DA condemns the ANC’s parallel process on the Section 25 Amendment Bill 

Please find attached English and Afrikaans soundbites by Dr Annelie Lotriet MP.

In an unprecedented act of parliamentary process manipulation, the ANC has unilaterally decided to introduce a new clause in the Section 25 Amendment Bill that will see the land restitution cut-off date changed from the previous 1913 to January 1800.

This clause was essentially smuggled into the draft Bill by the ANC without the knowledge of other political parties represented in the Committee.

The excuse that this clause was introduced following input from the recently concluded public participation process is insincere and very misleading. One submission, which advocated for changing the cut-off date for land restitution, cannot be taken as a sufficient threshold to introduce this contentious clause.

The Chair of the Section 25 Ad-Hoc committee, Dr Mathole Motshekga, claims that the Management Committee was responsible for requesting an extension to the lifespan of the committee and the drafting of the latest version of the Bill. Even so, any process that sidelines the Committee is patently irregular and at variance with parliamentary rules.

In introducing this clause, the ANC thought it would:

  • extend a political bribe to the EFF in the vain hope that they would bite and lend their support to enable the ANC to obtain the two thirds majority needed to pass the Bill;
  • force Parliament’s hand in extending the committee’s lifespan beyond the 2 weeks that it was granted by the Programming Committee yesterday. If this new clause is not removed, it would require that a new public participation process be initiated.

It is clear that the ANC is now on a desperate salvage operation to try and maintain a legislative process over a Bill that is essentially dead in the water. The truth is, no amount of political somersaults will negate the undeniable fact that the Bill was bound to fail from the start. Gutting the Constitution to appease ANC factions and EFF political hedging on land, was never going to proffer solutions for a sustainable land reform programme.

DA urges President Ramaphosa to follow President Mandela’s example in appointing Chief Justice

Please find attached soundbite by Adv Glynnis Breytenbach MP.

With current Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng’s term ending on 12 October 2021, the DA is calling on President Cyril Ramaphosa to take inspiration from former President Nelson Mandela in his 1996 appointment of Chief Justice Ismail Mahomed when he appoints the new Chief Justice.

While Section 174(3) of the Constitution places the prerogative of appointing a Chief Justice in the hands of the President – after consulting with the Judicial Services Commission (JSC) and leaders of parties represented in the National Assembly (NA) – former President Mandela chose a different, more democratic approach to supplement this process. He chose a process led by a four-person panel from the JSC that called for nominations from the Supreme Court of Appeal, the Judges President of the High Courts, legal organisations, as well as former President Mandela.

President Ramaphosa has already followed similar processes when appointing the National Director of Public Prosecutions, Adv Shamila Batohi, and the Commissioner of SARS, Edward Kieswetter, and the DA believes that this consultative approach would go a long way towards restoring trust in the independence of the judiciary.

We believe that an advisory panel composed of former Constitutional Court judges, leaders of political parties, and legal organisations should call for nominations of candidates who will then be interviewed by the JSC before a shortlist is presented to the President, for him to exercise his discretion.

Despite the gravity of the decision resting on President Ramaphosa, the DA would urge him to appoint the advisory panelists as a matter of urgency as we do not believe it would be in the best interest of the country that the post of Chief Justice should remain unoccupied for any length of time. In recent years, the judiciary has faced a continuous onslaught on its independence from opportunistic individuals and organisations that wished to evade justice. The President must do his part to ensure the stability of the judiciary and allowing transparency in the appointment of the new Chief Justice would go a long way in restoring faith in the justice system.

DA opposes ANC’s application to reopen candidate nomination system 

The DA strongly opposes the ANC’s application to the Electoral Court seeking to compel the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) to reopen its candidate list system. 


The ANC has indicated that it experienced numerous technical problems with the IEC’s registration system which prevented the party from registering some of their candidates in 30 municipalities. This reasoning holds no water, considering that the DA and many other political parties successfully submitted their full candidate lists without reporting any serious technical problems. Political parties knew since 6 July 2021 that the final date for submission would be 23 August 2021.


