Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Reflections on the Mayoral Debate


Reflections on the Johannesburg Mayoral Debate: 
Floyd Shivambu 
One of the greatest achievements of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has been its ability to set and define discourse on key issues that were considered no-go areas in the past. There are many pertinent issues such as nationalisation of mines, land expropriation without compensation, the powers of the Public Protector, profit shifting, tax avoidance and transfer pricing, and many other issues which we brought into the national discourse and somewhat influenced policies, which point to a responsive, yet incorrect direction.
Whenever we lead the discourse, the media lags behind because of the deeper lack of sophistication and intrinsic understanding by members of the media on any topical issues. Media often looks for sound bites and source information with the aim of capturing sound bites. There are very few or no media practitioners in South Africa who pay detailed attention to any specific topic. This is despite attempts and offers, for instance, by progressive global Organisations such as the Tax Justice Network to train and induct media practitioners on key issues around tax avoidance.
Media practitioners’ lack of deeper understanding on topical issues or even appreciation of key economic developments in the world deprives society of an opportunity to be exposed to new and alternate ideas and information. This is starkly illustrated by Stephen Grootes’ sorry interpretation of the discourse of “cityness” and the role of metropoles we introduced during the Johannesburg mayoral debate at The Gathering, which can be a great platform for ideological and political discussions. I had initially given Grootes the benefit of the doubt and blamed his line and quality of questioning on time constraints, but now that he has written his observations, it’s apparent that we should respond to the ignorance, and enlighten society.
In my opening remarks to the mayoral debate, I spoke about the historical role of cities and metropoles all over the world and made specific reference to the Pearl River Delta Economic Zone in China, and highlighted the fact that cities should be spaces and places of labour absorptive production, not just consumption spaces. I then drew the link that what Johannesburg’s outgoing mayor claims are achievements, are actually infrastructure for the rich and malls (consumption spaces) that do not create quality jobs, but reproduce the spatial inequalities designed by apartheid.
Now, the Pearl River Delta Economic Zone in China is the most successful city development and growth metropolitan region in the world, which heralded the most decisive developments, jobs and economic expansion. The zone includes Guangzhou, Foshan, Shenzhen and Dongguan and covers a space geographically smaller than Gauteng. Despite this reality, the economic zone accommodates 42-million people in a space of 7000ha in a dynamic skyscraper environment, with excellent infrastructure which is better managed than the city of Joburg.
The Pearl River Delta Economic Zone accounted for close to 20% percent of China’s economy and close to 40% percent of total trade in 2005. What defines this zone are jobs for the people in the productive sectors and small scale trade. The interplay between manufacturing, services and consumption in this region makes it one of the most dynamic economic regions in the world.
Due to its historical development and growth, Johannesburg, in the context of the poorly conceptualised city region, could play a leading role in the growth and sustenance of Gauteng and South Africa as a whole. It was therefore within context to speak about the role of Johannesburg in the economy of Gauteng and South Africa. A debate about Johannesburg cannot and should not be reduced to typical municipal functions of robots switching off, but to the dynamic of labour absorptive economic expansion, which is beginning to be evasive in the age of what the World Economic Forum called the “Fourth Industrial Revolution”. 
Instead of asking the fellow panellists about Johannesburg’s role in the region and country’s economic development, the moderator, Stephen Grootes, resorted to the lazy thinking false discourse about exploitation of workers in China, which I illustrated is a separate discourse. The principal question is on what economic development model does Johannesburg adopt to be the productive space in South Africa’s economy and how state strategic control and ownership of mineral resources and land link to that. The question is how many jobs does the city create and sustain.
Like all economic zones in the world, the Pearl River Delta Economic Zone has a set of specialised trade rules and regulations, designed to attract more productive industrialists and investors instead of consumption led investors. As a metropolis with the highest population in South Africa who need jobs, it is incumbent on Johannesburg to utilise existing infrastructure, legislative frameworks and strategic support to set trade rules and regulations that will create maximum employment to those without jobs.
Now Johannesburg is a neoliberal city where finished goods and services are dumped for consumption. This deprives the city of its “cityness”, with dynamic interplay between production, manufacturing, services and trade. Johannesburg under the ANC is modelled on the lines of the City of London whose expressed mission is to be a financial and services capital of the world.
This explains the bicycle lanes, which form part of a very dynamic and possibly the most successful public transport system in London, which links rail, bus rapid transit, airports and bicycles. The city of London bicycle lanes are within context because the city provides bicycles at virtually all major intersections and a significant number of people who work in the city reside on the immediate outskirts of the city of London. It is therefore sensible to provide bicycles because those who need the bicycles use them for reasonable short distances, and will not be delayed in the heavy traffic congestion.
In Johannesburg, the bicycles lanes in the city and in the upmarket Sandton are not utilised because they are not integrated to areas where the people live. It’s decidedly preposterous to expect residents of Ivory Park, Orange Farm, Diepsloot, Soweto and many other areas where commuters stay to rely on bicycles and the city does not provide bicycles in the same way the city of London does. Johannesburg’s adaptation of City of London bicycle lanes is the most foolish and also insensitive decision to be taken by a metropolitan council.
It is an insensitive decision because Johannesburg accommodates South Africa’s biggest number of landless slum dwellers in Alexandra, Soweto, Diepsloot, Zandspruit, Orange Farm and many other areas. It is an undeniable, irrefutable fact that people live like pigs in Stjwetla, in Freedom Park, in Hopefield and many other areas of Johannesburg while the city is busy spending money building bicycle lanes. Where is the logic in doing such? The EFF’s call is that we should build decent houses for our people and, in areas where the space is limited like Alexandra, housing should be provided in the form of decent and safe skyscrapers in the same way successful city regions have.
The RDP houses that have been provided by the provincial government are situated in areas where electricity supply is not reliable, roads and stormwater systems do not exist and basic amenities are not provided for. Johannesburg must invest in quality sewerage and sanitation to give all its residents access to flushing toilets in the city and its outskirts.
All these basic services must be provided in the context of provision of quality jobs for our people. That’s the point we made in the mayoral debate, that the city should maximally use the constitutionally provided power to regulate trade in Johannesburg. Instead of celebrating consumption spaces for rich people like Steyn City, Mall of Africa and Modderdontein, the city should be establishing and celebrating productive and protected economic zones that give jobs to our people.
The current legislation on special economic zones permits cities and economic zones to enact laws that protect and support manufacturing. This is not the creation of “Little Venezuela”, as Stephen Grootes suggests. It is a permissible economic development model adopted by virtually all successful economic zones in the world. To reduce such a discourse to Venezuela is also a reflection of economic ignorance because Venezuela’s economic expansion model is not protectionist in the manner we suggested.
To understand these basic developments does not need anyone to go very far. There are already attempts and trials in South Africa through special economic zones to protect certain industries in Coega and the automobile support programmes. The challenge with the model under trial in South Africa is that it protects export-dependent and capital-intensive industries which do not create many jobs.
On the contrary, the EFF Manifesto makes a commitment on production of a minimum of 50% of goods to be produced within the boundaries of the municipality and these should be in labour absorptive sectors. Labour absorptive sectors include textiles and clothing, food economy, plastic products manufacturing, and indeed the manufacturing and assembling of electronic products (iPhones and iPads) and many other areas.
The City of Johannesburg must deliberately protect these sectors and that is what the EFF will do when we take over Johannesburg. The economically naive and factless moderators will not understand these commitments because they are trapped in the neoliberal logic that Africa and the underdeveloped world is a dumping site for finished goods.
The EFF’s vision for a municipality is not one that focuses on collection of rates, taxes and rubbish bins only. While the EFF will maximally collect rates and taxes from those who can pay, and keep our cities and all human settlement spaces clean, we will also play a leading and protective role in enhancing and harnessing the productive sectors of the economy.
Enhancing and harnessing the productive sectors of the economy does not mean that we should condemn black people into spaza shops that sell imported goods in the same way the poorly envisaged township economy of Gauteng envisages, but by creating industrial spaces for our people to be involved in production. This should be complemented by the creation of trade spaces and markets where the people sell their products. Currently, the relationship between street traders and the Joburg municipality is that of dispossessions, where the metro police special units dispossess poor street traders of their goods.
While world-class infrastructure must be provided, jobs must not be casualties of such provision of infrastructure. Under the ANC, Johannesburg has lost millions of jobs and the number of household that have reported no income at all is increasing. Expending R100-billion on infrastructure has not given our people jobs and jobless development and growth is meaningless. It’s worse in the city of Joburg because infrastructure is delivered through tenders which benefit the relatives and wives of the political leadership. The EFF will build capacity, train our people, employ capable and skilled project managers and deliver services directly.
These messages could not cogently be presented in the Daily Maverick mayoral debate due to the lousy and mediocre moderation of Stephen Grootes. Now that he has chosen to reduce his ignorance to paper, we must then respond decisively to provide context. Perhaps it is unfair to expect depth from a Stephen Grootes who wrote, edited and even sold a book with wrong facts. He admitted in the interview he did with Mac Maharaj that he was on the other side of facts and already he had benefited financially from lies. If he respected facts, he would know that basic economic education is not economic arrogance.
The EFF is our last hope for jobs and service delivery and the people of Johannesburg must give us an opportunity to run this city. Parks Tau, the man ordained as the “right man for the job” by Stephen Grootes, has spectacularly failed to provide jobs for the people of Johannesburg and all the statistics and reality on the ground confirm this. The less said about Democratic Alliance mayoral candidate Herman Mashaba, the better, because he’s a square peg in a round hole and his confusion was demonstrated with excellence. 
The EFF will take over Johannesburg and illustrate to the world that all successful economic expansion programmes need sound and logical ideological foundation – and our logic is superior. D
Floyd Shivambu is EFF Deputy President and a resident of Johannesburg

