Statement on the Cabinet Meeting of 23 September 2015

1. Implementation of key government programmes

1.1. Cabinet welcomed the launch of the seventh edition of the Development Indicators (2014) on 20 September 2015, which presented an update on the state of South Africa’s development. The indicators create a better understanding of the impact of various government policies and service-delivery initiatives on the country’s development.

The indicators also promote a debate on the challenges faced by our country and act as markers that help define the milestones in our journey of social change. They serve as an inspiration for us to work together to achieve our long and medium-term goals as articulated in the National Development Plan (NDP) – Vision 2030 and the Medium Term Strategic Framework.

1.2. Cabinet welcomed the appointment of 154 district magistrates in various magistrates’ courts countrywide. Of significance is that 90 of them are women, who represent 59 percent of all appointed candidates. The fact that 141 of the magistrates are black and 13 are white will significantly improve the racial and gender transformation of the lower courts. The latest appointments follow the appointment of 57 regional magistrates on 2 February 2015, which brings the total of magistrates appointed this year to 211, which is unprecedented in our 21 years of democracy.

1.3. Cabinet welcomed the placement of South Africa among the top three in the 2015 Open Budget Index, which is the world’s only independent, comparable measure of budget transparency, participation and oversight. This profiles South Africa as a global leader in budget transparency. Some of the reforms that the country implemented between 2010 and 2015 included a new framework for strategic plans and annual performance plans, and government’s commitment to engage with civil-society organizations to ensure increased participation in the budget process.

1.4. Cabinet welcomes the announcement that South Africa will take over as Lead Chair of the Open Government Partnership (OGP). The OGP is a multilateral initiative to secure concrete commitments from governments to promote transparency, empower citizens, fight corruption and harness new technologies to strengthen governance. South Africa, Brazil, Indonesia, Mexico, Norway, Philippines, United Kingdom and the United States of America are the founding members of this initiative.

During its tenure as Lead Chair South Africa undertakes to raise the political profile of the OGP to ensure participation and accountability at the level of Heads of State. South Africa will also focus on mainstreaming the OGP in the international multilateral agenda at the United Nations (UN) General Assembly (UNGA), the Group of 20 and other platforms.

2. Key Cabinet decisions

2.1. Cabinet supports that South Africa host the second Commonwealth Conference on Youth Work in March 2016, on request from the Commonwealth Secretariat. The Department of Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation will partner with the Commonwealth Secretariat, University of South Africa and the National Youth Development Agency in arranging the conference. This conference is an investment in the development of South Africa’s increasing youth population, and it will provide a platform to professionalize the development of youth workers and promote them as primary providers of services to youth.

2.2. Cabinet approved the Guidelines of Good Business Practice for South African Companies Operating in Africa. These guidelines are a voluntary set of principles consistent with laws and internationally recognized standards that promote responsible business conduct on the African continent. They provide a guiding framework for South African companies to promote sustainable economic development in Africa. They also encourage South African companies to align their involvement and practices with government’s integration and development objectives in Africa and to build mutual confidence, trust and benefit for the companies and the societies in which they operate.

2.3. Cabinet approved the ratification of the Annex on the Institutionalization of the Southern African Customs Union (SACU) Summit. The summit, which comprises Heads of State or Government of each member state, will provide political and strategic direction to SACU. All SACU member states need to sign the agreement so that the summit can become the highest decision making institution of the SACU.

2.4. Cabinet approved the issuing of a Letter of Support to the African Union Commission for the Internet Service Providers’ Association in the application process for the hosting of the Regional Internet Exchange Point. This contributes to regional integration and the building of a secure, reliable infrastructure network and services to meet the demands of the established information and knowledge society.

This forges stronger partnership and cooperation between African entities and also positions South Africa as a global leader in the development, roll-out and use of Information and Communications Technology (ICT). Keeping regional traffic local will lower the cost to communicate and promote job creation, innovation, entrepreneurship and platforms for e-government services, as well as ensure that Africa is in control of its content and data.

