Constitutional Hill

Some thoughts of the rise of traditional leaders

When the Constitutional Assembly drafted the final Constitution in 1994 and 1995, it dragged its feet in finalising the provisions dealing with traditional leadership because it was not clear how such a system could be accommodated – except in a purely symbolic way – within the democratic system of government established by the Constitution. In the end, chapter 12 of the Constitution, which contains provisions regarding traditional leaders, provided for such leaders in rather wishy-washy language, stating (in section 211(1)) that “the institution, status and role of traditional leadership, according to customary law, are recognised subject to the Constitution”.

Given the fact that section 1 of the Constitution states unequivocally that the Republic of South Africa is one, sovereign, democratic state founded, inter alia, on the values of non-sexism, universal adult suffrage, and a multi-party system of democratic government to ensure accountability, responsiveness and openness, section 211 guarantees no more than a symbolic or ceremonial role for traditional leaders. This is because traditional leadership is by its nature undemocratic and not accountable, responsive or open and hence not compatible with democracy if such leadership is going to be given a governance role.

As Prof Christina Murray pointed out, the fact that traditional leadership has survived at all in the democratic era is quite remarkable. This is because – as in most other parts of Africa – South Africa’s traditional leaders were co-opted by the colonial powers to help it govern rural areas. Ugandan academic Mahmood Mamdani famously described colonial tribal rule as “rule by decentralised despots”. This was also the case in South Africa. In particular, from the early 1950s under the apartheid government, the development of legislative and administrative structures in the Bantustans saw traditional leadership used to enforce apartheid and to act as local government rulers in Bantustans and retain control over black South Africans living in rural areas.

The central government’s power of patronage (which remains to this day in the form of the payment of large “salaries” to traditional leaders) was encapsulated in the apartheid government’s power to depose and install chiefs, making the chiefs an effective tool in implementing apartheid policies. Under the corrupt apartheid system the rewards for compliance could be great. As Maloka and Gordon relate, in the Transkei, where 30 chiefs were deposed between 1955 and 1958 for resistance to the demands of the apartheid government, Kaiser Matanzima of the lesser Thembu royal house won the favour of the apartheid authorities and later became president of the Bantustan.

Murray again:

Colonial and then apartheid structures also meant that chiefs increasingly turned to the government rather than their subjects for support. Van Kessel and Van Oomen say: ‘[S]tate recognition [became] more vital for the chieftaincy than popular support. Chiefs had become civil servants, to be hired, fired, paid and, if necessary, created by the government’. Expected to deliver services with no real sources of income, they used some of apartheid’s most vicious laws to support their enterprise. For instance, under apartheid’s system of migrant labour, African men recruited from rural areas to work on the mines had to have their ‘passes’ and permits renewed annually in their home village. Chiefs administered the pass book system and ran the labour bureaux where permits were renewed – and they received a ‘registration fee’ for their efforts.

Given these facts it is surprising that traditional leaders have managed to ingratiate themselves with the African National Congress in the post-apartheid era. It did so by forming the Congress of Traditional Leaders of South Africa (CONTRALESA) in 1987, just as the uprising against the apartheid state was reaching a new intensity. Chiefs saw the writing on the wall for the apartheid system (and was also being impoverished because of the collapse of the pass law system which generated much of the Chiefs’ income) and turned to the ANC. Nevertheless, during the constitutional negotiations, gender activists and “modernists” completely outwitted and outvoted the Chiefs.

Thus the tepid endorsement of traditional leaders in Chapter 12 of the Constitution as well as several provisions in the Bill of Rights which made clear that cultural rights as well as customary law would henceforth be subject to the discipline of the other provisions of the Bill of Rights – including section 9 which prohibits unfair discrimination on any ground – including sex, gender and sexual orientation.

These provisions were unsuccessfully challenged by CONTRALESA during the certification of the 1996 Constitution by the Constitutional Court. In that judgment the Court made the following statement about the difficulties of marrying a system of traditional leadership with democracy:

In a purely republican democracy, in which no differentiation of status on grounds of birth is recognised, no constitutional space exists for the official recognition of any traditional leaders, let alone a monarch. Similarly, absent an express authorisation for the recognition of indigenous law, the principle of equality before the law … could be read as presupposing a single and undifferentiated legal regime for all South Africans with no scope for the application of customary law – hence the need for expressly articulated CPs [Constitutional Principles] recognising a degree of cultural pluralism with legal and cultural, but not necessarily governmental, consequences.

But despite the incompatibility of undemocratic traditional leadership with a constitutional democracy, some elements of traditional leadership and customary law were retained. This attempt to accommodate the chieftaincy – despite its tainted past as enforcers of apartheid – was animated by both emotional as well as a practical considerations.

