Skip to main content
President Ramaphosa arrives in France for G7 Summit

President Cyril Ramaphosa has arrived in Biarritz, France, today, Sunday, 25 August 2019, to participate in a G7 Summit that is focused on the elimination of inequalities of various kinds globally. 

The G7 comprises France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United States, the United Kingdom, and Canada, whose government leaders meet annually to discuss important global economic, political, social and security issues.

President Ramaphosa is invited to this year's G7 Summit by President Emmanuel Macron of the Republic of France. The summit is structured into three  tracks: G7 and Africa Partnership (South Africa, Rwanda, Egypt, Burkina Faso, Senegal and the Chair of the African Union Commission), G7 and four  Biarritz Partners (South Africa, India, Australia and Chile), and G7 and all partners. 

The working visit will also provide a platform for President Ramaphosa and members of Cabinet to invite global partners to experience South Africa as an investment destination and trade partner, and to participate in the country's efforts to secure faster, sustainable and inclusive economic growth and reduce unemployment. 

The Summit will deliberate on all manifestations of inequality – social, economic, environmental and in other dimensions – globally. It is expected to produce a range of declarations that will form the basis of action plans for addressing the challenges and embracing opportunities identified during the Biarritz deliberations. 

President Ramaphosa will be accompanied by Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Dr Naledi Pandor and Minister of Communications and Digital Technologies Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams.

Media enquiries: Khusela Diko, Spokesperson to the President – 072 854 5707 

Issued by: The Presidency

President ends G7 visit, turns focus to Japan-Africa Summit

President Cyril Ramaphosa has concluded a working visit to Biarritz, France, where he urged the world’s most advanced economies to partner with South Africa and the continent of Africa in exploring the opportunities presented by free trade and the digital economy, and in mitigating the   impacts of climate change.

President Ramaphosa was invited by French President Emmanuel Macron to participate in the 2019 G7 Summit which was dedicated to addressing inequalities in its various forms in global society.

The Summit was structured into three tracks: G7 and Africa Partnership (South Africa, Rwanda, Egypt, Burkina Faso, Senegal and the Chair of the  African Union Commission), G7 and four Biarritz Partners (South Africa, India, Australia and Chile), and the G7 and all partners.

During the two-day working visit on 25 and 26 August 2019, President Ramaphosa addressed various Summit forums and participated in a working lunch that brought together African Union Chair President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi of Egypt, President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, President Macky Sell of Senegal and President Roch Marc Christian Kaboré of Burkina Faso.

The President also held bilateral talks with Prime Minister Boris Johnson of the United Kingdom, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau of Canada, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, President Sebastian Pinera of Chile, and former Prime Minister of Italy Giuseppe Conte.

With South Africa due to become Chair of the African Union for a one-year term in 2020, President Ramaphosa used the bilateral engagements to solicit support for the African Union’s realisation of its developmental Agenda 2063.

President Ramaphosa also expressed South Africa’s commitment to mitigation of climate change, as well as to a just transition from fossil fuels to renewable forms of energy that will protect jobs and livelihoods and give communities equitable, affordable access to emerging alternatives in energy.

The President highlighted the potential opportunities arising for the continent of Africa and global partners from the inception of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area that will create the world’s largest single free trade area with a market of 1,2 billion people.

I would like to commend the leaders of the G7 for seeking to reorient its relationship with Africa to tackle these challenges.

We are therefore looking forward to developing concrete initiatives through the G7 Africa partnership that will support Agenda 2063 and the digital transformation of Africa.

The President urged his African counterparts and G7 leaders to support interventions to silence the guns of conflict in Africa. Peace and stability was a key theme of the G7 Africa Partnership dialogue.

President Ramaphosa commended G7 leaders for seeking to reorient the relationship with Africa to tackle developmental challenges and said the advent of 4th Industrial Revolution technologies and the increasing automation of services through artificial intelligence and robotics was an important development in human progress. It presented unprecedented opportunities while at the same time posing a serious threat to the conventional way of living and working.

If deliberate efforts were not taken, the digital divide could widen and worsen economic disparities.

The President urged the G7 to remain engaged with Africa to ensure digitisation reduces inequality and supports the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals and inclusive economic growth.

In keeping with the Summit’s focus on inequality, President Ramaphosa said the empowerment of women was central in poverty eradication and promoting inclusive economic growth in Africa.

“In this regard, eliminating financing barriers that discriminate against women can increase women entrepreneurship while expanding economic opportunities and enabling them to participate meaningfully in the economy,” the President said.

