ...
... smart cities. Mr President, when you were checking the delivery slips in OR Tambo and you nodded your head, what
exactly were you nodding for if the vaccines are nearly expired? Was it a mere PR exercise? How can you buy a million doses of a product without even getting a sample?
Mr President, you account to no one; you change lockdown regulations at will; and you don’t even allow the media to engage you afterwards. Mr President, we don’t have confidence in your leadership.
Mr A ARNOLDS: Thank you Deputy Chairperson, greetings to the President and the commander-in-chief of the EFF, commissars and fighters; President, this year marks five years since the EFF participated in the local government elections in 2016 and saw more than 800 councillors elected as ward and proportional representative councillors. We have since participated in municipal councils, held the corrupt accountable and demanded services for our people. We have fought for worker’s rights and dignity in the City of Johannesburg to ensure the insourcing of security guards and cleaners.
The EFF councillors in Tshwane, Nelson Mandela Bay, Rustenburg and in many other municipal councils tabled successful motions on the insourcing of municipality workers, and as a result,
thousands of security guards, cleaners and gardeners are now full-time employees with decent salaries and dignity.
In Johannesburg and Tshwane, we tabled successful motions to have municipal clinics open 24-hours a day, and we saw how these clinics that remained open for 24-hours helped our people during the COVID-19 pandemic. We have led from the front to demand water, sanitation and basic infrastructure for our people and exposed corruption.
In Rustenburg, when the municipality wanted to terminate contracts of 100 municipal workers while we have more than
10 million people unemployed, struggling to provide for their families, the EFF councillors fought for workers and they were reinstated.
As we listened to President Ramaphosa, as he exposed his lack of understanding and knowledge about the challenges faced by our people in Mitchells Plain, Nyanga, City of Cape Town, Alexandra, Lenasia in Johannesburg, Reiger Park and Tembisa in Ekurhuleni and many other areas, we were not surprised.
Municipalities have completely collapsed under his government. Today, we have more dysfunctional municipalities than functional municipalities.
Our councillors in various municipal councils across the country have demonstrated in the five years since the 2016 local government elections that it will be through a complete overhaul of spatial design of our society to bring workers close to the workplace, learners close to decent schools, communities close to libraries, sports facilities and places of worship.
This is the only way that we will be able to bring about real economic change in local government. We are not going to achieve this through some District Development Model that fails to take into account some fundamental flaws with the current system of local government.
President, commander-in-chief and commissars, allow me, to once more put forward what we believe as the EFF’s watertight vision for better municipalities and local government, something that the President failed to pay any serious attention to.
Firstly, we cannot separate the need to rearrange our society without addressing the land question. To begin to create better, functioning and practical communities, not some imaginary smart city in the air when people next to the so- called smart city in Mooiplaas, Diepsloot and Cosmo City do not have water, electricity and basic sanitation infrastructure. Once we put all land in the custody of the state, it is then that we will begin to develop much more meaningful and transformative spatial development plans.
Secondly, we will only create better municipalities and viable local government if we change the method and formula used to calculate the division of revenue between spheres of government.
As local government is the coalface of service delivery, we must develop a formula that transfers the majority of the revenue raised nationally to municipalities. The current formula that gives municipalities less than 10% has completely failed.
Once we address the land questions and a proper and viable funding model for local government, it is then that we will
move to build municipalities and local government’s internal capacity. To do this, we must abolish tenders and municipalities must hire engineers, artisans, planners and administrators at all levels. This will improve efficiency and also begin to address the challenges of corruption that have plagued municipalities and local government.
Lastly, commander-in-chief and commissars, we cannot reimagine our economy without driving localisation. We must amend the Municipal Finance Management Act, MFMA, to compel all municipalities and state-owned municipal entities to procure 80% of all goods from local producers, and we must emphasize that 50% must be procured from 50% owned and controlled companies owned by women and youth. Each municipality must prioritise building state-owned trading and retail platforms, and these platforms must sell 60% locally produced goods.
This is the EFF’s vision for better municipalities and local government, the only practical and implementable vision that will create jobs, build capacity to deliver services and stimulate economic growth. Not some misguided, incoherent and ill-conceived District Development Model that is nothing but a
response to the fear of losing power by the ruling party at local government level. I thank you.
Mr S N AUGUST: Hon Deputy Chairperson, firstly, my apologies for no video due to bad signal. The President’s state of the nation address was delivered to the people of South Africa under extra-ordinary circumstances and at an extra-ordinary time.
South Africa is confronted by many challenges that are working to undermine our progress. We will not succeed in beating these challenges and build an equitable country with a growing economy unless we, at least, manage the Covid-19 pandemic and roll out an effective vaccination programme; stabilise our supply of electricity and end load shedding; radically improve our basic education system; introduce a permanent basic income grant; and eliminate the scourge of violence against women and girls.
On the management of the Covid-19 pandemic, we welcome the announcement by the President that we will immediately shift to phase one vaccinations through the Johnson and Johnson
vaccine while the AstraZeneca vaccine is studied further. The pandemic is unprecedented and there is no manual to guide us.
We commend the quick and flexible decision-making, always informed by science and not political pressure. The announcement of future vaccine purchases is encouraging but we urge the President to share the full rollout plan with us as soon as the government is able to do so. It is important for business and community confidence that a detailed plan is known.
We have little hope of emerging out of this pandemic, ready to grow our economy and create jobs if we do not spare the lights and supply of electricity. Extra electricity capacity is readily available and from clean and renewal sources. We need a very clear and unambiguous commitment to procuring it fast and feeding it into the grid.
We welcome the President’s announcement of the procurement of additional generation capacity from the Independent Power Producers, IPPs. But we were looking for a much greater sense of urgency and a much clearer commitment to timeframes. We
welcome the commitment to a just transition to clean and renewable energy sources.
We will not turn our economy around and create jobs until we overhaul our basic education system. We must radically improve our education system so that young school leavers are equipped to participate in the 21st Century economy. Deputy Chair, when an economy cannot provide jobs and relegates millions of people to a life without access to income, then the country has a duty to provide support.
We welcome the extension of the Ters grant until mid-March 2021 but this is insufficient. We have no choice but to make provision for a permanent basic income grant. The President has previously hinted at introducing a basic income grant and we hope to hear the Minister of Finance include this in his national Budget.
Gender-based violence remains high on our agenda and the President has addressed us on this extensively. Sadly, law enforcement action is only reaction. We need to change some norms in our country. It starts in every home in our country. Thank you, Deputy Chair. [Time expired.]
Mr M NHANHA: Hon Speaker, hon members, ladies and gentlemen, a large carcass of a dead animal called local government looms large. Fraud, corruption, nepotism deployment of unqualified cadres, lack of service delivery, bloated workforce and financial mismanagement are the causes of death. Not surprising, the death certificate reads, ‘natural causes’.