Given the colonial encounter and the devastation it wrought on Africans, traditional leaders have been able – despite their dark, collaborationist past – to promote themselves as symbols of the dignity of African communities and cultures – supposedly untainted by colonialism. Although it is, of course, not possible to return to a pre-colonial era in which traditional leaders, applying customary law untainted by the ravages of capitalism and the greed and dishonesty that always accompanies it, there is a strong yearning – sometimes expressed and sometimes unspoken and unexamined – for such a symbolic return to a different way of life which would signal some kind of rejection of colonialism and European imposed structures and legal regimes.

Second, millions of South Africans still live under a system of customary law, which often provides an easy and cheap mechanism to resolve disputes. Given the fact that many rural citizens are not able to gain access to magistrates courts because such courts are far away from where they live and because they lack resources to make effective use of such courts, and given the fact that, culturally, the common law or the legislation passed by Parliament do not always speak to the ways they live, organise their lives or their attitudes towards those in their community, customary law still thrives in some parts of South Africa.

It is against this background that traditional leaders (who are the main interpreters and enforcers of customary law) are making a political comeback. But because many aspects of customary law are incompatible with the Constitution, given that traditional leaders are not democratically chosen and are in no way independent (as they are paid and can be removed by the government) and given, further, the fact that many traditional leaders have been corrupted by money and greed, there are serious problems with the system relied on by so many people living in rural areas. While the system works relatively well in some places, in others it has been abandoned.

It is therefore curious that with the Traditional Courts Bill, the government is seeking to re-impose a fundamentally undemocratic system that is incompatible with the separation of powers and an independent judiciary – even on those communities who have rejected it. Why our democratic government would propose to pass a law that would potentially bolster the autocratic powers of unelected Chiefs remains difficult to fathom.

Perhaps the answer lies in naked electoral politics. The move therefore might have much to do with the perception among some ANC leaders (which might not be true) that by cosying up to Chiefs the ANC will be gaining more votes in rural areas. It presupposes that Chiefs are universally popular – which they are not – and that rural people by and large will not or cannot think for themselves and will allow themselves to be told how to vote by their respective Chiefs.

Where Chiefs are wise and benevolent and where loyalty to a Chiefs is strong, a Chief might well have an important influence on his “subjects”, but in other areas it is far from clear that support for the ANC by corrupted and unpopular Chiefs will translate into a mass vote for the ANC.

In any event, the Traditional Courts Bill in its current form is clearly incompatible with the Constitution and even if it is passed it will never stand the test of constitutionality. Why some in the ANC therefore seem to be hell-bent on passing this law – despite the dubious gains – remains a mystery.

  • Gwebecimele
  • Gwebecimele
  • Gwebecimele

    Killing Telkom slowly, R10bn rand down the drain and more to go.

    Hands up all those who supported the Vodacom/Vodafone deal!!!

    http://www.techcentral.co.za/kt-cuts-offer-price-for-telkom-stake/31650/

    KT Corp is offering R25,60/share, down by nearly a third from the R36,06/share that had been proposed when Telkom first announced the discussions by way of a statement to shareholders on 14 October 2011. Telkom’s share price has fallen by 22,7% in the past six months and by 37,4% from a year ago.

    It’s also attached a new pre-condition to its proposed investment: the right to walk away from the deal if it doesn’t like the outcome of probes by the competition authorities into Telkom’s past practices.

  • Pierre De Vos

    An interesting illustration where custom clashes with an assertion of agency: http://www.iol.co.za/news/south-africa/forced-circumcision-son-takes-parents-on-1.454711

  • Sine

    Pierre De Vos says:
    May 8, 2012 at 12:25 pm

    Pity the story does not mention the fact that his two friends who introduced him to the church and the Pastor himself, actually went to the bush to be men in the traditional sense. Pity it also does not tell us what happened to his religion when he went to study at UFS. It also fails to report that other male members of his church actually disappear for a month to get traditionally circumcised and then come to the church to apologise and say they were forced. Had he focused on his studies instead of gathering pointless publicity, he would be an esteemed member of our community now.

  • http://www.truecents.blogspot.com/ freeboot

    “Why some in the ANC therefore seem to be hell-bent on passing this law – despite the dubious gains – remains a mystery.”

    I think that what you’ve left out of account is Zuma’s social conservatism. He represents an authoritarian “tendency” that feels ill-at-ease with liberalism. The Mogoeng appointment can be understood as an attempt to tame the judicial infrastructure by placing it under sympathetic stewadship.

    Part of Zuma’s promise was that he understood the importance of bringing social conservatives into the fold. His methods of doing so are uninspiring (at best.)

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    Sine
    May 8, 2012 at 13:08 pm

    Hey Sne,

    Would Dmwangi approve?

    He was tied up, taken to the bush, circumcised against his will, then forced to eat the skin taken from his penis.

    What if it become an acquired taste?

    Should I stop using a public loo?

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    freeboot
    May 8, 2012 at 13:22 pm

    LOL Freeboot,

    “The Mogoeng appointment can be understood as an attempt to tame the judicial infrastructure by placing it under sympathetic stewadship.”

