South Africa’s Ruling African National Congress Trapped

The owners of the economy, corporates, lobby groups, think tanks and their corporate mainstream media concocted a series of destructive strategies to ensure that particularly the African National Congress (ANC) would finally be reduced to a political party only second to the Democratic Alliance (DA)-Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) by 2019.

In the build-up to such a scenario, the image of the ruling ANC as well as its government was seriously tarnished. Character assassinations, similar to those meted out against Zimbabwe’s President Robert Mugabe, became the daily fodder for South Africa’s corporate media.

Traps, such as the “secret Sunset Clauses”; “state capture”; “corruption”; chequebooks politics setting up “blind trusts” for political leadership and judges, are part of it. At the same time, leaders were deliberately not vetted to proof their competency and loyalties.

An assessment of the current situation with all its flaws needs to be done.

Senior members of the ANC admitted to the wrongdoings. They pointed at factionalism, polarisation, a compromised leadership, double speak to mislead the majority of the population “to be able to continue serving their corporate lobbyists, also viewed as handlers”.

The question arises, “When was the ANC leadership captured and compromised?”

In the 1980s big business sent its elite and lobbyists as often as they perceived it necessary, to Lusaka, Zambia; Dar-es-Salaam, Tanzania; Luanda, Angola; London, United Kingdom; Washington, USA; Zurich, Switzerland; Bonn, Frankfurt and Munich in Germany; the Scandinavian countries and others. Was it not then already that the leadership was captured?

How free was the revered Nelson Mandela really when he was moved to ‘Victor Verster prison’ outside Paarl in the Western Cape?

By his own admission, the head of apartheid National Intelligence Services (NIS), Dr. Niel Barnard, influenced Mandela’s thinking of a “new South Africa under ANC rule”.

It became worse. There are those among the ANC leadership, who support the “secret Sunset Clauses” in private, which apartheid De Klerk and SACP Slovo brought to the negotiations in 1994. In public however, they deny their support of such secret agendas. Having met in secret with Big Business leaders; Boer academics, which fronted for a range of interests as well as the Urban Foundation, were ANC leaders not already captured by 1994?

The ANC failed to sensitize its members. When will that sun (of the secret Sunset Clauses) eventually set on South Africa? The contents of those secret clauses were never debated. The nation was thus, never taken along into the trust of the leadership. At the same time the majority was kept in the dark. Since the expiry date of those secret clauses, ANC members and the public in general were not informed. Why have the signed Sunset Clauses not been circulated among all ANC members, branches and the general public to be debated nationally?

The ANC was pushed into a corner at the CODESA negotiations in 1994. The grand apartheid planners and its international Western think tanks signed a much-hailed, neo-liberal constitution and its democracy.

And, this time grand-apartheid entered through the backdoor to stay, forming the constitution, through for example, “minority groups rights” and nine provinces bankrupting, dividing and unsettling South Africa further. “Minority groups’ rights” also protect structured poverty, as meted out at the poor indigenous majority. To date, that evil has not been addressed in public. It means, the public at large has been misled, as the ANC never fought for such.

The ANC further failed to set up its own think tank, its own research institute. Its media-platforms in exile, SECHABA, UMSEBEZI, DAWN and Radio Freedom were shut down on instruction of Thabo Mbeki. Why was this accepted? How could Mbeki wield so much power? Obviously, South Africa’s corporate mainstream media cartels do not have any African aspirations and interests at heart.

ANC followers had no further communication with its leaders. What was the role of certain leaders in doing such?

After the successful democratic elections, then President Nelson Mandela appointed his cabinet and support structures. But, there was no Minister of Finance and no Governor of the Reserve Bank for a number of years still. It seemed quite obvious, that both, the new Finance Minister, Trevor Manuel, as well as the new Governor of the Reserve Bank, Tito Mboweni, were not vetted by the ANC government when appointed, but by the established White elite outside the new rulers.

Until now, the ANC is not able to appoint anyone in the Treasury, or the Reserve Bank. Those positions seem to have always been vetted by invisible anti-ANC interests. As it stands, Johann Rupert seems to lead those forces in South Africa.

