Author Archives: iPAn

About iPAn

Independent Pan African News Network aims to provide accurate, fair and balanced African news stories relating to economics, lifestyles & cultural activities, in the form of videos, audio podcasts and written articles for both online and broadcasting.

Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA)

ICASA appoints an Acting Chairperson

The Council of the Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) announces the appointment of Dr. Keabetswe Modimoeng as acting Chairperson effective from today, 25 March 2019 until a permanent Chairperson is appointed. 

The appointment of the acting Chairperson follows a Special Council Meeting held this morning and is informed by the provisions of section 5(2) of the ICASA Act, 2000 which provides that…‘in the absence of the chairperson, the remaining Councillors must, from their number, elect an acting chairperson, who, while he or she acts, may perform all the functions of the chairperson.’  

In accepting the acting appointment Dr. Keabetswe Modimoeng committed to ensure that ICASA continues to execute its mandate independently and in the public interest.  

“We are governed by legislation and guided by the public interest mandate and for that we will continue to put the South African public first when taking decisions. We will continue to work closely with all key stakeholders (including government) to ensure that the Authority’s regulatory decisions advance transformation in the ICT sector, support economic growth and unlock opportunities presented by the Fourth Industrial Revolution and the digital economy,” says the acting Chairperson, Dr. Modimoeng. 

Dr Modimoeng holds MBA and PhD (Management Sciences) degrees. He is a Harvard senior executive fellow and has completed an Executive Development Program from Wharton University as well as Africa Director Program (Stellenbosch). 

Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA)

ICASA announces its decision on the licensing of an additional Commercial Free To Air television broadcasting services and related spectrum

The Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA) has taken a decision to award Kwesé Free TV an Individual Commercial Free-To-Air Television Broadcasting Licence and Radio Frequency Spectrum Licence i.e. 55% of MUX3 frequencies. The award of the licence follows Kwesé Free TV’s full compliance with the requirements of the Invitation To Apply (ITA) issued in February 2017.

“Broadcasting services play a crucial role in deepening our democracy, by, among other things, providing a platform for the expression of multiple views and strengthening social cohesion as well as giving a voice to various sections of the population,” said Councillor Dimakatso Qocha during the announcement of the successful applicant.

In coming to the decision whether to grant or refuse a licence, the Authority considered various criteria set out in the legislation and the published ITA as well as the provisions of the Electronic Communications Act (ECA).

The considerations for this licensing process include the following:

1. Compliance with the ECA
2. Compliance with the requirements of the ITA
3. Market research: Demand, Need and Support of the proposed service;
4. Viability of the business plan and financial means of the Applicant; and
5. Capability, expertise and experience of the Applicant and its employees in business in general and in broadcasting in particular.

The licensing of an additional individual commercial free-to-air television broadcasting service and related spectrum will stimulate competition and increase the variety of television broadcasting services available to South Africans.

“It is our duty as the regulator to ensure that we promote competition in the sector which we regulate; and are driven by our consumer protection mandate which

encourages us to ensure that South Africans have access to a wide range of communication services,’ concludes Councillor Qocha.


PSA appalled by conduct of Gauteng MEC for Sports, Arts, Culture and Recreation

The Public Servants Association (PSA) is appalled by the conduct of Gauteng MEC for Sports, Arts, Culture and Recreation, Ms Faith Mazibuko, as revealed by a leaked audio recording of a meeting between her and employees of the Department.

In the recording the MEC can be heard demanding for certain sporting facilities to be rolled out prior to the elections to influence election results. “The MEC displays a total disregard of the applicable tender processes and prescripts. She is further heard threatening to force senior staff to resign and making racial remarks to two senior staff members. This incident shows that given any opportunity beneficial to them, politically-aligned leadership will flout rules and regulations applicable in the Public Service for the procurement of services and use ordinary employees to do so,” said PSA General Manager, Ivan Fredericks.

The PSA pointed out that in the Nkandla debacle and various other recent incidents, workers were instructed to grant approvals that were not above board. “These workers were later blamed and brought to book for this while they, in fact, acted on instructions. The PSA commends the employees in this clip who refuse to flout regulations and persistently bringing this to the MEC’s attention. The Union encourages workers to stand their ground and follow proper procedure, regardless of undue pressure labelled as ‘instructions’. The conduct of the MEC in this instance exceeds the boundaries in various instances. The PSA calls for appropriate action to be taken against her,” said Mr Fredericks.