    The Mogoeng appointment has turned into a circus with the JSC looking like a bunch of clowns.

    Let’s see who, if any, of any worthy candidates now apply for the vacancy – even begging has not helped.

    Our CJ, if he has any self-respect left, should follow the example of outgoing SANRAL CEO, Nazi Alli.

  • Dmwangi

    ‘I think that what you’ve left out of account is Zuma’s social conservatism. He represents an authoritarian “tendency” that feels ill-at-ease with liberalism. The Mogoeng appointment can be understood as an attempt to tame the judicial infrastructure by placing it under sympathetic stewadship.’

    The liberalism of ‘On Liberty’ is incompatible with African political theory.

  • Dmwangi

    ‘This is because traditional leadership is by its nature undemocratic and not accountable, responsive or open and hence not compatible with democracy if such leadership is going to be given a governance role.’

    This passage is stunning. It shows such an utter disregard for history or the truth and it ‘outs’ this post as little more than naked propaganda.

    The traditional leaders have caught PdV’s ire by speaking out against homosexual acts and now he’s decided he’ll do his part to undermine, impugn, expose, etc. Classic pink mafia tactic. Don’t debate the philosophical issues. Engage in ad hominem warfare and try to win the public relations battle.

    Here’s my free counsel: do not disturb a sleeping elephant. Most guys in the locations are not yet aware of some of PdV’s favoured constitutional provisions. Foist some LGBTQ radicalism on them and you’ll have a backlash like you can hardly imagine.

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    Dmwangi
    May 8, 2012 at 14:50 pm

    Hey Dm,

    Did you eat your bit of vleis with pap?

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    Dmwangi
    May 8, 2012 at 14:50 pm

    LMAO!

    “Here’s my free counsel: do not disturb a sleeping elephant. Most guys in the locations are not yet aware of some of PdV’s favoured constitutional provisions. Foist some LGBTQ radicalism on them and you’ll have a backlash like you can hardly imagine.”

    Is this spontaneous or do you think long and hard before coming out with such crap?????

  • Dmwangi

    Perhaps I should remind that it is not only the traditional leaders. There is quite a wave of democratic inertia that runs in the same direction:

    http://features.pewforum.org/africa/question.php?q=16

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    Dmwangi
    May 8, 2012 at 15:00 pm

    On a serious note, Dm – do you know JR?

    He’s our soothsayer.

    He died but his spirit is still with us – sort of like that of our ancestors.

    But you can still ask JR what will happen when the “sleeping elephant” is disturbed.

    If you’re shy to speak with the dead ask Dworky to tell you what will happen!

  • Deloris Dolittle

    I find this article interesting because of a situation I am currently dealing with at work. We are in the planning phase of building a new mine. All construction will be handled by external contractors. The company I work with has a very good working relationship with the 6 Traditional Authorities (communities) that border our opperations. We have agreed with the external contractors that all labour they will need to hire in for the construction of the project will, as far as possible, be employeed from these communities. Now the Amakhosi from these communities have requested that we pay each Traditional Authority a fee for each person hired from these respective communities. The more things change the more they seem to stay the same. I have advise my bossed to consider this request very carefully.

  • Gwebecimele

    @ DD

    That sounds like “Chief Labour Broker” just call Vavi and you will save some money.

  • Gwebecimele

    Now we know why JR left us in a hurry.
    Sirjay is green with envy.
    Lots of Bunga-Bunga in the land of milk and honey.

    http://www.iol.co.za/lifestyle/love-sex/marriage/just-grab-a-man-aussie-women-told-1.1291908

  • Mayaya

    Prof. Some traditional leaders prostituted their roles to further the ends of apartheid and in the process pervated traditional leadership and its institutions. However, this must not be used to foreclose on pissbilities of reform.

    Your opposition to traditional leadership and customary law forecloses on any potential reform of the institution to align it with the Constitution.

    You seem to forget that common law grew from traditions and customs in England and Wales. Even in continental Europe most legal principles grew from customs in those traditional communities and only became codified in the past 500 years.

    Allow the instutitional reform to be align to the Constitution. If you do that, your will be exhibithing open mindness which you seem to require of traditional leaders.

  • Dmwangi

    @Maggs:

    So you and PdV think 86% of your fellow citizens are morally inferior (http://features.pewforum.org/africa/question.php?q=16) yet you talk non-stop kak about the virtues of democracy, grassroots activism, democratic values, etc.

    The contradictions in think are staggering. As Frankfurt would say, ‘Bullshit’ is abounding.

  • Sine

    @Maggs, LOL! No comments.

  • Dmwangi

    @Mayaya:

    Well said.

    @All:

    Anyone know how much it costs to endow a legal chair? We are in desperate need of scholars who can advance African jurisprudence and I’m willing to commit funds.

