Statement on the Cabinet Meeting of 16 May 2012

Cabinet held its ordinary meeting in Cape Town on 16 May 2012

1.1 CONDOLENCES

Cabinet expressed its condolences to the family of the late Minister of Public Service and Administration, Mr. Radhakrishana Lutchmana (Roy) Padayachie. It noted that a memorial service will be held in his honour on Thursday, 17 May, 2012, 11:00 at Pretoria City Hall, Visagie Street, Pretoria.

Cabinet supported the President’s messages and convey condolences to the family and friends of Reverend Motlalepula Chabaku who was an inspiration and symbol of hope for women in South Africa.

1.2 PREPARATIONS FOR YOUTH DAY/ MONTH

Cabinet noted that planned celebrations are being held under the theme: “Together We Can Do More to Build Infrastructure and Fight Youth Unemployment, Poverty and Inequality” which sustains the strategic emphasis of the President’s State of Nation Address.

During this period government will align all its communication activities to this theme in bolstering this national day and month and to support the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA). Cabinet urges the South African nation to rally behind government efforts of finding cost effective solutions in dealing with youth unemployment.

Cabinet also noted that President Jacob Zuma will officiate the Youth Day celebrations in the Eastern Cape on 16 June 2012.

In a separate but related development, the Department of Labour will participate in the 101st International Labour Organisation (ILO) Conference (30 May to 15 June 2012), which includes a general discussion session on youth unemployment. The theme of this conference is “Building of a Future with Decent Work”. It is proposed that the outcomes of this Conference will feed into already existing programmes to aid the country in addressing youth unemployment.

1.3 GAUTENG FREEWAY IMPROVEMENT PROJECT (GFIP)

The Committee of ministers, chaired by the Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe, briefed Cabinet on the progress made on the work relating to the Gauteng Freeway Improvement Programme(GFIP).

The Committee has reviewed all the facts and has directed that further work be done in certain areas.

Cabinet has taken note of the comments made by the public and various organisations and expressed appreciation for the various views and solutions offered. Government will continue to consult the public and various organisations on the GFIP with a view to reaching a constructive outcome.

We have effected major improvements to Gauteng freeways under the first phase of the GFIP, which have brought about observable changes to the flow of traffic on these roads. The benefits to motorists are evident.

In doing so the Government has borrowed money and incurred a significant debt. As a country we need to demonstrate unequivocal commitment to meet all our contractual obligations, including repaying the debt incurred in the construction of GFIP. Defaulting on our debt is simply not an option.

The South African National Roads Agency (Sanral) was created by our democratic government and with its demonstrable capacity to manage large contracts and deliver world-class road infrastructure, it has proved to be a valuable institution of the state.

Government plans to use Sanral to build more road infrastructure faster, in the period ahead. Accordingly, in light of the delay in e-tolling as a result of the court decision, government will take the necessary steps to ensure Sanral’s financial soundness pending the outcome of the legal and consultation processes. In this regard, the Committee chaired by the Deputy President is exploring interim measures to assist Sanral in meeting its financial obligations.

Cabinet reiterated its commitment to the user pay principle and its decision on e-tolling as an efficient mechanism of collection.

Cabinet has taken a decision to appeal the interim order to stop the e-tolling. Furthermore, government only received the written judgment late yesterday, 16 May 2012. Our lawyers are studying this judgment and will advise the executive in due course.

1.4 LOCAL GOVERNMENT

Cabinet noted reports of perpetual sporadic local protests, characterised by incidents of damage to property.

Cabinet calls on all public representatives to intensify their public participation visits to affected and non-affected communities to address issues, and uplift some of the underlying dynamics.

1.5 INTERNATIONAL AGENDA

1.5.1 The Global African Diaspora - 25 May 2012

Cabinet noted progress done in preparation for The Global African Diaspora Summit which will be held on 25 May 2012 (Africa Day) at the Sandton Convention Centre, under the theme: "Towards the Realisation of a United and Integrated Africa and its Diaspora".

This historic Summit will bring together various stakeholders from all over the continent. The Summit will help in creating sustainable partnerships and development for the people of our continent and beyond. It will devise strategies on how to deal with skills development, boost African trade and investment in infrastructure development whilst strengthening the Pan-African agenda.

As the host country Cabinet calls on all South Africans to welcome our guests from other continents and African Head of States. Cabinet encouraged for a Summit outcome that contributes to building a solid foundation for reviving our global African family.

1.6 Kingdom of Lesotho elections

The Kingdom of Lesotho will hold elections on 26 May 2012. Since 2009 Southern African Development Community (SADC) worked with the country’s political parties to amend its electoral legislation for more proportional representation in parliament and a strengthened Independent Electoral Commission.

