Politics on Tap : DA Engages Community Members

Politics on Tap

Today, Friday 29 May 2015, members of the Democratic Alliance in the Pretoria East region will host Politics on Tap, an event that seeks to bring South African citizens into an environment where they are able to interact on a personal basis, with their elected politicians.

This time, our panel will include the DA Gauteng Provincial Chairperson, Solly Msimanga MPL, DA’s Shadow Minister of Transport, Manny de Freitas MP and Mayor of the DA-Governed Midvaal Municipality, Bongani Baloyi.

The entire format of the engagement is to encourage the public to question, debate and engage with the topical issues of the day.

The Current Political Landscape

The members of the panel will give short opening speeches on their particular areas of expertise and their views on the current political landscape in South Africa before taking questions from the audience.

At this week’s event we will delve into matters concerning E-tolls, the state of local government in Gauteng and the upcoming local government elections.

Direct engagement with politicians is lacking within the South African political space.  Politics on Tap aims to bridge this gap by creating an informal setting where people can participate in both social and political activity at the same time.

We encourage members of the public to come through and join us.

Date : 29 May 2015

Time : 18:30

Place : Pretoria Boys High Old Boys Club, 378 Queen’s Crescent, Pretoria.


Media Enquiries

Phuti Kwenaite

Constituency Officer : Fountains Rust

074 633 8774


Jordan Griffiths

Convenor : Politics on Tap

084 209 3760


Nkele Molapo

Media Officer

072 041 4842


[Image source: Manny de Freitas and Bongani Baloyi]

DA to March with Leeuwfontein Community to Union Buildings

Lack of Infrastructure Development

Tomorrow, 22 May 2015, the Democratic Alliance (DA) will march with the Leeuwfontein community to the Union Buildings in protest against illegal land sales and lack of infrastructure development within the community.

Despite promises from various levels of government to address issues of alleged corrupt activities by ANC councillors, as well as the lack of progress on land ownership, the Leeuwfontein community remains without access to true freedom.

Date: 22 May 2015

Time: 10h00

Starting point: Cnr Church Street and Leyds Street, Pretoria CBD

There will be opportunities for interviews and photographs. Members of the media are welcome to attend.

Adriana Randall DA Constituency Head: Leeuwfontein

Media Enquiries:

Adriana Randall MPL
DA Constituency Head: Leeuwfontein
060 556 4342

[Image source]

E-tolls: Gauteng ANC Must March with the People

ANC Must March on SANRAL

Following the Gauteng ANC’s march to Eskom on load-shedding last week, the DA calls on Chairperson Paul Mashatile to announce whether they will now march on SANRAL after yesterday’s e-tolls announcement.

The Gauteng ANC rejected e-tolls with much fanfare last October at their provincial congress.

They have since betrayed the people of Gauteng with a brand new enforcement strategy to ensure people across Gauteng pay e-tolls or face severe punishment.

Will the ANC again march against themselves for a problem they have created?

Cost-effective Alternative to E-tolls

The truth is there is a simple, cost-effective alternative to e-tolls. The only thing needed is political will for government to ring-fence a small portion of the fuel levy to pay for the freeway upgrades.

In 2013, Sanral’s Vusi Mona said that 17% of all tolls would go toward collection fees.

At a cap of R450 per vehicle per month, that would have translated into R76-50 per vehicle per month.

However, with the cap reduced to R225 per month, the R76-50 still needs to be collected, driving up the percentage collection rate up to 34% per vehicle per month.

Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa’s Claims

If this ANC government is indeed a responsive and attentive government as Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa claims, it would long ago have realised that there is no need to resort to threats when cheaper and less complex methods of funding are available.

E-tolls are killing jobs and slowly strangling Gauteng’s economy, and ultimately, the rest of South Africa will pay the price.

People are opposed to e-tolls, and by resorting to jackboot tactics, the ANC government will only alienate them further.

The DA reiterates our call for a provincial referendum on e-tolls, asking the question: Do you want a small increase in fuel levies, free from expensive collection fees and government threats, or not?

Given the severe betrayal of the people by the Gauteng ANC, we believe allowing people to vote on e-tolls is the most effective way for fairness and justice to prevail.


Media enquiries:

John Moodey MPL

DA Gauteng Provincial Leader

082 960 3743

[Image source]

Fake Doctor Worked 5 Years at Bara Hospital

Dr JM AlbuquerqueJack Bloom DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health

A fake doctor worked at the Chris Hani Baragwanath Hospital for more than five years before his false qualification was detected.