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

ON STATE CAPTURE: Ideological Reflections!

ON STATE CAPTURE: Ideological Reflections!

Floyd Shivambu

South African media has in the recent past made reflections on the question of State Capture, largely as a follow up to the factual reflections the Economic Freedom Fighters gave on the Gupta family’s influence, in the aftermath of the reshuffling of the Minister of Finance in December 2015. In that reflection, we said and correctly argued that “We should never agree as this generation to be puppet mastered as if there are no rules and principles that governs this country. We call on all South Africans to stand up against the Gupta kleptocratic syndicate because we will soon be left with no country. Now that their National Treasury capture has failed, they will resort to other means of looting”.

Before the factual revelations on what exactly happened with the removal of Nhlanhla Nene as Minister of Finance, the EFF had rung alarms to the reality that the replacement of Ngoako Ramatlodi with Mosebenzi Zwane as Minister of Mineral Resources was a Gupta mechanisation due to the latter’s close relationship with the Gupta family. Zwane previously redirected millions to the Gupta family and signed the invitation letter that landed the Gupta plane at the Waterkloof airbase. Few weeks after his appointment as Minister of Finance, Zwane accompanied the Guptas to Switzerland to negotiate a business transaction with another criminal organisation called Glencore, known for its tax avoidance scandals all over the world.

There are of course so many Gupta undue capture and influences on many aspects and parts of the State, but South African media’s lack of sophistication and utterly sluggish investigative capacity keep what are reachable secrets as secrets. There is adequate legislative framework that can guarantee ordinary South Africans and the media access to crucial information, yet no one genuinely pursues such because most parts of the media represent fractions of capital. The facts that Des van Rooyen arrived with Advisors at the National Treasury and that a contingent of National Treasury staff members almost resigned was first made public by the EFF, and media caught up very late. There are still many revelations we are going to make about the Gupta corruption, and we will do so at the right time and moments.

With the current pieces of legislation that guarantees media access to information, credible sections of the media should have identified and quantified the numbers of contracts Guptas companies and subsidiaries have with the State. Such must be revealed because there has never been one single business empire in South Africa that monopolises State contracts in the manner the Gupta family has done. This is where the question of State capture comes in, and we as revolutionary political activists provide thorough ideological analyses on what State capture is.

Ideologically and analytically, the question of State capture has not been sufficiently addressed, because of the obvious reasons that the ruling party lacks proper ideological tools of analysis and the less said about the other opposition parties, the better. So we take this opportunity to provide a proper ideological analysis of the phenomenon of State capture in a capitalist system, and hopefully such will enlighten society’s comprehension and understanding of State capture. This ideological characterisation of State capture is, like all previous reflections, not hubris, but a humble contribution to a discourse.

The correct Marxist-Leninist characterisation of the State is that it is a product of the irreconcilability of class antagonisms, and always an instrument of class domination by the ruling class. In any capitalist society, the state is an instrument of class oppression, utilised to minimise and eliminate any resistance to the capitalist accumulation path. Governments, in this instance constitute a vital and central role in conditioning the continued oppression and exploitation of the working class by the capitalists. Conspicuously, the state always seeks ways to legitimise itself and capitalist exploitation through non-cohesive instruments of class rule, such as education, media, religion, and narrow nationalism.