ANC Veterans


As outlined at the beginning of the meeting, the primary objective of today’s meeting was to ensure that the members of the Veterans League are involved in every aspect of the Gauteng ANC elections campaign. The meeting is also the first step in the revitalisation of the structures of the Veterans Leagues in Gauteng after we have fully participated and ensured the ANC decisively win the elections on 8 May.


We are gathered today as long serving members of the ANC and are confident of that elections victory. However, we all have to work very hard for that victory. Our people are still wounded and still angry that we have disappointed them by not intervening authoritatively when our movement was on a downward spiral.


It is not by accident that the Veterans League was formed in 2009.Our leadership had a strategic for-sight by establishing the mother of all Leagues that had the authority of intervening on all issues that affect the credibility and integrity of our glorious movement.We must admit that we were on a downward slope and society had lost confidence in us to govern on its behalf.We must also admit that corruption, gate keeping, buying of votes, arrogance and factionalism were the order of the day, hence we lost ground in the 2016 local government elections.

The Veterans League since its establishment has failed in its responsibility to intervene authoritatively on all issues that affect the integrity and credibility of our glorious movement.

We all have to change the Veterans League from a passive, ineffective and docile veterans league to a more robust, constructive and authoritative league that has the authority to restore the integrity and credibility of our glorious movement.

Involvement of members of the Veterans League in the Integrity Commission which has the power to summon members of the ANC to appear before it to answer allegations or complaints of unethical conduct is of primary importance.We should ensure that we involve skilled, experienced and well grounded members of the Veterans Leagues at our most crucial sub committees of the ANC like: Organisation and Building Campaigns, Communication, Constitutional Affairs, Commission on Religious Affairs, Economic Transformation, Education and Health, Elections, International Relations, Legislature and Governance, National Appeals Committee, Disciplinary Committee, Peace and Stability and others.

The Veterans Leagues must raise its voice loudly against corruption, unethical behaviour and wrong doing wherever it occurs in our ranks and in government.

We must also inculcate the culture of holding meetings of the National Office Bearers and Provincial Office Bearers. Meetings of the National and Provincial Working Committees, meetings of the National Executive and Provincial Executive Committees and general meetings to report back to our constituency.

For us to hold the above meetings we have to be financially independent and aggressively raise funds for the Veterans League.

In all honesty, the ANC leadership has high regard for the Veterans League, however, we need to earn that respect.

We have to be ethical, hardworking, committed and ensure that we protect the integrity, values and the credibility of of our glorious movement.

We are gathered here when our movement and the country had entered an era of renewal, when we are aggressively addressing problems of divisions and dysfunctionality and when we are restoring the integrity and credibility of our glorious movement.

The Veterans League should play a leading role in restoring the integrity and credibility of our glorious movement. We should be more active in the elections campaign, unite society and the country and ensure we are given another chance to govern the country on behalf of society. We have nothing to lose but our country and our glorious movement.

How do we revitalise the Veterans League’ in Gauteng.

Our plan going forward from today’s meeting is to work with the PEC of the Veterans League in Gauteng to properly constitute branches and regions of the Veterans’ League. Many of our comrades are fully fledged members of the Veterans League and there are those who qualify as members of the League but have not yet applied for membership. Others might be over 60 years of age but have not yet completed 40 years of unbroken service in the ANC as set out in the ANC Constitution. There is a category of membership that provides for your active participation and support of the work of the Veterans’ League. Every year we also have comrades who reach the age of 60, whose activism, experience and participation in the Veterans’ League is needed so that members of the Veterans’ League play their active role in the political and organisational work of the structures of the ANC.

Comrades have filled in a registration form for this meeting and after elections we will use the information provided to form branches aligned to the sub regions and zone in each of the five regions of Gauteng. The branches will be launched with an elected leadership in June. At the same meeting we intend that delegates will be chosen for regional conferences and we hope will take place in July. At the regional conference we intend that delegates will be chosen for a Provincial Conference in August or September. In the meantime, each branch will be deployed to work with a

cluster of branches in the sub region or zone where they are located to that structures of the ANC, the Women’s League and the Youth League are able to make a full and rich contribution to the work of the ANC, to the movement and to the life of the nation as set out in the ANC Constitution.