Without exception, Eastern Cape district municipalities are bankrupt, Premier, such that in January 2021, Amathole District Municipality issued a notice to its staff members that it was unable to pay salaries for February, April, May and June. Yet, Mr President, the municipal manager of this municipality is in the same bracket as your Ministers in terms of salary. He gave himself a salary raise from R1,6 million to R2,4 million per annum. Whilst earning a cushy R2,4 million per annum salary and in the middle of a rampant pandemic, Qumrha Hospital has been without water for three weeks, Premier.
Despite these glaring weaknesses with the Eastern Cape district municipalities ...
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Hon Nhanha, address the Premier through the Chair, please! Otherwise, you’ll be attacking him here now and he will be tempted to respond. So, please continue.
Mr M NHANHA: I thought as much. I expected that.
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: No, but he’s speaking
directly to the Premier.
Mr M NHANHA: Please check my time.
The DEPUTY CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP: Order, please!
Mr M NHANHA: Despite these glaring weaknesses with the Eastern Cape district municipalities, Mr President, how can your government even in good conscience contemplate the district model as a solution? I can tell you here and now, your government will once again throw money we don’t have in a dark bottomless pit. But it’s not all doom and gloom, colleagues.
As the saying goes: “Every dark cloud has a silver lining.”
If you can cast your eyes across the valley of the Gamtoos River in the Eastern Cape, there’s a less spoken about DA-led government showing all its peers how it’s done. The DA assumed office in Kouga Municipality in 2016, inheriting an institution on the brink of collapse with all the symptoms in the carcass of the animal called local government. From 2008 to 2016, a total of R32 million in fruitless and wasteful expenditure was incurred by the ANC-led Kouga government. This is an average of more than R4 million per year.
The DA has significantly decreased fruitless and wasteful expenditure in the 2018-19 financial year to a meagre R53 650. But because we set ourselves high standards, in 2019-20 it was further reduced to only R27 485. The Auditor-General, AG has for the past three financial years gave Kouga Municipality a clean bill of health - something our opponents can only wish for whilst they are trying to resuscitate the lifeless animal called local government.
For the first time in its existence, this financial year Kouga Municipality adopted an adjusted budget of just R1 billion.
The previous incapable administration literally spent zero
percent on capital projects and by contrast, for the past three financial years we spent R100 million.
We were bequeathed a backlog of more than R500 million in road maintenance. Our predecessors must have learnt something from their comrades in the city of potholes in Makana Municipality because in both instances, they were using ‘a new state of the art’ technology of filling potholes. They were either using sand or sabhunge. Over the past two financial years, we properly filled 24 000 potholes.
Under the ANC road maintenance was allocated a meagre budget of about R3 million per year. By comparison, the DA-led council has spent R25 million on roads during the 2019-20 financial year.
Hon members, despite the efforts by a rogue and law unto herself Speaker of Nelson Mandela Bay trying to avoid the inevitable, the will of the people of Nelson Mandela Bay was finally respected because on the 6 December 2020 a coalition of good governance took reigns.
Kuqhuma uthuli eBhayi, ziyaduma, kuyasetyenzwa ...
... and the best is yet to come for the people of Nelson Mandela Bay.
Finally, hon members, I would like to pay a special tribute to a former staff member and an activist of our party, Luthando Lukhele who was killed in a terrible car accident outside Mthatha - on the N2 between Mthatha and Qumbu. He will be laid to rest on Friday. May his soul rest in peace!
Ndisatshaya. Enkosi. [Kwaqhwatywa.]
AN HON MEMBER: Point of order, Deputy Chair.
The MINISTER OF PUBLIC ENTERPRISES: Chairperson, President Ramaphosa, Deputy President Mabuza, Members of Parliament, today I want to pay tribute to my friend, comrade and colleague, the late Jackson Mthembu and the 40 000 people who have lost their lives as a result of the pandemic arising from
the covid-19 virus. In the state of the nation address, the President gave us a sobering reflection of the unprecedented nature of our current reality and the economic and human devastation caused by the covid-19 pandemic, not only in South Africa, but indeed throughout the world, which many of the speakers seem to ignore.
The aim of the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan is inclusive growth, the creation of sustainable jobs, the support of livelihoods and the improvement of infrastructure. Over the years, state-owned enterprises and government more generally had played an important role in the South African economy. As can be seen now, government has had an even more significant role to play during this pandemic, both in South Africa and around the world.
For business, the economy, domestic politics and indeed international co-operation as a financial ... Inaudible.] ... governments are likely to be permanently more interventionist than before. This of course is contrary to the DA mantras that we hear each time a member from the DA speaks.
Particularly significant is the pressure on all governments throughout the world to build back better. So, in South Africa, well-operated and financially sound SOEs are crucial for infrastructure services such as energy, transport, water, all of which, amongst others, are necessary to grow our economy and to ensure, above all, equity.
There is an opportunity to transform the economic system and ensure that it serves our national interests and all 60 million people in South Africa. However, in order to enable this, we need to reform and restructure the SOE sector, which has been so badly impacted by state capture. The SOEs became the honey pots of state capture, largely because of the large procurement span. As Daniel Kaufman, an expert in state capture, says, and I quote: “Corruption is the name, but procurement is the game.”
We are still recovering from the terrible damage caused by state capture. In a nutshell, the SOE package, as part of the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan will ensure that we recover from this ruthless looting and destruction, by ensuring that we reposition Eskom for energy security, the increased use of clean renewable sources of energy and the
energy mix prescribed in the Integrated Resource Plan 2019, IRP 2019, and the implementation of a just transition in the years that lie ahead. Secondly, introduce key changes in the fake logistics, rail, ports and large investments in infrastructure that will support the South African economy and partnerships, particularly with the black private sector through appropriate concessions. Thirdly, to take the faltering Denel through a process in which a new business model emerges. Finally, to conclude the business rescue chapter of SAA.
These strategic areas will be accompanied by other interventions across the SOEs, including, in view of their mandates, the recovery of funds lost through theft and looting; the review of contracts irregularly obtained; the change of procurement policies for efficiency and integrity; ensuring the implementation of localisation policies; ensuring that economic transformation takes place; empowering both small businesses; and facilitating the growth of new businesses and concessions.
Mr President, you said and I quote:
To support our reform process, the Presidential State- owned Enterprises Council has outlined a clear set of reforms that will enable these vital public companies to fulfill their mandates for growth and development.
Further in the Economioc Reconstructure and Recovery Plan, it is stated that, and I quote:
We are also reducing the reliance of SOEs on the fiscus by intensifying efforts to stabilise strategic companies, accelerate the rationalisation of SOEs and where appropriate, identifying strategic partners.
In 2021, we shall witness changes to the architecture of SOEs and the direction that these SOEs take. A set of structural reforms has been introduced to ignite growth in the economy and to address our capacity challenges, which have been compounded by the covid-19 pandemic.
The SOEs will take the lead in, for example, research and development, innovation and technology development, support ICT developments, and these activities will impact on renewable energy, adverse climate change and support us in the
education and the health sectors. In doing so, we shall actively be seeking to co-create wealth in partnerships with the private sector, particularly ensuring that such partnerships transform this economy.
