Zuma must go to save South Africa from government’s war with itself
16 October 2016
Our nation’s Constitution, for which so many people fought and died, is yet again under attack by Jacob Zuma and his cronies.
South Africa finds itself in this dangerous space today not just because of the most recent attempts by the President to undermine and manipulate institutions of state.
We are here today because of the years of determined effort by the ANC to put Jacob Zuma, and the majority party, above the Constitution.
The effects are now clear to see. Key institutions of state have been captured, and are sites of battle between warring factions of the ANC. Deputy President Ramaphosa is correct: the government is at war with itself.
Those who resist their incorporation into Zuma Inc now face the force of state institutions loyal to Jacob Zuma.
While nearly 9 million South Africans are without work or hope, while the gap between rich and poor becomes ever wider, while our higher education institutions are literally on fire, governing in the interests of the people becomes a distant concern for the Zuma government, dashing the hopes and ruining the prospects of millions of South Africans to pursue a life they value.
For South Africa to navigate its way out of this crisis, in the face of government’s escalating war with itself, we need the right leadership at the helm.
Jacob Zuma has never provided this much needed leadership, and will not do so in the future. He remains the single biggest impediment to our country’s success.
That is why it is more important than ever before that Jacob Zuma steps down as President of the Republic.
For for South Africa to move forward again, Jacob Zuma must go.
We call on all those who love our country, and our Constitution, to stand-together and echo this plea for Jacob Zuma to resign, or to be recalled by his party.
It is time for those ANC MPs and Cabinet Ministers, who reserve their outrage for selective quotes in Sundaynewspapers, to make their voices heard when it matters most. Join us in calling for Jacob Zuma to go.
DA to table motion in support of National Treasury and its efforts to fight corruption
The main front in Jacob Zuma’s battle for complete executive control is the National Treasury. Without his hands on the purse strings, he is unable to hand out the patronage on the scale that he desires, and push through projects which will be to the benefit of his family, friends and cronies.
Preventing National Treasury from being incorporated into Zuma Inc is therefore a matter of national importance, which should be supported by all those South Africans who want to protect our Constitution and root-out corruption.
As the elected assembly of the people, Parliament has its role to play in this regard. On too many occasions, due to the ANC’s cowardly support for the executive, this institution has found itself on the side of corruption instead of accountability. This must come to an end.
It is for this reason that the DA will, at the earliest opportunity, table a motion in Parliament requesting the House’s support for National Treasury’s efforts to fight corruption and State Capture.
If the ANC Chief Whip is serious about being more than a commentator in the media, he will instruct his caucus to support this motion.
DA will be in Court on 1 November to argue for release of State Capture report
Jacob Zuma’s attempts to once again frustrate the work of the Office of the Public Protector and to do whatever he can to prevent the report on State Capture being made public proves that he has something very serious to hide.
Jacob Zuma, and his proxy, Des Van Rooyen’s interdict to be heard on 1 November 2016 will therefore be a defining moment in protecting our Chapter Nine institutions and ensuring that the first steps are taken to push back the wave of State Capture which the President has facilitated.
Given this importance, the DA has taken the decision to become an intervening party in the matter to be heard before the North Gauteng High Court. We will argue strongly in favour of the release of the report and that it be made public without delay.
The Courts have been clear in both the Motsoeneng and Nkandla matters that a Public Protector’s report can be taken on review if there are concerns. This should be the only recourse available to the President, his Gupta friends, and those Ministers who clearly have a strong allegiance to both.
DA to request assurance that State Capture report will be released by new Public Protector
The DA was extremely concerned with comments made by the new Public Protector, Adv Bosisiviwe Mkhwebane that the State Capture report may not be a top priority for her office.
As the party which requested the investigation, we welcome reports that she has since changed her mind.
To any degree, Adv Thuli Madonsela’s statement that the State Capture report is final and cannot be changed means that the current report must be made public.
We will therefore seek assurances from the new Public Protector that the report will be tabled before Parliament and made public once the court matter has been resolved.
In view of the “bombshell” by Minister Gordhan expressed in Court papers made public today, it is obvious that this report is in the public interest and it must see the light of day so that all those implicated can be held accountable.
Politicisation of National Prosecuting Authority a threat to our democracy
The timing and nature of charges most recently brought against the Minister of Finance, Pravin Gordhan, and the Leader of the Economic Freedom Fights, Julius Malema has left me deeply concerned.
An impartial and independent prosecuting authority is the backbone of a functioning constitutional democracy, where the principle of the rule of law is respected and upheld.
While it may be that both these individuals have a case to answer before our courts, one cannot ignore the suspicious timing of the charges, especially in light of the contemptible delay tactics being used by the NPA to avoid prosecuting Jacob Zuma for the 783 charges of fraud, corruption, money-laundering and racketeering.
Our nation should be worried when a Minister of Finance expresses publically that he has no faith in the National Director of Public Prosecutions, Adv Shaun Abrahams, to give him a fair hearing.