This Marxist characterisation of the State as captured in the Manifesto of the Communist Party by Karl Marx and Frederick Engels is important to highlight,
“Each step in the development of the bourgeoisie was accompanied by a corresponding political advance of that class ... the bourgeoisie has at last, since the establishment of Modern Industry and of the world market, conquered for itself, in the modern representative State, exclusive political sway. The executive of the modern state is but a committee for managing the common affairs of the whole bourgeoisie” (Marx & Engels, 1848)

This characterisation perfectly defines the South African State since its emergence as a capitalist state that used racism and sexism to subjugate and exploit the majority for class interests. Capitalists in South Africa, particularly the Chamber of Mines in the early discoveries of precious mineral resources, captured the State and introduced racist laws which would guarantee them maximum profits to the exclusion of the black majority. For a considerable amount of time, the chamber of mines represented a fraction of capital, a section whose interests could only be served through racial segregation, deprivation of land and introduction of taxes for the black majority so that they are forced into wage labour.

Throughout history, various English fractions capital in South Africa largely in the minerals-energy complex played a central role in determining the agenda of the State, and was contested post 1948 heavily by the emerging Afrikaner Nationalist capital which sought to be replacement or genuine competition of what was characterised as predominantly English capitalist fractions. The core base of Afrikaner capitalist fractions was agriculture, and financial services, and their ideological arsenals were in the Broederbond, the Church and the Afrikaans speaking Universities. This was so for many years, and boosted Afrikaner racist egos, and of course determined the agenda of the State, including influence on appointments of key cabinet ministries.

Due to the fact that it suffered the most from the sanctions imposed on South Africa and its role in initiating the discussions that led to genuine political discussions which led to a negotiated political settlement (which is also negotiated economic subjugation), the mining capitalist fractions had a decisive say and influence over the content and form of the transition from political apartheid to continued economic apartheid. The interests of mining capital in the 1980s were best summarised by Clem Sunter, who held various positions in Anglo American wrote in a book defining possible scenarios of South Africa’s transition from apartheid to a post-apartheid system that Negotiation works. Rhetoric is dropped, reality prevails and in the end the companies concerned go on producing the minerals, goods and services (Sunter, 1987)”.

Towards the end of apartheid, various capitalist interests and fractions were largely united on the replacement of apartheid with a system that will guarantee continued capitalist exploitation. This reality is perfectly illustrated that towards the release of Nelson Mandela and other political prisoners and unbanning of political parties, F.W. De Klerk consistently consulted with both the Ruperts and Oppeheimer families. It is a recorded fact that Derek Keys, the last Minister of Finance under apartheid and first under the democratic dispensation was forwarded by the Ruperts family.

When President Mandela came out of prison, he too had constant engagement with various capitalist interests, and specifically engaged with the Ruperts and Oppeheimers on key political decisions. This is evidently reflected in the first cabinet of President Mandela. Derek Keys continued a Minister of Finance, Pik Botha was Minister of Mineral Resources and Kraai van Niekerk was Minister of Land and Agrarian reform. What this means is that the ANC inherited the state that was already captured by interests of white monopoly capital, and after they had converted key members of the then cabinet into their agenda, there was no more worries about continuation of the capitalist agenda that had captured the State. The successor to Derek Keys as Minister of Finance was Chris Liebenberg, who was seconded by the Oppeheimer family controlled Brenthurst Group.

The adoption of the Growth, Employment and Redistribution (GEAR) in 1996 under the ideological guidance of then deputy president Thabo Mbeki was manifestation of State capture by international capitalist interests, who in the period leading to the 1994 general elections had invaded South Africa to execute economic policy coup de tat. As a matter of fact, Derek Keys signed the General Agreement of Trade and Tariffs on the 24th of April 1994.

Under president Mbeki, established white monopoly capital was comfortable with the Minister of Finance Trevor Manuel, who evidently had a relationship with the Oppeheimer family before the unbanning of the ANC. In his authorised biography, a dramatic record is given of how Trevor Manuel organised Vergelegen (Oppeheimers wine farm) as the first meeting venue of the ANC after the unbanning. Well, it looks like since the first visit to Vergelegen, the ANC and particularly Trevor Manuel still have not come back.

Now, despite these factual influences of the ruling capitalist class in South Africa, we should never believe that capitalist interests are always homogenous. The development of capitalism in South Africa and many other parts of the world reveals a reality that there exists intra-capitalist rivalry sometimes defined by the nature of business the capitalists are engaged in. Various fractions of capitalist interests always seek to exert hegemony over the State for their own private purposes. At all times, nonetheless, capitalist states are always hostage of the capitalist class. Captured States always protect the interests of the capitalist class, and the mass massacre of workers in Marikana in August 2012 was a manifestation of a captured State.

What South Africa is currently experiencing under Jacob Zuma is a form of criminal State capture by a family that is in business with Zuma. Jacob Zuma is a business partner of the Guptas and uses his son as a proxy on almost all businesses of the Gupta family. The Guptas then abuse the fact that they are in a corrupt business relationship with Zuma to bully government departments and state owned companies into illegally siphoning money from the state into their own pockets.

The extent of Gupta’s State capture is far much deeper and wider than has been reported in the less inspiring newspapers of South Africa. The Guptas control many government departments, provinces, and state owned companies in a manner that far exceeds any of the capitalist control in South Africa. Their attempt at capturing the National Treasury was a last stroke which would have affirmed South Africa as a Gupta Republic. The attempt to capture National Treasury is informed, amongst other things, by their taking billions of Rands outside the country.

Of course, other fractions of capital, particularly the established white monopoly capitalists, are not pleased by the activities of the Guptas, hence they used their power to instruct Zuma in December to unappoint Desmond Van Rooyen as Minister of Finance. The established white monopoly capitalist hold tremendous power over the economic direction of South Africa and have links with international capitalist interests in the country. The amount of power they have can destabilise the South African economy, weaken and actually deprive South Africa of its Currency in the same manner Zimbabwe was deprived of its Currency. These capitalist opposition to the Guptas’ State capture is upon realisation that Guptas can displace them from positions of influence and continued profit maximisation.

As a revolutionary movement, which decidedly fights for the class interests of the working class, we, as the EFF do not and have never taken sides on intra-capitalist rivalries. We oppose all forms of State capture, whether by established white monopoly capital or by a corrupt family, which takes advantage of their business partner’s lack of sophistication and generally love for quick riches.