The elections will take place in less than 60 days. Let us leave this meeting knowing that we will actively participate in the Gauteng Elections Campaign under the leadership of the Gauteng Veterans’ Leagues PEC. Tomorrow political parties will be submitting their lists of representatives to serve in the National Assembly and Provincial Legislatures. We support the nomination of those who are tried and tested, credible and ethical. We do not support the inclusion in our lists of anyone who has been involved in corruption. We urge all the nominated candidates of the ANC to introspect and decline their nomination if their inclusion in the lists will in any way dent the image of our glorious movement.

Let us all work for unity and ensure that we build a strong Veterans League and that will build a strong ANC that will deliver our set objectives.

We must all play an active role in ensuring that we win these elections with a resounding victory.

Snuki Zikalala
President of the ANC Veterans League

mplement BNC decision, ministers and officials told.


1. At the invitation of His Excellency, Cde Emmerson Dambudzo MNANGAGWA, President of the Republic of Zimbabwe, His Excellency, Cde Matamela Cyril RAMAPHOSA, President of the Republic of South Africa, paid an Official Visit to Zimbabwe from 11 – 12 March 2019, for the Third Session of the Bi-National Commission (BNC) between the two countries. President Ramaphosa was accompanied by five (5) Cabinet Ministers.

2. The Third Session was preceded by the meetings of the Ministers on 11 March 2019 and Senior Officials from 7 – 8 March 2019.

3. During the meeting, the two Heads of State held discussions with a view to further strengthening and deepening bonds of friendship and cooperation between Zimbabwe and South Africa. They also exchanged views on regional, continental and international issues of mutual interest.

4. The two Presidents underlined the close and friendly bilateral ties deeply rooted in shared history, sustained and nourished through growing economic partnership, multifaceted cooperation as well as vibrant people-to-people contacts.

5. The discussions were held in a cordial atmosphere.

6. The two Heads of State welcomed the positive outcomes of the Third BNC held in Harare in 2019. They directed the Ministers and Officials to implement the decisions taken by the Heads of State to further cement the strategic bilateral partnership.

7. The two sides emphasized the importance of expanding trade and investment to drive the strategic engagement forward. In this regard, the Heads of State directed their Finance and Trade Ministers to work together to achieve these goals.

8. Zimbabwe highlighted the key initiatives taken by Government to improve the ease of doing business in the country and further informed on the country’s efforts to simplify and rationalize investment rules with the view to attract foreign direct investment.

9. The relevant Ministries agreed to consider options for expanding the standing Facility arrangement between the respective Central Banks. Other Financing Options beyond this are also being explored (for example a facility from South African private banks to the Zimbabwe private sector and guaranteed by the South African Government, with an appropriate counter-guarantee from the Zimbabwe Government).

10. They also agreed to work together on re-engagement with the International Co-operating Partners in support of Zimbabwe’s economic reform and Debt Arrears Clearance Agenda.

11. Zimbabwe expressed appreciation for the unwavering commitment of the Government and people of South Africa in calling for the removal of illegal and unwarranted sanctions which are stifling the country’s economic recovery programme.

12. The two Leaders unequivocally called for the removal of sanctions on Zimbabwe whose adverse effects have been far-reaching across the political and socio-economic spectrums.

13. The two Presidents emphasized the importance of enhancing strategic bilateral engagement, particularly in defence and security cooperation, to accomplish the common interests of the two countries and their peoples.

14. At the multilateral level, the Commission welcomed the convergence of views on regional, continental and international issues and agreed to further harmonize their positions especially in view of South Africa’s non-permanent membership of the UN Security Council and its upcoming assumption of the Chair of the African Union in 2020.

15. Zimbabwe expressed goodwill and confidence in the successful holding of elections in South Africa which will take place on 8 May 2019.

16. The two leaders expressed their deepest condolences to the Government and the people of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and all other nations on the sad loss of lives in the recent air disaster involving flight ET302.

17. At the conclusion of the BNC, His Excellency, Cde Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa expressed gratitude to His Excellency, Cde Emmerson Dambudzo Mnangagwa and the people of the Republic of Zimbabwe for the warm welcome and hospitality accorded to him and his delegation.

18. His Excellency, President Ramaphosa extended an invitation to his counterpart, His Excellency, President Mnangagwa, to attend the Fourth Session of the BNC, to be hosted by South Africa in 2020, on a date to be agreed and communicated through diplomatic channels.