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    Dmwangi
    May 8, 2012 at 16:00 pm

    LOL DM,

    “So you and PdV think 86% of your fellow citizens are morally inferior ”

    You’re the mutt who thinks “(m)ost guys in the locations” are crazed animals.

    But here’s a warning especially for you : be careful of the things you say here cos history may just repeat itself – http://www.iol.co.za/scitech/science/discovery/dinosaur-fart-may-have-warmed-earth-1.1291514

  • Dmwangi

    ‘You’re the mutt who thinks “(m)ost guys in the locations” are crazed animals.”

    Hey,

    Don’t use quotes when I never said anything remotely like that.

    I said they will not respond apathetically to having LGBTQ radicalisms foisted on them.

    Now are all 86% of us who believe homosexual acts are immoral, morally inferior??

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    Dmwangi
    May 8, 2012 at 16:29 pm

    DM,

    :Don’t use quotes when I never said anything remotely like that.”

    Pah – you’re kinda like Jessica Leandra Dos Santos – see May 8, 2012 at 14:50 pm for the nonsense you wrote.

    “I said they will not respond apathetically to having LGBTQ radicalisms foisted on them.”

    Now you talk even more nonsense – nothing is being “foisted on them”.

    Do something useful – go to the ritual school and eat some left overs!

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    p.s. “Now are all 86% of us who believe homosexual acts are immoral, morally inferior??” – no.

    Just stupid!

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    Dmwangi
    May 8, 2012 at 16:04 pm

    Hey Dm,

    “Anyone know how much it costs to endow a legal chair?”

    Not much if you want to “endow” Sylvia Tamale.

    She requires just common sense. Ok in your case that’s a lot to ask :P

    Like she has done many times before, Tamale once again maintained her stand on that contentious and emotive issue—homosexuality: “It involves two consenting adults who are aware of what they are doing.’’ She said that as long as gays did not infringe on anyone’s freedom, they should be allowed to do as they wanted.

    It is such statements by which she has been quoted in the media that make it easy for people to misunderstand and misrepresent what Sylvia Tamale stands for. And in a society like Uganda where people get prickly over things that they either tend to avoid, not acknowledge or sweep under the carpet, anyone who draws attention to them will be perceived with caution and treated with suspicion.

    Yet Tamale chooses to raise her voice on issues like the right of sex workers to earn a living, the right for adults to enjoy adult entertainment and leisure like ebimansulo (striptease shows), and the recognition of human rights for marginalised groups such as sexual minorities and refugees, addressing the injustices in the law. Her arguments? That as long as these minorities’ activities do not infringe on the freedoms and rights of others, they should be granted their right to freely do as they please.

    http://www.monitor.co.ug/SpecialReports/ugandaat50/-/1370466/1394360/-/uid089z/-/index.html

    p.s. About sylvia tamale
    • Tamale holds a Bachelor’s degree in Law from MUK, a Master’s degree from Harvard Law School and a PhD in Sociology and Feminist Studies from the University of Minnesota.
    • Dean of the Faculty of Law at Makerere University, from 2004-2008, she was the first female to hold the position.
    • Founded and serves as coordinator of the Law, Gender & Sexuality Research Project, Makerere University.
    • Guest lecturer at several universities, including Cape Town, Pretoria, Wisconsin and Zimbabwe.
    • Awards won include: Inspirational African Feminists Award for being the first woman to hold the Dean of Law position at Makerere University in 2011, the University of Minnesota Distinguished Leadership Award for Internationals in 2003, African Studies Association International Visitors Award in 1999, a Fulbright-MacArthur Scholarship from 1993-1997, and Uganda Law Society Prize for the best performance at the Law Development Centre in 1990.

  • Dmwangi

    ‘PhD in Sociology and Feminist Studies….’

    That’s fine. But as I said, ‘On Liberty’ is not compatible w/African jurisprudence. Hence, the lack of traction this woman’s ideas obtain. Probably no portion of Ugandan law has been influenced by her advocacy.

  • sirjay jonson

    To my mind, the only pertinent question with regard to the traditional leaders is:

    Does their mode of operation meet the requirement of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa? Yes or no? Simple.

    A second question which begs to be answered is: why are the folk (or are they serfs) under the control of traditional leaders not given title to land. Seems to me there are many angry demands for the minority cultures to turn over their land, and without compensation I gather, and very little asked, let alone demanded from the traditional leaders (note I don’t use the term ‘elders’ – that would imply selfless wisdom and true caring for their people).

    Just asking.

  • sirjay jonson

    Gwebecimele
    May 8, 2012 at 15:48 pm

    Envious: hardly. At my age I’ve already have far too many women in my life, and for that matter, far too many children, which I might add it was the women who insisted on. Expensive, the lot of them.

  • sirjay jonson

    How about a daily latin quote herewith, as it seems relevant to all South Africa’s challenges:

    Forsan et haec olim meminisse iuvabit – Perhaps someday we will look back upon these matters with joy.

