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By Alec Hogg
Reading yesterday’s speech to Parliament by South Africa’s reappointed finance minister Nhlanhla Nene, it again struck me how much the country’s prospects have changed since December.
Two years ago, a good friend chided me for celebrating that fragmented and inefficient SA State procurement had been put into a central office. He reckoned instead of then finmin Pravin Gordhan’s intended result of cutting waste and corruption, it would simply make life easier for industrial scale plunder.
An infamous attack (Oct 2016) on then chief procurement officer Kenneth Brown by Zuptoids Jimmy Manyi and police general Berning Ntlemeza showed my pal’s warning had substance. But lots has happened since Ramaphosa won the December 2017 election. Manyi has no powerful patrons, Ntlemeza was “retired” and the CPO is going full steam ahead.
So yesterday, Nene could tell Parly that state spending is below budget. And Brown’s old colleagues are now able to move on to bigger fish, now targeting “two of the most critical areas for service delivery: health and education.” Gordhan must be loving seeing his plan come together. At last.
Cyril Ramaphosa: The Audio Biography
Listen to the story of Cyril Ramaphosa's rise to presidential power, narrated by our very own Alec Hogg.