This explains why the EFF is the most vociferous opponent of white monopoly capitalists and even organised the biggest protest action against white monopoly capital, to the extent that our opposition to white monopoly capitalist interest is sometimes confused with opposition to white settlers. The primary enemy in the struggle for economic freedom in white monopoly capital, and that has never meant that we will turn a blind eye on Guptas and even African exploitative and murderous capitalists who capture the state for their own private benefits.

The EFF fights against all capitalists because in its very nature, capitalism is exploitative, murderous, greedy and in the South African (or even global) context, racist. The immediate tasks and functions in the war against capitalism is to take political power from those who surrender it to capitalists and give real power to the working class, those who do not own the means of production. The solution to State capture is to remove the ANC from political power and we must not be apologetic about that. In the immediate, the means through which we will remove the ANC from political power is through elections. This, does not mean, whatsoever that other means to remove a captured state will not be explored because under capitalist states, electoral outcomes are not the true reflection of the people’s wishes and interests. Electoral outcomes in capitalist societies are often a reflection of the size of the budget for election campaign, and not the will of the people.  


Floyd Shivambu, EFF Deputy President.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

SA IS UNDER THE COLONIAL ADMINISTRATION OF THE GUPTAS: THAT IS WHY NHLAHLA NENE WAS FIRED!!!

SA IS UNDER THE MANAGEMENT OF A GUPTA CRIMINAL SYNDICATE: 

Floyd Shivambu 

Many people in South Africa, including the country's Senior leaders in the ruling party, in government and private sector are still wondering as to why Nhlahla Nene was abruptly removed as Minister of Finance without any sound explanation by Mr. Jacob Zuma, who has foregone the right to be called President. 

Many people are left to speculate as to the real reasons why Nhlahla Nene was removed, yet no one can pinpoint the exact reasons as why the Minister of Finance was removed. This is shocking because all evidence is there for anyone to see. The reason Nhlahla Nene was removed was to open space for the looters, the Gupta led criminal syndicate, to loot State resources for private enrichment. 

The reality is that for sometime now, South Africa has been under the management of a criminal syndicate masquerading as genuine business people, headquartered in Saxonwold. The criminal greedy and ruthless syndicate is called Gupta family. The existence of Gupta family is not a fictional imagination, it is a reality that exists and has de facto colonized South Africa for sometime now, with Zuma being the Chief Colonial Administrator. 

The Guptas have established a solid network inside the ruling party, the ANC and have disproportionate, actually decisive influence on what happens in the ANC and the State it administers on their behalf.
The Guptas posses lots of cash and run South Africa's State machinery in a manner that seek to benefit them and the puppets they have in the State at national and provincial levels. In their network of influence, they have premiers of the Free State and North West provinces, ministers, chairpersons and CEOs of State Owned companies, and also have control over many critical decisions that will financially benefit them and the puppets they control. 

The first and last time anyone spoke about the disproportionate influence of the Guptas in the ANC was in the 2011 launch of the ANC Local Government elections manifesto, when then ANC Youth League President Julius Malema said, right in front of Mr. Zuma that South Africa's democracy is “not a democracy of families; this is a democracy of the people of the country. When families are exploiting the resources of this country and are enriching themselves in the name of freedom, when those in political office abuse their power to benefit friends, the youth must rise in defence of the ANC." That call is relevant today, and the call is to all South Africans to rise in Defence of South Africa.

From there on, the attitude of Mr. Zuma, the colonial administrator of the Gupta empire took a dramatic turn, such that he never addressed even one meeting of the ANC Youth League National Executive Committee under the leadership of President Julius Malema. As Youth League Leader, President Julius Malema was privy to the reality that the Guptas would call individual members of the ANC National Executive Committee to tell them which Ministerial position has been given to them prior to the official announcement by their puppet, the colonial administrator, Mr. Zuma. Fikile Mbalula was told by Atul Gupta that he is going to be Minister of Sports before Zuma announced the decision. We all know what happened to the leadership of the Youth League, and such is not a point to decry because that led to the dialectical and necessary formation of the Economic Freedom Fighters, which fearlessly fights against all forms of corruption.

Since the dissolution of the Youth League and replacement with a desk which has no sense of what is happening in South Africa, the Gupta family was left to operate freely with no real internal opposition. They took over the ruling party's real decisions, including bankrolling the re-election of Mr. Zuma as President in the 2012 National Conference. In that way, the Gupta empire tightened the screws on their control of the ANC, the State and intensified means defined by impunity and gross corruption.

In the Free State Province, the Guptas introduced programmes through Mosebenzi Zwane, which amount to millions of Rands, corrupted Ace Magashule, partnered his son on a business in a same way they did with Jacob Zuma's son. They took charge of the South African Airways, and even decided on basic things such as SAA Newspaper subscription so that their lousy Newspaper, the New Age is the most distributed and paid for newspaper in SAA platforms, including their check in counters, lounges and flights. They opened offshore accounts for their corruption beneficiaries, including that of the philandering Minister who thoughtlessly displays the fact that he has additional income from no additional work.

In 2010, the Guptas had managed to appropriate the mining Licence of Kumba Iron ore, effectively hijacking the mining rights of a company which was supposed to convert the Licence from old order mining rights to new order mining rights. Imperial Crown Trading (ICT), an entity which is partly owned by Duduzane Zuma, the son of the colonial administrator Zuma, and the Guptas tried to frustrate Kumba iron ore through a Court case, which they lost at the Supreme Court of Appeals in 2013. Of course the Guptas lost the court case because they have no respect of the law.

The decision to replace Minister Ngoako Ramatlhodi was taken in Saxonwold, and as a matter of fact, the presidential convoy was in Saxonwold the day before Zwane was announced as a Minister of Mineral Resources. Zwane is appointed as Minister of Mineral Resources in order to allow the Gupta empire to have control over mineral rights and policy in a manner which will benefit the family and puppets. In his previous role as MEC in the Free State, Zwane had excellently served Guptas interests through a dairy project which the provincial government paid millions for, and never materialized, and is subject of investigation by the Public Protector. Zwane is a also a political extension of Ace Magashule, the Premier of the Free State who accounts in Saxonwold, and has introduced his son to the Gupta family as partner of one of their businesses. 

