The 3268 public servants who stole social grants must be dismissed and criminally charged

Please find an attached soundbite by Dr Mimmy Gondwe MP 

The DA will play an active role in ensuring the dismissal and laying of criminal charges against the 3268 public servants who were found to have fraudulently received and benefited from social grants that they were not entitled to receive.

This follows the revelation made by the Minister of Social Development, Lindiwe Zulu (Minister Zulu), in response to a DA Parliamentary question that 3268 public servants fraudulently received and benefitted from a social grant they were not entitled to receive. This came to light following a verification process conducted on only 66 480 social grants out of the 165 297 social grants that were found to have been received by public servants.

To this end, the DA submitted written Parliamentary questions to Minister Zulu and the Acting Minister of Public Service and Administration, Thulas Nxesi, requesting, amongst other things, that they furnish the DA with the names and other details of the 3268 public servants who were found to have received and benefitted from social grants they were not entitled to receive. As soon as the DA is furnished with these details, we will proceed to lay corruption and criminal charges against each of the implicated public servants.

While Minister Zulu admitted in her response that R12,6 million had been recovered from the implicated 3268 public servants after they concluded acknowledgements of debt with SASSA, including the fact that they would face disciplinary action, she makes no mention of whether the implicated 3268 public servants would be subsequently dismissed and face criminal action.

In fact, it is not clear from Minister Zulu’s response whether the said disciplinary processes against the implicated public servants have commenced. Even if this were the case, the DA remains highly sceptical that such disciplinary cases will be finalised on time considering the existing backlog of disciplinary cases in the public service.

Were it not for the unrelenting efforts of the DA which exposed this scandal, it remains unclear if the government would even have picked up on this fraud or theft. The DA’s timely intervention saw the suspension of 165 297 grant payments in September last year, the commencement of a review or verification process to determine eligibility and the recovery millions back from implicated public servants.

Even though the DA welcomes the recovery of these millions, it takes the view that further action is required to ensure that the implicated public servants are criminally charged and permanently removed from the public service. Failure to enforce consequence management on this glaring abuse of taxpayer money, will only serve to entrench and perpetuate a culture of corruption in the public service.

Earth day 2022: DA governments continue to invest in environmental resources to combat the effects of climate change

Please find attached soundbite by Dave Bryant MP 

Last week 22 April 2022 the global community was observing Earth Day, an annual event to demonstrate support for environmental protection.

The theme of Earth Day 2022 is “Invest in Our Planet.” Earth Day however, comes at a very difficult time for South Africa, particularly, KwaZulu-Natal in light of the tragic inclement weather events that have unfolded in parts of that province.

The DA has been warning for many years that if governments choose to ignore the potential impacts of climate change and do not act accordingly, there will be devastating consequences. What happened in KZN demonstrates in graphic detail that climate change is not something that will affect future generations alone. It is something that is happening right now.

All spheres of government must take urgent steps to mitigate and adapt to the changing natural environment. As more information emerges, it is clear that the ANC government was repeatedly warned about the dangers of flooding in KZN but did not act accordingly to address the identified areas of vulnerability. Whilst the scale of the heavy rains would have undoubtedly provided significant challenges to any part of the country, it is clear that the impact could have been minimised if more stringent contingency plans had been put in place.  The province’s aging infrastructure including drainage and storm water systems, has been severely neglected by the local ANC government over many years.

In contrast to the static response of ANC administrations, DA-led governments across the country are working hard to provide ongoing maintenance and are investing in our municipal infrastructure and environmental resources. This ensures that DA-led governments can protect residents from many of the most severe impacts of climate change and continue to deliver services to all, especially those living in our most vulnerable communities.

Investing in our planet is something that the DA continues to do where we govern. We must remember that our environment and the economy are intrinsically linked and both are essential to the quality of people’s lives.

DA exposes how ANC Poverty Cabinet blew R1.4 billion on parties, dinners and hotels during lockdown

Please find an attached soundbite by Dr Leon Schreiber MP

Amid reports of children dying from starvation in the Eastern Cape, and with large parts of KwaZulu-Natal without food or water following the failure by the ANC to put adequate disaster relief plans in place, the DA today reveals that 18 ANC Ministers, Deputy Ministers and their departments spent over R1.4 billion on catering, entertainment and accommodation since President Cyril Ramaphosa’s government took office on 19 May 2019.

While millions of South Africans go to bed hungry, ANC cadres kept on partying on taxpayer money all throughout lockdown.

