SA’s Economy: DDF versus the ANC.

A hard look at the ANC led economy paints a grim picture for 2014.

By contrast a Direct Democracy Forum administration will both liberalise and discipline the economy with emphasis on economic fairness, including but not limited to:

Out the window will go patrimony, nepotism, graft and corruption.  While the DDF cannot guarantee the absence of these practices in the market-place and in the public service, what the DDF can guarantee is that any evidence of such practices will be pursued timeously, diligently and to the full extent of the law, irrespective of whomever is involved.

Look at DDF Policies to see how they can help you.

Support the DDF                                                                             Follow the DDF on twitter

The buck stops at the ballot box.

IEC Impartiality?

The Direct Democracy Forum have always chosen to believe in the impartiality of the Independent Electoral Commission in the electoral processes of South Africa.  The DDF have always willed that impartiality into the forefront of its consciousness in the belief that if we cannot depend on IEC impartiality we cannot depend on the entire political process in South Africa.   Sadly, it seems we were naive in that belief and guilty of some wishful thinking.  It seems that even the IEC are capable of politically manipulating the electoral process, this according to the M&G on-line report IEC credibility questioned after Tlokwe judgment.

In a nutshell, an IEC official, John Mokodi, disqualified independent candidates for a number of Tlokwe by-elections without just cause.  They met the minimum requirements and should have been registered without question, instead they were disqualified, presumably because they were ANC opponents in highly controversial by-elections.  The Electoral Court found for the independent candidates who took the matter before the court. So far as we know there is a process involving a number of IEC officials in registration decisions.  How can they all have agreed on this matter?

Clearly there needs to be an urgent investigation into the facts of the disqualifications and in the registration verification process, and any involved in deliberate wrongdoing need to be removed from the registration process, indeed from the IEC itself.  That the IEC should investigate this publicly and urgently should go without saying, but it needs to be said.  The IEC need to act swiftly and unambiguously to restore the confidence of both the electorate and the political establishment, in the institution and its processes.  Surely heads must role and fixes be made.

A DDF administration would ensure that all the activities of the IEC are beyond reproach and that any incidents that damage its credibility would be responded to impartially and swiftly, in line with the DDF‘s approach to all administrative matters in South Africa.  The DDF believe in constitutionality, within the party and within South Africa as a whole.  This belief is reflected in DDF policies.

The buck stops at the ballot box.

Criminal Cops in a Criminal Government?

What does it say about a State which employs 1448 policemen with criminal records, some of them very senior policemen, and which does all in its power to block and obstruct the prosecution of Richard Mdluli, charged in 2011 with  murder, and suspended as crime intelligence chief; and charged with corruption relating to the alleged abuse of the secret services account and subjected to disciplinary investigation by police management?

The Direct Democracy Forum believes that successful prosecution would set yet another precedent in the challenge to the reigning political elite,  that even the most senior of them can be held accountable for their actions and abuses.  The DDF believe the government of the day are avoiding this precedent at all costs so as to avoid a domino effect that could bring down the highest of the high in the corridors of power.  

Does this mean the scrabble to avoid that domino effect arises from widespread criminality in the corridors of power?  The DDF suspect as much.  What other reason can there be for such telling  and panic induced behaviour?  The alternative of letting justice prevail and letting the truth out is certainly being avoided, almost at any cost.

DDF administration would stand back and allow the full prosecution of criminals in government, no matter who they were, nor the manner of their criminality.

The state must be above reproach in all matters to engage the trust of its citizens.  This is something DDF policies will ensure at all levels of government.

The buck stops at the ballot box.

No More Player Referees

This tale of self-enrichment will not occur under a Direct Democracy Forum administration.

The DDF understand that people in government who see opportunity to enter into business dealings with Government are tempted to do just that, and there should be clear cut and reasonable rules which permit freedom of association and freedom of trade without compromising the integrity of either the government, the service provider or the transaction itself.

The only way this can happen is for the government employee/service provider, to completely disassociate himself from government (resign) and tender (get in the queue) along with all the other bidders, and that all the other bidders should be privy to the same information available to the most privileged bidder.

The penalty for not disengaging in this manner should be an all expenses paid sojourn in one of our prestigious places of incarceration.  In short, deal-rigging, should be a criminal matter with meaningful consequences.

The DDF are committed to this sort of transparency and corruption busting.  DDF policies speak for themselves.

The buck stops at the ballot box.

Something is rotten in the State…..

Something is rotten in the State of Denmark.  Shakespeare could have been writing about South Africa:

All involve politicians diverting or stonewalling investigations into their activities.  There is indeed something rotten in the state of South Africa that a Direct Democracy Forum administration will take the wraps off and let the law prevail.