The Guptas' entrance into the media space through The New Age, ANN7, and SABC is also an attempt to colonize the minds of all South Africans. The New Age and ANN7 are bankrolled by Government departments and entities, with the Free State government spending millions of Rands on Gupta media platforms. The SABC has been pushed into an unexplained cooperation with The New Age for a television breakfast show, which in terms of basic media business laws cannot be co-hosted with owners of a rival television station. The compromised and semi-literate SABC Chief Operations Officer Hlaudi Motsoeneng even appears on the rival ANN7 Awards ceremonies alongside the colonial administrator because Saxonwold said they should be there. 

In a recent blog writing, Alec Hogg tells of a story of how Atul Gupta instructs Mr. Zuma around. Hogg says "While in Davos, I met an Indian newspaper editor who proudly informed me he had interviewed my country’s President. After smiling at my surprise, he told about recently accompanying an Indian Business delegation to SA. At one of the cocktail functions he made small talk with Atul Gupta, head of Sahara Computers, proprietor of the New Age newspaper and, via his shell ICT, attempted hijacker of the Sishen iron ore mine’s mineral rights.
The way my new acquaintance told the story, he mentioned to Gupta how he would love to interview Jacob Zuma (wouldn’t we all?). No problem, said the New Age bossman, and a few minutes later the surprised editor heard the South African President being instructed to make time for this interview. The astonished Indian newspaperman duly got his face time with Zuma. But wondered privately to me at the influence of Atul Gupta who was able to swing something so difficult with such ease". 
This is just one of the many illustrations of how influential and controlling the Guptas are on the President and everything he does. The Guptas are the only ones who recurrently transports the president in private cars to their compound to instruct government ministers and SOCs officials to take decisions in their favour.

Now, the reason why Minister Nhlahla Nene was removed and replaced with Des van Rooyen is because Saxonwold said so. Van Rooyen is not an elected leader of any organization, and a political extension of North West Premier Supra Mahumapelo, who is as rapacious as Ace Magashule and Mr. Zuma and part of the colonial administration of the Guptas. Geographically, the paltry political contributions of Van Rooyen happened in Gauteng where he was a Mayor in Merafong, yet it was the Premier of the North West who went around justifying Des Van Rooyen after the disastrous decision to make him Finance Minister for 5 days by Mr. Zuma. The person who introduced Van Rooyen to Zuma is Supra Mahumapelo, the Premier of the North West, because like Ace Magashule with Mosebenzi Zwane, and David Mabuza with Intelligence Minister David Mahlobo; Mahumapelo also needed his political extension in a senior cabinet position. 

But why did the Gupta empire use their colonial administrator Zuma to take over National Treasury? There are three fundamental reasons and they are: 

1) Nuclear Deal: 

Mr. Zuma has since announced that the SA government intends to construct nuclear power station, which will cost the State more than R1 trillion to finalise. In September 2015, the Financial Mail reported that "
This week, Oakbay released its annual report, in which chairman Atul Gupta argued that nuclear energy is the way to go. A hike in nuclear demand would boost Oakbay, whose main asset is Shiva Uranium, 165km southwest of Johannesburg, which it bought in 2010 and revived.
Gupta said even though uranium isn’t well understood in SA, countries like China, Russia and Brazil are powering ahead with nuclear plans.
“Nuclear energy is the key to meeting the exponentially increasing [global] energy demand over the next 20 years with clean power,” he said.
Gupta said Oakbay was “in the ideal growth market and uranium is the place to be”.

The reality is that Minister Nhlahla Nene argued very correctly that South Africa cannot afford Nuclear power stations as such will cause a massive fiscal crisis. For that Nene was removed and replaced with a powerless Van Rooyen, whose role would be to ask how high whenever instructed to jump.

2) The R4 billon Jet.

Mr. Zuma wants to purchase a R4 billion jet, not because he wants to fly in an expensive and safe jet, but because the actual cost of the jet is less than R500 million and the supplier of the jet was going to be companies associated with the Guptas. They are already leasing jets to the Presidency like the one used by Mr. Ramaphosa in the recent past visit to Japan. When purchased for R4 billion, massive bribes were going to be reserved for the Gupta empire and puppets. 

National Treasury under Nhlahla Nene correctly illustrated that such a purchase is not necessary and will add to a fiscal crisis.

3) SAA

The Gupta family has interest in the South African Airways and their intentions go beyond the contracts they intend to have with the airways. The ultimate intention is to cause huge debt for the airways and ultimately buy it as a private Gupta airways. 

As part of National Treasury interventions in SAA, Nhlahla Nene and the ministry has set key targets for SAA to achieve as part of its recovery plans and an absolute majority of those were not reached. As a matter of fact, Treasury had drafted a cabinet memorandum in which change of leadership was recommended and this meant that Dudu Myeni would no longer continue to misguide SAA, and this was going to disrupt the looting intentions and aspirations of the Guptas and their puppets. 

These and many other private criminal syndicate intentions are the major causes of the financial crisis caused by Mr. Zuma. Any person with a brain knows beyond any doubt Mr. Zuma (Number 1) gave a go ahead for the Gupta plane to land at the Waterkloof airbase. That is why the person who was blamed for the landing was later promoted by Zuma to an ambassadorial post.


When Van Rooyen was made Minister, he immediately appointed Ministerial advisors, whom he had introduced to the senior management of National Treasury. It is a fact that majority of senior managers in National Treasury indicated that they will leave if such goes ahead, and that is the main reason why the decision to reappoint Pravin Gordham came about, because now Zuma was made to understand that if National Treasury senior management resign in huge numbers, the financial crisis was going to deepen to unmanageable levels. The bank executives who met Zuma feel like they influenced him to change the decision, but the fact is that the patriotic staff members in National Treasury coiled Zuma's evil intentions.
 


These are hardcore and open facts, and we challenge the Presidency and anyone who is mentioned here to factually dispute what we have said. The reality South Africa, is that our country has been hijacked by a criminal syndicate which works with Mr. Zuma to maximize private financial interests. The ruling party is incapable of resolving this crisis because most of their senior leaders are compromised and cannot do or say anything. We have to stand up and close down the Gupta colonialists, whose greed will bring about a massive crisis. All major banks in South Africa have been downgraded because they are holding accounts and monies generated through Gupta corrupt means.

South Africans must stand up against rapacious looting of state resources. Commentators and analysts who say Zuma is not a fool are fools themselves. How do you explain actions of a leader who cuts his nose to spite his fate expect to say such is foolishness. How do you explain someone who destroys his organization and trust amongst his senior colleagues on the altar of looting state money? South Africans must never equate con men and tricksters to intelligent people. 