The IEC cannot bend to the will of the ANC and must therefore oppose this frivolous application. 


Indeed, for the sake of consistency, the IEC should vigorously oppose the ANC’s application — on the basis of past precedent.  It is important to recall that the IEC previously barred candidates from the NFP from contesting the 2016 Local Government Elections after the party failed to pay its registration fees on time. 


The IFP case of 2011, when it did not submit candidates in time for Umzumbe, was taken right up to the Constitutional Court where the IEC’s position was confirmed: non-compliance with the election timetable cannot be condoned in order to ensure free and fair elections.


This principle applies to the ANC just as it applies to every other party, and it would be a very serious violation of this principle if the IEC appears to be bending the rules to suit the ANC.

Luthuli House must be investigated over lack of UIF payments

Please find attached a soundbite by Michael Cardo MP.

The DA has written to the Minister of Employment and Labour, Thulas Nxesi, and the Unemployment Insurance Fund (UIF) Commissioner, Teboho Maruping, asking them to acknowledge whether or not the ANC has been paying over UIF contributions to the state.

This follows a claim by disgruntled staffers at Luthuli House that since 2018 the ANC has been deducting UIF contributions from workers but not paying them over to the government.

In the absence of a satisfactory answer from the Minister or the UIF Commissioner, the DA will lay a charge for the Hawks to investigate further. If no UIF payments have been made, the ANC would be in breach of the law and the Top Six would need to be charged.

Earlier reports suggest that the ANC has not handed over Pay As You Earn (PAYE) deductions to the South African Revenue Service (SARS) either, and that it owes the tax authority over R80 million.

This reveals the depths of the ANC’s incompetence and dysfunctionality. The ruling party shows complete contempt for the institutions of state.

If the ANC can’t administer its own payroll properly, then it is hardly fit to govern, or to provide stewardship over a modern industrial economy.

The DA will pursue the matter through the UIF, SARS and the South African Police Service if necessary. For the fact of the matter is that if the DA does not intervene, people will have to forego their rightful benefits. The ANC is incapable of doing the right thing. That is why even ANC staffers look to the DA to get things done

Extension of Section 25 Ad-Hoc Committee is a desperate Stalingrad stunt by the ANC 

The DA completely rejects the unilateral decision taken by the ANC to submit a request to Parliament calling for an extension of the Section 25 Ad-Hoc Committee’s lifespan. This request was not discussed or accended to by any of the political parties represented in the Committee.

The Committee’s mandate was due to expire on the 30th of August 2021. This morning, Parliament’s programming committee agreed to give the Ad-Hoc committee a 2-week extension.

Vain attempts by the ANC to push for repeated extensions to the Committee’s lifespan under the cloth of parliamentary procedure is just plain abuse of Parliament. The ANC knows that it won’t be able to secure the two thirds majority needed to pass the 18th Constitution Amendment Bill to allow for expropriation of land without compensation. It has now resorted to playing for time in the vain hope that it delay the inevitable.

The truth is, no amount of political somersaults will negate the undeniable fact that the Bill was bound to fail from the start. Gutting the Constitution to appease ANC factions and EFF political hedging on land, was never going to proffer solutions for a sustainable land reform programme.

If anything, the ANC/EFF coalition have wasted time on a process that was never going to address the land question for landless South Africans. For all the years that the committee has spent trying to take away the property rights of South Africans and nationalise all land, focus should rather have been on opening access to state land, improving tenure security and providing support to emerging farmers.

Faced with the reality that the Bill is now dead in the water, the ANC has now resorted to a Stalingrad approach to try and salvage a dud. In today’s session of the Section 25 Ad-Hoc Committee, the DA will remind the ANC that the circus is over and it’s time to stop this merry go round and let the Committee expire.

DA wants to know what’s going on with Manguang’s missing metro police

Please find attached English and Afrikaans soundbites by Cilliers Brink MP.