The DA will not sit by while this assault on such a valuable institution of state continues.
My colleague, DA Chief Whip, John Steenhuisen, has requested a debate of public importance on this matter.
I urge the ANC Chief Whip to end his selective-outrage and support our call. It is time for Parliament to call Shaun Abrahams and the NPA to account for their actions.
I have also asked for my office to collate all the criminal charges which we have submitted to the SAPS. We will follow up on all of these charges through written questions in Parliament to again ascertain while the NPA thinks some cases are more important than others.
Furthermore, the DA will renew its efforts to ensure the independence of the NPA by pursuing the Private Members Bill, first drafted by the late Dene Smuts MP, to provide for greater accountability of the NPA, and more Parliamentary oversight over the selection of the National Director of Public Prosecutions.
The NPA, of course, have a golden opportunity to show that they are capable of acting without fear or favour by dropping their costly litigation opposing the re-institution of the 783 corruption charges against Jacob Zuma, and proceed with prosecuting the President – as they have been instructed to do by the Courts.
DA to support multi-party march in Tshwane on 2 November 2016
As a party that supports the rule of law, we trust in the Courts to properly adjudicate what seems to be highly suspicious charges brought against the Minister of Finance, Pravin Gordhan.
These charges, nevertheless, display clearly the war government is waging against itself – making use of institutions of state to settle political scores.
2 November 2016, the day in which the Minister of Finance will appear in the North Gauteng High Court, will therefore be an opportunity for all South Africans to rally against State Capture, Corruption, and the abuse of independent institutions by Jacob Zuma.
The DA has accordingly taken a decision to join other concerned South Africans on the day in Tshwane. We will be present in large numbers to make our voices heard that Jacob Zuma must go, and State Capture must come to an end.
We all need to stand together in this crisis. South Africans must be re-assured that there exists the political determination to protect our country from the internal machinations of the ANC and those bent on destroying key institutions of state to protect Jacob Zuma.
The continued crisis facing Higher Education in South Africa
South Africa’s higher education sector is on the brink of collapse. Should the academic year not be completed, the knock on effect on our economy, important sectors, such as Healthcare, and on graduating matriculants across the country, will be catastrophic.
It is evident, for all to see, that those who continue to advocate for campus-shut downs are not animated by a desire to help poor students. The destruction and violence which we have witnessed in the last few weeks are the acts of thugs and criminals, not of young aspiring leaders.
We again call on all students to demonstrate their support for the re-opening our Universities. They must reject the blatant disregard for our law and Constitution demonstrated by a small violent group by standing together to ensure that campuses are safe so that learning can re-commence.
To this end, the DA has launched a campaign to directly engage with students and young South Africans around our proposals to re-open universities and ensure that no poor student is denied an education because they cannot afford to study. This will involve directly communicating with students using pamphlets, social media and other latest campaign technology.
On campuses across South Africa, DASO have also launched a campaign to identify poor students who qualify for NSFAS but who remain unfunded. The DA is committed to closing down loop-holes and support those students who want to have their voices heard peacefully.
Vice-Chancellors, with the right funding support from government, must now do everything possible to ensure that lost-time is made up. We encourage civil society, the private sector, and parents to assist them in doing so.
We also urge Vice Chancellors to make clear their intention to open tomorrow. Let the failed UCT approach of endless negotiations with a small group of students who simply don’t care about the future of our country be a lesson learnt in this regard.
As the official opposition, the DA will be doing its part in Parliament to ensure that more funding is made available. We have already tabled practical and affordable solutions to the student funding crisis.
The Medium Term Budget Policy Statement is a key opportunity to make more funding available, by cutting waste and unnecessary expenditure by Zuma’s administration.
Following the tabling of the budget, the DA will closely study all line items and will then proceed to make amendments so that more funding is made available.
We were previously able to identify an additional R2.2 billion for higher education, but this was blocked by the ANC caucus.
It is time for the ANC to act in accordance with its new-found (albeit belated) enthusiasm for parliamentary accountability and join us in making amendments to the budget. If they do not, they will yet again be shown to be more concerned with party politics than helping poor students.
Lastly, the DA has also made the decision to peacefully protest outside the National Assembly on the day of the Medium Term Budget Policy Statement. In doing so, we will represent the voices of those students who have been silenced by the violence of a few individuals, but who want their concerns around a lack of government funding heard by the ANC government.
South Africa yet again faces an assault on our Constitution, and the values which it enshrines.
The DA, however, remains confident that the South African people will not stand-back and allow for our hard-won freedoms to be trampled over.
We are a country that has overcome challenges before, and we will do it again.
I invite all South Africans who share our love for our country to join hands with us so that we can, united, stand up to Jacob Zuma’s state capture and corruption and protect our precious Constitutional Democracy.
Statement issued by DA leader, Mmusi Maimane, 16 October 2016