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Monthly Archives: May 2012

How are you doing? “I` am not fine!”

Do you know that feeling you get when somebody ask you questions such as:  “how are you doing?” and you respond by “I`am fine” but deep down in your heart you know you`re not? That`s what is happening in this country at the present moment. It even seems hard to disclose that lot things are just a mess about this country.  I am deeply shocked by the current events in this country. I think we need to revisit our Morality and everyone needs to know his position and take it. This year I have read so many articles which portray a debauched morality about this country.

Let me start from the top where we are supposed to have leaders who should lead by example. In 2006, the judiciary was kept busy by the Jacob Zuma rape case of a HIV-positive woman. At this time Zuma was not a President but he was pursuing that route. The most degrading part is the respond that Zuma made after he was asked about what he did after she had sexual intercourse with the 31 year old woman who was raped twice before the Zuma incidence. On Zuma’s testimony, he said that he had a shower immediately after having intercourse with the woman to lessen his chances of contracting HIV. This was characterized as a very controversial statement because South Africa is one the countries which are fighting the epidemic of HIV-Aids. If the person who was in pursuit of becoming a President at that time says such, what image does it portrays to the entire world about South Africa and its leadership? What does it says about our morality?

As a result, since then Cartoonist such as Zapiro always drew Zuma with a Shower on his head even today. And someone procured it far to draw him with his genitals exposed week ago. As some will say that he called it on himself, I would say that; it still does not make it right. It is clearly the abuse of freedom of expression.  If we are to build a country, I don`t think we are on the right path.  We need to set our priorities straight.

In 2008, riots emerged; we killed, injured and vandalized foreigners properties from African countries because they were seen as “taking out jobs” and perceived as illegal. There is no human being who’s is illegal in this world. Yes, one can be in a country illegal but he/she is not illegal as a human being.

Lately, the have been rape cases reported on the media daily. The one which was trendy is the gang rape video circulating around the internet and what shocks me mostly that there are people who want to watch the video. Rape is not a game, somebody life is ruined and you just want to watch? The rape video is not a movie. How do people watch such and be able to sleep peacefully in the night? What is wrong with us?

Another incidence I just read about is about a policewoman who was arrested and charged with corruption after she was caught having sex with a prisoner at the Scottburgh police station in KZN.  There immorality acts prevails in this country while we perceive ourselves a developing state. What are we developing? Rape seems like new a career path these days in South Africa. It not just man who rapes, even woman do. What happened to the morality of most South Africans? What does government doing about this?

Recently, president Zuma is said “we are a nation of thugs” in response to a gang rape incidence. My question is; did he count himself when he said “we”? Some people by now will think that I am part of the opposition party but unfortunately am not. Being against how some ANC member’s lead this country has nothing to do with hate unless one is ready to deny that neither of the events took place in this Country. It is my democratic right to say something and this is one of the result a public participation is encourage in the Constitution even the relevance of the section is quite fuzzy.

Lastly, the Bureau for Market Research (BMR) released findings from a survey conducted in Gauteng [ a very small province] that nearly 80% of  Gauteng high school pupils regularly consume alcohol. All I can say is great parenting. It does not shock me at all considering that in our society when a kid lifts up a bottle of beer, the parents laugh instead of doing their doing their duties. Sometimes, they get stoned with their children and the next day still expects respect from the same teenager you shared a beer with yesterday. We pass by teenagers stoned walking in and out of taverns but we sack it as disobedience. Some adults will even smoke and drink with them. The real question is; what are you doing about it? The level of immorality is shockingly shocking in this country.

We look through our windows with our Unimpaired judgment and observe a man beating a woman like he is thrashing a drum yet we treat such incidents as if nothing has happened. Some elders will even act as spectators and applaud the fight on.

Parents, take your positions!

Children take your position!

Leaders take your position!]

Society as a whole, take your position!

I am tired and YES….AM NOT FINE!!!

 

 

 
 

Simplified Version of Chapter 13 of the National Planning Commision.

 

 

 

 

 

 

South Africa is a country which suffered a lot of maladministration prior to 1994 and segregation of race in the decision makings. However, 1990 represent the initial tip of departure for a turning point. The release of the former president Nelson Mandela, act as an indicative change in South African governance. In addition, the 1994 elections acted as a testimonial to these changes in governance.

 As a result, the African National Congress (ANC) came to power. Their mandate was to build a nation which is non-sexist and non-racial. As a result, the Reconstruction Development Program (RDP) was introduced and it was seen as a bold step to reconciliation process.