After nine years, millions of wasted rands, and even the appointment of a metro police chief, the Manguang metro still has no actual metro police service.

The metro council decided to establish a metro police service in 2012 and although the decision was reaffirmed in 2016, it was never implemented.

In 2017 Israel Kgamanyane was appointed as the head of the non-existent metro police service, but still no metro police officers were appointed to perform the basic duties and functions of a metro police service.

Finally, the metro police was meant to come into being on 24 August 2021. But the day came and went without any announcement.

Sadly this is not the worst of the matter. Dirk Kotze, a DA councillor in Manguang, has discovered the following:

  • Manguang is considering making 144 appointments to establish a metro police service;
  • Only 60 of the proposed 144 appointments will consist of ordinary officers. In fact, the metro plans to appoint 2 deputy police commissioners, 8 colonels, 8 lieutenant colonels, 15 superintendents and 38 assistant superintendents; and
  • What is worse, 24 of the 140 candidates recommended for appointment have criminal records – and apparently the municipality want to assist these applicants to “expunge” these records.

Not only was money and time wasted with the establishment of a metro police service, now the municipality wants to appoint people who have engaged in criminal activity.

Councillor Kotze will make every effort to find out exactly what the Manguang mayoral committee unveiled and decided on in this matter.

The DA will also submit parliamentary questions to the Ministers of Police and Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affairs (CoGTA). We want to stop more money from being wasted, and prevent criminals from donning metro police badges.

DA welcomes JSC decision to uphold Hlophe impeachment recommendation

Please find attached soundbite by Adv Glynnis Breytenbach MP.

The DA welcomes the decision by the Judicial Service Commission (JSC) to uphold the recommendation that Western Cape Judge President, John Hlophe, face an impeachment vote. A Judicial Conduct Tribunal found him guilty of attempting to influence Constitutional Court Justices Chris Jafta and Bess Nkabinde in 2008 to find in favour of former President Jacob Zuma in his corruption trial with French arms company Thales. We view the JSC’s decision as a victory for the rule of law and the importance of judicial independence.

Judge President Hlophe has allowed his impartiality – essential to a judge – to be impacted , and his conduct is proof that he is unfit for this position. He has completely decimated the reputation of the Western Cape High Court as an independent entity.

Although it has taken nearly 13 years to get to the point where Hlophe is being held accountable, the DA fully supports his impeachment and will vote in favour of his removal in the National Assembly. We sincerely hope that all other parties will vote to achieve the 2/3 majority needed in terms of Section 177(1)(b) of the Constitution to remove Hlophe. In doing so, it will demonstrate that Parliament is serious about their work to protect the judiciary.

It is highly desirable that the JSC decides that Judge Hlophe be suspended pending the finalisation of the impeachment procedure, in order to try and preserve a modicum of independence for the Western Cape Bench. This is required in order for President Cyril Ramaphosa to suspend him.

Hlophe’s suspension is of paramount importance, in order to protect the independence and status of the judiciary.

With the judiciary under more scrutiny than ever before, it cannot afford to have a Judge President that has so flagrantly disregarded its independence and the rule of law.

Payment of outstanding R180 million on Cuban drugs should be cancelled 

While the Democratic Alliance (DA) welcomes the ‘heads will roll’ stance taken by the new Minister of Defence and Military Veterans, Ms Thandi Modise, on the R215 million Covid-19 drug Heberon from Cuba, we call on the Minister  to initiate the termination clause on the contract and cancel the payment of the outstanding R180 million.

The contract cannot continue to subsist and had been rendered invalid due glaring violations by the Department, which include:

  • Failure to conduct due diligence, in consultation with the South African Health Products Regulatory Authority (SAHPRA), on the efficacy of the Hebron resulting in its rejection;
  • Violation of South Africa’s public procurement laws and import regulations as the Department is yet to provide evidence of whether it sought an exemption from Treasury and the Department of “Trade & Indusrty”  for exclusive procurement of the drug.

