Cabinet reshuffle was to inject young blood, Msholozi tells WEF

President Zuma will within a week be legally forced to explain how reason played a big role in his deciding to fire Pravin Gordhan and reshuffle his cabinet – note reason, not reasons, because the one’s he’s giving now lack any sane explanation. Gordhan and his deputy Jonas were somehow undermining, with treasonous intent his Presidency and turning the international community against him on their overseas economic roadshow, a trip designed to do the very opposite. That’s his first reason. Now he’s telling delegates to the World Economic Forum (WEF) in Durban that the cabinet reshuffle was ‘to make room for young people’. He dismisses the uproar his constitutionally imperious purging of those less than totally obedient to his whims caused, by saying those expressing outrage are evidence of South Africa being a democracy. By investing in the youth, Africa will rise, he adds. Another fine set of reasons he ad-libbed on Africa’s inability to mobilise funding, was profit shifting, base erosion and tax crimes causing illicit financial flows of billions from Africa’s shores annually. Quite likely, but perhaps we could mobilise more funding if we stopped the illicit Zuptoid flows. Then watch Africa’s leading economy rise… – Chris Bateman

By Liesl Peyper

Durban – President Jacob Zuma said on Thursday he reshuffled his Cabinet recently to make room for young people to join government.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum (WEF) on Africa in Durban on Thursday, Zuma was responding to a question from the floor on how young people can play a bigger role in decision-making.

President Jacob Zuma answers questions at Parliament in Cape Town, March 17, 2016. REUTERS/Mike Hutchings

“I reshuffled my Cabinet recently and I put a lot of young people in my Cabinet,” Zuma said in his response. “Of course people have different views about that, but that’s democracy.”

Zuma said in his address that the youth have been clear: leaders must address unemployment and inequality.

He said the WEF’s theme of inclusive growth presents an opportunity for vigorous discussion of various issues of economic growth and development. “Opportunities from that growth must not be enjoyed by only a few.”

Zuma said since the last WEF meeting in South Africa in 2015, “we’ve seen increased alienation and exclusion”.

He said Africa is a youthful continent, with a bright future if it invests correctly in its young people.

“As leaders we haven’t addressed adequately how to close the gap between rich and poor and get meaningful inclusive growth. The gap between rich and poor in many countries remains wide.”

Radical economic transformation in SA

Zuma said in South Africa radical economic transformation is underway, which in his view will take the country on the path to inclusive growth and a better life for all.

South African president’s radical economic transformation. More magic available at

“Moves are already underway to radically transform the African economy. Infrastructure development remains top of the agenda to ease the movement of goods, people and services across Africa. Also critical is the work that is being done to promote regional integration and intra-Africa trade.”

In the Southern African Development Community (SADC) region for example industrialisation especially through labour intensive manufacturing to promote job creation is a priority, Zuma said.

“Other focus areas include agriculture in order to improve food security and also to begin to derive more value from the ocean, through boosting the ocean economy. These are areas that many investors would find lucrative on the African continent.”

He cautioned though that for Africa to succeed in taking these programmes forward, the continent needs financing.

“Accordingly, we must invest in developing local capital markets and mobilise domestic resources through taxation and other means,” Zuma said.

Illicit financial flows

Standing in the way of Africa’s ability to mobilise funding however is the prevalence of illicit financial flows, which lead to billions of dollars leaving the shores of Africa annually. “This is money that can be used to finance projects in Africa.

“If we don’t address financial crimes such as profit shifting, base erosion and other tax crimes we won’t make progress,” Zuma said.

Economic diversification

Another radical step that African countries needs to take is to diversify their economies away from dependence on commodities so that they become less vulnerable to commodity shocks, the president said.

“We also need to step up investment in both social and economic infrastructure. Improving the quality of life of our people through social infrastructure such as building hospitals, schools will improve the quality of life,” he added.