 For some reasons, it was eradicated in 1996 and replaced by the Growth, Economic and Redistribution program (GEAR). This program was introduced because it was argued that in order to have a successful redistribution process one ought to grow the economy first. This program was alleged to be initiated by the former President Thabo Mbeki who was later replaced by Jacob Zuma. As a result, South Africa has altered from the more rigid governance to a more flexible hence, a developmental state in the making which caters for any individual no matter the race, class and gender.

His administration is seen as the one pushing for a Developmental state mandate as a result,     the National Development Plan was document was drafted in 2011. This document was drafted to provide a coherent planning of how the government is going to execute their mandate and what needs to improve from the current performance thus it provided some recommendations on how such task will be executed.

This article will undertake to critically discuss the five recommendations on how the South African state can improve the management and the capacity problems of its institutions. These recommendations will be drawn from Chapter 13 of the National Planning Commission’s National Development Plan drafted by the office of Presidency which is lead by the Trevor Manuel. This task will be carried out by referring to several scholars and research institutions. The recommendations are as follows:

Firstly, “There is a need to stabilise the political –administrative interface” (NDP, 2011: 4). This is the idea that the must be a precise demarcation in references to the public servants roles, responsibilities and their political powers. This will assist public service in aggressive serving interest of the government hence fulfilling the democratic mandate (Naidoo, 2011). However, this has been obstructed by the pitiable ideals since most public servants are employed on the foundation of their political affiliation. The demand for professionalism and improvement of skills can unravel this problem. One ought to note that improving skills is closely related to professionalism thus, altering the way in which the public servants are being recruited can serve as a rescue strategy. Therefore, a call for recruiting public servants in the basis of merit but not political affiliation is the way forward in ensuring effectiveness.

The circumvention of political affiliation may come handy in ensuring an adequate and efficient way of enforcement of legislation. In South African context, it would also be necessarily to avoid recruiting or employing public servants because they were in exile or not. In addition, Jay Naidoo (2010) argues that there were people who felt that they are entitled to power or seats in the government after 1994 because they perceived that exiles have contributed to the struggle and those who were not in exiles we seen as individuals who lack the ANC tradition. Getting rid of such perceptions will vital to the form a management that is capable of addressing social and economic needs. Therefore, there is a need of a strong public Service Commission in order to strengthen the recruitment procedure is based on merit not political grounds role (NDP, 2011). This will assist in ensuring that the public servants are of high calibre. However, creating monitoring bodies is crucial in the process of effectiveness and encouraging strong coordination amongst departments. Lastly, the NDP (2011) argues that the clarity on who reports on who, and who is accountable to who and what is the responsibility of each public servants especially leaders is essential. In doing so, also the promotion of decentralization of powers to the senior mangers of municipalities from higher levels of government will be will be vital (NDP, 2011).

Secondly, “Make the public service and local government careers of choice” (NDP, 2011: 9). If one were to recall Scholars such as Max Weber and Woodrow Wilson who contributed so much in the knowledge of Public Administration. Max Weber inscribed six principles of the modern system of bureaucracy. One of those factors was that an administration is a specialist occupation meaning that individuals ought to be hired or recruited on the basis of merit (Hughes, 2003).  On the other hand, Woodrow Wilson (1887), well known as the father of Public administration argued that Public administration is a field of study hence; the government is the subject of study which should be formally studied in higher institutions. I addition, public servants should be separated from the political mandates.

 According to Wilson (1887), if administrators act in a political manner, it unties the paths for corruption and political beneficiation. Therefore, those who make policies should be separated from those who implement them in order to construct a system of governance that allows accountability. On the other hand, Jay Naidoo (2010) argues that one of the challenges they encountered in the Mandela administration which is still a problem even now is the lack of qualified project managers due to the high rate of unskilled public servants. He argues that “across government departments rolling over form year to year funds set aside for capital projects, due to lack of management expertise” (Naidoo, 2010: 239).

However in making a Local government a career choice, it is necessarily to create a more dignified graduate recruitment pattern which will be entail the a local government career alleyway which will instigate by a robust and educational training on management within the first year of recruitment (NDP, 2011). Therefore, this will ensure that that within a local government there is satisfactory capacity to contrivance essential governmental precedence and in doing so, provide a quality basic service to communities. For this to succeed, a good management is required meaning that to current managers, they should be a training provided to improve their management skills and expertise.