We should never agree as this generation to be puppet mastered as if there are no rules and principles that governs this country. We call on all South Africans to stand up against the Gupta kleptocratic syndicate because we will soon be left with no country. Now that their National Treasury capture has failed, they will resort to other means of looting. They control the majority faction in the ANC, and they have already said who their person of the year is through some bogus awards ceremony. We should not be afraid, we should fight to decolonize South Africa from thieves. 

Floyd Shivambu is EFF Deputy President 



Thursday, October 22, 2015

On Blade Nzimande and the crisis of Higher Education in South Africa! #ListenToTheKids

On Blade Nzimande and the crisis of Higher Education in South Africa! #FeesMustFall! #BladeMustGo and #ANCMustFall

Floyd Shivambu

With no intention to polarise the otherwise gallant struggles of all students mobilised under the #FeesMustFall movement, we should perhaps take a pause to reflect on the real objective and subjective politics behind the higher education funding crisis in South Africa. Those at the forefront of the students’ protests correctly proclaim that the #FeesMustFall movement is not a party political programme, but consolidated students’ action cutting across racial, political and class lines. Students with affiliations of different political parties are indeed at the forefront of the protests in many institutions of higher learning, and the demands are still centred on securing no fee increases for the academic year 2016, and variety of genuine workers’ demands.

Directing the protests to Parliament and demanding that Minister of Higher Education be held accountable is a commendable step because students are beginning to appreciate that the political ruling elite are the ones who are responsible for the higher education funding crisis in South Africa. As a matter of fact, the Ministry of Higher Education under its inaugural and current Minister of Higher Education, the erstwhile Communist Blade Nzimande has dismally failed to provide clear direction on the question of higher education and students’ funding in particular. This is despite the so many calls and demands by successive students’ generations that the question of funding should be attended to. Thousands of campus based and nation-wide protests have been held to demand free education and against fees increase since 1994. Valuable infrastructure has been burnt into ashes, cars damaged, and libraries destroyed by students demanding free education and no to fees increase since 1994.

Let us take a pause to reflect. Of course I will share personal experiences because in my life I have been a branch Secretary, Chairperson of a student organisation (SASCO) and President of the Students’ Representative Council (Wits University), member of a Regional and National Executive Committees of a students’ organisation (SASCO). I also had the privilege to lead all SRCs students in the process that led to the formation of the South African Union of Students (SAUS), writing its inaugural Constitution and co-organising its founding conference. I was in the board of the National Students’ Financial Aid Scheme between 2008 and 2012, and also served in the Joint Task Team of the Joint Initiative on Priority Skills Acquisition from 2006 to 2009 representing students and youth. Throughout my student and youth activism, I consistently fought for free quality education, and partook in many protests demanding free education.

Higher Education ministry’s leadership, or lack of it, on the higher education funding mechanism and system is the major cause of the #FeesMustFall protests, which will escalate into violence and instability if not managed correctly. Whilst institutional managers and Vice Chancellors play a role, the lack of guidance and decisive leadership by the ministry of higher education deepens the crisis. There are various objective and subjective challenges that causes this crisis and here we will candidly reflect on them, and sometimes revealing the privy information we have access to. For this purpose, we will attend to the following: a) National Students Financial Aid Scheme, b) Higher Education Funding in general, and c) institutional mechanisms to foster real higher education transformation.


a)      National Students’ Financial Aid Scheme

Instead of resolving the higher education and vocational training funding crisis, the Ministry of higher education and current government continuously mention South Africa’s biggest loan scheme, the National Students’ Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS), which is inconsistently and badly managed across institutions of higher learning. There is absolutely nothing that stopped Blade Nzimande from addressing the higher education funding crisis in relation to NSFAS because his predecessors in higher education established the NSFAS Review process, which was largely ignored when the Ministry of Higher Education was established in 2009.

Instead of following a professional review process, part of Blade Nzimande did as the inaugural Minister of Higher Education was to cause instability in the leadership of NSFAS, which despite historical challenges was beginning to find stability. I am aware of this because in 2008, before Blade Nzimande was in government, I was appointed into the board of NSFAS by then Education Minister Naledi Pandor, after being nominated by the students and youth movement. When he became Minister, Blade Nzimande instructed all Board Members, who were in the middle of the NSFAS Review process and implementation of a Turnaround strategy to resign from the NSFAS Board. This was spearheaded by South African Communist Party Central (SACP) Committee Member Gwebs Qonde, who was mysteriously and undeservedly appointed Director General of the department of Higher Education.

I was personally instructed in December 2010 to resign by the DG Gwebs Qonde through telling me lies that they, as the Communist Party, intend to introduce free education through NSFAS, and that they are going to appoint ‘experts’ into the board. I obviously refused to resign because I am driven by an individual philosophy of not quitting: No surrender! No retreat! I told Gwebs Qonde in the NSFAS Board meeting that he is hypocrite, and should not engage in factional and potentially corrupt activities on issues relating to NSFAS, because NSFAS could be used as a vehicle to liberate many poor students. In all the board meetings I attended, I recurrently raised the issue of converting the loan scheme into a bursary and highlighted the fact that the threshold of students eligible for NSFAS has not been changed in more than 10 years. I served until the end of my term in 2012, and obviously could not be reappointed because I did not fit into the category preferred by the Communist Party, a category of clueless board members whose aim was about themselves and not students.

I vividly remember when Board members handed in resignations and new members were appointed into the NSFAS Board, and a common thread of all the new members of the board is that they, in one way or another, had links to the South African Communist Party. The central faces in the new appointments were Collette Caine (Blade Nzimande’s personal financial advisor and SACP Fundraiser), and ZB Sogayise, an indifferent and less informed former school principal from the SACP in Cape Mero with close links to the Director General of Higher Education, Gwebs Qonde.

Now, due to ZB’s lack of understanding of high level financial management and control at Board level, Collet Caine took control of NSFAS, and literally relocated to Cape Town to be closer to the office so that she could micro-manage the internal affairs of NSFAS. The then Chief Executive Officer Ashley Seymour, who was appointed by the previous board, was unceremoniously fired, and replaced by Nathi Khena, who was also fired in less than six months by ZB Sogayise and Collette Caine. The Board was later coerced to agree to the firing of Nathi Khena, and I voted against such. Nathi Khena was replaced by Msulwa Daca, who had been the Chief Financial Officer.