This is revealed by Gauteng Health MEC Qedani Mahlangu in a written reply to my questions in the Gauteng Legislature.

According to Mahlangu, Dr JM Albuquerque worked at the hospital from 1 March 2007 to 28 June 2012.

I am astonished that he got away with this for so long.

Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA)

In another case of false qualifications, Dr NW Katumba worked at Bara Hospital for more than a year, from 15 November 2010 to 2 December 2011.

One more case is currently being investigated of a doctor who worked at the now defunct Charles Hurwitz TB Hospital.

The Department says that they rely on the Health Professions Council of South Africa (HPCSA) to verify qualifications for health professionals.

Medical Qualifications

No complaints were received concerning treatment by the fake doctors at Bara, but I am concerned that patients could have died or been injured by them.

More controls are needed to ensure that all medical qualifications are checked stringently.


Media enquiries:

Jack Bloom MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Health

082 333 4222

[Image source]

Scrap E-tolls: The Only ‘Dispensation’ That Works

Unfair and Unjust SystemJohn Moodey DA Gauteng Provincial Leader

Today Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa is expected to announce more ways to pay for e-tolls, instead of scrapping them altogether – despite the fact that less and less road users are willing to pay for this unfair and unjust system.

According to the National Department of Transport, since January there has been a dramatic drop in the number of people registering for e-tolls, as well as a steady decline in revenue collected.

This disproves the assertion by Premier Makhura and the e-toll review panel that people are not fundamentally opposed to paying tolls on Gauteng’s highways.

People are feeling the financial crunch of increases in municipal rates, electricity, petrol and income tax, and are simply not willing or able to pay e-tolls.

Stealth Methods to Pay for E-Tolls

Instead of scrapping e-tolls altogether, the ANC’s response is to introduce stealth methods hidden in licensing and other fees to force people to pay.

The fact is that the e-tolls system does not have the ability to cope and deal with debt collection, and the introduction of the hybrid model will further complicate an unsustainable system.

So while the economies of Gauteng and the country are reeling from the effects, and unemployment spirals out of control, Deputy President Ramaphosa and Premier Makhura are standing at a crossroad today.

They could act in the interests of the poor and working class by scrapping e-tolls altogether, or open a Pandora’s Box of civil disobedience and non-compliance on a scale never seen before.

The choice is theirs, and the consequences will be felt at the polls in 2016.


Media enquiries:

John Moodey MPL

DA Gauteng Provincial Leader

082 960 3743

[Image source]

GP Education: R2.5 billion Admin Budget Prioritises Cadre Deployment Over Teachers

Administration BudgetKhume Ramulifho, MPL: DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Education

In the budget book report to the Gauteng Legislature, the provincial Education Department tabled its 2015/6 budget with at least R2.5 billion allocated for administration.

Not only has the budget increased, but there have been alarming cuts made to funds directed at personnel for public ordinary schools and early childhood development programmes.

3500 People Will Lose Their Jobs

In fact over 3500 people will lose their jobs in this sector while MEC Panyaza Lesufi directs more funding to employing people at district and head office level.

The MEC has already conceded that the department is failing to meet basic policy requirements, including teacher-student ratios of 40:1 and 35:1 in classrooms.

The move is nothing more than blatant cadre deployment to ensure that the MEC’s office administration is prioritised over the needs of desperately overcrowded schools.

Quality Education

Quality education is key to accessing freedom in South Africa; the MEC must publically explain his decision to deny vulnerable communities this opportunity.

I will follow up with the MEC and the Education Portfolio Committee to request a review of this skewed administration budget, which obviously does not put the interests of the learners of this province first.


Media enquiries:

Khume Ramulifho MPL

DA Gauteng Education Shadow MEC

082 398 7375

[Image source]

Financial mismanagement by Gauteng Health puts patients at risk

Financial Strain

Financial mismanagement by the Gauteng Health Department puts patients’ health at serious risk.

In a written response to a DA question MEC Qedani Mahlangu alluded to non-availability of medicines being a result of national suppliers failing to build up necessary stock to meet the province’s needs.

Yet, the Department’s third quarterly report noted that shortages in medicine supply are partly as a result of non-payment to smaller suppliers in the province. The report further noted delays in payment due to shortages of funds.

MEC Mahlangu must stop pointing fingers at medical suppliers and get her house in order.

Medicine Shortages

The DA has on numerous occasions pointed out the financial strain stock-outs have placed on patients at state owned hospitals.

