Category: Questions & Motions

Corruption in land restitution and redistribution process

FOLLOW-UP QUESTION BY REV KENNETH MESHOE MP

“Deputy President, it is clear from the findings of the High Level Panel Report that, for the most part, the main source of anger among landless people is not Section 25 of the Constitution as some claim, but rather, it is due to corruption among government officials that has resulted in both land restitution and redistribution going to unknown people, and not those whose names are on claim forms and applications.

As some of the corrupt officials and politicians may still be involved in processing those claim forms and applications, what is government doing to ensure that the landless and poor people who have applied – rightly so – for their land, are provided with direct ownership of land, with title deeds to that land and not the corrupt officials who have the capacity to bribe other corrupt officials and politicians?”

REPLY BY DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SOUTH AFRICA, MR DAVID MABUZA

“Thank you very much. I’m sure in the next two weeks – three weeks – the President of the country will announce a panel: a panel that would take forward all the land questions, issues and challenges. But, of course, we are mindful of the issues raised in the report, alleging that there were instances of corruption in the process of restituting land back to the people. And those will be investigated. That is an opportunity that will tell us how much land has been given back to the people, at what cost; what were the processes followed; how many claims are still left behind and what is the total cost of those claims. For us to move forward, we need to make a thorough audit of what has happened and what needs to happen. That will guide our way forward as we proceed with the land question.

Thank you very much.”


FOLLOW-UP QUESTION BY REV KENNETH MESHOE MP
National Assembly Questions to the Deputy President in response to question by Ms T Mbabama (DA) who asked: “With reference to the findings in November 2017 of the High Level Panel on the Assessment of Key Legislation and the Acceleration of Fundamental Change that the Government has failed to protect the right to tenure security of many South Africans in contravention of section 25(6) of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996, what steps will the Government take to provide direct ownership of land to persons, such as communal residents, who have insecure rights?”
29 May 2018

Investigate corruption at Crime Intelligence and State Security Agency now

FOLLOW-UP QUESTION BY STEVE SWART MP

“President, the ACDP shares concerns and is extremely concerned about allegations of malfeasance, corruption and gross abuse of State resources at both Crime Intelligence and the State Security Agency. While we welcome the review panel that you are instituting, clearly there is nothing to prevent investigation and prosecution on the basis of those allegations at this stage.

Would you agree that those investigations should continue and that steps should be taken to investigate those authorities such as IPID and other police officials that might be intimidated both from Crime Intelligence and the State Security Agency from doing their jobs in eradicating these ‘rotten apples’ from these institutions?

REPLY BY SOUTH AFRICAN PRESIDENT, MR CYRIL RAMAPHOSA

“I am able to confirm that the review panel that is going to be set up is going to get involved in – as I have already said – reviewing the mandate particularly of our intelligence service. But that does not prevent any investigations already underway from proceeding. If there are any investigations that have commenced, we will say they should go ahead because, if there has been wrong-doing, we would say that that wrong-doing needs to be addressed and those who are found to have participated in wrong-doing, should, indeed be dealt with. So, there is no prevention whatsoever to investigations that have already commenced from proceeding.

The review panel will be reviewing the mandate, the effectiveness, the systems and the structures of our intelligence agency and once it has come out with a report, we will then be able to see the extent to which that state agency needs to be recalibrated, to be reformed, and if it requires restructuring, how we will be able to do that so that we reposition it to serve the interests of the people of South Africa in the most effective way in terms of our Constitution.

Thank you very much.”


FOLLOW-UP QUESTION BY STEVE SWART MP
National Assembly Questions to the Deputy President in response to question by Ms D Carter (Cope): “Whether, in the interests of transparency, accountability, responsibility, the rule of law and the best interests of the country, he will establish a commission of inquiry into the alleged serious dysfunction, malfeasance, corruption and gross abuse of resources of the State, including financial resources, for wrongful ends within the Crime Intelligence Division of the SA Police Service and the State Security Agency; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?”
8 May 2018

Hold delinquent board members of SOEs to account

QUESTION TO THE DEPUTY PRESIDENT BY STEVE SWART MP

“Whether he has taken any steps since 27 February 2018 to improve the lack of accountability and enforcement of sanctions against board directors and management of state-owned enterprises (SOEs), given their failure to comply with laws, codes and internal processes, as highlighted in various reports, including the Public Protector State of Capture report, as well as various Parliamentary inquiries, including that of the Portfolio Committee on Public Enterprises and that of the Ad hoc Committee on the SABC Board?”

REPLY BY DEPUTY PRESIDENT, MR DAVID MABUZA

“In the State of the Nation Address (SONA) the President highlighted some of the steps that have been undertaken at the time to address government’s failures in state-owned companies. Among others, he mentioned the following:

Action has been taken at Eskom to strengthen government, root out corruption and ensure that work to restore its financial position is implemented as a matter of priority. The Commission of Inquiry into State Capture, headed by the Deputy Chief Justice is expected to commence its work soon. This will ensure the extent and the nature of the state capture is established, that confidence in the public institutions is restored, and that those responsible for any wrong-doing are identified.