Under Collette Caine’s control of NSFAS, new arrangements were introduced such as Board fees, which never existed before, and travelling on business class, victimisation of Union leaders in NSFAS Offices, and all forms of social gatherings which Collette Caine would have with NSFAS Staff members loyal to her. Without venturing into unfounded allegations, the reality is that if there can be a closer and forensic examination of the doings and transactions in NSFAS during the period of the SACP deployees, a lot of questionable linkages between NSFAS and SACP Benefactors will be revealed. Amidst these, NSFAS went into a crisis which Blade Nzimande admitted to when announcing the appointment of the new Chairperson.

Collette Caine and ZB Sogayise’s interference with NSFAS was reported in the Mail & Guardian in June 2011 when Ashley Seymour, the CEO they fired took NSFAS to Court for unfair dismissal. The M&G report said amongst other things that, “Sogayise and Caine became “operationally involved within the organisation” and there was “a dramatic change in the workplace” involving the “creation of a hostile and intolerable work environment”, Seymour says. “It became apparent that [there was] a witch hunt against me.” (M&G, June 2011). The circumstances around the firing of Seymour’s successor, Nathi Khena were also mysterious and orchestrated by the Communist Party deployees in the board. In one of the board meetings, Khena complained about Caine and Sogayise’s micro-management of NSFAS affairs.

NSFAS’ plans for establishment of a central applications office lost direction and the conversion of loans into bursary scheme did not happen in the manner initially envisaged. The most tragic development out of all these though was the Board’s refusal to minute and implement our proposal that NSFAS should take over the debts of all academically deserving students who have been financially excluded, whether inside or outside the allocation criteria. Such a takeover would give financially excluded students access to their qualifications or academic records to continue with their studies or find jobs. The reality is that there are qualified students in South Africa who do not have their certificates of qualifications because they owe Universities tuition fees. Additionally, NSFAS’ failure to centralise applications and administration of the fund in order to avoid inconsistent selection and loan allocations criteria by institutions of higher learning.     

Whilst they over celebrate the R9 billion availed as loans to students, the massive administrative and political challenges imposed on NSFAS by Minister Nzimande and the Communist faction are heavy and disables the institution from performing its functions properly. In August 2015, when announcing the appointment of the new NSFAS Board Chairperson Sizwe Nxasana, Minister Nzimande pointed to the challenges confronting NSFAS, and mentioned the following:
1.      Failure of leadership to put in place an effective strategy to collect all revenue due to NSFAS. (Loan recoveries from student debtors have decreased significantly to R261.2-million in the 2014-2015 financial year from R372.3-million in the 2013-2014 financial year.) 
2.      The inability of NSFAS to raise funds as per its mandate. 
3.      Limited human resource and requisite expertise, and the capacity of management and leadership to ensure that the entity meets its mandate in terms of the NSFAS Act. 
4.      The entity has not been able to ensure that adequate and skilled resources were employed and has put the operations of NSFAS at considerable risk. 
5.      Failure of leadership and management to effectively provide oversight and manage financial and performance reporting, compliance with relevant legislation, lack of internal controls and policies to govern its operations, which opens up the entity to fraud at the NSFAS and institutions. 
6.      The NSFAS has not developed supportive relationships with its stakeholders and donors, and measures to improve the administration of donor funding take significant time to bear fruit, to the detriment of eligible students.

What Minister Nzimande did not do is reveal that the administrative crisis and challenges in NSFAS were his and the DG’s own creation, of appointing cronies into the Board and failure to provide decisive direction on deliverables. Students have been compromised due to lack of adequate and proper political leadership. Here is a Minister of Higher Education who disregards skills and expertise and make nepotistic appointments, and raising suspicions due to what he always said before the ANC 52nd National Conference in Polokwane. Before Polokwane and his campaign for the SACP written Alliance pact with the ANC, Nzimande would always say that “it cannot be correct that we all go hunt for nogwaja (rabbit), and once we caught it, only ANC leaders are the ones who eat, whilst we only get bones”. Those who understand parables will know what this means, but it looks like NSFAS was being turned into nogwaja for Nzimande and the SACP.

b)     Higher Education Funding:

In December 2012, the Vice Chancellor and Principal of the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University Derrick Swartz presented a report on the feasibility of free education and it still has not been released, despite the fact that the report said free higher education is feasible. This might seem improbable for a Minister who was mistaken for a revolutionary and champion of free education, but the reality is that a thorough study was conducted on provision of free education and Minister Blade Nzimande is hoarding the report. It is highly possible that Nzimande has not yet read the report because he rarely pays attention to details, does not attend to his ministerial responsibilities, except ones which bring him immediate private benefits. Why would a Minister deprive the higher education fraternity an opportunity to deliberate on introduction of free quality education, whilst the organisation that deployed him resolved to gradually introduce free education for the poor until undergraduate level in its 52nd National Conference?

In the 53rd National Conference of the ANC, a resolution was taken that “the policy for free higher education to all undergraduate level students will be finalised for adoption before the end of 2013”. This was after noting that “University education is costly and academically capable students from poor families should not be expected to pay up-front fees in order to access higher education”. All these resolutions have not been implemented, and there is a person whose role is to implement such resolutions. Again, it is possible that Minister Nzimande has not read these resolutions, because there is no immediate personal benefits for him or the Communist Party.

South Africa’s Constitution gives Ministers powers to table legislation in Parliament and the current budget allocation process demands that Ministers and their departments should present detailed plans on what their funding needs are in any given financial year. The final budget then becomes the product of what Parliament has approved from departments. Minister Blade Nzimande and his department have never asked for additional money to finance free higher education, except for the normal inflationary adjustments. There was never a time where additional funding to ease the burden on students were asked from Parliament. Asking for money from Parliament is a political function of Ministers and Nzimande has not done so.

Higher Education should be radically funded and existing institutions of higher learning expanded to absorb more students. When many students struggle to pass and attain their qualifications due to inadequate learning, teaching, and research support, there are many others who are waiting on the long queues trying to gain access to higher education, yet cannot because there are no sufficient spaces in institutions of higher learning. The highlight of what we previously presented to parliament reflects the following:
INSTITUTION OF HIGHER LEARNING:
NUMBER OF APPLICATIONS FOR ACADEMIC YEAR 2015:
NUMBER OF SPAPCES AVAILABLE FOR FIRST YEAR:
University of Stellenbosch
23 818
4 900
University of Cape Town
23 600
4000
University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg
54 000
6400
Cape Peninsula University of Technology
31 601
9285
Durban University of Technology
79 000
7200
Mangosuthu University of Technology
40 000
3500
Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University
31 620
5 850
University of KwaZulu Natal
90 000
8 400
North West University
23 200
9 471
University of Zululand
71000
3900

This trend reflects in all institutions of higher learning, and Blade Nzimande’s leadership on this crisis is introduction of two new Universities in Mpumalanga and Northern Cape, which can only take up to 10 000 students in 10 years’ time, whilst only accepting less than 3000 students combined. When we criticise this, Nzimande resorts to his belittling retorts and even threatens violence as if he knows anything about violence. The question of where was he has still not been answered.