New information obtained by the DA through a series of parliamentary questions reveals that during the past three years – which ordinary citizens mostly spent under lockdown – the ANC national government spent at least R1.2 billion in public money on accommodation, another R157 million on catering, as well as R12 million on entertainment for Ministers, Deputy Ministers and other cadres employed by national government departments.

To put the total amount wasted on parties, dinners and hotels – over R1.4 billion – into perspective: this amount would have been enough to provide school meals to over 250 000 needy children for the entire duration of their 12-year school career.

The biggest spenders

The DA’s questions sought to establish how much each Minister, Deputy Minister and Department had spent on accommodation, catering and entertainment during the last three years of unprecedented hardship for most South Africans. The results revealed that the following ministers and departments lived it up the most during lockdown:

  1. Ronald Lamola’s department of justice and correctional services

Amount spent on catering, entertainment and accommodation: R293 million

This department – which has overseen the collapse of the National Prosecuting Authority and was exposed as the posterchild for BOSASA corruption by the State Capture Commission – accounts for nearly a quarter of all taxpayer money wasted on luxuries over the past three years. The department spent an eye-watering R285 million on accommodation during a period when most South Africans were locked down and not allowed to travel.

  1. Lindiwe Sisulu’s former departments of human settlements, water and sanitation

Amount spent on catering, entertainment and accommodation: R252 million

As we’ve come to expect, one of the biggest spenders of all was South Africa’s own Marie Antoinette, Minister Lindiwe Sisulu. Over the past three years, the departments of human settlements and water and sanitation – which she oversaw for most of that period – blew a combined R252 million. This included over R200 million for accommodation and over R50 million for catering.

  1. Angie Motshekga’s department of basic education

Amount spent on catering, entertainment and accommodation: R149 million

In third place is the basic education department, which did not limit itself to South African destinations in spending nearly R120 million on accommodation. Minister Angie Motshekga, her deputy and officials altogether spent an additional R6 million on foreign accommodation.

  1. Aaron Motsoaledi’s department of home affairs

Amount spent on catering, entertainment and accommodation: R149 million

With South Africa’s home affairs and immigration systems having effectively ground to a complete halt during lockdown, Motsoaledi and his department spent the past three years racking up the third highest bill for catering, entertainment and accommodation. Instead of spending these scarce resources on reducing the never-ending queues at Home Affairs and speedily processing immigration applications to reduce the scope for populists like Herman Mashaba to fan the flames of xenophobia, Motsoaledi and his fellow cadres in the department instead sipped drinks at hotels on taxpayer dime.

  1. Barbara Creecy’s department of forestry, fisheries and the environment

Amount spent on catering, entertainment and accommodation: R137 million

In fourth place is the department that has failed to do its job by allocating fishing rights permits to many traditional fishing communities. While many fishers struggle to put food on the table for their families due to Creecy’s department’s negligence and incompetence, ANC cadres spent over R11 million on catering and R126 million on accommodation.

  1. Naledi Pandor’s department of international relations and cooperation

Amount spent on catering, entertainment and accommodation: R127 million

Next comes Naledi Pandor’s department, which not only failed morally when it disgracefully sided with Vladimir Putin’s regime, but also directly imperilled South Africa’s economic relationship with our biggest trading partners in Europe and the United States by refusing to condemn Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. But Pandor and her fellow cadres are apparently blissfully unaware of the rapidly declining state of the economy, as they spent nearly R10 million on entertainment, R7 million for catering and R110 million for accommodation – most likely including parties celebrating the Russian army.

  1. Blade Nzimande’s department of higher education, science and innovation

Amount spent on catering, entertainment and accommodation: R74 million

When Nzimande and his departmental cadres aren’t busy collapsing NSFAS and trying to classify Afrikaans as well as Khoi and San languages as “foreign,” they can be found lazing about the hotel pool to the tune of R54 million. Destroying our higher education system is apparently also hungry work, as Nzimande and his department spent a combined R17 million on catering.

  1. Zweli Mkhize’s health department

Amount spent on catering, entertainment and accommodation: R67 million

In addition to the role he played in the corrupt Digital Vibes contract, disgraced former health minister Zweli Mkhize – who was in charge of the health department during most of the lockdown – also oversaw wastage of R59 million on accommodation and over R8 million on catering while other South Africans were locked down.

  1. Gwede Mantashe’s department of mineral resources and energy

Amount spent on catering, entertainment and accommodation: R55 million

While continuing to subject South Africans to worsening bouts of electricity blackouts through his refusal to allow the rapid procurement of additional generation capacity, Gwede Mantashe and his fellow cadres could probably rely on generators during their numerous stays at hotels during the lockdown years – which cost taxpayers over R53 million.

