Constitutional Hill

Nkandla: it depends on the definition of “corruption”

At first glance Public Works Minister Thulas Nxesi’s latest explanations on government spending at President Jacob Zuma’s Nkandla home does not make any sense. According to Nxesi a government investigation has allegedly both revealed that the state paid over R206 million for the upgrade of Nkandla “so far” (R71 million of that for “security upgrades”), and found “no evidence that public money was spent to build the private residence of the president or that any house belonging to the president was built with public money”. But Nxesi might not have contradicted himself — it all depends on how one defines terms like “build”, “private residence” and “belong”.

When former President Bill Clinton tried to explain in 1998 during his grand jury testimony on the Monica Lewinsky affair why he had not lied to his top advisors, despite having assured them that “there is nothing going on between us”, he famously said that it all “depends on what the meaning of the words ‘is’ is.” Later, when asked if he was ever alone with Lewinsky he said: “It depends on how you define alone…”

Clinton was widely ridiculed for his lawyerly parsing of words. Nxesi is surely also going to be derided for claiming that although the state had spent more than R135 million on non-security related upgrades at Nkandla, none of this was spent to build the private residence of the President. I will leave it to the comedians to mock Nxesi. Instead, I propose to parse his word in the best lawyerly fashion, before determining whether it was lawful to spend over R200 million on construction at the private residence of the President.

Of course, we do not know what is really contained in the report of the government task team set up to investigate the spending at President Zuma’s private home at Nkandla. Nxesi is refusing to release the report for “security” reasons, which means we should treat his most recent statements about the matter as no more than allegations. But assuming these allegations are true, this is what I suspect Nxesi might have meant.

Nxesi originally claimed that the government only spent money on security upgrades at Nkandla. He now admits that his previous claim was false. According to Nxesi, the government allegedly spent just over R71 million on “security upgrades” at Nkandla. Over R20 million of this was allegedly spent on private security consultants. (By the way, the use of private consultants suggests that our government is not very serious about President Zuma’s security. Who says these security consultants won’t sell information about the security measures at Nkandla to a foreign government or to the Boeremag? These consultants obviously know how to make a fast buck, so there are no guarantees that they will keep their special knowledge secret.)

Nxesi now claims that the government allegedly spent a further R135 million on non-security related construction at Nkandla, but none of it was allegedly used to build the private residence of President Zuma or on any of the houses that belongs to him. How can this be true?

It can be true, first, if one adopts an innovative definition of “build” to include only houses built from scratch. This definition of “build” would exclude any cost related to the upgrade or extension of existing houses. For example, installing gold taps or electrically heated toilet seats in his residences, or adding a few rooms to an existing structure at Nkandla, would then conveniently not fall within the definition of “build”.

Second, it can be true if one assumes that a “private residence” is only the main house where the President normally sleeps and works. Other houses in the Nkandla compound — where the family watches TV, or where his wives, children, extended family sleep — would then conveniently not be viewed as his “private residence”. That would mean that some of the R135 million was used to build many other houses at Nkandla for the private use and benefit of President Zuma and his family but these would then not be viewed as his “private residence”.

Third, Nxesi might have meant that although R135 million was spent to build several buildings at Nkandla and that many of them are exclusively used by Zuma and his family, these buildings do not “belong” to Zuma, because they were built on communal land and are not legally registered in his name at the deeds office. It could also mean that he had ceded the houses to one of the Gupta’s or to First National Bank, who allegedly was kind enough to break the rules and register a bond over the property despite the lack of a title deed.

Does this clear things up? Perhaps not, as there is still the little matter of the Ministerial Handbook, the go-to Bible of our Ministers and MEC’s. The Handbook states that:

The Department of Public Works will be responsible for making available general cleaning services in private residences used for official purposes. Members are responsible for all costs related to the procurement, upkeep and maintenance of private residences used for official purposes.

But, dear readers, there might be a loophole in the Ministerial Handbook, as it defines a “Member” as any “Minister, Deputy Minister, Premier, Member of the Executive Council (MEC) and a Presiding Officer/Deputy Presiding Officer in Parliament”. One can therefore argue that as far as the Handbook is concerned the President is not a “Member” (no sniggers) and that the state is therefore not bound by this strict prohibition on the use of state funds for the procurement or upkeep of his private residence. While it is obviously unconscionable for the state to spend R135 million on upgrading the private property of the President, one might argue that the Ministerial Handbook does not prohibit this. Just like the Bible sanctions the keeping of slaves, the Ministerial Handbook might sanction the use of public funds to enrich the President.

Perhaps the drafters of the Ministerial Handbook assumed that the President could be trusted not to waste R200 million of public funds on his own comfort while many of our compatriots languish in poverty. If one cannot trust the President (who earns a R2 million salary and eat and live for free) to put the interest of the poor above his own interest, who can one trust to do so?

Ironically, this potential loophole does not seem to be available to justify the spending of R71 million of public funds for security upgrades at President Zuma’s private residence at Nkandla. This is so because Annexure E to the Handbook limits the amount of public funds that can be spent on security upgrades of the private house of a “Public Office Bearer” if it is being used as an official residence to the “maximum amount of R100 000, or the total cost of security measures not exceeding R100 000”. One cannot really get language more precise and clear than this.

President Zuma might not be a “Member”, but — as I have argued before — he almost certainly is a “Public Office Bearer” and is therefore bound by the R100 000 limit imposed by the Ministerial Handbook for state sponsored security upgrades of a private residence being used for official purposes. As the President is a member of the cabinet and is empowered by the Constitution to exercise public power as head of the executive, it would make no sense if he was not included in the definition of “Public Office Bearers”. This view is strengthened by the fact that the Remuneration of Public Office Bearers Act of 1997 regulates, amongst other things, the determination of the salary of the President by the Commission for the Remuneration of Public Office-Bearers.