I shall outline the essential elements or what we might call the SOE package that gives effect to the objectives of the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan and the 2021 Sona proposals.
In the first instance, on energy security and Eskom, a priority of the plan is to speedily increase energy generation capacity and to guarantee a reliable electricity supply, restoring Eskom to operational and financial health and accelerating its restructuring process, essential to this objective. [Interjections.]
Government’s main objective is to stabilise this electricity supply and ensure that South African businesses and others who wish to invest in South Africa have the certainty that they require for investment purposes. In this regard, the Department of Public Enterprises, DPE, will work with the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy and other
departments to ensure that all sources of energy are accessed for this purpose.
The following is an integrated and co-ordinated approach in this regard, firstly, by Eskom continuing to intensify the maintenance of power stations, improve emissions compliance and, complete the restruction and the repair of Medupi and Kusile, about which we have been absolutely transparent.
Eskom will rapidly develop and deploy new and clean sources of electricity. It will also procure more generation capacity by opening up the power system to renewable sources of clean energy and other forms of energy sources as well.
We will finalise the options to resolve the debt burden of Eskom, which is a serious problem, and ensure its financial sustainability. The establishment of a separate legal entity for transmission is in line with the Eskom roadmap and will be achieved by December 2021, at the latest.
Eskom should play a leading role in facilitating the connection of renewable energy and other sources of energy, by
expanding and strengthening the transmission grid, including what the President announced in relation to municipalities.
Eskom will itself participate in the building of renewable energy and with private-sector partners build a significant part of the renewable capacity that we need to introduce.
Crucial to all of this is the execution of a just energy transition. The transition to a low carbon future is not only about the introduction of renewables; it will also serve and impact in numerous ways on a wide range of companies, jobs and communities.
Eskom has established a just energy transition office whose role is to firstly, ensure that we accelerate the repurposing and repowering of power stations, to use them for alternate purposes; actively pursue a share in renewable energy allocation, in line with the Integrated Resource Plan; and implement an integrated socioeconomic strategy including the reskilling of workers.
There will be a very carefully crafted Eskom social plan to ensure that all participants and stakeholders in Eskom are winners in this particular process.
On the logistics front and the transport sector, we will ensure that there is a successful implementation of the ambitions set out in the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan, and thereby, stimulate economic growth.
Our ports and rail must become efficient and competitive. We will see new capital projects and investments taking place at the three major Transnet port terminals - Cape Town, Richards Bay and Durban, including the Port Elizabeth, PE, area.
We will ensure that Transnet appoint a key service provider for the extension of the rail corridor, called SouthCor, to enable auto exports through Port Elizabeth. This will increase the throughput of complete automotive units by three times when it is completed.
By the end of 2021, the PE manganese terminal will be decommissioned and will be moved to Ngqura. Transnet in partnership with the Transnet ports terminal will build a new
high performance manganese export terminal with an expected medium-term capacity of 16 million tons.
Similarly, where Transnet ports are concerned, an initiative to reposition Durban as a hot port for the southern hemisphere shipping, will see Transnet National Ports Authority and the national port terminals initiate a process for concessions of port terminals.
The Durban Container Terminal will see a process through which we will identify an international terminal operator to partner with Transnet and to improve its own performance at this level.
Denel will have a new business model within the next two or three months and that will reposition Denel as an effective participant and leader within the defense industry area.
SAA will see the completion of the business rescue process and finally, the exit of the business rescue practitioners.
The SOE council that the President has established will undertake further work on mandates on innovative ... [Inaudible.]... and end the bailouts from the fiscus system.
We will also make endeavors, as I conclude, to recover funds that have been taken from SOEs. In this regard, if need be, criminal charges will be put in place and secondly, we will trace these funds, wherever they might be in the world, to ensure that the money that had been stolen by all sorts of role players is returned to South Africa and used for the benefit of South Africans in a more general sense.
Localisation ... [Time expired.]
Dr A LOTRIET: Chairperson, imagine a country where citizens know that their property rights are protected by the state. Imagine a country where the government runs a successful land reform program, where people receive title deeds on their property. Imagine a country in which someone who was given land to farm is not given a 24-hour eviction notice so that that same land can then be given to politically connected and wealthy business people. Imagine a country where the government did not put every possible stumbling block in the
way of the beneficiaries of land reform to own their own piece of land. Imagine a country in which property owners — urban and rural, farmers and farm workers and their families — felt safe and protected by the government. Imagine a country in which people knew their property was protected against land grabs and where the rule of law was the cornerstone of their society.
Maar, Voorsitter, hierdie bly bloot ’n verbeeldingsvlug onder ’n ANC-regering. ’n Regering wat vasklou aan ’n argaiese, onwerkbare ideologie waar die staat beslis oor die eiendomsregte en welsyn van die individu. ’n Regering wat die heiligheid en die onskendbaarheid van die Grondwet verkondig — soos nou weer hierdie afgelope naweek — maar terselfdertyd sonder skroom peuter om Artikel 25 van die einste Grondwet te verander.
Wat Mnr Cloete betref, wil ek aan die Huis sê dat Mnr Cloete steeds op die derde plaas is en dat die regering — die Departement van Landbou en Grondhervorming — nog steeds probeer om hom af te skop vanaf die die plaas waarop hy boer sodat die plaas aan ’n voormalige Umkhonto we Sizwe-veteraan
kan gaan — ’n hoogs suksesvolle ANC-kader. En dis presies wat die chaotiese grondhervorming ten doel het: Om kaders te ontplooi en ’n teelaarde vir korrupsie te vestig.
En Mnr Cloete is nie die enigste een nie. Daar is baie ander wat in dieselfde verknorsing sit. Die volgehoue gekarring om Artikel 25 te wysig is bloot ’n voorbeeld van wat voorlê vir boere wat geteiken word vir uitsetting, sonder dat die gereg sy gang gaan.
Meneer die President, u dade — nie net u woorde nie — het ’n
impak en dra verreikende gevolge.
In u staatsrede verwys u na grondhervorming. Ons stem saam. Dit is inderdaad so dat grondhervorming ’n imperatief moet bly, maar u laat na om te noem waarom dit tot op hede nog nie suksesvol aangepak is nie. U verwys na ’n versnelde grondhervormingsprogram waar onteiening sonder vergoeding een van die belangrike meganismes moet wees om dit te bereik.
In u verklaring van 8 Januarie het u ook ANC-strukture aangemoedig om toe te sien dat Artikel 25 van die Grondwet onverwyld gewysig moet word, sodat die grond aan die mense
teruggegee kan word. Tipiese EFF-taal! Mens sou dink ù en die leier van die EFF het saam tee gedrink...
Die harde, onaangename werklikheid is dat hierdie prossesse eiendomsreg soos vervat in die Grondwet in gedrang bring. Die proses om die Grondwet te wysig is niks meer as ’n skynproses is nie. Ten spyte daarvan dat die oorgrote meerderheid van die voorleggings wat in die Parlement gemaak is, daarteen gekant was, het dit gewoon op idiologies-gevulde ore geval en het die ANC en die EFF dit eenvoudig verwerp.