In calling for the cancellation of the outstanding amount on the contract, the DA is responding to the revelation made yesterday before the Portfolio Committee on Defence by the Secretary of Defence, Gladys Kudjoe, that the Cubans were now putting pressure on the South African government asking for the payment of the outstanding R180 million.

The claim that failure to pay the outstanding amount will negatively affect the bilateral relations between Cuba and South Africa, is completely unfounded. The Department of Defence and Cuba should not have entered into a pharmaceutical drug supply agreement without a certificate of approval from SAHPRA.

Worse still, there is no evidence to show that the Cuban Covid-19 Hebron drug has World Health Organisation Certification on Pharmaceutical Products Quality.

Yesterday’s committee meeting was convened to receive the Ministerial Task Team report on the circumstances which led to the illegal procurement of this Cuban drug. Department of Defence Officials were not only unprepared but were also not forthcoming on key information concerning this pharmaceutical drug deal.

Heads must not only roll for those who were involved in this shocking abuse of public resources but they must also be held accountable. Soon after the tabling of the Ministerial report in three weeks, as promised by the Minister, the DA will be laying criminal charges against all those implicated.

Minister Modise’s commitment to transparency on this Cuban drug issue will only work if she stops the payment of the R180 million that is being demanded by the Cubans and holding all the implicated officials accountable for their actions.

Nelson Mandela Bay’s 5-year roller coaster ride – a cautionary tale

No metric says more about the state of our nation than the unemployment rate, which has hit an all-time high of 44.4% of South Africa’s labour force including those who’ve given up looking for work.

For the youngest age group, 15-24, that number is 74.8%. These figures are for the second quarter of 2021, so don’t include the impact of the July insurrection, meaning we can expect things to get even worse.

These numbers are devastating and damning. Unemployment is the main driver of poverty and inequality in SA. As a nation, we are failing the poorest and most vulnerable, because we are failing to build an inclusive economy.

We can and must consider how to strengthen the social safety net for those locked out of the economy. But a job is the best guarantee of social protection, so job-creating economic growth must be our top priority.

Over 60% of South Africans are urbanized and if our economy is to grow in a way that creates mass employment, this can only happen in our cities. We need better-run cities, that attract investment for being safe, clean and functional. The upcoming local government election is the best and most immediate way for voters to make this happen.

On Monday I announced the DA’s mayoral candidates for Cape Town, Tshwane, Johannesburg, Ekurhuleni and Nelson Mandela Bay. Each of these candidates was chosen on merit for their ability and will to deliver tangible results.

The story of Nelson Mandela Bay Metro over the past five years shows that achieving the best possible outcome for these cities in the next five years requires an outright DA majority. A DA-led coalition is very much second prize, because it comes with the risk that the government could collapse at any time.

The DA is the biggest political party in NMB, but with 57 seats out of 120 in council, it is 4 seats short of a full majority. Those four seats have cost residents dearly in terms of interrupted progress on service delivery and job creation.

When the DA-led coalition took over the running of NMB in August 2016, they inherited a truly broken city, destroyed by state capture and corruption as set out in Crispin Olver’s book How to Steal a City.

Over the next two years till August 2018 when the coalition lost its majority, they racked up some incredible delivery successes, creating attractive conditions for investment and job creation.

Finances: They turned an inherited R2 billion of debt into a R650 million surplus, cancelling R615 million worth of corrupt contracts, receiving a AAA credit rating, and taking NMB from the second least trusted to the second most trusted metro in SA (after Cape Town). They achieved this while still ensuring the lowest basket of tariff increases in 20 years and the lowest across all metros.

Safety: Unbelievably when they took over there was no metro police force at all. They established a metro police force with 135 fully trained officers who attended to over 25 000 crime fighting interactions. They installed shot-spotter technology in the areas most prone to gang violence, reducing gunshots in some areas by 90%.

Transport: They resurfaced over 55 000 square metres of road, put Integrated Public Transport System buses on the road for the first time, and completed the Clearly Park Bus Depot.