In any event, if we leave the lawyerly parsing of words aside for the moment, the one big question that no one has been able to answer is this: how can anyone ethically justify the use of R250 million of public funds on the enrichment of President Zuma? Is it not, as a matter of plain decency, unconscionable that so much money is spent on the private home of an elected politician who might be voted out of office in 2014, while that money could have been used to build houses for the poor, provide textbooks for learners, build a new University, or improve health care for those who cannot afford medical aid?

In short, when the President and his enablers decide that it is better to spend over R200 million on improving the life of the President rather than to spend it on improving the lives of the millions of South Africans who rely on the state to help them gain a semblance of dignity, what does that say about the character of the President and those who justify and defend this wasteful expenditure or remain silent about it?

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    “what does that say about the character of the President and those who justify and defend this wasteful expenditure or remain silent about it?”

    Hmmm, err, ummm …

    Perhaps that “President Zuma might not be a ‘Member’”

    p.s. @ Chris the-right-wing-guy – no parsing of “member” will be tolerated – this is a family blog!

  • Pakes

    If Nxesi and co lives in a fools paradise, an increasingly fed up citizens are not.

  • Sdumzela

    How is the ethics complaint going along Prof? I know you mentioned something like 30 days then. Any feedback?

  • Alibama

    The very concept of corruption, depends on the concept of ‘civil servant’
    which is a western absurdity to the bantu. OTOH they have proven and
    workable notions of justice/fairness. Just observe the flawless working
    of the collection of matata/taxi fairs a zillion times a day. Consider
    that in rural sub-saharan-africa there are no fences. Every one walks
    through everyone else’s garden/field, and it’s known exactly which chicken
    belongs to whom.
    =================
    Newsgroups: soc.culture.zimbabwe,za.politics
    Subject: White owned farm confiscation justification?
    I was very impressed by the recording of President Mugabe’s 200x
    speech [apparently in Parliament] where he explained:-
    * the Lancaster House agreement had been a 10 month job;
    * the British government had agreed to pay for ‘purchase of
    white owned farms, to be restore to the native population’;
    * after the British had a change of government, this new
    [Blair] government, renaged on the promises of the previous
    conservative government;
    * in international law [and common sense], when one party
    ‘aquires the assests of another party, it also aquires the
    liabilities’;
    * therefore, logically the Blair government could legally
    NOT renage on it’s obligation, inherited from the previous
    government.

    [BTW, this is unrelate to the fact that bantu avoid this problem
    by NEVER changing government, in principle; except when
    presured by donors.]

    Since Mugabe is no fool, why didn’t/doesn’t he publish
    the evidence [eg. a copy of the 'contract']. Then even
    semi-literates who revert to simplistic “it’s not fair that
    the X percentage of whites have NNNpercentage of farm
    land”, would have a better argument. I also don’t want to
    be fooled by the crooked British. Show me too. Please.
    Is the different pro-rata awarding of science Nobel prizes
    to Jews and Negroids not also unfair?

    == TIA.

  • joeslis

    “… private residences used for official purposes”

    Aha! This is Nxesi-speak meaning that Nkandla will become South Africa’s new Seat of Government, with Zuma already unofficially installed there as President for Life.

    The Union Buildings will be split up into timeshare units, with the proceeds used to swell the ANC’s coffers at Luthuli House.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ Pierre

    What evidence is there that Mr Zuma will “reside” at the Nkandla complex after he leaves office? I have seen nothing to suggest that it is intended to be his permanent abode in retirement. If so, Nkandla will be available for state and official functions in future. In this sense, Nkandla is no different from the “White” House, the Elysee Palace, and other places where leaders reside while they remain in office, many of which are built and maintained at great public expense.

    Thanks.

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder
    January 27, 2013 at 20:46 pm

    Hmmm!

    Well spotted Dworky.

    The Egyptians built pyramids for their Pharaohs – we can do something for our Professor!

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    I think you and maggs don’t make much sense but should rather practise the frogg-march. William the Baboon is coming.

    “According to Nxesi a government investigation has allegedly both revealed that the state paid over R206 million for the upgrade of Nkandla “so far” (R71 million of that for “security upgrades”), and found “no evidence that public money was spent to build the private residence of the president or that any house belonging to the president was built with public money”.”

    yes. There was complete breakdown given by the minister showing how monies were spent and the considerable amount spent on infrastructure in and around Nkandla. Roads, water, sewerage, electricity infrastructure doesn’t come for free you know. or perhaps the Apartheid government build it al for you so you take it all for granted?

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    “By the way, the use of private consultants suggests that our government is not very serious about President Zuma’s security.”

    That is because of a serious lacl of capacity and your beloved AFFIRMATIVE ACTION. lets hope William gets the point through to you since you have overstayed your welcome.

    http://www.politicsweb.co.za/politicsweb/view/politicsweb/en/page71654?oid=353290&sn=Detail&pid=71616

  • mike venter

    Aaag Pierre nothing will come from this. The sad truth is that they weasle out of everything and not even our fancy, liberal, best in the world constitution can stop such blatent theft and corruption.

    And worse, how can men like Nxesi, Jackson sit there and defend this? Have they no moral code themselve? Or is it that they themselves are all corrupt? Or scared to talk?

    Why spend that much money on security?

    But, nothing is going to come from this, Zuma will again walk scott free away from this.

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Ja PdV,

    “depends on what the meaning of the words ‘is’ is.”

    Not too far from home “Me? Well, I don’t know. I must go to a dictionary and learn what a crook is. I’ve never been a crook.”

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    I want to suggest that PdV changes the title of his blog to “Corruption Watch” or “I hate Jacob Zuma”. This is probably blog post number 1000 on Nkandla.

    He doesn’t seem to interest on any issues regarding the Constitution any more, it would for example be interesting to hear what Blade Nsimanade, William Makgoba and that little thing called “academic freedom” have in common. One would have imagined his glorious academic background would have prompted him to see such developments in a rather serious light.