Die impak van die wysiging van hierdie artikel gaan die land nog duur te staan kom.
Hierdie artikel is deel van die Handves van Menseregte. Ons het juis nou gedurende die staat van inperking weer gesien hoe maklik menseregte deur die ANC-regering en regeringsorgane misken kan word. Die Handves beskerm die burgers teen enige vergrype of arbitrêre aksie deur die staat. Artikel 25 — die eiendomsklousule — staan sentraal tot ons demokrasie en ekonomie — ’n ekonomie wat sedert die pandemie en die staat van inperking in krisis is.
Die ANC se huidige voorstelle vir die wysiging van Artikel 25 plaas die mag in die hande van die uitvoerende gesag en word die rol van die howe afgewater.
Geen ekonomie kan in so ’n onsekere omgewing groei nie. Geen belegger gaan sy geld waag as eiendomsreg nie beskerm word nie.
En asof dit nie reeds genoeg rede tot kommer is nie, is die Onteieningswetsontwerp ook onlangs gepubliseer, waar onteiening met nul vergoeding voorgestel word.
Een van die belangrikste riglyne vir wetmakers is dat ’n wet altyd opgestel moet word met die swakste moontlike Minister in gedagte. Wat ons tans by die Zondo-kommissie hoor oor ANC- Ministers se optrede en oor wat met onteiening sonder vergoeding kan gebeur laat koue rillings teen ons ruë afloop. Dit maak die deur oop vir arbitrêre onteiening.
Maar, Voorsitter, wat ek wel vir u kan sê is dat die verbeeldingsvlug waarna ek vroeër verwys het nie onbereikbaar is nie. Dit is moontlik en is reeds ’n werklikheid waar die DA regeer. Onder ’n DA-regering staan eiendomsreg sentraal, kry
die inwoners titelaktes van hul eiendom, is daar suksesvolle aandeelhoudingskemas en word hul menswaardigheid herstel.
Dit is waar die beleggings invloei omdat daar beleidsekerheid is wat deur ’n bekwame administrasie geimplementeer word. Dit is onder ’n DA-regering waar die Grondwet werklik as die oppergesag gesien word en waar ’n toekoms van hoop en vooruitgang vir elke burger ’n moontlikheid is. Dankie.
Mr M G E HENDRICKS: Hon Chairperson, Your Excellency, Mr President, the nation is abuzz talking about chickens, sugar cane, bakkies and even crocodiles. Your state of the nation address also tried to capture the nation’s imagination as you introduced a new historical narrative, now captured in Hansard, which is called the new abnormal by thought leaders in international symposiums still to be held.
The new abnormal is to embrace change as permanent. After COVID, life can never, ever get back to a new normal. That calls for wanting too much of the past back. You know that we cannot hark back to our old ways.
The fynbos will not be the same before it was burnt.
The NDP must obviously now be revisited because of the new abnormal. It will most probably be thrown in the wastepaper basket. Or most of it...
That is why Al Jama-ah is holding positions as deputy mayor in Estcourt, ... [Inaudible.] ... position for infrastructure in Johannesburg Metro, and this week our MPL will offer support to your premier in the Western Cape to help implement some of his plans.
Al Jama-ah’s call to the Minister of Defence to support housing for our men and women, especially at Simonstown Naval Base, is bearing fruit. Retired generals and serving generals and chaplains are supporting the first Defence Force housing co-operative in our history.
Commander in Chief, you must support the initiative to get your men and women title deeds. We have free, vacant defence land ... or for example, reduce their bonds.
This is what the new abnormal calls for.
We are waiting, hon President, for you to remove discrimination on the basis of colour on the Cape Flats.
You also need to capture the gang lands.
[Inaudible.] ... to fight gender-based violence. Girl learners also want a universal income grant when they enter high school to avoid teenage pregnancies. High school children should get shares when they matriculate from the new BEE ... [Inaudible.]
... and they want to be trained to do business plans and how to run SMEs. Your children ... [Inaudible.] ... speed up the expropriation of land without compensation but they want commercial land in the cities and business hubs. They are also
... [Time expired.]
Mr M S CHABANE: Hon Gwarule ... [Interjections.]
AN HON MEMBER: Gwarube.
Mr M S CHABANE: Hon Gwarule. Hon Gwarube. Thank you. You are misleading our people. The President did not procure wrong AstraZeneca, AZ vaccine that has expired. That is not true. The AZ vaccines are going to expire in April and those will be
disposed of before that date. Thank you very much. [Interjections.]
House Chair, the ANC welcomes the address of the President on the occasion of the state of the nation. The President clearly articulated government priorities for the year; provided a truthful account of progress we have made since the previous Sona; accepted the responsibility for the areas which could not be achieved; and set out practical plans for the country towards economic empowerment particularly focusing on women, youth and people living with disabilities.
The address by the President was linked closely to both the National Development Plan, NDP Vision 2030 and the 2019 Election Manifesto grounded on the 54th ANC National Conference resolution. The President provided clarity on the government intervention to centre young people in the economy and acknowledged unemployment amongst youth as the area that requires urgent attention by our government.
In equal measures, the President boldly on the shortcomings which negatively impacted on the ability of government to decisively address unemployment amongst in particular young
people. We raise this to emphasise the point that the ANC remains alive to the responsibility as the governing party to improve the lives of South Africans and invest especially in young people as the custodian of the future.
House Chair, hon Lindiwe Zulu was trying to explain this to the DA, that the youth of this country play a central role as the driving force of fundamental transformation of society.
Young people of different generations kept alive the revolutionary fires throughout the struggle against apartheid in this country. It was young people who, at the political repression in 1976 necessitated the new condition for confrontation against the apartheid regime. They summoned their courage armed with nothing but conviction of ideals to face the brutal regime of apartheid pursuant to aspirations of a nonracial, nonsexist, democratic and prosperous South Africa.
House Chair, we recite this history of heroism of youth to register the point that young people of different generations of our country have never been passive observers and have never been disengaged in the affairs of our nation. If anything, the history of South Africa is littered with heroic
of its young people. We affirm young people as a motive force for change in society and demand that our government must invest in the creativity, development, employment and empowerment of the youth of South Africa as the custodian of the future.
House Chair, there is no doubt that young people in South Africa face multiple problems which the President has outlined in his state of the nation address. Poverty compounded by high employment, gender-based violence, climate change, drugs and substance abuse, systematic level barriers to entry into economic opportunities, and existing value chain in township and rural areas.
House Chair, the latest Statistics SA’s unemployment number for the third quarter of 2020 show that unemployment increased substantially compared to the second quarter of 2020. Poverty has risen and the inequality has deepened. The sporadic youth- led protests movement in most of South Africa are testimony that young people are calling for decisive and pointed intervention. However, we take comfort in the fact that many young people, despite the challenges faced by the democratic government in alleviating unemployment and poverty, remain
confident that the ANC-led government carries a positive future for them.