The buck stops at the ballot box.

Athletics SA victim of power grabs

Our bureaucrats are not the only people subjected to power grabs and interference in their jobs.  It seems South African athletes are subjected to similar attacks.  The South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee (Sascoc), a body designated by the Minister of Sports and Recreation as mandated by the National Sports and Recreation Act No.110 of 1998 to act as an umbrella body for multiple sport activities, such as the Olympics and Commonwealth games, is trying to assume overriding authority over SA’s sports federations.  

The act does not state that the body allotted that task (currently Sascoc) has the right to interfere in or with the various national sports federations, either in their leadership, management or selection processes, yet this is exactly what Sascoc seem to be attempting with Athletics SA (ASA) by inserting Sascoc choices into ASA (at least one of which apparently resulted in financial mismanagement at ASA). 

This is apparently a similar pattern of interference experienced by other national sports federations.  In terms of the new companies act, to which both Sascoc and ASA are subject, you cannot have control of one non profit company vested in another and this seems to be what Sascoc is attempting to achieve. ASA would not play ball and Sascoc suspended ASA from Sascoc. (do Sascoc even have the right to do that?). Sascoc also seem to be usurping the reporting channels of national sports federations to Parliament by inserting themselves into that line of authority and accountability.  This doesn’t look good for Parliament or South African sports or SA sports federations. 

The practical effect for South African athletes is they no longer have representation at the IOC or the Commonwealth Games and are no longer recipients of any funding that is normally channeled through Sascoc.  A ray of light is that the International Association of Athletics Federations (IAAF) recognise ASA and not Sascoc as the controlling body of athletics in SA and continue normal relations with ASA and athletic events under IAAF auspices continue. 

A Direct Democracy Forum administration will ensure that power grabs by Sascoc will cease and the authority, accountability and responsibility of national sports federations to their members and Parliament will be reinstated and reinforced.  Sascoc will have to limit their activities to that of mediator and coordinator of multiple sports activities, as envisaged by the act. Then our national sports federations can get on with doing what they do best – seeing that our sports men and sports women continue winning on international playing fields and bring honour to our country.

The buck stops at the ballot box.

Limpopo Textbook Saga Continues

This M & G report ‘Textbook saga smacks of meddling‘ seems more like graft and corruption to the Direct Democracy Forum.

There is an expression – organised chaos.  The DDF interpret that to mean chaos organised so as to obscure truth.  That is what the Limpopo textbook saga seems to be,  that the system was manipulated and abused in order to allow a series of competing service organisations some with connections to bureaucrats involved in the ‘consumer-side’ of the operation to profit from the chaos, and to confuse and obscure what actually took place.

Reading the M & G report is not that enlightening, not because the M & G are particularly incompetent, indeed they are not, but the report attempts to bring to order this state of organised chaos and to the extent that it illustrates that chaos quite successfully the M & G succeeded in their efforts, if not in their intentions.

A DDF administration’s response to such a situation would be to remove all those involved in the chaos and start afresh – take control of the textbooks and the delivery system, place all of that in the hands of someone competent, and effect delivery within the shortest possible time.  30 days for those books already printed and bound, 60 days for those still requiring printing.  It would at the same time point forensic investigators at the original problem, determine the causes, and prosecute, criminally and civilly, all involved in the fiasco, and whatever clever little boytjies were involved in and profited from the chaos would live to regret their involvement and their profit.

This is the only response possible – fix the problem and punish those responsible for the problem, as quickly and thoroughly as possible.

We’ve posted on this topic before at ‘textbooks should be a given‘ and each time this issue is raised we become a little more enraged and determined to stop these debacles and incompetences and to deliver what is needed on time and for ever.  See DDF Education Policies.

The buck stops at the ballot box.

Political Hands on the NPA

There is hope.  Sometimes when the outlook seems bleak there is a ray of sunshine, if only momentary, until it is hidden by yet another cloud.

What am I rambling on about?  The last post on this ‘blog’ was all about politicians manipulating and corrupting the civil service and interfering in the management of the Mandela Bay Metropolis.  At the same time another story of political interference hits the headlines.  This time politicians interfering in the National Prosecuting Authority.

Glynnis Breytenbach is a prosecutor in the employ of the NPA.  At the time of posting she has been suspended from her job.  Ms Breytenbach’s cases included prosecution of former police crime intelligence boss Richard Mdluli on fraud and other charges.  Her boss instructed her to close down the prosecution of Mdluli and Ms Breytenbach refused.  Unable to get her collusion her boss, acting National Director of Public Prosecutions Nomgcobo Jiba, then initiated charges against Ms Breytenbach for, amongst other things, failing to act impartially in a case, improper relationships with opposition attorneys whose clients were under investigation by Breytenbach, breaches of confidentiality and insubordination (in all, 15 separate charges). The NPA brought these charges against Breytenbach and then their own disciplinary hearing threw all the charges out as ‘guilt …. on this plethora of charges …. has not been established’, this according to the hearing’s chairperson Selby Mbenenge SC.  That was the ray of sunshine.  