Rounding out this dishonourable list is Fikile Mbalula’s transport department (R34 million), Ayanda Dlodlo’s public service and administration department (R26 million), Patrica de Lille’s public works and infrastructure department (R22 million), and Stella Ndabeni-Abraham’s small business department (R12 million).

Department Catering Entertainment Accommodation TOTAL
Basic Education R29 794 610,20 R196 667,22 R119 866 182,00 R149 857 459,42
Finance R1 901 521,93 R85 174,55 R9 757 900,19 R11 744 596,67
Forestry, Fisheries and the Environment R11 139 328,75 R27 117,95 R126 661 271,12 R137 827 717,82
International Relations and Cooperation R7 686 544,39 R9 608 620,06 R110 296 510,47 R127 591 674,92
Human Settlements R47 306 107,81 R166 708,04 R33 931 193,12 R81 404 008,97
Justice and Correctional Services R8 190 700,11 R9 731,70 R285 257 912,71 R293 458 344,52
Mineral Resources and Energy R1 796 721,43 R888,90 R53 463 221,09 R55 260 831,42
Public Service and Administration R4 788 000,00 R4 000,00 R21 274 000,00 R26 066 000,00
Trade, Industry and Competition R76 162,00 R10 556,00 R0,00 R86 718,00
Transport R5 391 597,00 R426 872,00 R28 503 395,00 R34 321 864,00
Public Enterprises R238 155,20 R949,00 R4 895 479,83 R5 134 584,03
Home Affairs R3 131 959,00 R335 889,00 R145 630 915,00 R149 098 763,00
Water and Sanitation R4 491 000,00 R470 000,00 R166 484 000,00 R171 445 000,00
Small Business Development R1 103 063,54 R1 339,60 R11 224 491,03 R12 328 894,17
Higher Education, Science and Innovation R17 242 779,46 R284 868,22 R57 175 314,77 R74 702 962,45
Health R8 075 000,00 R8 000,00 R59 289 000,00 R67 372 000,00
Public Works and Infrastructure R5 070 900,89 R224 117,00 R16 319 208,10 R21 614 225,99
Women, Youth and People with Disabilities R78 629,45 R0,00 R1 333 613,15 R1 412 242,60
TOTAL R157 502 781,16 R11 861 499,24 R1 251 363 607,58 R1 420 727 887,98
Sports, Arts and Culture Refused to answer

Western Cape Strengthened Mathematics Strategy launch

Good morning

  • Acting SG, the DDG: Institution Development and Coordination, Archie Lewis,
  • DDG: Curriculum and Assessment, Haroon Mohammed, and our WCED officials,
  • Guest speakers and academics,
  • Principals and teachers,
  • And all invited guests,

Today marks a real turning point for our province as we unveil the Western Cape Strengthened Mathematics Strategy for the next five years.

We have been concerned about our province’s performance in Mathematics for some time. While we have had, and continue to have, the highest matric pass rate for Maths in the country, there has been a worrying trend in Maths participation.

We have also seen a gradual improvement in systemic test results, until the pandemic came along and reversed a lot of those gains – especially in the early grades. So the Department had to take these learning losses into account when developing the strategy too. (I don’t need to remind everyone how important these tests are in telling us whether we are making progress with our interventions. It really is a pity that other provinces don’t have access to the same kind of data.)

I won’t unpack the detail of the strategy as you have heard from many capable officials doing so, but I hope that you have found these two days to be a celebration of Mathematics teaching, and a source of encouragement for the task ahead.

Our Maths teachers have already done incredible work to get our children interested and improving in Maths – and I am glad that the new strategy has a strong human resources component to it. You are our most valuable resource in this endeavour and you can really feel a love for the subject when we engage with these teachers.

But…are we are adults and parents unintentionally undermining their work?

31% of 15-16 year olds in a multi-country study by the Programme for International Student Assessment said that they were nervous of doing Maths problems. 33% said they would get tense doing their Maths homework, and 60% worried that Maths classes would be difficult. Unfortunately, studies also show that girls are more likely to experience this anxiety than boys are.

This anxiety is developed from an early age, and our children look to us as adults and especially as parents for guidance. In fact, studies have shown that teachers’ and parents’ attitudes toward their students’ and children’s ability in Maths are key determinants in the development of “Maths anxiety” in learners.