Thirdly, “Develop technical and specialist professional skills” (NDP, 2011: 18). It has been highlighted in several times that many South African graduates leave the Country after they have attained their degrees which results in lack of specialist in South Africa. Many doctors take the route to Cuba after they get their degrees to attain greener pastures. As a result, documents such as the Skills Development Act were established in South Africa to simply improve the skills of the people of South Africa. This document was established to eradicate the shortage of skills in South Africa and in doing so prepare more individuals with skills by introducing programmes such as the Learnerships (NSDS iii, 2010).

According to the National Skills Development (2010), the shortage of skills is predominant in the local governments where lack of Engineers to build and maintain the infrastructure is prevailing. This is a problem for a developing country such as South Africa because without the expertise to develop, it is impractical to develop. This queries the State`s role in developing technical skills thus, a speedy respond is necessary.

In order to meet these objectives, the role of the state is to be reinforcing and developing technical skills. This is only practical with the correct strategy for training and recruitment. In addition, such mandates can be established with a cooperative paradigm among institutions of governments in a long run (NDP, 2011). The National Skills development argues that the shortage of specialist and technical in South Africa is due to the government too much dependence on outsourcing most of its duties to the private sector as a result, the need for developing skills was not seen necessary.

According to the National Development Plan (2011) it also essential to preserve professionals, those with great capability should withstand as practitioners deprived of having to dissuade to management careers. In addition, it is also over emphasized that Authority should be decentralized from high levels of government to low levels of government in order to permit line managers to yield responsibility for tasks and in doing so, gain some management experience.

While delegating power, it is also important to over emphasize the concept of accountability to promote democratic management, even the executives to be held accountable. This also means that power should not be over concentrated on one branch of government thus it should decentralized amongst the  three spheres of government namely, National, provincial and Local government.

Fourthly, “Improve relations between the three spheres of government” (NDP, 2011: 23).  There has been some concern about the relations between the three spheres of government namely, National, Provincial and Local government as Identified in chapter 3 off the Constitution. In Addition, These spheres of government are independent as well as ought not to exist or be perceived as hierarchical (DPLG, 2007).Consequently, “the spheres of government are distinctive, inter-related and inter-dependent” (DPLG, 2007: 9). Likewise, they are obliged to carry out their mandates according how the Constitution, laws and policies made by national Parliament stipulated.

However, there have been some concerns between these three spheres of government. According to the Intergovernmental Relations, there has been an issue of the local government being not sufficiently presented and poor communication amongst these spheres. In addition, Some Ministers don`t pitch up for meeting leaving those with lower authorities having to decide or have to postpone the meeting (DPLG, 2007). As a result, the Intergovernmental Relations was comprehended as an instrument to solve these disputes.

This instrument was established because of the emphasis the South African problem with coordination and cooperation thus, it is required to resolve those disputes among the spheres of government. In addition, this was seen as a way to solve effectiveness and performance problems among these spheres.

In contrast, Pierre de Vos (2009) argues that the government is bearing in mind the scrapping of the South African Provinces. However the opposition party DA appear dismayed about this decision even though it is still not finalised. It is a big concern for the DA since their monopolizing the Western Cape Province and if the rethinking of provinces goes through, the might lose their leadership in the province.

However, the focus is on the need to improve the performance within the existing system of governance in order to established effectiveness. According to The Foundation for development of Africa (2010), the first step in Building relations is to reconsider the one- size- fits- all approach in moving forward. This approach has to be scrapped because unalike municipalities have to cater for different social and economic settings with distinct performance intensities and sustenance necessities. As a result, their faced with different challenges thus, they cannot be functional under solitary way of doing things.

The NDP (2011) argues that there must be a clear clarity on functions ought to be carried by each spheres of government in order to fight the confusion that exist at the current moment and in doing so, the disputes will be dissolved hence relations the three spheres of government will be established.

Lastly, “The developmental potential of the state-owned enterprises (SOEs)” (NDP, 2011: 31). Pienaar and Geldenbloem (2008: 40) argue that SOEs enterprise refers to “entities owned by the state which preforms functions that no private investor would be willing to perform, either as sole share holder or majority with decisive control of enterprise”. As a result, this entities need to be developed because we are leaving in a globalised world where structures that used to in use are now obsolete. These entities are seen as tools which can contribute hugely on the South African economic and social infrastructure (NDP, 2011).