House Chair, the President drew an analogy of a Fynbos Biome which rises after fierce fire. He raised this to emphasise our resilience as a nation. While the state of affairs is devastating particularly in relation to the youth, we draw courage from this story that we shall overcome in the same way as the Fynbos.
The ANC is convinced that education remains one of the critical pillars upon which to improve the state of young people in the country. The more young people get educated, the more likely are the chances of creating jobs and finding employment. I say this cognisant of the fact that there are young graduates who are currently unemployed throughout the country. This is an indication and a call that there must be re-orientation of the education system as well as radical transformation of ownership of the pattern of economy. Our education system must produce and align with the economic needs.
House Chair, one is encouraged by the priority areas that the President has outlined throughout the Presidential Youth Employment Intervention aimed at empowering young people. It is encouraging to know that this initiative has already over 1,2 million people on the national pathway management network and there are prospects of being matched with government’s programme opportunities.
One of the greatest achievements of this government is the establishment of the National Youth Development Agency, NYDA and locating it at the centre of coordinating youth development and advocating young people’s interests across the country. The President also reported that the NYDA and Small Business Grant funding have supported 1 000 youth businesses in 100 days despite the disruption caused by the Covid-19 pandemic. This target was achieved and again, this is a demonstration of the ANC-led government at work.
We welcome the President and his Cabinet’s commitment that government intends to support 15 000 start-up businesses by 2024. We welcome the decision by Parliament, following the complaints by numerous formations of young people, to start afresh the process of establishing the NYDA Board. This indeed
shows that we are a government that listens to the concerns of our people and in particular, youth formations.
We further welcome activities on our Special Economic Zones, SEZs which will create more employment for the youth. For instance, the Musina Makhado in Limpopo arrangement is envisaged to create more than 26 job activities and job opportunities.
House Chair, this year the Review National Policy 2020-30 should be finalised. We draw courage from the President’s leadership commitment regarding the affairs of women, youth and people living with disabilities. Government will build on the 2015-2020 policy achievements. As Parliament, the true tribune of the people, we will ensure through our oversight role that the intervention led by our government to address the challenges faced by our young people are indeed implemented.
In conclusion, let us draw from the words of the former president of the ANC Youth League, Anton Lembede when he made a clarion call to young people to occupy the foremost trenches in the battlefield for freedom for our people:
We are not called to peace, comfort and enjoyment but to hard work, struggle and sweat. We need young men and women of high moral stamina and integrity; of courage and vision. In short, we need warriors. This means that we have to develop a new type of youth of stoical discipline, trained to endure suffering and difficulties. It is only this type of youth that will achieve the national liberation of the African people.
Thank you. [Applause.]
Ms N V MENTE: House Chair, president and commander in chief of the EFF, Chief Whip, commissars and fighters, the state of our state owned enterprises, SOEs, is appalling. We should not keep quiet when South Africa is going through one of the biggest industrial scale lootings of public assets in the continent. Foxes are in charge of the hen house and it is there for everyone to see. There is no plan to stop the evergreen contracts that are sucking our public purse dry.
Let us begin with Eskom. On 24 June 2015 the Secretary-General of the EFF, commissar Marshall Dlamini, stood in front of this very House and reminded us of how the ruling party refused to
build additional energy generation capacity and to maintain ageing infrastructure despite warnings. The 1998 White Paper on Energy was clear about the need to build new power stations. Had we listened to the wisdom of qualified advisors and technical people we wouldn’t be where we are today.
He also reminded us of something. He said, “How can you, President, who yesterday were together with a criminal syndicate, Glencore, negotiated tenders to supply Eskom with coal?” As the Deputy President then, you had the total control of Eskom’s decision making through a war room where you made decisions in secret overseeing procurement of coal without following processes with the inflated prices which are laid bare by the financial reports of the Auditor-General, AG, today.
President, you made your money through selling Shanduka and Glencore in deals of supplying coal to Eskom. What then became of Eskom? While you were making your billions Eskom was being deliberately run down and is now swimming in debt. Under the so-called competent and corrupt-free management of Eskom, Eskom has recorded an irregular expenditure of R33 billion and more than R500 millions of fruitless and wasteful expenditure.
Insisting on keeping the Independent Power Producers, IPPs, President, is the highest level of insanity. The golden boy of Mr Jamnandas in a form of a group CEO is eliminating black business people from Eskom and ensuring that Eskom is controlled by whites only executives.
Transnet is proof that the current political leadership in the country is miserable out of this deck. You allowed elimination of African executives only for irregular expenditure to increase from R8,6 billion to over R100 billion in the last two years. Today, Transnet cannot manage procurement contracts, there is no consequence management and there is a general problem of leadership.
In Denel, President, like Eskom and Transnet, Denel is in a depressing state. At some point they were unable to pay workers’ salaries. Despite R1,8 billion recapitalisation programme, Denel has further worsened. Despite the so called competent appointments of senior executives, Denel is more dysfunctional than it was when they were appointed.
No one knows the state and the status of the South African Airways, SAA, today. What we do know is that after years of
lack of political direction and leadership, SAA has become a pot of free money for business rescue practitioners who so far have paid themselves more than R200 million without producing any tangible work. Workers at SAA have not been paid and some have passed away without seeing their payments. What a shame! Yet, the Minister who spoke right here before me still did not provide any way forward.
The SA Express suffered and, even worse, failed and then it was sold for a mere R15 million. Nothing compared to the strategic role the airline has played to service major local and regional economic hubs that were not serviced by mainstream airlines.
We need to rebuild South Africa’s economy. We have to build state capacity and strategic sectors and we must build SOEs and use state procurement through these SOEs as a driver for localisation. This is why the EFF is going to table two important Private Member Bills here in Parliament. The first one being an insourcing Bill to ensure that all services that the state uses all the time are performed internally including by the SOEs; and the Bill to amend the Public Finance Management Act to ensure that 80% of all government’s
procurement is sourced locally. That is what we call progressive localisation.
As the EFF, as a matter of urgency, engage in physical and virtual oversight meetings with all SOEs to independently understand the scope nature and form of their crisis. And lastly Chair, we will still call for Jamnandas to fall. Thank you very much.
The DEPUTY MINISTER IN THE PRESIDENCY FOR WOMEN, YOUTH AND
PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES: Chairperson and hon members, I’m grateful for the opportunity to address you on matters pertaining to the National Strategic Plan on Gender-based Violence and Femicide; legislative interventions to address Gender-based Violence and Femicide GBVF; and women economic empowerment.
Before I address the above issues allow me first to state that I stand here today in the year in which we celebrate 150 years of the trailblazer, Imbokodo, iSithwalandwe and a freedom fighter who fought for the emancipation and rights of black women. I am speaking about Mme Charlotte Mmakgomo Maxeke who fought against gender inequalities all her life. As Mme Maxeke
argued the social ills of gender-based violence and femicide and issues of gender equality and women’s empowerment are socially constructed. Relegating women and persons with disabilities to third class citizens is a historical phenomenon rooted in patriarchal and apartheid systems.