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    Dmwangi
    May 8, 2012 at 17:21 pm

    hehehehe!

    As backward as expected.

    But welcome to South Africa – we’ll refine you yet!

  • radix lecti

    sirjay jonson
    May 8, 2012 at 18:18 pm

    Radicitus, comes!

    Sola lingua bona est lingua mortua.

  • Dmwangi

    ‘Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!
    May 8, 2012 at 18:48 pm
    Dmwangi
    May 8, 2012 at 17:21 pm

    hehehehe!

    As backward as expected.

    But welcome to South Africa – we’ll refine you yet!’

    Er, 86% of S. Africans agree with me.

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    Dmwangi
    May 8, 2012 at 20:43 pm

    Crap Man,

    “Er, 86% of S. Africans agree with me.”

    Equality is a cornerstone of our democracy – there may be a handful of nuts who don’t want equality but those are insignificant.

    Millions of our neighbours live here too and many more are on their way cos it’s such a cool place to live in.

  • Dmwangi

    ‘Millions of our neighbours live here too and many more are on their way cos it’s such a cool place to live in.’

    Agreed. But 86% is hardly a handful — or are the ‘nuts’ the other 14%? If so, I agree.

  • Maggs Naidu – maggsnaidu@hotmail.com

    Dm,

    Did you know that Ssuth Africa has been escalated to level 6 or something serious by Genocide watch?

  • Dmwangi

    ‘Maggs Naidu – maggsnaidu@hotmail.com
    May 8, 2012 at 22:11 pm
    Dm,

    Did you know that Ssuth Africa has been escalated to level 6 or something serious by Genocide watch?’

    No worries, mate. Just more alarmism. I’m more worried about the ‘genocide’ of skills in the youth labour market. That should be occupying more attention.

  • Maggs Naidu – maggsnaidu@hotmail.com

    Dmwangi
    May 8, 2012 at 22:35 pm

    Well said Dm,

    “I’m more worried about the ‘genocide’ of skills in the youth labour market. That should be occupying more attention.”

    Now there’s a conversation we should be having.

    Let it roll!

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    @ Pierre

    “it is surprising that traditional leaders have managed to ingratiate themselves with the African National Congress in the post-apartheid era.”

    I, too, was shocked. I thought the ANC was irrevocably committed to liberal individualism or, at worst, some variant of slightly tepid social democracy!

    Thanks.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    Dmwangi, I now see so-called traditional (conservative) “African” values as no more than the imposition of “Christian” missionaries. These pious hegemons were anxious to crush the spontaneous pansexuality of the devout practitioners of polymorphous perversity from whom all of us descend!

  • Dmwangi

    MDF:

    Of course this is what you ‘see.’ Being white, totally ignorant of African culture and predisposed to viewing the world through ‘pink’ lenses, would give you that perception.

    Feel free to proselytize the 86% of your fellow citizens who disagree. I wish you luck!

    Maggs:

    What are your thought on compulsory national youth service?

  • Maggs Naidu – maggsnaidu@hotmail.com

    Dmwangi
    May 9, 2012 at 0:47 am

    Dm,

    I have reservations over Compulsory National Service, but it may well be one of the realistic options for us.

    Compulsory intern/apprenticeship programmes for businesses of say 5 to 10% of their workforce will go a long way to solving the challenges we face.

  • ewald

    @Maggs I suspect Dm will need a BIG pot of pap, he does mention a sleeping elephant somewhere doesn’t he? Not sure you know, the reason for eating the foreskin is that it is the safest way to dispose of it, as burying put it at risk of being found by the tikoloshe who will then dispatch it to the nearest witch doctor and next thing the initiate has an evil spell over him. So perhaps your insistence of wanting to know what he did with his is rather apt as his thinking processes appears to be rather clouded…

    Two far more disturbing myths is:

    1. Ukukhutshwa kwefutha, the belief that the amakrwala (initiates undergoing their 6-month ‘apprenticeship’ under the elders after circumcision) must have sex with someone who is not their regular partner to cleanse themselves of all bad luck. The real reason of course is to see if the penis is working, a chance not to be taken with the partner..:(

    2. That water intake after circumcision delays healing of the wound. The thinking — if you can call it that — is that the water mysteriously finds its way to the wound and prevents it from drying out, so water intake is severely curbed and the wound tightly wrapped. Hence most of the deaths are caused by dehydration resulting in kidney and heart failure, and amputations due to sepsis as the nutrients and anti-bodies necessary for healing and infection prevention simply can’t get to the wound.