We need to think about how we speak about Maths as adults. (I’m excluding our Maths teachers here of course, because we know you all have a special love for numbers that you try to instil amongst your learners!)

Self-fulfilling prophecies

We often hear someone say “I wasn’t good at Maths” or “I didn’t enjoy Maths at school”. I’ve been guilty of saying this as recently as this week.

Neil deGrasse Tyson, the American astrophysicist and author, pointed out something very important, saying: “Somehow, it’s okay for people to chuckle about not being good at math. Yet, if I said ‘I never learned to read,’ they’d say I was an illiterate dolt.”

We need Maths in our everyday lives, yet are comfortable proclaiming that we are not good at it, creating two false impressions.

Firstly, it creates an impression that you either have an innate genetic ability for Maths, or you don’t, and that there is no changing this. Certainly, not everyone will become a renowned mathematician. But when it comes to high school Maths, pretty much anyone can manage through hard work, preparation, and self-confidence.

A group of psychologists undertook a study with junior high school students in the United States to determine whether a student’s beliefs about mathematical ability changed their outcomes on tests. They presented two ideas to the learners: that you have a certain amount of intelligence which you can’t change, or that you can significantly change how intelligent you are.

The learners who agreed that they were able to change how intelligent they were achieved higher scores in Maths than those who believed you couldn’t change your level of intelligence. The psychologists then worked with some of the learners in the latter group to convince them that they could develop their intelligence through hard work and that the brain will make new learning connections. They received a startling result: as the learners’ beliefs changed, they worked harder, and their scores increased!

This is not one lone study – many others have come to the same conclusion about how our self-beliefs affect our ability to achieve. So when we say things like “I’m not a Maths person” to our kids, we may well be creating a self-fulfilling prophecy about their mathematical abilities, without even realising that we are doing it! Why on earth would we hamper our child’s enjoyment of Maths – and their future career prospects – by suggesting that you are either good at it or not? We should rather be reminding them daily that anyone can improve if they put in the hours.

The same goes for those who urge children to switch from Maths to Maths Literacy because it will be easier for them. I have previously raised my concerns about this, particularly as a result of the pressure from ‘league tables’ based solely on the matric pass rate. I will happily see a school encouraging more learners to take Maths and have those learners getting 60% for it, than have them getting 80% for Maths Literacy. We must emphasise quality over quantity.

Maths as a skill

The second problem with these phrases is that the past tense creates the impression that Maths was just something you did at school, didn’t enjoy, and now you don’t have to do anymore. Obviously, nothing could be further from the truth: not only does Maths have a functional use (from shopping to working out your taxes), but it also develops the problem-solving techniques and abilities that you apply to all aspects of your life and career daily – as the programme of this conference illustrates.

We are all still doing Maths, every day, all the time. And yet, our own anxiety about Maths persists into adulthood.

A lot of the difficulty has to do with how those of us who – like me – are not education experts see Mathematics at school: as a subject, instead of a skill.  Shakuntala Devi – who was popularly known as “The Human Computer” for her mental calculations – asked: “Why do children dread mathematics? Because of the wrong approach. Because it is looked at as a subject.”

It is clear from the speakers at this conference that Maths has a place across all fields, from archaeology to art, and that the skills it teaches us are applied across all subjects – in just the same way that reading applies. We already have a Reading Strategy and Team READ, so adding Team Maths is the logical next step!

As you will no doubt be aware by now, I resigned as Minister of Education this week, to pursue new opportunities. But I can promise that I will be watching with great interest to see how the implementation of this strategy will affect our learners’ performance over time. I wish you all the very best in this endeavour, and have no doubt that you will continue to pour your expertise and dedication into our children’s hearts and minds so that they, too, can appreciate Maths in the way it should be appreciated!

ANC is to blame for Eskom mess, but SCOPA chair shoots the ‘messenger’ for pointing it out

Please find an attached soundbite by Benedicta van Minnen MP 

Eskom’s board and CEO, André de Ruyter, acknowledge that the Eskom’s problems stem from a culture of impunity and ineptness by their shareholder, the ANC government, as well as an ecosystem of entrenched corruption, a skill shortage due to an ongoing skills flight abroad, a lack of time and money caused by bad planning and delays, poor timing, and a culture of impunity and ineptness by Eskom’s shareholder, the ANC government.

The ANC’s corruption and incompetence are totally to blame for the current crisis at Eskom, and in the country, and everyone knows who the elephant in the room is.