Consequently, women are perpetually victims of triple oppression of classism, racism and sexism.
Persons with disabilities continue to be excluded from all areas of everyday life, including children with disabilities being excluded from accessing education. All these talks to high levels of poverty, unemployment and inequality experienced by women, youth and persons with disabilities and they are problems which turn to be perennial. This continues despite the fact that our country has undergone major socioeconomic and political restructuring and transformation since the advent of democracy, with a strong social transformation agenda.
Inequality calls upon all of us, men and women of our country, to put shoulder to the wheel to ensure that no women and children go to bed without food, but rather enjoy the
constitutional rights to life and security of the person that so many fought and died for.
Since the joint sitting of Parliament where we discussed the crisis of violence against women by men as the President correctly named this, men in their diversity continue to kill women and children unabated. Women and children with disabilities face even higher risk of abuse due to their dependency on their abusers.
In 2020, there was a 64,9% drop in cases of GBVF compared to the same period in 2019. This was still 5445 cases in 2020. Although these figures showed reduced reporting during the COVID-19 lockdown, we know that lower numbers of reported domestic violence cases is due to the fact that many victims could not report these crimes. We know this lack of reporting applies to women and children with disabilities as well.
On many occasions and speaking on public platforms, the President of the Republic declared GBVF as a crisis and emergency and a commitment needed 365 days of the year. In his state of the nation address, His Excellency, President Ramaphosa reiterated that ending gender-based violence is an
imperative if we lay claim to being a society rooted in equality and nonsexism.
The national strategic plan sets out to provide a cohesive strategic framework to guide the national response to the hyper endemic GBVF crisis. The national strategic plan, NSP, has accountability, co-ordination and leadership; prevention and rebuilding social cohesion; and better information management to inform action.
In September 2019, there was a spike in femicide cases that sent shockwaves throughout the country, raising awareness to the ongoing scourge of violence against women. The emergency response action plan that we implemented between October 2019 and March 2020, was a response to this upsurge and subsequent GBVF-related protests. Within a short space of time, the interim gender-based violence and femicide steering committee managed to a large degree to galvanise the nation and mobilise resources within public and private sectors towards the fight to end GBVF. The emergency plan report details progress we made in a number of areas. These include: availability of evidence collection kits in all police stations; setting up of shelters to house victims and survivors of gender-based
violence; analysis of over 785 thousand dockets relating to sexual offences by the Cold Case Task Team; establishment of new Thuthuzela Care centres; and drafting of legislation on GBVF. We developed a gender-responsive planning, budgeting, monitoring and evaluation and auditing framework. We are using this framework to facilitate programming, resourcing and ensure that all departments integrate NSP deliverables into their core mandates.
In addition to the achievements listed above, we sought to review the legislative framework governing and regulating cases of gender-based violence in this country. Responding with urgency and agility, the three Bills, Criminal Law (Sexual Offences and Related Matters) Amendment Bill, Criminal and Related Matters Amendment Bill and the Domestic Violence Amendment Bill were drafted and submitted for consultation.
As part of institutionalising the implementation of the six NSP pillars we are employing a number of processes to ensure a draft national council on gender-based violence and legislative framework is in place; the strengthening of partnerships such as those with various UN agencies, Gesellschaft fuer Internationale Zusammenarbeit, GIZ, and the
European Union, EU; a broad monitoring and evaluation framework for the NSP that seeks to have a 5-year and 10-year focus is being developed; Parliament recently finalised and released the parliamentary oversight framework on the National Strategic Plan on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide; a multisectoral platform comprising of all sectors of society worked on high impact initiatives that support collective efforts in the implementation of the NSP; and working with all premiers’ offices, Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs, Cogta and the SA Local Government Association, Salga, in facilitating the establishment of provincial and local multisectoral structures that will be responsible for the roll-out of the NSP as part of the district development model.
According to the NSP the state has an obligation to fund the national council and the roll-out of the NSP. As the department we are working on the demonstration of government’s commitment through financial and infrastructure investment, aimed at prevention and mitigation of GBVF as outlined in Pillar 2.
We welcome the recent launch of the private sector-led GBVF Response Fund 1 which within a day raised about R128 million
to resource the NSP in the fight against GBV as the country regroups and embark on its path to economic recovery plan to ensure sustainable future growth of the country.
Hon members, economics is about the power to access resources and ownership of assets, therefore women’s access to economic resources is at the heart of women empowerment. South Africa’s economy was built on mining and agriculture, with land being a key factor. We are a prolific producer of minerals. However, the wealth of this country remains in the hands of the few for decades. My department has signed a memorandum of understanding, MoU, with the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development with regard to the distribution of land to ensure that women, youth and persons with disabilities also receive land ownership.
In his address the President stated that persons with disabilities must be considered for economic opportunities. We must empower them through economic opportunities. Task teams have been established to collaboratively work together on initiatives and capacity building workshops aimed at fast tracking the empowerment of women-owned businesses to better
take up opportunities within the implementation of the 40% preferential public procurement.
My department is co-ordinating the implementation of the Sanitary Dignity Implementation Framework. We are working with the SA Bureau of Standards to facilitate certification. The SheTradesZA Project is being led by the Department of Small Business Development and implemented through the Small Enterprise Development Agency, Seda.
In closing, we must all heed the President’s directive issued in his state of the nation address in committing to make South Africa safe for women across ages, genders and sexual identities, disability and geographic location. To save the lives of women we must empower them economically and socially to be able to walk out of abusive situations. The link between economic empowerment and eradicating gender-based violence and femicide cannot be overstated. We should all join the President in embracing Maya Angelou’s poem, I rise. We must all unite to end inequality and ensure that women enjoy freedoms enshrined in the Constitution. Victory is guaranteed. Women will rise above the oppression they face to take their
rightful place in society and move South Africa forward.
“Malibongwe!” [Let it be praised]. I thank you. [Applause.]
The CHIEF WHIP OF THE OPPOSITION: Mr President, House Chairperson, Members of Parliament, my fellow South Africans, I am sure you have all heard of Karen, she is the lady that always asks to speak to the manager. Well, Mr President, I am Natasha and I am speaking to the manager. I like to think of myself as a positive person, always seeing the glass half full, even during the lockdown period, when the glass was completely empty, but I now find myself finding it very difficult to feel positive about anything. I am bombarded by stories of death, corruption, poverty, deliberate racial baiting, and a failing economy, not to mention a barrage of constant lies.
Yesterday, South African learners and teachers went back to school, not a single one of them had even the faintest hope of protection from the Covid virus, never mind the variants because not one of them had been vaccinated. What I find the most disturbing as I look around me is that there are only 50 members in this House while the rest of the country is expected to go back to work and back school, but Parliament
remains in isolation. This is wrong on every level, the Parliament of South Africa must be recalled in full and only those who are in the high risk categories should join virtually. You see, this is what happens when a country enters into a National State of Disaster that it is not designed for and you land up with a Prime Minister and a President and I think we must all be honest, Minister Dlamini-Zuma always said she would run the country, and now she, in fact, does. We aren’t even consulted as a Parliament; the act is just extended at will.