2.5. Cabinet approved for South Africa to co-host the second Ministerial Forum for China-Africa Health Development under the theme: “Promoting the availability of healthcare service in Africa, Improving China-Africa’s Cooperation in Public Health in post-Ebola era” from 4 to 6 October 2015 in Cape Town. This initiative is a result of the Forum on China-Africa Cooperation, which places health as an important part of the China-Africa cooperation. Recently, China pledged significant resources to help stem the spread of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa.

3. Bills

3.1. Cabinet approved the publication of the National Environmental Management Laws Amendment Bill, 2015 for public comment. This Bill amends the National Environmental Management Act, 1998 (Act 107 of 1998) and a number of specific environmental management legislations. The amendments strengthen, among other things, integrated environmental management, compliance and enforcement measures, biodiversity and conservation, air quality management and waste management.

3.2. Cabinet approved the introduction of the Refugees Amendment Bill, 2015 to Parliament. The amendments increase the efficiency and effective functioning of the application process of the asylum system, and are part of the broader review of the Migration Policy that is underway.

3.3. Cabinet approved the introduction of the Justice Administered Fund Bill, 2015 into Parliament. The Bill creates a legislative framework that will increase accountability and address the audit findings by the Auditor-General by enhancing organizational efficiency and transforming the justice services.

The Bill also provides for the establishment of a Justice Administered Fund to regulate the management, control, investment and usage of money from Third Party Funds (also referred to as ‘Monies in Trust’), such as maintenance and bail monies.

4. Upcoming events

4.1. President Jacob Zuma will lead a South African delegation to the 70th UNGA in New York, United States under the theme: “The United Nations at 70: the road ahead for peace, security and human rights”. The UN Sustainable Development Summit from 25 to 27 September 2015 is being convened immediately prior to the UNGA for the adoption of the Post-2015 Development Agenda.

The new sustainable development agenda will serve as the launch pad for action by the international community and by national governments to promote shared prosperity and well-being for all over the next 15 years. On 25 September 2015, His Holiness Pope Francis will address the UNGA, and the General Debate takes place from 28 September to 6 October 2015. South Africa is satisfied that the sustainable development goals will continue to focus global attention on fighting poverty, inequality and sustainable development.

4.2. The Department of Transport will implement the October Transport Month (OTM) campaign from 1 to 31 October 2015 under the theme “Together we move South Africa forward”. The OTM is held annually as a focus month that is aimed at showcasing infrastructure projects with major socio-economic spin-offs in the modes of transport such as road, aviation, maritime, rail and public transport. Key projects will include the official opening of road infrastructure developments such as the R71 Moria Project (interchange safety improvement); Umgeni Interchange and the Denneysville Sasolburg Road in the Free State by the South African National Roads Agency Limited, in collaboration with provincial departments of roads and transport.

The OTM will also be used to heighten the 365-Days Road Safety campaign, which is led by the department and implemented together with transport entities with a road safety mandate and private sector and non-profit organizations. The Road Traffic Management Corporation will introduce 24-hour working shifts for traffic officers to curb road carnages. Government has also developed a qualification for traffic officers from National Qualifications Framework (NQF) 4 to NQF 6 in order to further professionalize the traffic fraternity. 

The Road Accident Fund (RAF) will continue to provide post-crash care and related support to road-accident victims and affected families, and also reach out to communities through the RAF-on-the-road campaign. 

4.3. South Africa will for the first time host the South African International Renewable Energy Conference from 4 to 7 October 2015 in Cape Town, under the theme: “Re-energizing Africa”. The conference will profile renewable energy opportunities available in South Africa and Africa to producers of renewable power, as their next investment destination.

South Africa, through its Renewable Energy Independent Power Producers Procurement Programme, is becoming one of the biggest markets for renewable energy. In future biomass, wind power, solar power and hydropower will contribute 11.4 gigawatts of renewable energy to the grid.

The Department of Science and Technology is supporting the country’s energy policies through research and technology development in low and carbon-free technologies that can be commercialized and rolled out, to increase energy security and access to all South Africans. Further efforts to diversify our energy portfolio include the development of hydrogen fuel cells technologies with applications in domestic back-up and primary electricity provision, electric vehicles -especially in the mining and entertainment sector - for mining vehicles ,range extension in golf carts  and  mobile communication base stations.