  • Ze Philosopher

    OB, perhaps you should start your own blog and call it Anti-Opinionista. Lawyerly parse is worth exploring. As for Thulas, we shouldn’t forget it is his time to eat and will do anything to stay in the kitchen.

  • Gwebecimele

    Why are South Africans bothering Prez Zuma in his private home?? Cabinet and Public Works decided to come and build more facilities in his premises that he never requested. Zuma has nothing to do with the choice of renovations or prices.

    Is that difficult to find documents and signatures of those who requested and approved this expenditure. Just like the case of Julius, he never signed anything and we are yet to find those who requested and approved “his” tenders.

    In SA we always go around in circles or wipe under tap rather than closing it.
    At this rate public servants will continue to sign and approve dodgy tenders.

    Take the focus (comedy) away from Nxesi he is not the one initiated the deal.

  • Gwebecimele
  • Gwebecimele
  • John Roberts

    Blue Ozone

    January 28, 2013 at 8:47 am

    I want to suggest that PdV changes the title of his blog to “Corruption Watch” or “I hate Jacob Zuma”. This is probably blog post number 1000 on Nkandla.

    Well if you bothered to read the fucking news you’ll notice it’s a hot current topic. Why read it if you don’t like it ? Our Constitution does allow you to fuck off elsewhere so be constitutional.

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    John Roberts
    January 28, 2013 at 11:55 am

    Hey JR,

    Nice to see you again!

    What’s news from racist heaven?

    What will happen now that the report has been released?

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    p.s. Nice to see you refer to “Our Constitution”. So glad to hear you’re still a loyal South African and the public display of affection.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Gwebecimele
    January 28, 2013 at 11:37 am

    “Out of the handful of questions, practically all were directed at Nigerian President Goodluck Jonathan.’

    Now lets see – hmmm Nigeria. The most populous country in Africa, ranked 142/169 in Human Development Index world wide.

    despite being a “land of opportunity”.. with lots of oil and minerals, gold, uranium, tin and tantalum, etc, etc…. a country that imports almost all its food despite having plenty of arable land.

    University/HE rating even worse – ranked no 23 out of 100 in Africa – not even on the map in comparison to the rest of the world.

    http://www.4icu.org/topAfrica/

    What can we possibly learn from Nigeria, gwebs? Perhaps prof William Makgoba can explain? Baboons like myself are a bit stupid and would like to know.

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Gwebecimele
    January 28, 2013 at 11:26 am

    Hayibo Gwebs,

    “Why are South Africans bothering Prez Zuma in his private home??”

    It’s no longer his private home.

    The #NkandlaCompound is now a National Key Point!

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    John Roberts
    January 28, 2013 at 11:55 am

    It is a dead story with very little substance to those allegations and has been done 1000s of times in here now.

    The minister published the facts long time ago, just more of the usual flogging a dead horse to distract from the real constitutional issues that are devastating our land.

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    3 Duties of owner in relation to Key Point or Key Points Complex

    (1) On receipt of a notice mentioned in section 2 (2), the owner of the National Key Point concerned shall after consultation with the Minister at his own expense take steps to the satisfaction of the Minister in respect of the security of the said Key Point.

    (2) If the said owner fails to take the said steps, the Minister may by written notice order him to take, within a period specified in the notice and at his own expense, such steps in respect of the security of the said Key Point as may be specified in the notice.

    (3) (a) If the said owner without reasonable cause refuses or fails to take the steps specified in the said notice within the period specified therein he shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding R20 000 or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years or to both such fine and such imprisonment.

    (b) If the said owner refuses or fails to take the steps specified in the said notice within the period specified therein, the Minister may take or cause to be taken the said steps irrespective of whether the refusal or failure took place with or without reasonable cause and irrespective of whether the owner was charged or convicted in connection with that refusal or failure, and the Minister may recover the cost thereof from that owner to such extent as the Minister may determine.

    (4) (a) The Minister may after consultation with the owners of Key Points included in a Key Points Complex order them by written notice to take, within a period specified in the notice and at their expense, such joint steps in respect of the security of that Key Points Complex as may be specified in the notice, and to determine within a period specified in the notice on the proportion in which each shall be responsible for the cost thereof.

    (b) If the owners are unable to determine within the period specified the said proportion, the Minister may determine that proportion.

    (5) If an owner referred to in subsection (4) without reasonable cause refuses or fails to take the steps for which he is responsible within the period specified in the notice, or delays, frustrates or renders them impossible, irrespective of whether any other owner with or without reasonable cause refuses or fails to take the steps for which he is responsible within the period concerned, or delays, frustrates or renders them impossible-

    (a) the first-mentioned owner shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to a fine not exceeding R20 000 or to imprisonment for a period not exceeding five years or to both such fine and such imprisonment;

    (b) the Minister may take or cause to be taken those steps, as well as the steps which any other owner was unable to take as a result of the first-mentioned owner’s refusal or failure to take the said steps, irrespective of whether the owner has been charged or convicted in connection with that refusal or failure, and the Minister may recover the cost of those steps from all the owners on whose behalf they were taken in the proportion in which they were responsible for the cost or to such extent as he may determine.

    (6) The Minister may at any time amend any period or steps in terms of a notice under this section, and the owner or owners concerned shall forthwith be notified thereof by written notice.

    http://www.saps.gov.za/docs_publs/legislation/juta/a102of1980.pdf

  • Mushroom Threads

    Legal or not, someone is hell-bent to enshrine JZ in secure luxury, befitting a king, or life-time president. It won’t be the first time in Africa. Is our ‘democracy’ in danger of being completely subverted?

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ JR

    As Maggs has already noted, everyone is speculating about the fallout from the publication of the summary of the report. So — what do YOU say will happen next?

    Thanks

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    “Nxesi now claims that the government allegedly spent a further R135 million on non-security related construction at Nkandla, but none of it was allegedly used to build the private residence of President Zuma or on any of the houses that belongs to him. How can this be true?”

    As said very, very simple really. I’m sure even a baboon or a bonobo would understand.