As part of the SONA implementation process, the following steps have been taken:

In respect of Eskom, a new board has been appointed, an acting CEO and CFO have been appointed to strengthen governance, disciplinary action has been taken against at least 8 senior managers to start the process of rooting out corruption and to stabilise the financial situation in Eskom. As action in terms of this intervention was intensifying, some of these individuals opted to resign from their positions before disciplinary hearing would even sit to determine their guilt. The process of appointing a full-time CEO and CFO is almost complete. The issues pertaining to coal supplies in some of the power stations is receiving attention as we speak.

All boards of state owned companies are in the process of being reviewed and strengthened. At Denel, changes have been effected with the announcement of a new interim board. So is the case with Prada. Boards of SOEs have been directed to focussing on all government failures that have impacted negatively on their performance. In addition, boards will prioritise recovery of stolen funds and undertake a review of all contracts to identify those that may have been improperly awarded. Where there are criminal offences, charges must be brought against those individuals through the relevant authorities to ensure that those that are involved are brought to book.

The instances of maladministration and corruption at state-owned companies identified by reports from the office of the Public Protector, including Parliamentary inquiries, have assisted a great deal in highlighting the extent of the problem and the Executive is taking these matters seriously.

In instances where forensic and criminal investigation have already been conducted, steps have been taken to ensure that individuals identified by this investigation at the board and executive level are removed through due processes, including suspension and the institution of disciplinary hearings.

The President will establish an SOC council and will announce its mandate in due course that will help strengthen the work of the state owned companies. This is work in progress. Progressively Ministers will be taking action to strengthen governance, accountability, transparency and improved performance and financial stability of our state owned companies as has been indicated before.

Sooner, rather than later, the dependence by SOCs on the fiscus must be totally removed. In fact, commercially owned SOCs should be paying dividends to government. We undertake to keep honourable members briefed as this programme of reform unfolds in these SOCs.”

SUPPLEMENTARY QUESTION BY CHERYLLYN DUDLEY MP (ON BEHALF OF STEVE SWART MP)

“I’ll be responding on behalf of my colleague, Steve Swart, who sends his apologies.  I have noted your response and am going to read from his response:

It is encouraging that various criminal investigations are ongoing against board directors and management of state-owned enterprises arising from the allegations of state capture. We are also pleased that the Hawks and Asset Forfeiture Unit have made progress in this regard and the AFU obtaining preservation orders running into millions of rand.

What is lacking, however, is the enforcement of sanctions of board directors and managers in terms of both the Public Finance Management Act as well as the Companies Act. Sadly, time after time, board members and management are replaced after running SOEs into the ground and are then redeployed to other SOEs.

The ACDP believes that besides holding those board members criminally and civilly liable for losses sustained by those SOEs, serious consideration should be given to have these directors declared ‘deliquent directors’ in terms of section 162 of the Companies Act. This will prevent directors who have failed to fulfil their fiduciary duties to SOEs from ever being able to serve as directors again. Would the Deputy President support these suggestions?”

REPLY BY DEPUTY PRESIDENT, MR DAVID MABUZA

“Well, it goes without saying that if you were a board member and certain things happened under your watch, obviously, somewhere, you must take responsibility. It is not enough just to leave your role as a board member. You must, at a certain point, account for certain things that have happened under your watch. So, I support that.

Thank you.”


QUESTION TO THE DEPUTY PRESIDENT BY STEVE SWART MP
25 April 2018

Moral regeneration? Teach respect in our schools

FOLLOW-UP QUESTION BY REV KENNETH MESHOE MP

“According to the Moral Regeneration Movement’s website, the origins of the MRM date back to a 1997 meeting between former President Nelson Mandela, key South African faith-based organisation leaders and others, to discuss spiritual transformation. President Mandela, highlighted the role of religion in nation-building and social transformation, and the need for them to work with the state to overcome the ‘spiritual malaise’ underpinning problems with crime.

Does the Deputy President and government agree with the original aim of the MRM, and if yes, why are Biblical values, such as respect for God, one’s neighbour and those in authority, not taught in schools, particularly in light of recent reports of students attacking teachers in schools – a behaviour the ACDP strongly condemns?”

REPLY BY DEPUTY PRESIDENT OF SOUTH AFRICA, DAVID MABUZA 

“Thank you very much.

I think as government, we really agree and share those aspirations of the entire Moral Regeneration Movement. But, because, as I’ve said, religion was seen as a central pillar in the whole movement, we therefore, cannot prescribe – because, in terms of our Constitution, we are a secular state. We are not going to prescribe a form of religion. But, whatever religion is being practised, it must conform and must adhere to our Constitution.

But the very same religion that we know – all of us, Christianity – like I’ve said, it’s beginning to lose the very direction that we hope they must show. There are incidences that you know, Reverend Meshoe, where people are made to drink certain things they say to be healed, people are made to do certain things in churches that undermines what the religion stands for. And now, the Church ceases to occupy the leadership role in our moral regeneration. Of course, this is a matter that we should dialogue with the churches, because I’ve heard a number of churches condemning such actions. But, government must assist. We must assist the Church. We must assist all institutions that seek to uphold our values and build a nation.

Thank you.”


FOLLOW-UP QUESTION BY REV KENNETH MESHOE MP
NATIONAL ASSEMBLY QUESTIONS TO THE DEPUTY PRESIDENT in response to question by JH Steenhuisen (DA) on “whether he has engaged any organised segments of society in pursuit of his responsibility as champion of moral regeneration initiatives, since he was sworn in as Deputy President of the Republic on 27 February 2018; if not, why not; if so, what are the relevant details?” 20 March 2018