Harare, 12 March 2019

Bonisile Norushe

In Memory of Comrade Norushe

The Premier of the Eastern Cape, Comrade Norushe’s family, our Veterans who came from our different provinces to bury this revolutionary giant, dear comrades, esteem mourners, fellow South Africans.

It was on the 31st of January 2019 when our deputy president, our comrade, a revolutionary giant closed his eyes and had his last breath as a living soul on this planet.

As the ANC Veterans League, we are saddened by the untimely death of this trusted and committed cadre of our revolutionary movement.

Comrade Norushe has not been well for some time, but he never succumbed to the injuries he sustained as a result of torture meted by the brutal apartheid regime.

“Snuki, the boers were brutal. When they arrested me in the early 80’s, they lifted me up and threw me on the concrete floor like a bag of mielie meal. My back was severely injured, I could not walk for days but I never submitted. Lately because of age, my back is giving in and I am unable to walk long distances. I now have to use a wheel chair when moving from one place to the other. I am booked for a back operation and it’s a delicate one, but I will never give up. We have to build a strong and vibrant Veterans League that will help our glorious movement to build a strong and united ANC, an ANC that will deliver on its mandate to society,” he would say.

Illness did not deter Comrade Norushe from attending our most important meetings of uniting the Veterans League and the ANC.

Comrade Norushe was very ill when he attended our last meeting in December in Johannesburg.

His main focus and energies were on uniting and building a strong Veterans League capable of mobilising society to support our glorious movement, the ANC, and win the forthcoming elections.

I have worked intimately with Comrade Norushe as from October 2017 when both of us were elected as leaders of the ANC’s Veterans League. I was fortunate that he had been the Chairperson the ANC Veterans League in the Eastern Cape since 2009 and was frustrated by its inability to confront and intervene authoritatively on issues that affected the dignity, integrity and uprightness that are the true reflection of our values.

The two of us were groomed by the ANC and the South African Congress Trade Unions (SACTU) and worked with giants like our Isithwalandwe Comrade John Nkadimeng. We were both energetic and passionate about reviving the Veterans League which has been moribund since it was established in 2009. Its critical, constructive and authoritative voice was silent when our integrity and credibility was severely undermined.

It is not by accident that the Veterans League was established in 2009, thanks to our leadership. They had a strategic foresight of establishing a League that had the authority to intervene on all issues that affected the integrity and credibility of our glorious movement. Our leadership saw that we were on a downward slope and that society was losing confidence in us to govern on its behalf. Corruption, arrogance, gate keeping and factionalism were the order of the day.

Our movement intervened and established the mother of all Leagues, the Veterans League, to help in cleansing itself of corrupt and arrogant elements who use the power of money to corrupt our branches and erode our hard earned integrity and credibility.

As Mandela said “A movement without a vision would be a movement without moral foundation.”

To be honest and brutal, it has not been an easy 15 months since we were elected in October 2017. To change the Veterans League from a passive, dysfunctional and docile veterans league to a more robust, constructive and authoritative League that has to restore the integrity and credibility of the movement is a gargantuan task.

After all our National Office Bearers meetings, comrade Norushe would say in disbelieve: “We can’t believe this! What is happening, why should comrades refuse to adapt to change. We must all be committed in building a strong united and accountable Veterans League that will save the ANC and our country, its really unbelievable.”

All this has invariable taken a toll on Cde Norushe’s health.

We must however all admit that change is constant and humans, as evolutionary beings, are predisposed to resist change because of risks associated with it.

Comrade Norushe as the Deputy President of the Veterans League was a perfectionist and demanded accountability. He wanted the Veterans League Office Bearers to meet four times a month with a well-structured agenda and deliverables. It is still a myth. But will eventually get there. Every statement that I issued as the President of the Veterans League had to be approved by him. Comrade Norushe wanted to know what our inputs will be at the ANC National Working Committee meetings and at the ANC Executive Committee meetings.

He would gently instruct: “Make sure that you get a mandate on issues that will be discussed at those meetings and do not compromise on unethical issues. We have to ensure that our glorious movement regain its moral integrity and win the forth coming 2019 elections. Remember we are the custodians of the ANC values and principles.”