    I have even gone and found the breakdown for you that is openly available on the Internet.

    These principles, among others, resulted in the following measures to satisfy the requirements of the security forces.

    1. The reinforcing of barriers

    2. The erection of high security fences

    3. The provision of local fire fighting capability for the helipad (not security related)

    4. The creation of safe havens as with other sites all over the country

    5. The relocation of pylons to allow a clear access flight path (not security related)

    6. Roads constructions in and around the precincts (not security related)

    7. The building of a security compound to house security and support staff

    8. Improving and rendering the water safe (not security related)

    9. The provision of waterborne sewage systems (not security related)

    10. The provision of an air crew pavilion (not security related)

    11. The provision of a clinic in a lower security area to allow for both dignitary care and later conversion to part of the community health service in the area (not security related)

    12. Security guard houses and stations

    13. Security systems for all areas

    14. The provisions of interim accommodation arrangements with Park homes etc. while the construction was on-going (not security related)

    15. Earthworks and barriers erection. (not security related)

    http://www.politicsweb.co.za/politicsweb/view/politicsweb/en/page71654?oid=330727&sn=Detail&pid=71616

  • Nats

    Zuma should resign and Nkandla be donated as a community hub to the people of Nkandla.

  • Gwebecimele

    @ Maggs

    The Prez, ANC and his cabinet are telling us that this is a private residence of the Prez.

    In the “absence” of a title deed this property belong to King Zwelithini and should be treated like any other palace ( there are more than 5 paid for by taxpayers) under Ingonyama Trust. The King and his subjects have special agreements which are different from normal leases. Unlike the normal leases these are not time specific and can be terminated anytime for reasons such as undesirable member of community, murderer, rapist etc. In any case Prez Zuma might ask the state to do the impossible and take back what is theirs or that he no longer requires after his term so that he can enjoy his home without any obligation.

  • Anonymouse

    ‘According to Nxesi a government investigation has allegedly both revealed that the state paid over R206 million for the upgrade of Nkandla “so far” (R71 million of that for “security upgrades”), and found “no evidence that public money was spent to build the private residence of the president or that any house belonging to the president was built with public money”.’

    Explain this to me very slowly please?! The state paid R206 Million – but NO public money was spent! … Shit man?! What other sources of income does the state have besides tax payer money, which is public money; and, what can make certain money be classified as state-owned money, but definitely nopt PUBLIC money? … Good grief!! Even a first-grader would grasp the fundamental flaw in this reasoning – and then the ANC has the audacity to lambast FNB for making the voices of the future leaders of the country known, otherwise the ANC will withdraw its ‘not-so-public’ funds from investmennts that it holds at FNB. … Bah! Stuff and nonsense I say! I am tired of living with Allice in Wonderland.

  • Brett Nortje

    What is the Zulu for ‘farceur’?

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ Pierre

    The chatter of the chattering classes and the liberal press about Mr Zuma are in vain. He has a 60% approval rating. (See http://www.news24.com/SouthAfrica/Politics/SA-still-favours-Zuma-poll-shows-20120608).

    Our people are not stupid. They know that, although Mr Zuma is not without his faults, he represents their aspirations, will create 5 million jobs, and has a new plan to eliminate corruption.

    Thanks.

  • Anonymouse

    Brett Nortje

    January 28, 2013 at 14:56 pm

    What is the Zulu for ‘farceur’?

    The best I can do is either ‘usomahlaya’ (‘comedian’) or isidingidwane / isidomu (‘fool’)

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Gwebecimele
    January 28, 2013 at 14:34 pm

    Gwebs,

    ” In any case Prez Zuma might ask the state to do the impossible and take back what is theirs or that he no longer requires after his term so that he can enjoy his home without any obligation.”

    As I understand the NKP Act, Zuma has got no choice once the Minister of Defence has made the declaration.

    The owner (Zuma as the Act is written) is deemed to be the owner of those portions which he has the right to use and the Ingonyama Trust (for those parts outside Zuma’s use) have to pay for these upgrades – if my understanding is wrong hopefully someone will clarify.

    Look also at 5, 5(a), 5(b) in the portions of the act I posted above.

  • Brett Nortje

    Anonymouse says:
    January 28, 2013 at 15:12 pm

    Ngiyabonga!

    Ki ki ki ki!

  • Gwebecimele
  • Brett Nortje

    Good stuff, Maggot!

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Nats
    January 28, 2013 at 13:50 pm

    “Zuma should resign and Nkandla be donated as a community hub to the people of Nkandla.”

    Correct. That is the general idea.

    ” Government documents refer to it as an “emerging town”, but covering 200 hectares, which could comfortably accommodate 10 000 middle-class homes, that may be selling it short.

    The envisaged project includes:
    Government facilities, including offices for home affairs and social development;
    New community facilities, includ­ing a library, theatre and ­recreation centre;
    A new school with boarding facilities;
    A community safety centre and additions to an existing clinic;
    A recreation centre featuring a swimming pool and tennis courts;
    Light industrial units, including an agricultural market; and
    Housing centred around community gardens.

    The construction would transform what is a dusty backwater with basic government buildings scattered among isolated rural homesteads into tree-lined avenues and covered walkways connecting modern, architect-designed buildings.

    But it will come at a high cost. An initial feasibility study dated November last year reveals that the area has no sewer or stormwater infrastructure and the electricity infrastructure would have to be upgraded substantially.”

    http://mg.co.za/article/2012-08-03-00-taxpayers-will-have-to-pick-up-r1-bn-tab-for-zumaville

    We are talking about development and modernisation of rural Africa. We don’t live in mud houses and run around in leopards skins stuck back in 1850 no more, no matter what William the Baboon wants is to believe.

  • Gwebecimele

    Maggs

    You might be right but it will be interesting to find out if the law views Prez as tenant or owner given the circumstances around the title deed. If indeed Public Works donated these facilities then what stops the Prez or Ingonyama Trust to ask them to take them back?