Busisiwe Mavuso, an Eskom board member and CEO of Business Leadership South Africa (BLSA) echoed this sentiment. She came clean and honestly called out the facts as they are after months of baiting by ANC members of Scopa, pointing out that this situation was created by the ANC, and that the false outrage by some members of Scopa was almost comic in its pantomime outrage.

The DA believes Mavuso was accurate in pointing out that the crisis at Eskom was the “ANC’s mess” and was caused by ANC corruption and ineptitude, and that she should be praised for telling it like it is to the very committee tasked with investigating what is wrong with the entity.

However, instead of being thanked for her honesty, she was asked to leave the meeting by the Chair – which begs the question of his role – a member of the IFP why was he covering up for the ANC and not allowing the truth to come out? And we know this is true as he subsequently castigated the journalists in the room who put the facts out into the public domain. What is he covering up?

For once the truth was being told to Parliamentarians and the ANC and IFP did not like it. Perhaps it is time to demand that Scopa be chaired by a real member of the Opposition who actually can, and does, hold the government to account.

It is thus beholden to the DA to ensure the facts get out there, that the elephant be named, and that we continue to expose the real reasons for Eskom failure.

Delayed SRD grant payments a slap in the face for desperate recipients.

Please find an attached soundbite by Bridget Masango MP 

The DA has received numerous messages from distressed Social Relief of Distress grants recipients who have been let down by SASSA after the agency’s latest delay in disbursing payments.

The DA condemns this delayed payment of SRD grants, it is totally unacceptable for millions of desperate beneficiaries rely on this grant to be left hanging when these funds are their only source of income. We have even received desperate phone calls from recipients saying that this grant is usually paid by the 16th of the month, but they haven’t received anything as the month draws to a close.

According to information obtained by the DA, SASSA is still waiting for approvals to put President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement into action. This is totally unacceptable and indicates major government administrative failings.

When the President announced the extension of the SRD, millions of unemployed and disadvantaged South Africans believed that they would be able to put food on the table, and these delays are a slap in the face.

The DA calls on Lindiwe Zulu, Minister of Social Development, to honour the President’s announcement by removing any and all hurdles to avert the crisis as a matter of urgency.

Patricia de Lille is now directly implicated in the Beitbridge border fence – she must resign

Please find an attached soundbite by Samantha Graham-Maré MP

It comes as no surprise that Minister Patricia De Lille has been directly implicated by the companies alleged to have improperly benefited from the construction of the infamous Beit Bridge border fence.

As we have stated from the beginning of this debacle, the entire process emanated from the Ministerial Directive in the name of Minister De Lille, dated 16 March 2020.  In the Directive, the Minister stipulates as to who the Project Team is, when they will meet with the appointed contractor (who had clearly been defined at this stage already), as well as instructions to the CFO to issue an emergency variation order for procurement.  The Minister further instructed the CFO to put emergency payment mechanisms in place to ensure weekly payment of the contractor.  Every single one of these instructions is direct ministerial interference in procurement and extremely irregular.

Documents in my possession, provided by a whistleblower within the DPWI, provide detailed timelines of the meetings and interventions undertaken by members of the Minister’s staff including Melissa Whitehead (Special Advisor), Mr Mcendisi Mtshali (Technical Advisor/Senior Secretary) and Nadine Fourie (Special Advisor – Legal).  These include site visits prior to the issuing of the Directive, as well as their attendance in meetings to discuss procurement, deviations and variation orders.  Once again, this indicates ministerial involvement that goes far beyond the role of the Executive in their Department.

It remains of great concern that the only person not implicated in any of these shenanigans is Minister Patricia De Lille.  We have requested that President Ramaphosa investigate her role in the Beit Bridge Border Fence fiasco, but these calls have gone unheard.

Perhaps it is time that Minister de Lille comes clean and admits to her integral role in the whole saga.  For how long can she continue to blame everyone else?  Minister De Lille – you started the process, you issued the directive, you signed off on the procurement and then you threw everyone under the bus!  It starts and stops with you!

DA welcomes Premier Alan Winde’s new cabinet

Please find an attached soundbite by Jaco Londt

The Democratic Alliance welcomes Premier Alan Winde’s announcement today on the changes within the Western Cape cabinet.

The DA-run Western Cape has a stellar track record of being the best-run province in the country and we are confident that the new cabinet will continue to govern the province with distinction and will work hard to deliver quality services to all residents.