Sanitation: They reduced the number of bucket toilets by 60%, from around 16 000 to around 6 000.

Infrastructure: They achieved the best Urban Settlements Development Grant spending performance in the country and were therefore awarded an extra R178 million.

Jobs: As a result of the above-mentioned successes, they attracted millions in private investment and were also able to triple the annual number of EPWP jobs.

But after 24 months of tangible growth and delivery under this jobs-friendly administration, the ANC-EFF coalition of corruption ousted the DA-led coalition in a council coup. The city then fell back to economic-destruction-mode during the 28 months from August 2018 to December 2020 that the ANC-EFF coalition ran the council.

When the DA-run coalition under DA mayor Nqaba Banga returned to government in December 2020, they set about picking up the pieces once again. In just the last 8 months they have ramped up delivery considerably. Some examples:

Finance: Capital budget expenditure is forecast at 82% for the financial year, up from a dismal 16% by December 2020 (should have been 40-50% by then). And the average turnaround time to pay creditors has been reduced from 64 days to 43 days.

Safety: 307 previously unlicensed and unserviced metro police vehicles were returned to the city’s roads by March. The shot-spotter system was reactivated and has led to emergency response deployment at 244 shootings this year.

Housing: Grant allocations have been reinstated for housing developments, and 6200 title deeds are being processed.

Transport: The backlog of 1100 municipal vehicles with expired license disks has been reduced to zero.

Governance: Mayco meetings have been live-streamed since February to promote transparency. Council adopted an Anti-fraud and Anti-corruption Strategy in March which have led to arrests for corruption.

Sanitation: the average number of leaks repaired per week has tripled from Jan from 300 then to 900 now and average number of sewerage complaints resolved has doubled from 230 then to 490 now.

They are starting to build momentum again towards delivering a city that attracts job-creating investment. But sadly NMB is nowhere near where it would have been had they run council uninterrupted for five full years.

The other challenge with coalition government is that progress tends to be slower the more hands on the steering wheel. This is why a full majority will make for the best possible outcomes. And why the DA will only go into coalition with parties that share our core values which are a commitment to the rule of law, nonracialism, a social market economy, and a capable state that delivers to all.

NMB’s experience these past five years is a cautionary tale to voters hoping to turn the tide on South Africa’s jobs bloodbath. In the upcoming local government elections, a vote for the DA will be a vote for jobs.

DA urges MPs to choose SMMEs over 5-star hotels 

Today, the Portfolio Committee on Small Business Development met to be briefed by the Department of Small Business Development on the recent unrest and violent looting in Kwa-Zulu Natal and Gauteng – which impacted grossly on small enterprises and informal traders – and the plans that are in place to assist affected Small, Medium and Micro-Enterprises.

During the meeting, I urged members of the Committee to refrain from staying in fancy, established hotels when travelling across South Africa, and instead opt to stay in accommodation venues that qualify as SMMEs.

The South African government has grossly neglected SMMEs to the detriment of job-rich economic growth. It is the responsibility of Members of Parliament as duly elected representatives of the people of South Africa to lead by example and support SMMEs, starting with those in the tourism sector which have been decimated by the ill-considered and irrational lockdowns of the ANC government.

Although the DA only urged members of the Portfolio Committee on Small Business Development to support SMMEs, we call on the Minister of Public Service and Administration to urge all public representatives across all spheres of government, regardless of party affiliation and political ideology, to only make use of affordable SMME accommodation venues where reasonably possible to do so.

This should, of course, not deflect from the moral duty on Members of Parliament to band together to pass legislation that reduces the red tape and systemic barriers to growth imposed on SMMEs by the ANC. Showing first-hand support to struggling SMMEs is merely a small step towards reaching the broader goal of creating an economic environment where SMMEs can thrive and achieve their full potential.

The DA will also submit a Parliamentary Question to the Minister to ascertain the amount of taxpayer funds that public representatives have spent on travel-related expenses, and what portion of these expended funds went into the wallets of SMMEs.