    I can bet my last smarties Madonsela will focus on the officials/signatures and less on politics.

    Prez is about to appoint head of SIU who might have to investigate this matter.

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Gwebecimele
    January 28, 2013 at 15:36 pm

    Gwebs,

    “it will be interesting to find out if the law views Prez as tenant or owner given the circumstances around the title deed.”

    It seems to be covered in the Act – those nasty apartheid blady agents seems to know that Zuma will try this trick. :P

    ‘owner’, in relation to a place or area declared a National Key Point under section 2, includes-
    (a) the person registered as the owner of the land constituting such place or area;
    (b) the person who by virtue of any right acquired from a person referred to in paragraph (a), lawfully occupies such place or area;
    (c) Where the person referred to in paragraph (a) or (b) is deceased, a minor, insolvent, insane or otherwise legally incompetent, an executor, administrator, guardian, trustee, liquidator, curator or other person who controls the estate and assets of that person or represents him;
    (d) where the State owns or occupies such place or area, the head of the department under the control of which the place or area is;
    (e) any person under whose control or management such place or area is;

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    seemed not seems

  • sirjay jonson

    Never a dull moment in SA, or for that matter, the world. This is 2013 and much is changing very rapidly. Rand at 9.15 as I write.

    Vital manuscripts at Timbuktu stolen or burned, an enormous explosion at one of Iran’s underground nuclear sites (see http://notlurking.com/businessinsider.com/DJcP,

    and Ramphele finally entering the fray http://dailymaverick.co.za/article/2013-01-28-analysis-mamphela-ramphele-to-the-rescue.

    Looks like the majority of our top political leaders will be female. Witness also Obama’s feminine side, crying while commenting on Newtown; a president of the US crying?

    The fear over the end of the world due to most people’s incorrect understanding that it meant the end of the world was imminent, has passed. What has not passed is the meaning of the final glyph representing their calendar of 5,000 plus years, that the staff of power would pass from the male energy to that of the female, representing positive creative power and nourishing, rather than dominance and self interested exploitation.

    Who doesn’t recognize the horror and cruelty of the past five millenium under male domination. The world is changing rapidly; we can all see it. My call is that what’s upon us is a positive uplifting evolution, the likes of which we’ve never witnessed before . The truth may not always set us free but its certainly the painful growth required to shift and grow.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ Sirjay

    ” … and Ramphele finally entering the fray”

    Sirjay, I can assure you that few of our people will be flocking to Dr Ramphele’s party. She has already revealed herself as UNPATRIOTIC (in the mode of FNB), with her ceaseless criticism of the ANC in government. I must add that her criticism, while at UCT, of affirmative action, won her few friends, outside the ranks of the usual WHITISH types.

    Thanks.

  • Tony in Virginia

    Does anyone see Zuma’s neighbours in the picture here? http://www.iol.co.za/news/politics/nkandla-millions-whitewash-1.1459489

  • Brett Nortje

    Strange modus vivendi. Another murder in Muldersdrift:

    http://www.beeld.com/Suid-Afrika/Nuus/Onder-boewebeleg-20130128

  • Brett Nortje

    http://www.politicsweb.co.za/politicsweb/view/politicsweb/en/page71619?oid=353283&sn=Detail&pid=71616

    Jacob Zuma as the Big Chief – TAU SA
    TAU SA
    25 January 2013

    A sober move to modern-day thinking needed to salvage the ANC as a functioning govt

    CULTURAL CHERRY-PICKING

    Late last year, before the important ANC Manguang leadership conference, State President Jacob Zuma called on his ancestors for help with the outcome of the conference. Pictured in traditional Zulu leopard skin attire and brandishing a spear, Mr. Zuma danced and sang with thousands of others who raised traditional Zulu weapons in the air. A local Zulu chief (nkosi) told Mr. Zuma to use the weapons “to protect himself from his ANC opponents”.

    In the run-up to the same conference at Polokwane in 2007, Mr. Zuma was assured by his followers that this same “traditional ceremony” would protect him and that he would come back as an elected leader. Traditional incense was burnt – a symbol of communicating with the ancestors – and this contact with the ancestors was continued at Zuma’s luxurious, Western-style homestead, according to reports.

    The anomalies here are even more startling when it is considered that Mr. Zuma is an African president of what is purportedly a first-world country whose economy and infrastructure was created by non-African settlers from the middle of the seventeenth century. Mr. Zuma has embraced all the trappings of his first-world office with relish: he has not rejected any of the accoutrements left to him by the previous government – the Parliament, the overseas travel, the salary, the perks, the prestige of the presidency, his magnificent homes and his Western style clothes. He presides over his catered dinners, conferences and weekend retreats, and he enjoys his German cars, his taxpayer-funded staff, his free transport and bodyguards, and all the other elements of a functioning Western society.

    Yet Mr. Zuma talks about “decolonizing the African mind”, of not allowing oneself as an African to be subject to “the white man’s law”, of “clever blacks who read newspapers”. He selectively eschews Western culture, at the same time having no option but to depend on it for survival. Sunday Times editor Joe Latakgomo refers to this concept that has been part of African culture, as the Big Chief principle. “The public is expected to contribute to the resources of the Big Chief because of the demands on his resource base, and from which he is expected to provide for his kith and kin and all and sundry who request his help.”

    Hence Mr. Zuma’s largesse in appointing incompetent but loyal party members and followers to posts for which they are, in a Western sense, hopelessly unqualified, and his boasting of how he has provided welfare grants for fifteen million people when it is the taxpayers who have footed the bill. South Africa is perceived as his tribal ground, over which he presides and dispenses munificence within an uncomfortable first world/third world juxtaposition.

    RESPONSIBILITY

    With the trappings of his presidency goes Western-style responsibility. Mr. Zuma cannot cherry-pick his cultural preferences when it suits him. When he seduces his rural followers with tribal symbols – the bare-hand killing of a bull, the offering of incense to ancestors and the clarion cry of “returning the land to those from whom it was stolen”, he is treading a precipitous path.