Comrade Norushe, because of his trade union background, was committed to building strong Veterans League branches, regions and Provincial structures. In the Eastern Cape, because of his hard work, regions have already been established and he has managed to unite all Veterans of our glorious movement.

Even when he was in hospital and his voice inaudible, and I would struggle to hear, Comrade Norushe would be as concerned about the movement winning the coming elections. I would later call him through his sister, Thembi Norushe and would emphasise: ”Snuki, we must organise for an all-inclusive workshop of all veterans in our provinces. Provincial structures of the ANC must present to us their election plans. We as veterans must enhance those plans, give inputs and fully participate in mobilising society to vote for our glorious movement.”

Comrade Norushe, I am happy to report to you that at our last NWC meeting, I presented the election proposal and it was accepted.

Comrade Norushe was also concerned about the election lists. He wanted that the Veterans League or the Integrity Commission be fully involved in vetting members who are nominated to go to provincial and national parliaments.

“We should ensure that those nominated have credible credentials that meet our criteria as enshrined in our document “Through the Eye of a Needle.”

Comrade Norushe you left us too soon, I do not know who will fill in your big shoes.

You left us at the time when our movement and the country had entered an era of renewal, when we are aggressively addressing problems of divisions and dysfunctionality and when we are making progress in restoring the integrity and credibility of our glorious movement.

Your incredible input when we discussed names of Veterans who are now members the ANC’s integrity Commission, whose wisdom guides our glorious movement in addressing instances of wrong doing and unethical behaviour will be truly missed.

You left us when our movement had taken bold steps to confront corruption and state capture and restore the credibility of our public institutions.

Comrade Norushe we will not disappoint you. We will commit to build a strong and united Veterans League that would help in building a strong and united ANC, and a prosperous South Africa.

You will be sorely missed
Lala Ngo Xolo Bhele

Snuki Zikalala
President of the ANC Veterans League

Sipho Pityana

An Open Letter to Sandile Zungu

An Open Letter to Sandile Zungu

Dear Sandile In 2018, soon after you and I were respectively elected presidents of Business Unity South Africa (BUSA) and the Black Business Council (BBC), JJ Tabane invited us to a televised debate about business unity.

We both declined, preferring a direct engagement. That engagement has yet to happen, and I now regret declining Tabane’s invitation as I believe that it is in the public interest that we engage on the current state of black business, and business unity. I write to you now, as a black business leader in my own right, firstly because I firmly believe that there can be no holy cows in our fight against corruption and state capture. Secondly, I’m aware that later in the week BBC will be holding its “Black Business Summit” an occasion that should afford honest introspection.

And finally I am prompted by the public spat arising from what some senior ANC leaders are alleged to have said about the complicity of some black professionals – and, you might add, of some black business people — to the crisis that afflicts not only our stateowned companies (SOCs), but also our state institutions in general. Today our country is in a perilous state. And you and your cronies played no small part in that – so it is about time you confronted your ugly ghosts.

We are currently in the midst of a desperate fight by workers from various SOCs to protect jobs threatened by the consequences of many years of corruption, mismanagement and ethical collapse. A number of businesses that were heavily reliant on these entities for business either closed or restructured, losing many jobs. Many pensioners’ money has been put in jeopardy through investments in unethical and corrupt businesses such as Steinhoff among many, as the PIC enquiry reveals every day. What the nation has seen from the various commissions of inquiry established by the President, including the State Capture and Nugent Commissions, are revelations of a frightening brazenness in the systematic disablement of the state in order to facilitate wanton looting and theft.

Let’s not mince our words, Sandile: The era of “money for jam”, as you are alleged to have termed it, is what brought us to where we are today. It turns out “the jam” was only for corrupt Zuma cronies, it was grabbed from the desperate mouths of the destitute and marginalised black poor. The BBC of your era brought utter shame to many of us who consider ourselves upright and scrupulous black professionals and business leaders. After all, you have been at the centre of it all.

You took our black identity only to blemish us all. You represent neither me nor the many black people in whose name you insist on speaking. It is time you stopped. “Black Like Me”? No. You may be black, but you certainly not like me. Our different ethical compasses, it turns out, is what keeps us apart. Although we read a lot about KPMG and Nkonki (which closed as a result), a number of audit firms – supposedly the bastions of good governance — have been caught in often compromising positions with respect to their watchdog role, compromising the credibility of our market system.