South Africa’s Independent National Treasury, which President Zuma failed to capture, as accused, sits with a 50% debt to GDP, a declining economy, close to recession. It is paying the highest interest rates under any circumstances. Why did National Treasury not increase economic growth? How could South Africa benefit from its National Treasury?

A well-known senior economist insists that the following questions should be answered to the best of Pravin Gordhan’s abilities, “Of the ZAR1trillion debt, National Treasury head, Gordhan, raised since he became Minister of Finance, what exactly was this amount applied to? To date, South Africa has not seen the money. Where is it going? Who is in charge? Who hoodwinks the nation? Why has no forensic audit been done on the National Treasury?”

Given the current economic situation, the debt, the over-politicizing of the Treasury, the factionalism of the ruling party, an independent National Treasury under Gordhan has failed South Africa.

No one asks the National Treasury any questions. Gordhan is a “bolombolo tiger”, created by public relations consultants, hopelessly over-inflated by the corporate mainstream media cartels. Under arrogant Gordhan, South Africans will be in for real grief. To date, no one asks Gordhan the mentioned hard questions, as well as why the Treasury is acting without any accountabilities.

Powerful Russian President Putin recently fired his Finance Minister when he discovered that his Minister had taken a bribe of US$2million.

Meanwhile, think tanks, such as the ‘Brenthurst Foundation’, the ‘Helen Suzman Foundation’ and the ‘Freedom under Law Foundation’, who have long-standing links with Zimbabwe’s MDC-T and its leader Morgan Tsvangirai, remain forces to be reckoned with. It seems, nothing goes without their approval. Add to the mentioned NGOs US-George Soros’ “Southern African Litigation Center (SALC)” and “Open Society Foundation”, they seem to form a “deep state”, undermining the South African state. This should be an additional national debate.

Another serious problem is patronage with government position-holders. It applies to the veterans as well as other stakeholders.

The recalled former ANC- and country president, Thabo Mbeki, was the architect of patronage, at the same time centralizing all powers under him to ensure the old status quo remains in place.

Those, who accepted the ‘patronage system’, enjoyed guaranteed positions in government. ANC stalwart, Joel Netshitenzhe, and many others had their positions secured. This ‘patronage system’ also made ANC members afraid to query the direction of Thabo Mbeki’s leadership. It amounted to intimidation. The descent within the ANC was oppressed.

The manipulation of using state agencies against one another was rooted in Mbeki’s term of office. It is interesting to observe that the very same “stalwarts”, currently questioning the state-of-affairs, perpetuated patronage under Mbeki.

The patronage system helped to identify and create “tenderpreneurs”. As some of the senior ANC NEC members told this writer under the condition of anonymity, “Mbeki’s faction benefited most from the patronage system. Those beneficiaries include Saki Macozoma, Smuts Ngoyama, Njali Majola, Bulelani Ngcuka and a few more. State patronage promoted corruption across the board and assured corruption on all levels, from national-, to provincial-, to municipal. Today, they are multi-millionaires.”

“In fact, “state captures” is not a new concept. We believe, the Guptas played the role of a decoy to deflect the focus to those who were actually captured. Who brought those Guptas to the ANC? What was Essop Pahad’s role? The mission is clear. It was done to destroy the ANC.”

“The Guptas were to infiltrate one of the factions”, the senior ANC NEC member pointed out. “Their mission was to establish the weakest link, which they seemed to have done.”

“If the ANC wants to reclaim its movement, it has to strictly ban corporate political funding across the board. Big business renders political leadership and its parties powerless. The corporates hijack all power to destroy whole countries, regions and continents for their own crude interests, as seems the case in Africa and the Mid East.”

“Under an ANC-led government, South Africa would have to move towards a ‘one-person, one-vote system’ in a ‘Constituent Assembly’. This is what the ANC fought for. It will return power to the people.”

Proportional representation shortchanges the electorate. It gives the party bosses more power than their own constituencies are worth. This is viewed as “fraudulently centralising power”. If this is not accepted, it could lead to the disintegration of the ANC into leaderless little groups and factions.”