We are now capable of manufacturing and integrating various components into a whole range of energy generating devices for these applications that are currently undergoing testing. The benefit of our hydrogen and fuel cell technologies Programme is the use of platinum which will also open opportunities into the automotive catalytic converter market and promote beneficiation of one of our most abundant minerals. In this regard, we have established and are strengthening our partnership with the private sector to do final tests and commercialize various components and full energy solutions.

4.4. Government will celebrate Social Development Month in October by highlighting poverty-alleviation programmes and extending its footprint through Project Mikondzo to reach all vulnerable South Africans. Since the inauguration of Project Mikondzo in 2013, government officials have visited more than 900 wards with high levels of poverty and unemployment to better understand the diverse needs of communities.

As part of the October events, the Department of Social Development will also mark the 10th anniversary of the South African Social Security Agency (SASSA), which provides social grants currently benefitting 16.8 million people, and has over the past decade assisted to reduce poverty and improve food security among poor households. The department has also opened the application period for social-work scholarships and interested people are encouraged to apply before 31 October 2015. More information is available on www.dsd.gov.za

4.5. Cabinet salutes all our educators on World Teachers Day on 5 October 2015 and conveys its gratitude to them for their commitment, dedication and patience in preparing the young and the growing minds of our learners for the future.

Cabinet calls on interested young South Africans to apply for the Funza Lushaka Bursary Programme, a multi-year programme to promote teaching as a profession, from 1 October 2015. More information is available on www.education.gov.za. Cabinet calls on all South Africans, especially the youth to explore teaching as a career of choice.

4.6. Cabinet calls on South Africans to celebrate our sports stars by nominating them for the 2015 Sport Awards before the end of September 2015. More information is available on www.srsa.gov.za

4.7. The Department of Sports and Recreation South Africa will from 5 to 10 October 2015 hold Youth Camps in all provinces for 15 to 23-year-olds. Youth camps are part of a broader government programme to develop young people, empower them with the requisite values, skills and knowledge that can assist them to become responsible citizens.

4.8. Cabinet has urged South Africans to support the first annual National Recreation Day, which will take place on 2 October 2015. On 10 December 2014, Cabinet declared that the first Friday of October each year should be National Recreation Day. This day will provide an opportunity to all South Africans to actively participate in recreational activities that will improve their health and well-being. A healthy and active citizenry is a key factor in realizing the NDP objectives.

4.9. Cabinet wishes the Proteas squad well for their cricket tour of India from 29 September to 7 December 2015, and also wishes the Springboks well ahead of their crucial World Cup game today (Saturday). Cabinet encourages South Africans to support our teams as they compete in various competitions.

5. Cabinet’s position on key issues in the environment

5.1. Cabinet welcomes government’s R22-million investment to further develop the facilities at Maropeng to include a 500-seater amphitheatre and renovate the visitors’ centre to cater for the expected influx of new visitors. This follows the historic discovery of Homo Naledi at the Cradle of Humankind Word Heritage Site.

5.2. Cabinet noted recent developments around the Annual National Assessments (ANA) and urges all parties to work towards a solution that prioritises and protects the rights of the learners. The ANA are a critical tool to identify gaps so as to ensure targeted intervention for the development of learners and teachers. While government notes the concerns raised by teachers, it maintains that education should be the main priority.

5.3. Cabinet joins the rest of the country in paying tribute to Blessed Tshimangadzo Samuel Benedict Daswa, a 43-year-old schoolteacher from Tshitanini village in Limpopo, who was killed on 2 February 1990 for his strong religious beliefs. This is also the first time in the history of the Catholic Church of Southern Africa that a South African was recognised as a Blessed Martyr of Christ. Cabinet calls on all South Africans to pay homage to South Africa’s first home-grown martyr by committing ourselves to ensuring that we all live together in peace and harmony, and respect one another’s constitutional and human rights.