    He sees no irony nor feels no shame when he sings about using a machine gun to kill the boers (farmers), and that his cabinet will do the same. He says the courts must not try to thwart government policies. Time magazine of December 24 last year put the ANC in perspective – Time is not a praise-singer, it is a first-world magazine.

    The world has come to terms that the ANC is in reality nothing more than a liberation struggle group that has reverted to type. “The party never really measured up to its myths “, says Time. ” Its guerilla and intelligence wings secretly made use of criminal networks, torture and execution in its fight against apartheid”. Time says the ANC has had “a corrosive effect” on South Africa . It calls Mr. Zuma’s homeland KwaZulu/Natal (KZN) “the corruption and political assassination capital of South Africa “. It says that “at the beginning of 2012, the Auditor General announced he was investigating 1 640 cases of municipal corruption across South Africa , of which 1 103 were in ANC-ruled KZN alone”.

    The ANC is like Vito Corleone in “The Godfather” – after he terrorized and murdered his way to power, he tried to go “respectable”. The ANC is trying to be respectable, but it is mutton dressed as lamb. The world is now recalling where the ANC came from. To salvage itself, the ANC must halt the calls for “land for the people”, cast off the tenets of the Freedom Charter where the mining industry is now the victim, and take on the responsibility to at least preserve the country it received on a plate in 1994.

    A TECTONIC CULTURAL SHIFT

    This needs a mind-set change, a tectonic cultural shift. There is little evidence of this however: Mr. Zuma doesn’t care if the sewage runs down the municipal main streets. He doesn’t sack incompetents, and he appears impervious to criticism. But he has ensured with focused precision his election for a second term. His priorities are skewed. Mr. Zuma cannot have his cake and eat it.

    Either he embraces his role as leader of a first-world country whose citizens are diverse but whose needs can only be met by adhering to a first-world structure, or he must go back to the kraal to sing and dance.

    A cultural get-together with home friends is well and good, but it doesn’t solve the problems at the Union Building . South Africans of all cultures can live with the sangoma whose muti (medicine) is supposed to stop rhino poachers being caught; with witchcraft and bone throwing; with dangerous initiation ceremonies that kill young men, but it cannot survive the huge cultural deficiencies reflected in Mr. Zuma’s governance.

    It is incumbent upon the president to put a halt to the National Union of Mineworkers’ railing against “the evil nature of capitalism” when it is that very system that keeps South Africa afloat. The president should lead by example. He should rein in the mobs disrupting agriculture in the Western Cape . He must denounce the cry that farmers employ “slave labour”. He should immediately reverse affirmative action so that the country’s hospitals, municipalities, schools and civil service can properly function. His Big Chief largesse is corroding a functioning South Africa .

    The president went on a visit to Angola while sectors of the mining industry threw in the towel. We heard nothing practical from him about the mischief being made within mining and agriculture. All we heard were platitudes and wild slogans from political opportunists in both sectors.

    It is not commercial agriculture’s duty to provide workers with a “living wage”. Wages are determined by the market and consequent agreements between agriculture and the government. People are not forced to work on farms. Citizen columnist Andrew Kenny puts things in perspective: “For some farm workers in Africa , R69 a day is a fortune. In Africa , more than half the population has an income of less than R8 per day. In Cuba , the average income is R8 per working day. Every farm worker is free to leave the job whenever he wants, so the notion of ‘slave labour’ is nonsense”.

    Kenny points out that ANC Minister of Agriculture Ms. Joemat-Pettersson has an income of R1,7 million a year, or R3 300 a day. Since 1994, more than a million farm jobs have been lost. More will be lost because of ANC policies but this fact seems to have been lost in the hyperbole.

    A sober move to modern-day thinking may salvage the ANC as a functioning government. Cultural practices are fine if they don’t interfere with the living standards and food security of millions of people. The ancestors are not going to save South Africa . They may not even save Jacob Zuma and the ANC.

  • Jeffman

    Preach it brother preach it……pearls before swine….

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Brett Nortje
    January 29, 2013 at 8:36 am

    “TAU SA”

    Where is Transvaal? It looks like these okes are very much stuck in the past as well?

    There is a huge differences between “celebrating your culture” and celebrating racism or ethnic chauvinism. You should know that Brett. Zuma has up to know maintained a relatively healthy balance, but with the appointment of someone like William the Baboon Makgoba to transform (lingo for screw up) the rest of our HE much as he screwed up UKZN is a step too far. “Africanization” does not imply dumbing down the syllabi to ensure more Black people pass or making bullshit racial references to White men who can’t dance like Africans. Placing more emphasis on indigenous languages not a problem either, in fact that should be welcomed – but then insisting that “African knowledge production” should take precedence over “Eurocentrism” in the year of our lord 2013 – I mean WTF?

    We don’t want to “reverse affirmative action”, we just want to give it a moral basis that addresses the inequalities of the past – therefore we have to address the inbalances and unfortunately they are caused by economy dictated by capitalist relationships. If the TAU can’t see that, well then I’m afraid they are missing the point.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    …Zuma has up to now…

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    “In Cuba , the average income is R8 per working day.”

    Yes – but in Cuba high quality health care and education is for FREE. You can earn as much as you like, it is the like the cost of living is what determines your relative wealth and well being.

  • Brett Nortje

    Mooi! Fokof daarnatoe.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    Brett, Mr Malema was never a “child soldier” in the strict sense. He only spontaneously appeared in scholars’ manifestations of their discontent. But yes, he was young. He had a lot to learn.

    Thanks.

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    President Jacob Zuma might be financially responsible in his personal capacity for over R200-million spent on beefing up security at his Nkandla homestead.

    According to current legislation governing the protection of national key points, the National Key Points Act of 1980 dictates that the owner of a property designated for state protection is personally liable for the costs of security measures demanded by the state.