In February my colleague and DA Gauteng Health Shadow MEC Jack Bloom was contacted by a pensioner who’s had to spend R6000 due to medicine shortages at the Charlotte Maxeke Hospital.

In March the DA also had reports from an unemployed mother who had to pay R450 for medicine for her brain-damaged child, after being told by Daveyton Hospital staff that they had no supplies.

The Department’s non-payment has seen a decreased production in essential medicines leading to the use of more expensive ones, increasing costs. Treating simple medical infections with more expensive and potent drugs will not only see an increase in drug resistance, but an unsustainable financial burden on the Department.

MEC Mahlangu Must Get the Job Done

To this end the DA calls on MEC Mahlangu to make use of the current management model and get the job done. Basic economics based on supply and demand can only be achieved through proper financial management, meaning that suppliers have to be paid on time so demand can be met.

Administrative management from primary, secondary and tertiary healthcare is essential to ensuring that right to accessible and quality health care.


Media enquiries:

Mike Moriarty MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Finance

082 492 4410

[Image source]

DA to Conduct Oversight Visit to Rebongwe Primary School in Meadowlands

This morning, DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Education, Khume Ramulifho MPL, will conduct an oversight visit to Rebongwe Primary School in Meadowlands.

The purpose of the visit is to establish whether the Gauteng Department of Education has addressed overcrowding as well as classroom furniture and other infrastructure shortages as promised.


Date: 20 May 2015

Time: 10h00

Venue: Rebongwe Primary School, Meadowlands West, Zone 9


There will be opportunity for interviews and photographs. Members of the media are welcome to attend


Media enquiries:

Khume Ramulifho MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Education

082 398 7375

[Image source]

Gauteng Social Development Department Confused Over Budget Allocations

Budget AllocationsRefiloe Nt'sekhe DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Social Development

The DA calls on Social Development MEC, Faith Mazibuko to clear the confusion surrounding the budget allocations of her department, which are not properly managed.

During a recent portfolio committee over the 2015/16 budget, officials presented poorly collated information and conflicting budget amounts for programmes in various budget documents.

Principle of Appropriation Bill

Of further concern was that some of the research used to develop the Annual Performance Plan (APP) was taken from old data. An example of this is the Department stating a target of 6199 beneficiaries for its HIV/Aids programme in the Principle of Appropriation Bill presented to Finance Portfolio Committee documents, versus the 6571 as stated in its APP.

The question is now whether the APP is a true reflection of what the Department submitted to the Gauteng Department of Treasury for funding.

Estimates of Provincial Revenue and Expenditure (EPRE)

Almost every programme’s performance targets varied – such as the Estimates of Provincial Revenue and Expenditure (EPRE) 2015/16 FY over Medium Term Expenditure Framework (which was distributed to all members after the budget speech by Finance MEC Barbara Creecy); Estimates of Capital Expenditure 2015/16 FY and Medium Term Expenditure Framework, as well as the Socio Economic Review (Gauteng Treasury).

The Department of Social Development is tasked to care for the needs of the most vulnerable people in our society, and MEC Mazibuko needs to explain why targets and expenditure estimates vary across the board, and how the department can roll out its service delivery programmes when uncertainty prevails over funding.

The DA will submit written questions to MEC Mazibuko to explain these discrepancies, and hopes that she prepares herself for hard questions when she presents her department’s budget to the Legislature.


Media enquiries:

Refiloe Nt’sekhe MPL

DA Gauteng Shadow MEC for Social Development

060 558 8297

[Image source]

Gauteng Premier Misleads the Public on Mega-Housing Projects

Gauteng Premier David Makhura is misleading the public on the progress of public/private agreements to develop mega-housing projects in the province.

On 7 April the Premier and Human Settlements MEC, Jacob Mamabolo announced that a memorandum of understanding was signed between the Provincial Government, Gauteng’s 12 municipalities and 43 construction companies to develop these projects.

However, in response to a written DA question regarding this event, MEC Mamabolo states that: “There are no 43 construction consortiums involved in the construction for the mega projects. The Department is in the process of finalizing a procurement model for the mega projects.”

Click here to view the response.

It is clear that Premier Makhura and the ANC are under severe pressure to ramp up government service delivery as we head for the 2016 local government elections.

However, by hosting lavish media events under the pretence of signing non-existent memoranda of understanding, the premier has exposed his hypocrisy about being serious about the needs of Gauteng’s people.

Premier Makhura needs to be honest to the people of Gauteng over the authenticity of this memorandum.


Media enquiries:

John Moodey MPL

DA Gauteng Provincial Leader

082 960 3743

[Image source]