5.4. Cabinet congratulates the Black Mamba Anti-Poaching Unit, a South African ranger group consisting of women, which won the Champions of the Earth award, a top UN environmental prize. The Mambas were recognized for the impact they have made in combating poaching and their courageous actions. This impact is evident because since its inception in 2013, the 26-member unit has helped to arrest six poachers, reduced snaring by 76 per cent, and removed over 1 000 snares, and put five poachers’ camps and two bush meat kitchens out of action.

5.5. Cabinet commends the nominees and winners of the 2015 Mbokodo Awards, a partnership between the Department of Arts and Culture and the private sector.

5.6. Cabinet congratulated National Treasury’s head of specialised audit services, Ms Zanele Mxunyelwa, who was named the 2015 Certified Examiner of the Year by the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners. This top award confirms that government has stepped up the fight against fraud and corruption, and those planning corrupt and fraudulent activities have been warned to refrain from doing so.

5.7. Cabinet conveys its condolences to the family and friends of Reggie Vandeyar, a political activist who was at the forefront of many campaigns, including the defiance campaign and spent 10 years on Robben Island. He was a delegate to the Congress of the People that adopted the Freedom Charter and he worked with various communities. He was laid to rest at the Special Provincial Official Funeral on Sunday, 20 September 2015.

5.8. Cabinet conveys its condolences to the family and friends of the late Mr Wandile Dlamini who passed away on 21 September 2015. 

Popularly known as “Quesh”, Mr Dlamini was a political activist and former member of Umkhonto we Sizwe.  Whilst in exile he was based in Lesotho and later in Zambia until the unbanning of the ANC.  At the time of his death he was working as the General Manager in the State Security Agency.

6. Appointments

All appointments are subject to the verification of qualifications and the relevant clearance.

6.1. SASSA:

1. Mr Tsakeriwa Joseph Chauke as the Chief Financial Officer (CFO); and
2. Mr Abraham Sonny-Boy Mahlangu as the Executive Manager: ICT.

6.2. ICT B-BBEE Charter Council:

6.2.1. Telecommunications sub-sector

1. Mr Lucky Mokgabudi Masilela (South African Communications Forum); and
2. Ms Sarah-Jane Capazario (Internet Service Providers’ Association).

6.2.2. Electronic sub-sector

1. Mr Raletlhogonolo Andile Tlhoaele (Communications Cabling Association of Southern Africa); and
2. Mr Mduduzi Odysseus Mkhonza (Black IT Forum).

6.2.3. Information Technology sub-sector

1. Mr Gavin Pieterse (Information Technology Association); and
2. Mr Adrian Schofield (Institute of Information Technology Professionals of South Africa).

6.2.4. Regulator

1. Councilor Katharina Pillay (Independent Communications Authority of South Africa).

6.2.5. Women

1. Ms Nokuzola Nelly Ehrens (South African Communications Forum).

6.2.6. Youth

1. Ms Morwesi Ramonyai (Young Entrepreneurs South Africa).

6.2.7. National Economic Development and Labour Council

1. Mr Thulani Tshefuta.

6.2.8. Trade unions or organised labour federations

1. Mr Richard Charles Poulton (Communication Workers Union); and
2. Mr Tshepang Lesiba (Communication Workers Union).

6.2.9. Broadcasting sub-sector

1. Ms Pheladi Gwangwa (National Association of Broadcasters); and
2. Mr Frank Awuah (South African Broadcasting Corporation).

6.2.10. Government representative

1. Ms Petronella Linders – Deputy Director-General: ICT Policy and Strategy Development (Department of Telecommunications and Postal Services

6.3 Mr Mlamli Booi as the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Sentech.

6.4 Ms Rudzani Cordelia Rasikhinya as the CFO and as an executive member of the State Information Technology Agency Board.

6.5 Ms Bongani Louisa Mathebula as a non-executive member to the Board of the National Metrology Institute of South Africa.

6.6 Mr Pascal Moloi as the CEO of the Housing Development Agency.

6.7 Mr T Takalani as the CEO of Sedibeng Water.

6.8 Prof Edith Vries as the Director-General of the Department of Small Business Development on a three-year contract.

Enquiries:

Ms Phumla Williams
(Acting Cabinet Spokesperson)
Cell: 083 501 0139

Issued by:
Government Communications
26 September 2015




 

 

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