“The empowerment of women, particularly through the vehicle of small, medium and micro enterprises (SMMEs) will positively contribute to inclusive growth, and in turn address the challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality.”

Later today, Monday 26 August 2019, President Ramaphosa will travel from France to Yokohama, Japan, where he will participate in the Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD).

The Tokyo International Conference on African Development will be convened under the theme of “Advancing Africa’s Development through Technology, Innovation and People”.

TICAD is a multilateral leaders’ forum on African development that was first convened in 1993 in Japan.

TICAD VII has identified three overarching priorities, namely accelerating economic transformation and improving business environment through innovation and private sector engagement; deepening sustainable and resilient society, and strengthening peace and stability.

The Summit will focus on science, technology and innovation; human resource development and education; the oceans economy; climate change and disaster risk reduction, and agriculture.

Media enquiries: Khusela Diko, Spokesperson to the President – 072 854 5707

Issued by: The Presidency

President to engage with Nissan Global

President Cyril Ramaphosa will on Wednesday, 28 August 2019, participate in a Japan-South Africa Business Forum at the Nissan Global Headquarters in Yokohama in Japan.

This engagement by the President forms part of his Working Visit to the State of Japan where he arrived today, Tuesday 27 August 2019, to participate in the 7th Tokyo International Conference on African Development. 

President Ramaphosa will utilize the business engagement to invite global partners to experience South Africa as an investment destination and trade  partner, and to participate in the country’s efforts to secure faster, sustainable and inclusive economic growth and reduce unemployment. 

More than 140 Japanese companies have an investment footprint in South Africa totalling more than R90 billion. 

The government of Japan as well as the country’s corporate sector view South Africa as a strategic partner on the African continent and within the context of the 
programmes and activities of TICAD

Media are invited to the South Africa-Japan Business Engagement as follows:

Time: 10:00 
Date: 28 August 2019
Venue: Nissan Hall, Nissan Global Headquarters, Yokohama 

Media enquiries: Khusela Diko, Spokesperson to the President on 072 854 5707 

Issued by: The Presidency

President Ramaphosa arrives in Japan for TICAD VII

President Cyril Ramaphosa has arrived in the State of Japan today, Tuesday 27 August 2019, to participate in the seventh Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD VII) Summit that is expected to expand partnership between Japan and African states.

TICAD VII takes place in Yokohama from 28 to 30 August under the theme of “Advancing Africa’s Development through Technology, Innovation and People”.

TICAD is a multilateral leaders’ forum on African development that was first convened in 1993 in Japan.

TICAD VII has identified three overarching priorities, namely accelerating economic transformation and improving business environment through  innovation and private sector engagement; deepening sustainable and resilient society, and strengthening peace and stability.

The working visit will also provide a platform for President Ramaphosa and members of Cabinet to invite global partners to experience South Africa as an investment destination and trade partner, and to participate in the country’s efforts to secure faster, sustainable and inclusive economic growth and reduce unemployment.

On Wednesday 28 August, the President will participate in a South Africa-Japan business roundtable to be hosted at the headquarters of the Nissan Corporation and in which a South African business delegation will engage with their counterparts in Japanese commerce and industry.

More than 140 Japanese companies have an investment footprint in South Africa totalling more than R90 billion. The government of Japan as well as the country’s corporate sector view South Africa as a strategic partner on the African continent and within the context of the programmes and activities of TICAD.

The Summit will focus on science, technology and innovation; human resource development and education; the oceans economy; climate change and disaster risk reduction, and agriculture.

Also on 28 August the President will address a Summit forum on Science and Technology in Society and will co-chair a plenary session on economic transformation.

South Africa views the partnership between Japan and the African continent as an enabler for infrastructure development and industrialisation throughout the continent.

President Ramaphosa is expected to have a number of bilateral engagements with counterparts attending the Summit.

On 29 August the President will participate in a public-private business dialogue coordinated by Trade and Investment South Africa, an agency of the Department of Trade and Industry.

The President will also have an engagement with the Japan External Trade Organisation, a government-related organisation that promotes mutually beneficial trade and investment relations between Japan and other nations. President Ramaphosa is accompanied by Minister of International Relations and Cooperation Dr Naledi Pandor; Minister of Trade and Industry Ebrahim Patel and Minister of Higher Education, Science and Technology Dr Blade Nzimande.

Media enquiries: Khusela Diko, Spokesperson to the President on 072 854 5707 

Issued by: The Presidency

President Ramaphosa departs TICAD VII after successful working visit to Japan

President Cyril Ramaphosa has today, 29 August 2019, successfully concluded a working visit to Japan where he participated in the 7th Tokyo International Conference on African Development (TICAD VII) in Yokohama.  