Premier Winde has announced the following:

  • Tertuis Simmers is appointed Provincial Minister of Infrastructure
  • Daylin Mitchell is appointed Provincial Minister of Mobility
  • David Maynier will be appointed Provincial Minister of Education from 15 May
  • Mireille Wenger will be appointed Provincial Minister of Finance and Economic Opportunities from 15 May
  • Reagan Allen is appointed Provincial Minister of Community Safety and Police Oversight

We wish the Premier and his new team well for the work that lies ahead.

Parliament refuses to conduct oversight over R1 billion sent to KZN for housing 

As with the multi-billion-rand Covid-19 relief package, Parliament has yet again refused calls by the DA to conduct oversight of disaster relief funding allocated to the KwaZulu-Natal flood disaster.

Whilst many other Parliamentary Committees are in session, or on the ground in KwaZulu-Natal, the Portfolio Committee for Human Settlements is yet again missing in action. This is despite the 8000 homes that were damaged, and the 4000 homes that were destroyed in the past week.

On 14 April 2022, the Democratic Alliance (DA) Shadow Minister of Human Settlements wrote to the Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee, Hon. Rosina Semenya requesting that the Committee urgently convene to receive a briefing on budget re-appropriations and disaster relief plans currently being put in place by the National Department of Human Settlements.

The Chairperson, Hon. Semenya has now responded to the DA, refusing to convene such a meeting of the Committee, noting that this will only happen once work by the Ministry is concluded in the Province. This, despite a public announcement by the National Minister of Human Settlements, Hon. Mmamoloko Kubayi, that more than R1 billion will be re-appropriated from the Department of Human Settlements and its Entities for immediate relief efforts.

The ANC, it seems, would sooner give budget re-appropriation information to the media than to those charged with holding their kleptocratic government accountable in Parliament.

As the members of the Portfolio Committee, we have a constitutional obligation to hold the Executive and government Departments to account. This is especially critical in light of the lessons Parliament has already learnt in not having conducted proper oversight of the R500 billion Covid-19 relief package that was subsequently subject to wide scale looting, fraud and mismanagement.

By refusing to convene a briefing or oversight hearing, the Chairperson – as with the Covid pandemic – is yet again preventing Members of Parliament from exercising their critical role in ensuring fiscal accountability and good governance. Had this same Chairperson acceded to the DA’s requests for similar oversight in the early stages of the lockdown, we would have likely been able to avoid the hundreds of millions of Rands that were subsequently stolen and lost to fruitless and wasteful expenditure. Had Parliamentarians been allowed proper oversight, issues such as the Talana tin-shack scandal, and the Auditor General’s scathing findings on the failures of the Human Settlements Command Council could have been averted.

In following the same playbook, it will be little wonder if a similar fate befalls the latest R1 billion appropriation from this crucial front line Department.

The DA will now write to the Chair of Chairs, requesting that the Committee Chairperson be immediately ordered to convene an oversight briefing, failing which, the DA will consider our legal options.

Last chance to reject the Draft Health Regulations

Public comment for the consequential Draft Health Regulations will close this Sunday. The DA urges South Africans to make their submissions. We remind South Africans of the concerning proposed amendments, which will seek to impose the following:

  • Forced quarantine, without the option of refusal, in the event of a positive Covid-19 case;
  • Forced testing and taking of bodily samples, without the option of refusal, in the event of a positive Covid-19 case, or worse, upon the mere suspicion of a positive test;
  • Forced treatment or providing of prophylaxis, without the option of refusal, in the event of a positive Covid-19 test. Currently, the only lawful prophylaxis for Covid-19 are the various vaccines as approved by the South African Health Products Regulatory Agency (SAHPRA); and
  • The ability to enforce trivial limitations on gatherings and funerals without the need for scientific based evidence or input, which will continue to destroy small businesses and the entertainment and restaurant industry.

Earlier during the public participation process, it was reported that public submissions were being deleted without being read. The DA wrote a letter and informed the department highlighting these reports and it was realised that the automatic deletion was a technical error. We are yet to receive feedback on the request regarding an audit and assessment of these public comments, that have potentially been lost due to this technicality. We will continue to place pressure on government to ensure that the public participation process results in meaningful incorporations into the new regulations and is not just a box ticking exercise

Before the 7-day extension for public comments was announced, approximately 160 000 submissions have been sent through. Public participation is a central part to our democracy and offers South Africans an opportunity to provide for meaningful input to the decision-making process. South Africans have a right for their voices to be heard. We encourage South Africans to submit their concerns regarding the Regulations before 24 April 2022 via WhatsApp on 060 012 3456; e-mail at; or via the website on