In addition, “In 2030, South Africa needs to be served by a set of efficient, financially sound and well governed SOEs that address the country`s developmental objectives in areas were neither the executive arms of government nor private enterprises are able to do so effectively” (NDP, 2011: 393). However, as it has been over stressed that the SOEs mandate has to set spotless and in doing so, promote transparency for accountability purpose (Pienaar and Geldenbloem, 2008). One concern that needs to be addressed is the capacity constraints within the SOEs and again, the clear governance structures will enable that mandate to be success and it will also halt the liability of inadequate human and financial resources. The issue of skills and a long term reliable strategy has also been over emphasized as vital above thus, their also vital in the success of the SOEs in South Africa. “In order to be effective, the SOEs must endeavour a steadiness between socio-economic goals; between collectivism in terms of the social space they occupy, and the corporate individualism”(Pienaar and Geldenbloem, 2008: 41).

These recommendations stressed too much the idea of recruitment procedure which is a good thing in fighting corruption and developing a strong management and capacity to meet social and economic goals.

In conclusion, these recommendations highlighted in the National development from Chapter 13 of the National Planning Commission are very critical to the South African government on how they can improve management and capacity of institution because to build a social and economic transformation successfully, a very strong and effective state management is a necessity.

The avoidance of political affiliation within the administration will be essentially towards creating skills and professionalism where public servants will serve the government not a certain political party. This idea of developing skills and professionalism can only be attained if the way public servants are recruited can be altered. If there can be a push for recruiting public servants base on merit basis where the public service and local government could be seen as carers of choice. While this has been established, it is an obligatory to improve relations between the three spheres of government. In addition, making responsibilities clear and decentralizing some authority is also crucial. Lastly, the main state owned enterprise (SOEs) must be provided by pure public interest obligations and straight onward authority edifices that assist them meet social objectives.

References

De Vos, P. (2009). What now for Provinces?. Constitutionally Speaking. Available. [Online]. http://constitutionallyspeaking.co.za/what-now-for-provinces/. Last accessed on 07 May 2012.

Hughes, O.E. (2003). “The Traditional Model of Public Administration” in Public Management & Administration, an Introduction.  Hampshire and New York: Palgrave MacMillian.

Wilson, W. 1887. The Study of Administration. In J.M. Shafritz, A.C Hyde and S.J. Parkes. (Eds). 2004. Classics of Public Administration.  USA: Thomson & Wadsworth. [online]. Available. http://www.disas.unisi.it/mat_did/mussari/408/Articolo_Woodrow_Wilson.pdf. Last accesed on 22/09/2011

Naidoo, R. (2011). Build state capacity — or we fail. Available. Online.

http://www.dbsa.org/(S(upxbqimsayndjj55clk2fmug))/News/LatestNews/Pages/Buildstatecapacity–orwefail.aspx. Last accessed on 25 April 2010.

Naidoo, J. (2010). A life time of Political and Social Activism.  Fighting for Justice. Picador Africa. ISBN 978-1-77010-177-7. Available [online]. www.panmacmillan.co.za. Last accessed on 8 may 2012.

National Planning commission (2011). Chapter 13: Building a capable State. National Planning Commission. Vision 2030. National Development Plan. Available. [Online].

http://www.npconline.co.za/pebble.asp?relid=25. Last accessed on 25 April 2012. Page 1-37.

The Department of Provincial and Local Government, (2007). The Implementation of Intergovernmental Relations Framework Act. An Inaugural Report 2005/6-2006/7. Available. [Online]. http://www.info.gov.za/view/DownloadFileAction?id=87398 .Last accessed on 05 May 2012. Page 1-73.

The Department of Higher Education and Training, (2010). The National Skills Developments Strategy (NSDS iii). Available [online].

http://www.info.gov.za/view/DownloadFileAction?id=121537. Last accessed on 8 May 2012. Page 1-27.

Pienaar, D. and Geldenbloem, E. (2008).  A Review of changes in the Macro- Organisation of the State: 1994-2008. The Department of Public service and Administration. Available. [Online].http://www.thepresidency.gov.za/docs/reports/15year_review/governance/macro_organisation.pdf. Last accessed on 8 May 2012.

 
 

First Step to Fight Crime and Corruption = Recall Zuma

There has been an increase in the deviant acts and violent crime across South Africa. The statistics are puzzling and Altbeker (2005) has asked the question; has South Africa turned out to be world`s crime capital? Recently, President Jacob Zuma has been heard saying “We`re living in the nation of thugs”. Why so much crime?

