Thursday, October 21, 2010

DA at Work - 21 October 2010

20 October 2010


Welcome to DA@Work, a weekly newsletter keeping you in touch with the hard work being done to create an Open, Opportunity Society for All in South Africa.

In this edition of DA@Work:

Quote of the Week
Top Story
In other news
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Quote of the Week

“The greatest check on corruption is the willingness of voters to hold their representatives to account by voting them out of office. Only when politicians are really frightened of voters who are prepared to use the power of the ballot to change their government, is it really possible to hold corrupt politicians accountable. The more opportunities for voters to do this, the less corruption there will be.”

Helen Zille in her recent SA Today, “The drive to destroy the provinces is purely political””

Top Story

Ministry tensions: DA to call on Minister Blade Nzimande to appear before Parliament

Ian Davidson MP, DA Chief Whip raised concerns over the recent tensions in the Department of Higher Education and Training. Minister Blade Nzimande has been embroiled in another scandal with the Director-General (DG) Mary Metcalfe, allegedly asking her to resign. Davidson said that if the reports were true, then the minister should explain his decision to Parliament. As such, the Democratic Alliance (DA) would be calling on Dr. Nzimande to appear before the portfolio committee on higher education and training.

Davidson said that numerous sources suggested conflict between the minister and the DG, allegedly relating to his expensive overseas trips and expensive stays at luxurious hotels during his tenure in the Cabinet.

He added that the DA would be writing to the chairperson of the portfolio committee on higher education and training requesting that Dr. Nzimande appear before the committee to answer questions based on his department. It is time for the minister to be open and transparent about the affairs of a ministry responsible for overseeing the education and training of our people, said Davidson.

Unfortunately, this is not the first time that the minister had been involved in controversy. During his brief tenure, he had engaged in unethical, self-indulgent and excessive spending, including the purchase of a luxury BMW as his ministerial car and taking up extended stays at high-end hotels, he said.

Davidson stated that the DA was concerned that allegations of the DG’s possible ousting come on the back of numerous resignations, transfers and dismissals of directors-general under the Zuma administration:

• August 2009: Public Enterprises DG Portia Molefe resigned
• April 2010: Presidency Chief Operating Officer Jessie Duarte resigned
• June 2010: Labour DG Jimmy Manyi was suspended
• July 2010: Rural Development and Land Reform DG Thozamile Gwanya resigned
• July 2010: Communications DG Mamoduphi Mohlala dismissed
• September 2010: Presidency DG Vusi Mavimbela transferred

These changes at the highest echelons of the civil service do not bode well for service delivery. The South African people are entitled to some constancy in the departments that serve them. At the very least, the minister either needs to confirm or deny the allegations of discord in his department concluded Davidson.


In other news

NYDA Advisory Boards: DA Youth agrees with Young Communists

Mbali Ntuli, DA Youth Chairperson said in a recent statement that the Democratic Alliance (DA) Youth supported the Young Communist League’s (YCL) call for President Zuma to intervene and depoliticize the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) and make it more representative of youth identification. The NYDA was supposed to be an independent body that promoted the interests of South Africa’s youth instead of place where ANCYL members got rich, said Ntuli.



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