Advisory businesses that could previously be relied upon to help enterprises navigate their way to profit and success have often been caught with their hands in the cookie jar — including reputable brands such as McKinsey and Bain, as well as emerging black ones such as Trillian and Regiments. How did we get here? It’s clear now that you and Jimmy Manyi hijacked the proud, legitimate and noble cause of black economic empowerment — with disastrous consequences.

The foundation of BBC can be traced to the relentless efforts of Dr Sam Motsuenyane’s NAFCOC that was founded in 1969, and subsequently FABCOS which broke away from it, and a number of other sector specific black business formations that lobbied for reforms under apartheid to secure a level playing field for black business whose commercial undertakings were restricted on a racist premise. Similarly, black corporate professionals, encouraged by reformist programmes initially introduced by US companies such as Ford Motor Company, established BMF to campaign for reforms to open up promotional opportunities for blacks. Subsequently, many black professional formations have emerged.

These came together following the unbanning of the ANC and at the dawn of a new democracy under the auspices of the Black Business Council with Patrice Motsepe as its President. Together with BSA, a white business formation, they represented business in all engagements with government. It was after the democratic government intervened, urging these two bodies to unite, that BUSA was formed as the voice of business. When Zuma took office as the country’s President, you, Manyi and a few others sought to take over BUSA in order to reposition business to prop up his agenda. In what was its most progressive step, BUSA nailed its commitment to transformation by electing a successful black business woman, Futhi Mthoba, who was nominated by the black women’s auditing profession.

She in turn appointed the first black woman CEO of the organisation, Nomaxabiso Majokweni. Just at that time you broke away and re-established BBC as a separate business formation — ostensibly because BUSA was anti transformation. Many of us who saw through your opportunistic agenda, refused to join you and instead supported the new black female leadership that beat you in an open and democratic election. Manyi’s and your agenda soon became clear as you were appointed Zuma’s economic adviser and served on his committee on the restructuring of SOEs and the BBBEE Council among many structures he established and deployed you to.

This undoubtedly placed you at the high table of the state capture project. Through these positions, and with a complicit BBC platform, many incompetent and under qualified lackeys were appointed to boards or executive positions — with adverse consequences for both the economy and the worthy agenda of black professional advancement. In the process, the depth of ethical black talent that refused to be part of your unscrupulous project that would have better served our cause was overlooked. Worse still a number of competent, experienced and professional black executives were removed from some of these roles in a mad rush to place pliant and gullible pawns of an unscrupulous agenda.

Similarly, BBC became a body for the condonation, defence and justification of corrupt and unethical practices which whenever challenged were rebutted by cheap and flimsy allegations of racism. The BBC of Jimmy Manyi and your era owe, if not anybody else, but black business and professionals, an account of your role in state capture and the corrupting of the state, the ANC and the broader liberation agenda. That is why, in 2016, I personally wrote and subsequently met the BBC leadership during Ntsele’s tenure to urge you to use your proximity to Zuma to point out the devastating effects his corruption was having on the economy and the country.

Like the “apartheid era pimps”, you all thought you’d quietly inform him of my “treasonous conduct”. Little did you all know that I’d already made my disapproval of his corrupt leadership of our country known to him and done so publicly. Some in business have put us to great shame for their role in this ugly specter of selling out our country. As you know, some of the more powerful are or were members of some of the business organisations that belong to BUSA. I’m pleased that a few have been exposed and I hope that even more will be. Now it is your turn to confess, Sandile. After all some media reports locate you as the companion, if not a business partner, not only of Duduzane Zuma, but also the Guptas.

A close confidante, they say, of the champion of that project – Jacob Zuma. What is your culpability for the state we find ourselves in today? If you have any respect, if not for anybody else, but the black business and professionals, you would use the occasion of the BBC Summit to come clean. As you gather this week, I call on you to resolve to testify at the Zondo Commission on yours and your organisation’s possible complicity in the state capture project, whether knowingly or otherwise.

As I urge you to testify, I do similarly to those who fill the ranks of our affiliates, to encourage them not to wait to be exposed, but to come clean. Of course, this can only happen if you have a conscience. That is what prompted others in business to take the unusual step, in 2016 and 2017, of uniting with civil society to register their objection to state capture. You were not there, and you were never going to associate yourself with that project because you were definitively on the wrong side of history. You may now have seen the error of your ways, which would be a welcome development.