It was also explained to this writer, “Joel Netshitenze’s suggestion of an electoral college for the ANC would guarantee the total capture of the movement. It borrows from the US, where only two political parties can be part of democracy, sponsored by Wall Street. Corporate interests would vet all political leaders and rule through them.”

Finally, in its own brutal assessment, the question, which should uphold the democratic principles, is a fair one. “No one has ever addressed recalled former president Mbeki’s loss of elections. Mbeki’s faction resigned and left with him. Neither Mbeki, nor any of his followers attend ANC meetings. Why did Joel Netshitenzhe, Sipho Pityana and Siphiwe Nyanda deliberately not address that issue? Who funds the ANC “stalwarts” for their public appearances?”

A sulking, yet arrogant Thabo Mbeki demonstrated dictatorial tendencies, but by no means a democratic leadership. The ANC groups, also known as “counter revolutionaries”, show dishonesty and selective thinking. END.

End.

Follow my twitter handle: @theotherafrika

 

Advertisements

Has Washington Declared A Food War On BRICS Member, South Africa, Through Its AGOA?

 

President Barak Obama, as head-of-state and commander-in-chief of the armed forces of the United States of America and his team for the “African Growth And Opportunity Act (AGOA)”, gave sovereign South Africa until the 15th of this month of March 2016, to comply with Washington’s export of poultry as well as other meats.

 

In the meantime, the first batch of 325 tonnes of American brown chicken pieces has already hit South Africa’s supermarkets!

 

If South Africa would not abide by the AGOA-dictate of the White House, the country would be suspended from duty-free treatment to all AGOA eligible goods in the agricultural sector, meaning, South Africa would not be able to trade on the American market.

 

The obvious question is, why would a US president get involved in a project to export chickens to South Africa with a total weight of 65 000 tonnes annually?

 

It is BRICS, the new economic order of Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa. Observing the obvious, it is Washington’s arm-twisting foreign politics. AGOA is their law.

 

The White House’s discontent with South Africa’s move closer to China and Russia through its BRICS membership, as well as South Africa’s plan to cap foreign ownership in the security companies from mainly the US and the UK, are the real thorns in Obama and Cameron’s side.

 

The Chief Executive Officer of South Africa’s Poultry Association (SAPA), Kevin Lovell, explained that there was a clash between Washington and South Africa since the AGOA status came up for review at the beginning of this year 2016.

 

Lovell warned that building whole industries on AGOA would be dangerous, because it is a concession and not a trade agreement. South Africa’s industries are aware that the concession could be taken away from them at any time.

 

WASHINGTON’S FOREIGN POLITICS AT ITS WORST

 

From the onset the White House threatened that South Africa would loose its benefits, if it did not remove its anti-dumping duties on US poultry imports.

 

South Africa’s trade delegation consulted with the World Trade Organisation (WTO) on fair legal trade structures, which would have made America’s chicken imports more expensive. Washington’s “negotiating” team knew that it was not allowed to dump its brown poultry pieces for much longer.

 

When US-AGOA came up for renewal in 2014, brown poultry pieces became one of the strong negotiation tools. In addition, Washington’s trade team would invest in the development of new, indigenous black African entrants in the poultry industry. What they forgot to mention is, there are no indigenous black Africans who own a poultry-import business. It is the existing meat importers, who benefit.

 

America’s cost-recovery is from the white poultry meat, not the brown on the bone. When Washington exported its chickens to Ghana, prices were fixed so low that Ghana’s poultry industry collapsed and never recovered since. However, the prices for the imported chicken pieces from America escalated then.

 

Meanwhile, there was an outbreak of two types of poultry diseases in America, namely Avian Influenza and Salmonella. The outbreak of Avian Influenza hit America’s poultry industry in 2014 as well as in 2015.

 

Standard procedure is, that trade would be suspended and all exports halted when there is an outbreak of such diseases. Before trading of poultry would be resumed, the diseases would have to be proven to be cleaned out and destroyed completely.

 

The International Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) has strict guidelines when a country, any country, can be declared free from disease. This has to be followed by a period of three months after cleaning and disinfecting to the last of infected farms and before exporting.