In order to achieve these goals and many others, Africa as a continent needs to strengthen developmental partnerships between government, business, labour and all relevant stakeholders.

“This (World Economic) Forum is a key instrument in this regard as it brings global actors together to discuss such important matters. It is also important for such discussions among social partners to continue taking place domestically, which has been an important area of emphasis for South Africa,” Zuma said.

Africa rising

Zuma concluded his address, saying Africans have decided to take charge of their destiny. “Our people yearn for prosperity and we are determined not to fail them. That is why we have Agenda 2063 as a clear roadmap towards inclusive growth and a better life.

“We are acting to propel the rise of the African giant, our continent.

“Yes, we need to partner with the rest of the world to achieve our radical economic transformation goals. Our partners will find us moving forward with determination and zeal.

“Africa is rising and African leaders are rising to the occasion,” he said. – Fin24


Zuma told by South African court to explain cabinet changes

by Sam Mkokeli

(Bloomberg) – A South African High Court ordered President Jacob Zuma to explain why he made changes to his cabinet that included firing Pravin Gordhan as finance minister in March, a move that sparked street demonstrations and a downgrade of the nation’s credit rating to junk.

Former Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan

The president initially told the top six leaders of the ruling African National Congress that an intelligence report said Gordhan was aiming to undermine his government. ANC Secretary-General Gwede Mantashe later said the relationship between the two had reached the point of “irretrievable breakdown.”

“The president is in a bind — he will in terms of the court order have to provide the intelligence report,” said Pierre De Vos, a law professor at the University of Cape Town. “If he denies it, that then means he lied to his fellow top six members. A lot of interesting political, more than legal, consequences will flow from that.”

The ruling Thursday marked another major setback for Zuma, who was forced to abandon a speech at a May Day rally of labor union supporters of the ANC because of persistent booing by the crowd. Besides the unions, ANC veterans, the South African Communist Party, church and civil-rights groups have called for Zuma to resign or be fired. The president has said he won’t quit before the end of his current term ends in 2019 unless the ANC orders him to do so. He’s due to step down as the party leader in December.

‘Lawful Reasons’

Zuma, who has argued that appointing ministers is his prerogative, told delegates at the World Economic Forum on Africa in Durban on Thursday that he reshuffled the cabinet to bring younger people into his administration. The presidency couldn’t immediately comment on the court ruling, his spokesman said.

Under the court’s ruling in the case, brought by the main opposition party, the Democratic Alliance, Zuma, 75, will have to provide reasons for his decision to change the cabinet and then the court will decide if they are “rational and lawful,” said Lawson Naidoo, executive secretary of the Council for the Advancement of the South African Constitution.

More of Zapiro’s magic available at his website

“If anything, this is a victory for transparency,” he said. “It does not automatically mean the reasons will not satisfy the courts.”

Zuma replaced Gordhan with former Home Affairs Minister Malusi Gigaba, 45, who has no financial or business experience. South Africa’s credit rating was cut to junk by S&P Global Ratings and Fitch Ratings Ltd. after the cabinet changes.

Record of Decision

Gordhan, 67, had been at loggerheads with Zuma for months over plans to build new nuclear plants and the management of state-owned companies. The former finance chief also came under pressure from members of the Gupta family, who are friends of the president, to intervene after the nation’s biggest banks shut their company accounts.

Zuma has been dogged by scandal since he became president in 2009, and is on his fourth finance minister in less than two years. The ANC suffered its worst-yet electoral performance since the end of apartheid in a municipal vote in August that saw it lose control of Pretoria, the capital, and Johannesburg, the economic hub.

The president has five days from the court ruling to supply his record of decision, which he had said the DA was not entitled to, the opposition party said in an emailed statement. The court order will allow another application to review the rationality of the decision to proceed, it said.

“This is a great victory for us, in holding Zuma to account,” DA leader Mmusi Maimane said on his Twitter account.

(Visited 20 times, 1 visits today)