Breytenbach claims Jiba suspended her to prevent her pursuing the investigation against Mdluli, a view encouraged by the response of the NPA to their own findings.

Dismissing the findings of their own disciplinary hearing (they maintain “the findings are factually incorrect and legally unsustainable”) the NPA are now taking this to a review court.  That is the next dark cloud

What does this all mean?  Probably, just for starters that:

  • Facts are what the NPA’s political masters say they are and believe are expedient, even in the face of the NPA’s own expert’s opinion to the contrary.
  • The NPA really really don’t want Breytenbach to continue investigating Mdluli for fraud & etc.
  • The fallout of a continued Ndluli investigation and other issues under investigation may touch other political luminaries.
  • The pressure to close down the Mdluli investigation is most probably political (don’t touch the president’s men), in spite of ANC assertions to the contrary.

The truth of the matter probably follows the old saw, ‘if it walks like a duck, talks like a duck and looks like a duck, it probably is a duck’.  So, if it looks like political interference in the judicial process and the affairs of the NPA, it probably is political interference.

What makes this so depressing is that this seems to be part of a bigger pattern.  The pattern at Nelson Mandela Metro looks just like the pattern at the NPA, or, are we just imagining this?

A Direct Democracy Forum administration’s response to this would be to ensure that Ms Breytenbach is fully restored, with all powers necessary to do her job, whatever she deems that to be, and to go where the facts of her investigations lead her, without any political interference.  If you think we are not serious about this follow the link to DDF policies on the judiciary.

The buck stops at the ballot box.

Oh to be wrong! :={

Anyone reading these post could be forgiven for thinking the Direct Democracy Forum relish the opportunity to trash government.  The truth is that being right about the abysmal state of our government gives the DDF no pleasure.  The DDF would prefer to be wrong,  to sit back and enjoy the fruits of living in a well run society.  What pleasure and joy that would give the DDF.

What set this of was the M&G on-line report ‘Threatened Metro Manager‘.  The report demoralizes and uplifts at the same time.  

  • The degree of political interference in the administration of the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality just beggars belief.  The nature of the threats against a municipal manager, if not explicitly so then obviously and by deliberate innuendo, are violent and border on criminal assault.  The whole is simply demoralizing.

The report however does contain hope and upliftment.  

  • A senior member of the municipal management, the metro manager herself, has had the courage to challenge the outrageous behaviour of her political bosses.  In short she has blown the whistle.  Hats off to Lindiwe Msengana-Ndlela.  What Lindiwe is doing requires courage, determination and strength of character.

The DDF‘s approach to undue influence and bullying tactics imposed by anyone on civil servants would be to treat it as criminal and ensure that prosecution in the courts follows as a natural consequence, so, in common with all other criminal behaviour, it will be rendered too unprofitable to pursue.  The DDF will also fully support efforts of civil servants like Lindiwe to pursue their career goals, professionally, ethically and honourably, without let or hindrance.  Anyone who doubts the intent of the DDF should visit the DDF Local Government policy page which  illustrates the seriousness with which the DDF view local government and service delivery issues.

The buck stops at the ballot box.

R100 Million deals and no statements for customers

It is very hard not to get personal about maladministration, nepotism, incompetence and graft because it effects us all in a very personal manner.

Some 15 years ago my family bought a house.  The house was modest, the down-payment was equally modest, the monthly bond repayments excessive but just bearable and the utilities bill was not cheap but was also just bearable, and we had regular statements of account from the Johannesburg municipality.

15 years down the line the monthly municipal utilities and rates and taxes bills far exceed the bond repayments we have had to make, we have not had municipal statements of account mailed to us in almost twelve months even although the municipality was able to mail notice of municipal property evaluations to us (it took two months to reach us, by the way) and during the 2011/2012 financial year  the Johannesburg municipality did business with its own and other state employees and office bearers to the tune of R100 000 000 (100 Million Rands).

So it’s very difficult not to get personal about maladministration, nepotism, incompetence and graft.  It effects everyone so personally.

The Direct Democracy Forum intend fixing these problems through application of DDF Policies, particularly with regard to the way municipalities behave and run their affairs, through DDF local government policies and the way municipalities fund those affairs through DDF tax policies and the application of TEAL.

The buck stops at the ballot box.