The violent crimes in this country are predominantly due to strains. Strains refer to “events or conditions that are disliked by an individual” (Agnew, 2006: 77).  However, this does not elaborate why South Africa suffers such high levels f violent crime.

If you travel to countries such as Zimbabwe, you will notice that Police officers don`t carry firearms at all but the country violent crimes is very low. In contrast, South African police officers carry firearms all the time and somehow the carrying of firearms correlates with the high violence in looking at the murder or gangsters shooting in South Africa. According to CSVR one factor that has heavily assisted the violent crime in South Africa is the increase of ownership of firearms. It is unquestionable that there is an increase in ownership of firearms in South Africa and that factor has contributed a lot in the violence crimes. Most robberies and murders are somehow conducted by a pistol. In fact, few years back the was operation which was conducted by the government for people to return unlicensed firearms, many firearms were returned but nobody actually knows even today where did these people get these firearms from the beginning.

Several scholars associated crime with inequality. On the other hand, South Africa’s Gini coefficient is nearly undoubtedly amid the highest in the world. According to the World Bank definition, inequality refers to an indicator of how resources are distributed within the society. There is a widening gap amongst the rich and the disadvantaged in South Africa which is broadening up daily.

As an outcome, utmost individuals still dwell in squatter camps antagonized by poverty daily. Poverty designates the state of lacking sufficient means to live.

One factor that affects South Africa Mostly is the issue of poor justice system and implementation. We`re this country which is recognized with one of the finest Constitution in the world. Everything is pin point on paper poignantly our action say some thing else. In addition, this brings us to the point of poor police services which I wanted to elaborate on.  The point of departure for that could be traced back to the apartheid regime however, in this case let`s concentrate on things happen after 1994.

Likewise, the Commissioner of Metropolitan police Mark Robert argued that a good Police officer is the one who doesn`t employ criminals but the one who captures more (Jensen, 2008). This implies that the police are supposed to execute their duties than assisting criminals to commit crime.

Clearly that has not been the case in South Africa. To support this argument, let`s reflect back on what it has been trendy recently. In 2008 the National commissioner of South African Police Service, Jackie Selebi was charged with corruption and defeating the ends of justice system (Bruce, 2008). Jackie Selebi was found in collaboration with an alleged drug dealer by the name of Glenn Agliotti who’s involved in many drug smuggling in this country. Another case which is very interesting to watch out for in the news recently is the case of Bheki Cele. Bheki Cele is a National Commissioner of Police whose been accused of corruption. Bheki Cele was suspended by the president, Jacob Zuma after being accused of involved in an unlawful police lease agreements in 2011.

This case is still being investigated and the outcome of it will be issued in few months. This shows clearly that In South Africa has an issue of corrupt leaders which plays a huge role in an increase of violence crimes. People get away with many criminal acts because their in collaboration with police.

Lately, policeman Lieutenant General Richard Mdluli, a former Head of Police Crime Intelligence in South Africa has been accused of corruption.  The have been claims that Mdluli has received “partial and selective” treatment and implicated in the looting of  R200m crime intelligence “slush fund”. It is said that Mdluli is believed to be trusted by President Jacob Zuma and was seen as the frontrunner to replace General Bheki Cele as police chief.

Today I just read that Twelve police officers [Hawks] appeared in court .They face 13 charges that include murder, attempted murder, kidnapping and attempting to defeat the ends of justice.

My prevalent distress is the way these leaders have been appointed. Our President, Jacob Zuma is the one who appointed Bheki Cele; as a result, he took time to suspend him even though the corruption findings were released earlier. I think Zuma must be recalled.  If we recall, Zuma was been investigated for corruption charges by the scorpions who were dissolve when he came to power. It is clearly unquestionable that Zuma has failed several times to act when he was expected and obliged by The Constitution to do so. Recently he even tried to fight the judiciary after the Judiciary performed a judicial review of the formation of the HAWKS which stipulates that, the HAWKS were appointed unconstitutionally because their not an independent entity and neither politically separated.

As a result, operation such as “Hands of our Judges” emerged because according to the Constitution, there should be separation of powers between the Judiciary, Parliament and The executive. Meaning that our President should not even try to interfere on how the Judges perform their duties. I think is time we eradicate him…it is clear that he is taking us nowhere. Don`t here me wrong, I am not saying he is the cause of crime but I am saying, He is not doing anything about it in time. The first step in fighting crime and corruption in South Africa at the present moment is to eradicate Zuma. we need better leaders.