    “On receipt of a notice, the owner of the national key point concerned shall after consultation with the minister at his own expense take steps to the satisfaction of the minister in respect of the security of the said key point,” section 3.1 of the Act reads.

    Moreover if the owner of a national key point does not undertake the stipulated upgrades they could face a fine of up to R20 000 and/or a prison sentence of up to five years, the Act states.

    The piece of legislation has been used in part to defend state spending at the president’s rural residence and also utilised to defend the secrecy maintained by the government in relation to the work carried out.

    http://mg.co.za/article/2013-01-28-zuma-may-still-be-liable-for-nkandla-costs/

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Brett Nortje
    January 29, 2013 at 10:42 am

    “Mooi! Fokof daarnatoe.”

    Why? When can build a little Cuba here in South Africa – we have all the necessary ingredients to make that dream come true.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    Ozoneguy is right about Cuba.

    True, by “western” standards , 50 years is a little long for one leader to remain boss. But Cuban masses demanded that Fidel, whom they trusted, keep a firm hand of the wheel. Now, they trust his brother, Raul Castro. I read that opposition parties in Cuba may freely organise, provided they are properly registered. Is that true, Ozoneblue?

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)
    January 29, 2013 at 10:57 am

    “According to current legislation governing the protection of national key points, the National Key Points Act of 1980 dictates that the owner of a property designated for state protection is personally liable for the costs of security measures demanded by the state.”

    That sound grossly unreasonable to me maggs. Imagine the state declared your home a national keypoint and now you are personally liable for security upgrades worth millions. That cannot be constitutional, PdV would be the first to point out that such draconian Apartheid era legislation aught to be reformed.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder
    January 29, 2013 at 11:14 am

    MFD – I assume that you know that “having the vote” is a rather useless bourgeois luxury when you are dying of hunger and/or some easily treatable disease. You cannot vote from beyond the grave.

    Please learn to look at the glass half full.

    “But Cuba has developed a health and education system that is the envy of the world, she said, sending 60,000 health workers to poorer countries – many times more than the US or any European country ­- and offering 5,000 medical training scholarships to hard-up US students.

    “If a country of 11 million people can do this there is no reason why other countries cannot,” she said. “What’s the difference between Cubans and other people? We may laugh more, but we face the same situations, we have the same needs. The only difference is the social system we have.”

    Cuban scientists are working with Swiss experts to research vaccines against lung, breast and prostate cancer, she revealed.”

    http://www.camdennewjournal.com/reviews/features/2012/sep/aleida-guevara-ches-daughter-calls-more-countries-follow-cubas-lead-health

  • Brett Nortje

    True.

    Since the collapse of the Soviet Union Cuba is no longer able to feed herself. Where South Africa is headed. Wonder where we’re going to get bail-out packages from…

    Blue Ozone says:
    January 29, 2013 at 11:06 am

    Why? When can build a little Cuba here in South Africa – we have all the necessary ingredients to make that dream come true.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Brett Nortje
    January 29, 2013 at 11:33 am

    These immensely wealthy big bosses “can bail us out” Brett. Anglo American, Glencore, Xtralis – we have over 178 BEE millionaires now not to mention a couple of BILLIONAIRES who can afford to pay 18 million for a buffalo. with 18 million we can build at least one health clinics in Alexander, if we had more qualified architects and engineers working for government instead of earning millions in consulting fees – we could in fact build a couple more.

    I see no problems in there.

  • Brett Nortje

    You’re an azz. You have a hard time interfacing with reality.

    I’m going to tell you what I told the Indian sheriff (the one with political connections who I have a horrible feeling might have assumed the nomdeguerre MaggsJNaidu) when he told me he agrees with Malema about nationalisation….

    Fine. Nationalise the mines. Mining shares will be worthless overnight.

    Who is going to invest in South Africa then? (Quite apart from the international treaties the ANC is wriggling out of so it can attack property ownership.) No tax=no grant=no pensions. Shitforbrains.

    We have an extractive economy. No matter what pipe-dreaming Indians say about beneficiation. The ANC can’t even get textbooks to schools then it wants to bullshiit about ‘beneficiation’. Valli Moosa’s diamond beneficiation?

    Mining and agriculture, the backbone of SA. Both are on the skids. Thanks to the ANC-PF warlords.

    We’re seeing food-riots almost every day.Viva ANC VIVA. Well done.

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Brett Nortje
    January 29, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    LOL Goofy Boy,

    “the one with political connections who I have a horrible feeling might have assumed the nomdeguerre Maggs Naidu”

    If I was the the “Indian sheriff” then you would probably singing this one
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bqz_EvSn-pk

    :P

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    p.s. My only “political connections” are you, Dworky, Ozone Boy and JR!

    WDYSTT?

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ OzoneGuy

    “having the vote” is a rather useless bourgeois luxury when you are dying of hunger”

    You are right. But I take the strongest objection to the implication that the Cuban masses do not “have the vote.” It’s just that 99.9999 % of them for over half a century opted to vote for Fidel Castro. Now, they do so with equal enthusiasm for his younger brother!

    Thanks.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Brett Nortje
    January 29, 2013 at 12:11 pm

    I agree. This rampant corruption you are referring to is an inescapable side-effect of the value system represented by the capitalist system made even worse by this scourge of racial entitlement. It must also be nipped in the butt.

    Once we have politically re-educated our people to understand that the individual can never be allowed to thrive at the expense of the collective, you will see that we will create a much more patriotic, competent and efficient state.

  • Zoo Keeper

    I see some communism is resurfacing.

    That’s fine, but please explain the mess communist countries find themselves in?

    Russia is the prime example, so lets start there.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Zoo Keeper
    January 29, 2013 at 13:22 pm

    You cannot compare South Africa to Russia. And Russia is in an even bigger mess now than it was under communism, so I simply never understand that argument. Not to mention that just like in Hungary it is being overrun now by all types of neo-nazi, racist and ultra nationalist groups. It has generally gone from bad to worse, all over Eastern Europe.