 

WASHINGTON’s CREATIVE POWER-ARM-TWISTING THROUGH AGOA

 

Capitol Hill tried to force South Africa during the active outbreak of the Avian Influenza to accept a “regionalization protocol”. It means, Washington tried to dictate to South Africa to accept the different US states as “regions” and accept their chickens. Those “regions” would not be affected by an outbreak of Avian Influenza. It also means, that South Africa should accept the poultry from those states/”regions”.

 

However, geographic states being declared “regions” is not good enough. A sovereign South Africa considers whole countries in its trade relations, not parts of them.

 

In fact, the latest outbreak of Avian Influenza in America’s poultry-production industry spread so fast from one state to the next that it spun out of control.

 

Washington had its own way out again. A method called “compartmentalization” was brought to the negotiation table. “Compartments” were negotiated during peace times. Countries would agree to accept “compartments” to enable movement of breeding stock. South Africa agreed with AVIAGEN to work with their operations as a “compartment”. It is claimed that “compartments” are better for the control of diseases such as Avian Influenza, which is spread by wild birds. “Compartments” are under a central control system from beginning to end. It should mean that therefore, health risks are minimal.

 

But, regions have many different operations, which are not linked with one another and do not fall under the same management.

 

When Washington insisted on South Africa to accept their regions, South Africa’s Veterinary Services requested more information to evaluate the risks, as crucial information seemed to have been withheld i.e. the American poultry producers declared themselves free from Avian Influenza H5N8. Meanwhile, American poultry producers had an additional outbreak of H5N2, but did not declare it to the OIE. As American poultry producers declared themselves free from H5N8, there existed infected backyard flocks being cleaned up.

 

In January 2016 a new outbreak of Avian Influenza was reported in America. Under normal circumstances it would have resulted in the complete suspension of agricultural trade in general. But, it is not the case. If that batch lands in South Africa, this country’s national poultry industry would be put under severe health risk, as Avian Influenza would spread to the local poultry industry.

 

Another major health risk also seems to raise its evil head, SALMONELLA ENTERITIDIS. This avian disease will affect and kill humans in South Africa and the SADC region.

 

South Africa has a protocol for monitoring all imported meat and meat products for SALMONELLA. Sampling and testing of shipments at the country’s ports of entry apply to everyone.

 

Washington however, wants its products to be tested only for monitoring, but not for typing to establish what type of SALMONELLA it might be.

 

This writer was told that Washington rejected any form of typing and subjection to heat treatment of its poultry exports. South Africa was not given the option to reject landed, SALMONELLA infected poultry. And, South Africa cannot return shipments despite proof of disease.

 

The above-mentioned sanitary problems entered the negotiations at a later stage. South Africa’s poultry industry was involved during the negotiations of the annual tonnage, but not in the sanitary discussions.

 

SOUTH AFRICA SUCCUMBED TO WASHINGTON’S AGOA POLITICS

 

The South African authorities and their affiliated structures accepted and signed Washington’s “regionalization protocol”, despite the above-mentioned discrepancies. South Africa’s Veterinary Association tried to clear matters up. However, it was unsuccessful. AGOA was signed.

 

THE WHITE HOUSE-AGOA-DICTATE FURTHER UNDERMINES SOUTH AFRICA’S TRADE LAWS

 

By yielding to Washington’s AGOA dictate, South Africa opened itself up to abolish the basis of working trade laws. Cases upon cases will come up to enforce the abuse of South Africa’s trade laws, as it cannot discriminate between trading partners. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander.

 

Referring to AGOA, the South African Poultry Association’s CEO, Kevin Lovell explained to members of the media, “We knew it would hurt our industry, but realised that we had to come to an agreement for the greater good of South Africa.”

 

Is South Africa’s trade minister, Rob Davies, actually aware of the above-mentioned implications, as AGOA goes ahead?

 

Meanwhile, the AGOA status remains under threat, despite the signed agreement in place. Is this not a food war against BRICS member, South Africa? It is insane.

 

South Africa’s civil society needs to take immediate action, alerting consumers nationwide of possibly contaminated poultry imports. AGOA is a shocking, one-sided deal.