The very minute we realised the hard lockdown was coming and coming fast, the DA Leader John Steenhuisen called his shadow Cabinet together and instructed me to chair the meeting and ensure that every DA shadow Minister write to their ANC counterpart. We did just that, we offered our complete and unwavering support. Let me list who responded to these letters of goodwill – not one single Minister. So much for standing together and what a crying shame. I’ve thought long and hard this week about how we can make our offer more appealing to the President and how he can actually take us up on our offer. I came to the following conclusion: those appointing these commissions that we constantly hear about have a conflict of
interest, and that is why no one is ever arrested. Mr President, this includes you too, Sir. You were the head of Government Business at the zenith of state capture, you were the head of the ANC cadre deployment committee overseeing the appointments of people like Brian Molefe, Matshela Koko, Dudu Myeni, to name but the few.
So, what do we do now? We as the DA think that you shouldn’t establish a national anticorruption council. We think that it’s just more talk and even less action. Therefore, I say this to you, Mr President, Thuma Mina, send me, I will fight it again. Let the opposition sit on a committee that ensures that those responsible for corruption are brought to book, show that you are the President of the Republic of South Africa, and not the President of the ANC. We have given you too many chances, you have let us down too many times. We don’t believe you anymore, and we simply cannot trust you anymore.
Can we just take a moment to appreciate some of the bizarre things that we have seen in the last week? We now have the Nkandla tea parties happening, where “pay back the money” has changed to please “pass the scones and jam”. We have a defunct
and none existent faux army structure who purchase the uniforms at a co-op who are now threatening to protect Jacob Zuma of his arrested. The premier of the Eastern Cape sits here today instead of fixing hospitals where people are being
... [Inaudible.] ... and where he bought scooters instead of oxygen tanks. How possibly dare they? However, no one knows where the powers starts and no one knows where the power ends.
We have a wannabe Don, running around in dark glasses getting in and out of state vehicles saying that the Constitution is not sacrosanct. How absolutely dare him? Let’s make one thing very clear, these are acts of treason, these are threats to the sovereignty of our country, but we have a President who has no power to act against these threats because he himself has no idea where the power lines start and where the power lines end.
The most vulnerable of society were lining up begging for their mere pittance to survive just for a few weeks, when a very loud cruel Minister, while emulating the behaviour of John Vorster was sitting inside an armoured Nyala vehicle instructing police to open water cannons on them. How absolutely dare she? However, nothing thing will be done to
her, because once again no one knows where the power starts and no one knows where the power ends.
South Africans honestly now only know how to say, how absolutely dare you? Ridiculous lockdown laws have decimated local businesses, destroyed the South African economy and left us in mourning for lives and livelihoods. Drive around any city in this country and there are empty shops everywhere, restaurants and hotels have halved their staff, the supply chain has been broken. Alcohol and tobacco sales went underground and the black market thrived. Some people loved the prohibition period, let’s face lots of tax free money was collected. But, you see in ... [Inaudible.] ... there is a lot of space for a very nice wine cellar. Therefore, it doesn’t affect everyone. How absolutely dare you? My favourite Poet, Dylan Thomas, once wrote:
The hand that signed the paper felled a city Five sovereign fingers taxed the breath Doubled the globe of dead and halved a country These five kings did a king to death
Mr President, you dare not bear and be the sign and the hand that signs this county to death. The people had hope in you. We had hope in you. I had a hope in you. However, I can tell you now without a shadow of a doubt the Ramaphoria has well and truly won over. We now all know where the power starts and where the power stops. Therefore, we can guarantee that, Mr President, it is not with you. [Applause.]
THE DEPUTY MINISTER OF HIGHER EDUCATION, SCIENCE AND
INNOVATION: Yes, hon Chief Whip of the Opposition Party, you see the higher you go in the echelons of the DA, the more symptomatic your political inefficiencies are showing.
Therefore, I had to cleanse them from the microphone before I speak ... [Applause.] ... because you sounded highly infectious and I don’t want what you have. [Applause.] [Laughter.]
Hon President and Deputy President, hon Members of Parliament and South Africans, Humourist writer and self-declared genius, Oscar Wilde once said that “we are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars”. Wilde’s injunction speaks of the nature of the debate on the state of our nation, and some of the responses the leaders of the different opposition
parties made in its response even outside of this House. There is no denying that we are faced with some of the most difficult challenges this country has ever seen since the formal ending of apartheid. We’ve lost two million jobs in a short space of time. We are losing lives because of coronavirus disease 2019, Covid-19.
Our justice system is hard at work to expose and prosecute corrupt individuals in government and their collaborators in the private sector. Women live in constant fear of being raped and killed. Our economy is probably at its worst. However, to repeat all of these surmountable difficulties that define the temporary gutter that we find ourselves in makes none of the opposition parties that spoke here today, the heroes of the debate. The real test of leadership is whether we can see the stars that helps us to navigate out of this gutter. It’s a call for true leadership that will give hope where there is despair ... [Applause.] ... True leaders do not murmur the plight of the people without presenting workable solutions to the state of our nation.
One of the people who is looking at the stars is a 30-year-old Hlayisani Sono from Valdezia in Limpopo. She used to dream big
wanting to be a social worker but could not find funds to fund her studies. She lost her parents when she was a child.
However, she made it through the gutter when she finally became an artisan and registered her own company, Mhani Builder Construction and Projects Pty Ltd, and through it, she will build a staircase to reach for her stars. There is a reason why she and millions of South Africans went out to vote for us to be here, because they see in us men and women whose preoccupation is not to further fracture our vulnerable nation, but to become the glue that binds us into eternal unity. Therefore, to come here to this House and behave like a commoner with no responsibility to stabilise our nation, our economy and all the important factors that will build a new nation is a betrayal of the trust bestowed on you by the electorate.
Your state of the nation, President, took place almost at the same time as Nelson Mandela was speaking here in Cape Town, 31 years ago, after his release from Victor Verster Prison. It is a moment that defined the future of this country, and was followed by the negotiations and consultations with the people of this country on the kind of democracy and nation we are building. Mandela, together with the people of this country,
fought for this democracy whilst others, including some in the EFF, were running around in their diapers without an inkling of the kind of precipice this country was finding itself ... [Laughter.] [Applause.] ... With the benefit of hindsight, and flirting with the honeypot of populism, one of their leaders and former spokesperson once again repeated the lie that Nelson Mandela was a sell-out.
Ndlozi is obviously oblivious of the kind of violence that engulfed our country and the thousands of black lives that were lost in our townships, including that of Chris Hani. The negotiations process that this country found ourselves in as a way to usher in a new democracy was as a result of the need to end low intensity war unleashed by forces hon Ndlozi cannot even comprehend. However, at every moment of those negotiations, the ANC was determined to take the people along and put them at the centre of a future, peaceful and prosperous South Africa. Yes, negotiations did not fully yield the desired outcomes, but that’s in their nature, especially if the enemy still held its boot on the neck of the people in the township, hon Steenhuisen. [Applause.]