If that is so, then say so publicly and apologise for the blemish and shame you have caused the many black people who scrupulously built their businesses and professional standing through ethical leadership and a commitment to integrity. I doubt that you have gone through much introspection, however. Because if you did, you wouldn’t embarrassingly publicly parade your predecessor, Danisa Baloyi, as part of the black business delegation in international visits led by our head of state — in the full knowledge that she’s yet to account for allegations of embezzlement of funds from one of our SOCs. Surprisingly, both the said SOC and the Department of Transport are yet to lay charges for what was an obvious crime. The BBC’s publicly announced enquiry died with your election.

Does this mean you condone her conduct? If not, then use this opportunity to show resolution to act against corruption. There can be no doubt that we need a formidable, credible, non-partisan and principled black business voice whose ethical foundations are beyond reproach that is at the service of its members and free from factional battles of political parties. This arises from the glaring fact that 25 years since democracy, black business and professionals remain firmly rooted in the margins of the economy.

This is as much a failure of black business leadership as it is that of government. Such a champion of the black business agenda may choose to be separate or a part of an umbrella business body. It starts with what some of the more credible among your current leadership recognise as the need for a paradigm shift that can only come about with a leadership untainted by the ugly past that the country is fighting hard to rid itself of. What you may not quite appreciate is that it starts with ethical leadership.

You will no doubt agree with me that the country would never have made the tremendous strides we have to push back the frontiers of State Capture and corruption without removing the chief architect of that agenda, Jacob Zuma. Similarly, a BBC led by unrepentant companions of that regime is not worthy of our confidence and public trust. I and many others are as uncomfortable in being associated with it as we would hanging out and having beer in the Saxonwold shebeen.

How can we not conclude, in the absence of an honest and candid account from you, in the face of publicly available information, that by electing you as its President, you project the BBC as having nailed its colors to the mast of corruption and state capture that became the hallmark of the discredited Zuma regime? Government and some in business have been in the forefront of a corrupt conspiracy against our nation. Consequently, our expectation of a clean up from the state and the broader polity; and the restoration of good governance extends similarly to business formations including the BBC.

There can be no holy cows. In ending: I trust that you will share this letter with members of the once esteemed organisation that BBC used to be and register my earnest appeal that we reclaim this organisation from the vestiges of the state capture project and align it with the renewed efforts to reposition our country and regain public trust. To this end I will be happy to meet with you and your leadership to chart the way to reclaiming our steps. Should you fail to do this, I challenge those among us who believe it possible to advance a black business agenda without being corrupt to reflect on what we do next to reclaim our true identity and dignity. Undoubtedly, the moment demands of us, particularly as black business and professionals, through our organisations and or individual capacity, to take a firm stand against corruption and state capture. Should we fail to do so, then we must accept our complicity in horrible and ugly crime of corruption and brazen self aggrandizement.

Yours Sincerely
Sipho M Pityana

Thabo Mbeki


Last week, the Deputy National Director of Public Prosecutions for the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA), Advocate Willie Hofmeyr, submitted an affidavit concerning the court challenge brought by the Democratic Alliance to set aside the NPAs 2009 decision to drop corruption charges preferred against President Jacob Zuma.

In the affidavit, Adv Hofmeyr makes several allegations to the effect that during the time when I served as President of the Republic, certain people (presumably with my knowledge and consent) used or sought to use the NPA as a “tool to fight [my] factional political battles.”

After careful study of the affidavit, I have come to the firm conclusion that it contains ABSOLUTELY no evidence to back the claim that either the alleged role players or I sought to interfere or interfered in the work of the NPA.

Those who have followed this matter will recall that essentially the same allegations were canvassed before Judge Chris Nicholson in the Pietermaritzburg High Court in 2008. Though Judge Nicholson was persuaded by the allegations, the Supreme Court of Appeal (SCA) unanimously dismissed his judgment and said, amongst other things, that it was “incomprehensible.”

I have therefore determined that there is nothing to add or to subtract from the SCA judgement.

Subsequent to the SCA judgement, my office issued a statement on January 13, 2009 in which I said in part: “It seems to me that the unacceptable practice of propagation of deliberate falsehoods to attain various objectives is becoming entrenched in our society.” I also called on “All of us as leaders and citizens critically to reflect on this practice in order to avoid the entrenchment of a culture which may eventually corrupt our society.”