    Cuba, despite a massive, global capitalist onslaught to discredit it headed by the USA, is where the success of socialism shines through.

    “Cuba tops the class in UN development report”

    http://www.greenleft.org.au/node/42708

  • Deloris Dolittle

    @ Blue Ozone,

    ‘if we had more qualified architects and engineers working for government instead of earning millions in consulting fees – we could in fact build a couple more.

    These qualified architects adn engineers you speak of have already been retrenched from goverment thanks to AA and now they are making loads more money doing the same work but as consultants. YOu can’t blame them for this mess. And I don’t even think it will be possible to rehire them as they are still as white as when they got retrenched.

    And as for having black architects/engineers, they are in short supply due to the shitty education system we have and the few that there are will also rather be consultants earning more money than working for government.

  • Deloris Dolittle

    I heard an interesting (shocking) thing on the radio teh other night. Not really to do with the constitution but I doubt many people are aware of this.

    The SA government is the only shareholder of ESKOM. Currently they claim 0.9% of every rand we all pay for our electicity. I’m not to sure whether this is a dividend payment or what. It has now come to light during the current round of hearings on ESKOM’s request to have a 16% tarrif increase per year for the next 5 years that government wants to increase this ‘dividend payment’ to 7.8%. This is an almost 800% increase in their income and yet they, as far as it seems, invest nothing in it. ESKOM raises all their funds from loans and what they charge for electricity. More money going to into the black hole that is our government.

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Deloris Dolittle
    January 29, 2013 at 15:44 pm

    “It has now come to light during the current round of hearings on ESKOM’s request to have a 16% tarrif increase per year for the next 5 years that government wants to increase this ‘dividend payment’ to 7.8%. This is an almost 800% increase in their income and yet they, as far as it seems, invest nothing in it. ESKOM raises all their funds from loans and what they charge for electricity. More money going to into the black hole that is our government.”

    Agree. If that is true, it is totally unacceptable.

    More on the “success” of Russia – For the New York Times, Russian Poverty Is News NOT Fit to Print

    http://foreignpolicyblogs.com/2008/06/15/for-the-new-york-times-russian-poverty-is-news-not-fit-to-print/

    Now how is that for manufacturing propaganda?

  • http://www.ozoneblue.co.za/ Blue Ozone

    Rome dimming Colosseum lights to protest Hungary’s far-right Jobbik party

    http://www.jta.org/news/article/2013/01/24/3117671/lights-of-coliseum-in-rome-to-dim-in-protest-of-right-wing-party

    Hungary used to be a relatively prosperous and progressive socialist state. Same story in SA now we have BC/ultra-nationalist leaders like Mngxitama and Malema running around calling for a genocide on Whites. We have socalled “White liberals” constantly indulging in anti-White smear campaigns. We have chauvenist Africanist vice-chancellors demonizing and frog-marching Indians off our university campuses.

    Almost everywhere you go on this planet, once you have compromised on nonracial class politics ultra-nationalism/racism/xenophobia/anti-Semitism fills that void.

    It is a sign of the times.

  • Maggs Naidu – Yikes, another seven years! (maggsnaidu@hotmail.com)

    Lies, more lies and damned politicians!

    “[Free state Premier Ace Magashule] last week told us the process is ‘non-existent’. When we pushed for an explanation, he told us to get a dictionary.

    http://www.timeslive.co.za/thetimes/2013/01/31/board-exposes-magashule-s-government

  • Brett Nortje

    Maggs, far more important than what is happening at Sasolburg is what is happening in Nala Municipality.

    You see, the ConCourt set the tone for public administration in South Africa in Swartbooi (which is when I started calling it the ‘ConCourt’.)

    To put it shortly: The ANC Town Councillors of Bothaville decided they were gatvol of the tendencies the white tendencies of the DA’s councillors so they told ‘em this is a house of the Revolution an revolutionary house to siddown and shut up or jump and when the DA wouldn’t frogmarched them off the premises as Cde OBS is wont to put it. The DA sued on this abrogation of their constitutional rights. The racist Dutchmen on the Free State High Court agreed with them and held the ANC councillors individually liable for costs. The ConCourt decided to give these racists with tendencies a snotklap and dragged ‘municipal privilege’ out their …er, hat.

    Of course, thanks to the ConCourt, now the Spirit of Bothaville is generalised across the country. Including Sasolburg.

  • Brett Nortje

    http://www.politicsweb.co.za/politicsweb/view/politicsweb/en/page71654?oid=354163&sn=Detail&pid=71616

    17 failed ANC councillor candidates now city of Joburg officials – DA
    Cllr Toni Molefe
    30 January 2013

    Toni Molefe says information disclosed at a recent council meeting, no names provided

    City of Joburg: Unsuccessful ANC political candidate’s now city officials

    At least 17 ANC members who did not become councillors during the 2011 local government elections are now holding positions as officials in the City of Johannesburg. This was revealed during a formal question session in a recent council sitting. Despite further questioning, I was not provided with the names of these officials or which departments they currently work in.

    The ANC’s policy of cadre deployment has infected every level of government from big state parastatals through to municipal and local government. Loyalty to the party trumps merit to do the job and is always to the detriment of good governance and efficient service delivery.

    At metro level, one of the most basic levels of government, the incompetence which derives from cadre deployment will directly impact the most vulnerable citizens of our city. In order to prevent power abuse and patronage, the City of Johannesburg needs to appoint qualified professionals as city officials. Until this point, transparency and improved service delivery will never become a reality.

    South Africa has witnessed the damage which cadre deployment has done to local government and even the ANC itself has come as close as it will to admitting the failures of this policy. If the City of Johannesburg truly cares about its residents and providing them with quality services, they will do away with cadre deployment as well as publicly reveal the names of their officials and their appropriate qualifications, if any.

    Statement issued by Cllr Toni Molefe, DA Deputy Chief Whip, City of Johannesburg, January 30 2013