It was a collective effort, and one which challenged future generations to build on. If the EFF’s preoccupation is to out the ANC and single out Mandela as the culprit of the challenges we are faced with in this country, they do not speak for this generations, my generations or future generations because we are much more determined to build on the foundation that Nelson Mandela and many others have built. [Applause.]
The hon John Steenhuisen, Leader of the Opposition, has become nothing but a howler of ANC inadequacies whilst applying the see no evil, hear no evil and defend evil when it comes to those of his own political party. In his long winded endemic monotony of a speech, he mentions the ANC a whopping 12 times, but his own political party only twice. He speaks of accountability, and yet forget to make his own premier here in the Western Cape to account for the rampant corruption and cadre deployment, and neglect of the people of Khayelitsha or Mitchells Plain in changing their lives for the better. Good secretary says that you have appointed Penny Tainton and with no competence or qualifications, and with over a million-rand salary. And what does hon Steenhuisen do? See no evil, hear no evil and defend evil. The same applies with Vusumzi Magwebu
who was connected to a job in Cape Town as an ombudsman, or Allen Paulse, who was found guilty of financial misconduct, amongst others, in the municipality in Oudtshoorn. And yet, what does Steenhuisen do? See no evil, hear no evil and defend evil.
This morning we listened quite attentively to a very changed hon Julius Malema. Renowned revolutionary and psychiatrist Frantz Fanon would have defined hon Malema’s behaviour as a mild case of political cognitive dissonance. On a good day, this what hon Malema says “we are children of Mandela,” but on any other day, “Mandela is a sell-out.” One moment he would shout from the rooftop of ignorance that the problem in this country is Thabo Mbeki, and then claim that he was misled when having tea with Mbeki. His transition from “kill for Zuma”, into “Kill Zuma” and then to swiftly move towards killing time and have tea with Zuma is nothing but a reflection of someone who is willing to change their ethics, morals, politics and allegiances more often than they would change their red overalls. [Applause.] You accuse the President of not having a backbone, and yet you go around with a backbone equivalent to malva pudding seeking tea with anyone who is willing to comply to your political agenda. [Applause.] [Laughter.]
What have we learnt from your speech today? With an entire orchestra of intellectuals and academics among the fighters, only the EFF leader is allowed to speak until he gets tired
... [Laughter.] ... That is the tendency of a bully, nothing else and nothing more. The EFF commander-in-chief, CIC, has once more stuck to his strategy of maligning the person of the President and completely neglected engaging with the state of the nation address, and on one or two occasions when he tried to, he was incoherent and made unsubstantiated claims he knows he has no obligation to defend or to prove. The EFF leader also paid absolutely no attention to what the President said, and is only preoccupied with disagreeing with the person of the President. Now, that he has politically emasculated everyone in the EFF, the dead bodies that are there in the EFF headquarters, he is now smelling blood. All what he was saying today was that he’s coming into the ANC to get rid of our President, the only we can do that, unfortunately. I know on the Bulayo Nchabeng offered you to come back, but that is another matter for debate.
For the hon Rev Meshoe, who has been in this Parliament much longer than even he can remember, to rush out huffing and puffing just after the state of the nation address, boiling
with the same bile that he has been spewing since, to reduce the speech as an ensemble of words only offering hope shows how much longer he wants to stay in the gutter. Since Mandela, and every other President the Reverend Meshoe offered to the people of South Africa is nothing but rehashed vitriol just for his upkeep in this House. A pantomime of wasteful and fruitless expenditure. How is it that you missed the practical interventions that the President spoke about right at the beginning of the speech, R500 billion that went into the pockets of millions of South Africans; 18 million people receiving grant payments; R57 billion in wage support to more than 4,5 million workers; R1,3 billion for small businesses and R18,9 billion for 13 000 businesses. This may not be, Reverend Meshoe, five loaves of bread and two pieces of fish, or turning water into wine, but these are practical interventions that moved the state of the nation address ... [Applause.] ... beyond and touched millions of people to cope with the economic challenges imposed by Covid-19. The lack of depth, commitment to sinking to the lowest gutter, intellectual bankruptcy, inability to grasp the moment and willingness to focus on the person and not the vision that was offered on the state of the nation address is essentially what we have been listening here today. And I won’t be disappointed
if South Africans don’t pitch up tomorrow to their television
because there is absolutely no opposition in this Parliament.
It is at this time, President, that lack of foresight and vision should be characterised as nothing but the preoccupation of the ruffians. We’ve been told a thousand and one times that the people have lost hope and faith towards the ANC-led government. But this is far from the truth. The true measure of confidence is not winning some Twitter poll that the EFF has become popular about or the DA, but defending all the 71 wards that the ANC contested and even won four more including the city of Johannesburg. This is because we offer hope, but also action for the people. And through our leadership, they see the stars and they want to reach for those.
The South African story for the majority will always be about pain where there was never joy, hon Mulder who left the House. It has been about poverty where there was never plenty. About unemployment where there were never jobs. About an economy that’s marred with inequality where there was never an intention for inclusivity. These are the scars we carried from our previous generations. The blemishes of the rainbow nation.
But this is not the story that this ANC-led government wants to hold on to and let it define our future. Thus, the sleepless nights we spent, despite our shortfalls, are because we are daily striving to change this narrative. To build on the foundations laid by Nelson Mandela and those giants who were prepared to die for the liberation of our country, and not to be excited in this new democracy by shooting a gun in a rally in Eastern Cape.
Yes, hope alone is not enough to bring food to the table of the hungry, jobs to those who want to work, equality to those who have been excluded, or ultimate freedom and unity in a country ravaged by an ugly past. Thus, this state of the nation address cannot be defined by hope alone, but by evidence of a government at work and in action. For the millions of South Africans who lived under the shadow of violence, who saw their loved one’s gunned down by the apartheid system, who experienced violence without provoking the system, who had no hope and future, who had no houses, water and electricity, who had no access to education and health, who had to scramble for the crumbs that fell off the table laid exclusively for whites by their government, for those people, hope matters. And I can hear their exasperating
voices and chants: The opposition is dead, the opposition has no solutions, long live the spirit of the dead opposition.
Unlike them, we are not in the business of building beautiful coffins, we are in the business of keeping South Africans alive, and this nation prospering. Their currency as illustrated today and on many other occasions is to exaggerate the extent of our problems and underestimate our ability to overcome them. Yes, we are all in the gutter, but President, like many South Africans, we are looking at the stars. They are what brings hope, but also action, for us to navigate out of this mess. Ultimately, we shall overcome. Victory is certain. The struggle continues. [Applause.]
The HOUSE CHAIRPERSON OF THE NCOP (Mr A J Nyambi): Order
members! Order members! That brings us to the end of List of the Speakers for today. The debate will continue tomorrow.
That concludes the business for the day, and the Joint Sitting of the House is adjourned.
The House Chairperson, Mr A J Nyambi, adjourned the Joint Sitting at 19:17.