As a matter of fact, the cost to run all institutions of higher learning in a way which will provide free education is less than R50 billion, and through proper prioritisation, the current budget of the State can afford R50 billion for higher education. What this requires is political will and commitment to introduce free quality education for all, and it can be achieved. If government’s political will has directed it towards the Nuclear Build programme, which will possibly be completed when they are all no longer in government and at double or triple R1 trillion bill, the same will can be directed to provision of free quality education for all.

There should never be an assumption that provision of free quality education for all will happen at the expense of any other expenditure item, because education for any nation and country is a massive investment. Investing in education might lead to the development of innovative, productive and entrepreneurial population whose efforts and contribution will far outweigh the R50 billion initially invested. Also many other students will see the need to gain skills, expertise and education when such is fee free. Fees are a barrier to higher education and they must fall.

The Minister of Higher Education and entire ANC government has never tabled a proposal in parliament on how we should finance free quality education for all, despite that their own Conferences instructed them to do so. The crisis is therefore a political crisis caused by politicians who do not want to take responsibility and stay true to their own resolutions. If people fail to respect their own resolutions, it is difficult to expect them to respect other people’s resolutions. The ANC’s narcissistic belief and entitlement to political power in South Africa is the reason why they treat everyone with disdain. The disdainful and arrogant way individual Ministers approach key developmental issues, their incapacity and mediocrity have been institutionalised and currently defines the whole public sector, including government and parastatals. 

Every time the EFF raises the question of free quality higher education, Blade Nzimande consistently responds by saying that the Freedom Charter does not call for free higher education, taking advantage of the Freedom Charter sentence that says, “Education shall be free, compulsory, universal and equal for all children; Higher education and technical training shall be opened to all by means of state allowances and scholarships awarded on the basis of merit”. There are various interpretations to this, but the commitment to provision of free quality higher education is an ideological and political commitment which has been resolved on many platforms.

If allocating money for free quality higher education from the current budget will lead into a fiscal crisis, the Minister of Education should mobilise the whole of society enactment of legislation which will allow for an education tax from all private corporations and individuals. Society is already mobilised behind the need to develop a funding model for education and with presentation of superior logic, society can be mobilised to support a special education tax, which will could be ring fenced specifically for the provision of free quality education for all. What this means is the corporates and individuals would take ownership of higher education funding. South Africa is however leaderless on the education front and such will not be considered.

c)      Institutional mechanisms to foster real higher education transformation

Because government is usually the biggest financial contributor to institutions of higher learning, it should put in place a mechanism on how institutions of higher learning should respond to the transformation objectives and goals. This of course should not undermine academic freedom, in the sense of what and how to teach. Academics and students should be allowed freedom of research and academic expression without dictates of wishes of the government of the day.

Nevertheless, there are specific issues that can be transformation goals and targets et between the department of higher education and institutions of higher learning on what is to be done. These could include concrete agreements on issues such as;
1)      Ending all forms of financial exclusions.
2)      Academic and research support programmes which will guarantee maximum success rates for students.
3)      Minimum standards on institutional infrastructure, food, and residences.
4)      Minimum standards on employment conditions and salaries of all workers employed by institutions of higher learning, which should ban outsourcing and labour brokering.
5)      Fair, balanced and responsive curriculum.
6)      Quantitative and qualitative expansion targets, goals and aspirations.
7)      Universities’ contribution to societal open education.

These and many others could play a significant role and could be established through deliberative means which involve all stake holders, inclusive of students, workers, parents, governments (local, provincial and national) and communities where the institutions of higher learning exist. This can be fostered through a properly structured dialogue, transformation charters and even legislation which binds institutions of higher learning to progressive developments.

This can only happen if South Africa is led by a responsible and responsive government. As a matter of fact, the country is politically on autopilot, and this is vividly evidenced by the ANC and Nzimande’s lacklustre attitude. It is a fat that Minister Blade Nzimande does not go to work, and is often in what qualifies to be social pleasure in hotels and other areas. Such conduct defines him and other members in cabinet who have no interests in the wellbeing of the people they committed to serve.

Conclusion

Well it’s somewhat polarising to say this now, but the reality is that the misguided belief that SASCO will turn things around because it is within the congress movement is illusionary. Generations after generations of students’ leadership and brilliant activists from SASCO have made exactly the same demands students are making today, and still there is very minimal changes in the higher education sector. The qualitative disparities between institutions of higher learning are still reflective of what the colonial-cum-apartheid past designed these institutions to be, fees are unregulated, exclusions happen every second day, and black students’ success is minimal.

The #FeesMustFall Movement should intensify the struggle to achieve 0% increase of fees in 2016 academic year, but all students should appreciate that even in the current rates, the fees are unaffordable even for working families. The message is simple: #ListenToTheKids! High fees also decimate the NSFAS Loans granted to students and often leave them with no residences, food, and books. Attaining a 0% increase will be a great achievement, but such should be escalated to demand for free quality education for all, illegalisation of financial exclusion, scrapping of all students’ debts and qualitative and quantitative expansion of institutions of higher learning.

As a matter of, Blade Nzimande and the current Higher Education Ministry as configured will not bring about the necessary revolutionary changes, and that is when all students will appreciate that #FeesMustFall should also be #BladeMustGo and the #ANCMustFall. Well, to his credit, Blade Nzimande is one of the 2 Cabinet Ministers with a Doctoral degree, yet he is an epitome of mediocrity, who specialises in shallow rhetoric. The #ANCMustFall because when they see students clad in SASCO and ANC T-shirts chanting slogans of #FeesMustFall, they think of all of those students as some wayward children who must be called to Luthuli House for some guidance. So #FeesMustFall, #BladeMustGo and #ANCMustFall. #ListenToTheKids!


FLOYD SHIVAMBU IS EFF DEPUTY PRESDIENT!

FLOYD'S PERSPECTIVES

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