My views and concerns regarding this practice and its consequences have not changed.

At another period in history, Mahatma Gandhi sought to address this and other concerns when he spoke of Seven Social Sins, these being:

“Wealth without work;
Pleasure without conscience;
Knowledge without character;
Commerce without morality;
Science without humanity;
Worship without sacrifice, and;
Politics without principle.”

I hope and pray that one day, hopefully soon, our country will reflect on this and other issues with the obligatory depth and seriousness, bearing in mind that a society without a moral proposition is destined nowhere.

Statement issued by the Office of Thabo Mbeki, Johannesburg, April 9 2015

Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO)

Statement on the Memorandum by Embassies of the United States of America, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland

The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO) notes with disappointment the dispatching of a Memorandum to the Office of The Presidency by the Embassies of the United States of America, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, Germany and Switzerland. This is a departure from established diplomatic practice.

In terms of acceptable diplomatic practice, protocol and convention, diplomatic missions are expected to communicate to the receiving state by means of a note verbal (diplomatic note) conveyed through the Department of International Relations and Cooperation. All embassies, regional and international organizations accredited to South Africa are aware of this protocol and universal norm. South African diplomatic missions abroad consistently observe this protocol by directing official communication to the respective foreign ministries in the countries of accreditation.

The South African government is intensifying its efforts to deepen and expand economic relations with a number of countries around the world, and is pleased with the enthusiastic response its efforts have yielded thus far. All matters that have been raised by investors are being addressed by the respective clusters of our government. We are satisfied that all the branches of our democratic state, including state agencies, are vigorously pursuing their respective mandates to address our current challenges.

The Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Ms. Lindiwe SISULU has instructed the Department to demarche the concerned Ambassadors with a view to discussing substantive matters contained in their correspondence, and to reiterate acceptable protocol in addressing such matters.

The Department of International Relations and Cooperation would like to remind all diplomatic missions accredited to South Africa to address official correspondence through the appropriate diplomatic channels.

Brand South Africa

South Africa¹s Performance in the Transparency International Corruption Perception Index 2019 remains stable

JOHANNESBURG, Wednesday 30 January 2019 – Brand South Africa notes South Africa’s performance in the 2019 Transparency International Corruption Perception Index (CPI), which indicates that the country’s corruption perceptions score remains quite stable at 43/100 in 2019.

Commenting on the report, Dr Petrus de Kock, General Manager for Research at Brand South Africa said: “At the time of conducting analysis of the Corruption Perceptions Index, the Zondo Commission of Inquiry into State Capture is unearthing significant news regarding corrupt activities involving the private- and public sector. It is in this context therefore striking that South Africa’s corruption perceptions score remains quite stable at 43/100 in 2019. The score translates into a ranking of 73/180 nations measured through the CPI, the country’s ranking in 2017 was 71/180.”

Dr de Kock adds that while the ranking and score in the CPI remains stable, it is necessary to manage the reputational fall-out of revelations regarding corruption carefully.

“In this context it is necessary to indicate the extreme levels of transparency designed into the South African states’ governance system. For example, South Africa ranks 2/115 nations in the Open Budget Index, an indicator that clearly illustrates that the South African governance system is a world leader in terms of transparency and accountability within a constitutional democracy. It is necessary to reinforce this message on an ongoing basis to contextualise the reasons why revelations of unethical behaviour, and corruption, occur in the South African context,” said Dr de Kock.

In line with an element of public opinion in South Africa, the CPI also notes that ongoing commissions of inquiry is a step in the right direction to fight corruption. However, there is a need to move beyond commissions of inquiry towards the prosecution of those implicated in cases of corruption and/or state capture.

In terms of South Africa, the CPI notes that ‘under President Ramaphosa, the administration has taken additional steps to address anti-corruption on a national level, including through the work of the Anti-Corruption Inter-Ministerial Committee. Although the National Anti-Corruption Strategy (NACS) has been in place for years, the current government continues to build momentum for the strategy by soliciting public input.

Dr de Kock concludes: “From a Nation Brand reputation point of view it is important that commissions of inquiry are interrogating issues of state capture, and associated corrupt behaviour. However, as a nation we need to embrace the principles of transparency and accountability embedded in the nation’s constitution.”