Cabinet wishes the people of Lesotho a good election to consolidate their democracy.

1.7 African Union Candidature

Cabinet continues to endorse the South African Development Community (SADC) candidature for the Chairperson of the African Union (AU), Dr Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma. She is a distinguished and capable candidate with credentials and track record that respond to the task at hand. Since the formation of the OAU, which is now the AU, the Southern and Northern regions never had an opportunity to lead the AU at the level of Chairperson of the AU Commission. Cabinet believes that in keeping with the rotational principle, all regions should be given an opportunity to lead the AU Commission.

1.8 CHILD PROTECTION WEEK - 27 MAY TO 3 JUNE

This awareness campaign takes places under the theme: “Working Together to Protect Children”. Cabinet calls on all South Africans as individuals and as sectors to ‘Play Your Part’ in protecting children from any form of abuse and to wear a green ribbon as a symbolic commitment.

Cabinet urged all Departments to bolster communication and support initiatives during this week by contextualising the issues of child protection within their respective mandates through programmes and interventions of their own or in collaboration with the Department of Social Development.

1.9WOMEN IN INFORMATION AND COMMUNICATION TECHNOLOGY

Cabinet noted that government will celebrate World Telecommunications and Information Society Day on 17 May 2012 under the theme “Women and Girls in ICT”. From 17 to 20 May 2012, government will hold a festival of activities, in the Northern Cape, acknowledging the role of women in the information and communications technology sector (ICTs) and encouraging more women to get involved in this sector. The purpose of this conference is to profile, celebrate, acknowledge and recognise the achievements of the ICT towards socio-economic development. Furthermore, build interest towards this industry as a career of choice and its innovations which has shaped communications. Lastly, it also serves as a precursor for the “Women in ICT Conference” in November 2012.

1.10 Military Ombudsman

Cabinet noted and welcomed the appointment of Lieutenant General (retired) Temba Templeton Matanzima, as the Military Ombudsman with effect from 14 May 2012. Cabinet wishes him well in carrying out this enormous task he will handle during his term of office.

2. CABINET DECISIONS EMANATING FROM THE CLUSTER SYSTEM INCLUDED THE FOLLOWING:

2.1 The Science and Technology Ministerial Review Committee Phase Two Final Report.

Cabinet noted and welcomed the Science and Technology landscape Ministerial Review Committee Phase Two Final Report. Cabinet agreed that the Department of Science and Technology should go on public consultation process to better articulate the functions of the proposed structure.

2.2 Further Education and Training Colleges Amendment Bill, 2012 and Higher Education and Training Laws Amendment Bill, 2012

Cabinet approved the Further Education and Training Colleges Amendment Bill, 2012 and the Higher Education and Training Laws Amendment Bill, 2012 for submission to Parliament.

2.3 Hosting of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Meeting of Ministers Responsible for Information Communication Technologies (ICTS), Communications and Postal in South Africa, 1-3 June 2012.

Cabinet approved the hosting of the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Meeting of Ministers for Information Communications Technologies (ICTS), Communication and Postal from 1-3 June 2012 in Cape Town, South Africa.

2.4 Bi-national with South Africa

The Governments of the Republic of South Africa and the Federal Republic of Nigeria have long-standing strong bilateral relations.

The two countries are currently implementing a variety of measures to strengthen the historic bilateral relations both political and economic. Accordingly, on the 22nd and 23rd of this month the South Africa-Nigeria Bi-National Commission will meet here in Cape Town lead by the Deputy President/Vice President of the two sister countries.

The two countries share a common commitment to the unity and prosperity of the African continent as well as a just and equitable world – will continue to work together at various levels to achieve this common objective. 

3 APPOINTMENTS

3.1 Cabinet approved appointment of the following as the Non-Executive Members to the Ports Regulator for a period of three years with effect from 1 June 2012:

a) Mr. Mahesh Fakir;
b) Mr. Andile Mahlalutye;
c) Ms Patricia Mazibuko;
d) Mr. Grove Steyn;
e) Ms Thatho Abegail Tsautse;
f) Mr. Aubrey Bongani Zenzele Ngcobo;
g) Ms Gloria Serobe (re-appointment and Chairperson);
h) Mr. Randal Howard (re-appointment); and
i) Ms Pumzile Langeni (re-appointment).

Cabinet congratulates the new appointees and wishes them well in their new responsibilities.

Enquiries:

Jimmy Manyi (Cabinet Spokesperson)
Cell: 082 379 3454

Issued by: Government Communications (GCIS)
17 May 2012

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