    Initiates who suffer amputations are called intaka impuku = bird+ rat = bat = neither bird nor rat = neither boy nor man and they are treated separately from the boys and the men during traditional ceremonies. You can imagine living without a penis in a patriarchal society where what you can and can’t do with your penis define everything about who you are…

    This puerile resistance to commonly accepted knowledge of human physiology amounts to nothing else but criminal ignorance. But then these are ‘the instructions of the ancestors’…:(

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    ewald
    May 9, 2012 at 2:07 am

    Hey Ewald,

    “Ukukhutshwa kwefutha” and “intaka impuku” – surely those kind of things cannot be happening in this day and age.

    Did you make it up????

  • Brett Nortje

    Awesome post by Ewald.

    I hate giving away a competitive advantage, but do so for the greater good:
    Dr Lennon’s Staaldruppels.

  • Brett Nortje

    Ja, Annelize?

    Vertel ons bietjie oor vuurwapenlisensiehernuwings wat 8 jaar neem…

    Minister moet sê oor Mdluli
    2012-05-09 00:52 Philda Essop
    Kaapstad. – Nathi Mthe­thwa, minister van polisie, sal straks die voortslepende sage oor lt.genl. Richard Mdluli, omstrede hoof van die misdaadintelligensie-eenheid, aan die parlement moet verduidelik.

    Sindi Chikunga, voorsitter van die parlementêre portefeuljekomitee oor polisie, het gister gesê die komitee gaan dit oorweeg om Mthethwa te vra om te kom verduidelik.

    Sy glo nie dat Mdluli self genooi moet word nie.

    “Ons sal dit egter oorweeg om die minister na die komitee te nooi.”

    ’n Datum is nog nie vasgestel waarop dié besluit geneem gaan word nie.

    Mdluli is op omstrede wyse heraangestel in sy pos nadat aanklagte van bedrog en korrupsie teen hom teruggetrek is.

    Hy is onder meer daarvan beskuldig dat hy poste in die polisie se geheime diens, huise, luukse voertuie en vakansies verskaf het aan familielede wat geen ondervinding in polisiesake het nie.

    Mdluli is ook verlede jaar van moord, menseroof, diefstal en bedrog aangekla, maar die aanklagte teen hom is teruggetrek.

    Daar word bespiegel dat hy die volgende polisiehoof kan word.

    Dianne Kohler Barnard, DA-LP, het amptelik ’n mosie by die komitee ingedien waarin sy vra dat buitengewone vergaderings oor die Mdluli-kwessie gehou word.

    Sy wil hê die komitee moet spesifiek kyk na die besluit om tugstappe teen Mdluli te laat vaar en die daaropvolgende besluit om hom weer in diens te neem.

    Chikunga het ná die komiteevergadering gesê sy opper gedurig die Mdluli-kwessie teenoor die minister.

    “Ek is in kontak met die minister oor dié kwessie. Ek bel hom en vra hom daaroor. Ons beskou dit as baie ernstig. Ons kan nie voorgee dat die aantygings nie gemaak word nie,” het Chikunga gesê.

    Annelize van Wyk, ANC-LP, het daarop gewys dat die portefeuljekomitee toesig hou oor die uitvoerende gesag en as die komitee die minister wil vra om sekere kwessies op te klaar, moet hy dit doen.

    “Laat ons dit egter op die gepaste tyd doen. Ek sê nie laat ons wag totdat die kwessie hom in die media uitgespeel het nie. Dit sal onverantwoordelik wees om dit te doen.”

    Chikunga het dele van die Suid-Afrikaanse Wet op die Polisiediens wat met aanstellings en skorsing verband hou, aangehaal en gesê die komitee moet besluit of dit op Mdluli van toepassing is.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    Dmwangi, it stirs profound regret in my heart to hear you perpetuating the invented traditions of the whitist missionaries and colonial administrators, who, as part of their civilising mission, imposed “Christian” morality on our people.

    And why does the fact that I have a Slavic name render me whitish, anyway?

  • Maggs Naidu – maggsnaidu@hotmail.com

    Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder
    May 9, 2012 at 9:35 am

    Dworky,

    “And why does the fact that I have a Slavic name render me whitish”

    Indeed.

    There’s no such thing as White Slaves anyway!

  • Gwebecimele

    OB

    This is your week. Born-frees are having a go at racism on twitter and now here is a story that you must read to your son.

    http://www.timeslive.co.za/local/2012/05/09/black-pupil-turned-away-from-trials

  • Gwebecimele

    @ Maggs & ewald

    “Did you make it up????”

    Yes, he did. As expected, he will get support from the likes of Brett who have very little expectation or respect for black culture.

    I challenge you to take “Friday the 13th” and make similar generalisation about whites.

    Ngubani ingcibi yakho ewald?

  • Sine

    ewald says:
    May 9, 2012 at 2:07 am

    Uchane intilo ngontolo nto kanantsi. Your post though seems to pass off what you have mentioned as a universal occurance than exceptions. Kindly attend to this as we both know initiates who have amputations are those who do not take care of themselves as instructed or those who have noone to look after them. I am sure you have witnessed or heard of cases of initiates who arm themselves with machete’s (celemba) in order to avoid following instructions from their traditional care-givers (amakhankatha) or simply flee.

    Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go! says:
    May 9, 2012 at 8:54 am

    They are very much alive Maggs. Sometimes we follow traditional routes not because they make sense or they dovetail with our own beliefs but because our communities are not ready for the (modern?) ideas that we have. However, we are introducing changes bit by bit to accommodate the different times. For instance, initially initiates were not allowed to have their cellphones with them until their return. That has changed now as some initiates could need help whilst those who are responsible for them are having a good time in the villages or townships. So that rule against cellphones had to be changed or interpreted benevolently in favour of initiates.

  • Mikhail Dworkin Fassbinder

    Gwebe, I cannot fathom why Pierre has not posted anything on the Twitter furore. It is all very well to go on about CONTRALESA, SAPS, corruption, etc. But we will get nowhere in this country until we overcome FHM model’s RACISM!

    Thanks.

  • Zoo Keeper

    Prof

    You display a complete lack of understanding of what life is like at the coal-face. The chiefs are as useful to the ANC of today as they were to the Apartheid government. Not all chiefs are bad guys of course, but more than a fair few are.

    When the ANC is looking down the barrel of a serious loss of voters, they will use the chiefs to coerce the local populace their way. And they’ll do it the old way, with threats of or actual violence.

    Simple stuff really. They are the enforcers of voting in the rural areas. No private property rights for the masses, no security and fear of the chief. They will do as they are told.

    Its Real Politik 101!

  • Gwebecimele

    MDF

    Book me at Milpark with those two models and I will save the nation the effort.

  • Zoo Keeper

    Gwebe

    It was a monkey?! Darn, must have accidentally carried on past midnight…

  • Gwebecimele
  • Gwebecimele

    Quote of the week
    Moerane SC at the CC.

    “If he has an eye on a person that fits the bill, the constitution gives him that power,” Moerane said.

  • Brett Nortje

    Zoo Keeper says:
    May 9, 2012 at 13:07 pm

    Spot the corrupting influence of one Maggs J Naidu? The proverbial apple.

    The Gwebecimele of old was staid. Well-mannered. Would never have tried risque jokes.

  • joeslis

    Zoo Keeper:

    “And they’ll do it the old way, with threats of or actual violence”

    Oh, I dunno: violence usually gets messy and tends to attract unfavourable headlines in the press. Why not just resort to withholding the chiefs’ princely salaries and benefits?

  • Zoo Keeper

    Joeslis

    The chiefs will be using the big stick on the populace under the pay of the State, not the ANC on the chiefs if that’s what you understood?

    The chiefs will be the enforcers for the ANC come election time, mark my words…

  • Ricky

    DM, I wonder what you mean by ’PhD in Sociology and Feminist Studies…’ – it seems like you are somehow dismissive of this? And why not also mention her Masters from Harvard Law School or her Bachelors from Makerere?

    And, DM, according to the same poll with the 86 %, 75% of South Africans find polygamy wrong. In your view, does that not mean that the state should prohibit polygamy? Or is that different than homosexual behavior because it is part of “African tradition”?

  • ewald

    @Maggs and Sine and Gwebs: “Did I make it up”..I have a fertile imagination and may even look under my bed for the tikoloshe but not like this… Lived in Eastern Cape most my life, people don’t know what’s ACTUALLY happening. Likes of Sine and Gwebs..well that’s kinda expected but must say Sine that YOU must “Kindly attend to this..” and not me.

    Since Sine says “I am sure you have witnessed or heard of cases of initiates who arm themselves with machete’s (celemba) in order to avoid following instructions from their traditional care-givers (amakhankatha) or simply flee.”..I can’t be making that up Maggs, it’s straight from the machete’s mouth. What a culture where people are arming themselves with machete’s..no surprise these men are as violent as they are.

  • Maggs Naidu – Zuma must go!

    ewald
    May 9, 2012 at 22:43 pm

    Hey Ewald – I withdraw that “foot-in-the-mouth” comment.

    I’m astounded that these things could be happening.

    And horrified at the silence even tacit approval of people we look up to in our country – from the Youth Leagues to Women’s Leagues to NGOs to Nobel Laureates!

  • ewald

    @Maggs the silence is shocking indeed. We had a recent case of a brilliant first year Journ student here at Rhodes University, Qaqambile Mapukata, who died as early as the 4th day of initiation. I did my own ‘investigation’ as I thought he might have been murdered which thankfully wasn’t the case.

    I’m happy to email you (and Sine and Gwebs) what I did find and what transpired when he was at this ‘school’. You’ll find a chilling tweet he sent while he was still here in res the morning that he was about to leave for the ‘bush’, a tweet which speaks volumes.

    https://twitter.com/#!/q_universe
    from Rhodes, Eastern Cape
    4:38 AM – 25 Nov 11 via web

    You will find a link to his blog there as well, and for a photograph which suggests something about his character scroll down to Welcome to my World at http://qmapukata.wordpress.com/tag/q-mapukata/

    ‘Astounded’ is the right word indeed, to lose a bright mind like this in such mindless way..

  • Sine

    ewald says:
    May 9, 2012 at 22:43 pm

    Bro, you are beginning to strike me as someone who has never been to the traditional circumcision school but one who has acquired his info through “research”. Your willingness to easily feed away info on this issue also speaks volumes. Maybe that is why Gwebs asked you this question earlier:

    Gwebecimele says:
    May 9, 2012 at 10:38 am

    “Ngubani ingcibi yakho ewald?”

  • Gwebecimele

    ewald

    Good luck on your stay and research in the EC.
    Now I know why you can’t answer my question.

  • Barry

    >>”When the Constitutional Assembly drafted the final Constitution in 1994 and 1995, it dragged its feet in finalising the provisions dealing with traditional leadership because it was not clear how such a system could be accommodated – except in a purely symbolic way – within the democratic system of government established by the Constitution. In the end, chapter 12 of the Constitution, which contains provisions regarding traditional leaders, provided for such leaders in rather wishy-washy language..”

    Section 142 (1) (b) of the Constitution, 1996 makes over and above the “wishy-washy” sections 211 and 212 of Chapter 12, provision for “the institution, role authority and status of a traditional monarch, where applicable”…. and pertinently state in subsection (2) that ‘the role, authority and status of a traditional monarch” “(a) must comply with the values in section 1 and with Chapter 3″ and “(b) may not confer on the province any power or function that falls (i) outside the area of provincial competence in terms of Schedules 4 and 5; or (ii) outside the powers and functions conferred on the province by other sections of the Constitution.

    (I assume that the above mentioned “the Constitution” is in fact the Constitution, 1996 and not any provincial constitution.)

    You stated that “because traditional leadership is by its nature undemocratic and not accountable, responsive or open and hence not compatible with democracy if such leadership is going to be given a governance role.”

    According to your view a “governance role” of a “traditional monarch” is basically unconstitutional because it is “not compatible with democracy”.

    You are wrong – it was made compatibility by the ANC, fortunately with due regard to inter alia the founding provisions of the Constitution, 1996 but as the power-play in the country are now starting to pan out, probably not for much longer.

    >>”This is because – as in most other parts of Africa – South Africa’s traditional leaders were co-opted by the colonial powers to help it govern rural areas.”

    I think that Dmwangi May 8, 2012 at 14:50 pm said is applicable: “This passage is stunning. It shows such an utter disregard for history or the truth and it ‘outs’ this post as little more than naked propaganda.”

    Do you truly believe that white settlers and colonialists in Africa had historically any more say regarding “traditional leadership” than today?

    It represents the pinnacle of stupidity to believe your own propaganda and to dish it up as properly researched facts (your appeal to “authority”) is reprehensible.

    Africans have always and will always follow and respect their own – in short they never were the “puppets” or “victims” that some liberals want the world to keep on believing.

    >>”In any event, the Traditional Courts Bill in its current form is clearly incompatible with the Constitution and even if it is passed it will never stand the test of constitutionality. Why some in the ANC therefore seem to be hell-bent on passing this law – despite the dubious gains – remains a mystery.”

    The ANC craftily “negotiated” or rather openly arranged two sets of separate “rules” for white and black South-Africans and they must be expected to gradually entrench their already privileged position – traditional kings/leaders are powerful and popular, definitely more equal than others and enjoy both banal and group rights as well as special immunities that ordinary people can only dream about.

    If necessary you will have to learn the hard way that individual human rights, democracy and the rule of law will mean nothing more than what the historic rulers of the country, the “traditional monarchs” want it to mean.

    The leading pan-Africanists will reject and undone the current democratic constitutional experiment that were forced on them in totality when it suites them best.

  • ewald

    LOL @ Sine and Gwebs. Assumption is the mother of all fuck-ups. No comments about Qaqambile’s untimely death? Called by the ancestors? :)

  • Sine

    ewald says:
    May 11, 2012 at 4:49 am

    LOL. Sorry bro. Asinokwazi ukutyhila iimfihlo zamadoda emakhwenkweni.

  • WhichDokta

    No single model of responsibility and exchange which accurately describe only a single culture’s behavior is neither necessary nor sufficient to successfully mediate intercultural agreements.

    It doesn’t matter what we believe will work, it’s the pain we’re in now because we were wrong and it didn’t work.

  • https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HBMe5M933dw ushean

    I have to say that this submit could be the most relevant article I’ve ever study and saw. It is a great support to every person who is looking for this details.

  • Pat Shumba

    I have a question….many post colonial governments considered traditional leadership to be a primitive institution hindering development but isn’t it that they saw this house as a dangerous bastion of rival power?

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