TICAD VII was hosted by Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe from 28 to 30 August 2019 and was convened under the theme “Advancing Africa’s  development through Technology, Innovation and People”. 

The Summit sought to further deepen trade and investment, capacity and skills development, networking and people’s exchange between African  nations  and Japan. 

The President, as part of the activities ahead of the opening of the TICAD VII, visited the Nissan Motor Corporation headquarters in Yokohama where he also engaged with business leaders at a South Africa-Japan Business Forum and encouraged potential investors to collaborate with South Africa and the African continent to establish their businesses in the next frontier market in the world. 

President Ramaphosa invited investors to attend the South Africa Investment Conference which is scheduled to take place in November 2019. “South Africa has been a good partner to Japanese businesses over the years, and we have been able to address the challenges and constraints that were raised, we seek to be an entrepreneurial nation and our objective is for business to succeed,” President Ramaphosa said. 

With South Africa hosting Japanese investments of more than R90 billion, President Ramaphosa called for expanded interaction between South African companies and Japanese counterparts in both markets. 

In a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Abe, the two leaders agreed to cooperate in the maritime sector and in the protection of the marine environment; to investigate a possible expansion of access to the Japanese market for South African citrus producers, and the expansion of training programmes for South Africans in both countries. 

President Ramaphosa also addressed the TICAD Science and Technology in Society Forum which plays a role in forging international partnerships to enhance the role of technology in the development of society. The President, on behalf of South Africa endorsed the focus of science, technology and innovation as a priority theme for TICAD 7, given its great potential to accelerate African development through mutually beneficial partnerships with Japan. 

“Such investment and expansion is critical if we are to achieve the priorities set out in our continent’s platform for action Agenda 2063. After all, it is science and innovation that produced vaccines that save the lives of millions of children on the continent.” 

The President said partnerships between governments and business enabled innovation to thrive and innovation should give rise to solutions across sectors such as health and agriculture and should encourage the location of research infrastructure in Africa. 

The President co-chaired Summit plenary sessions on accelerated economic transformation and improving business environment through innovation and private sector engagement with the Deputy Prime Minister of Japan, Mr Taro Aso. The President implored that for Africa’s economy to grow and attract foreign direct investment to increase the potential for job creation and poverty alleviation, all nation states had to review their existing laws to lessen risks, tackle corruption, and strengthen public accountability institutions. 

President Ramaphosa also addressed the Japan-South Africa Business Expo, which was hosted by Japan External Trade Organisation (JETRO)  and was attended by 150 Japanese exhibitor companies and business people from Africa. Japan shared a recognition of opportunities on offer in Africa. JETRO announced that 57 percent of Japanese firms currently based in Africa are planning to expand their businesses in the forthcoming future.  

At the thematic session on Climate Change, chaired by United Nations Secretary-General Mr António Guterres, President Ramaphosa said that South Africa was working towards implementing the Sendai Framework while ensuring its appropriate integration with the broader climate change and sustainable development agenda. 

The African continent contributes less than 6 percent of global greenhouses gas emissions and has often been disproportionately affected by more frequent extreme weather and climate events. The President acknowledged that climate change has a serious potential threat to Africa’s development and prosperity and this is calls on all nation States to develop future-proof economic growth models. 

President Ramaphosa had bilateral meetings with President Mummadu Buhari of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, President Paul Kagame of the Republic of Rwanda, President Félix Tshisekedi of the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Vice President James Wani Igga of the Republic of South Sudan. 

President Ramaphosa was accompanied at the TICAD VII by Minister of International Relations and Cooperation, Dr Naledi Pandor, Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Ebrahim Patel and Minister of Higher Education and Training, Science and Technology Dr Bonginkosi Nzimande. 

Media enquiries: Khusela Diko, Spokesperson to the President – 072 854 5707

Issued by: The Presidency

Statement on the Cabinet meeting of 15 February 2017

1. Implementation of Government Programmes

1.1. Cabinet welcomes President Jacob Zuma’s 2017 State of the Nation Address (SoNA) under the theme "Radical Transformation of the Economy”. This was at the halfway mark of this Fifth Administration’s term of office which saw 2017 being declared the Year of Oliver Reginald Tambo and the year of deepening unity.

President Jacob Zuma outlined progress we are making in realising our vision of a National Democratic Society and the key actions required to move us closer and faster to a united, non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and prosperous society.

The President reflected on the implementation of Government’s programme and announced concrete actionable plans for effective implementation of the National Development Plan, which underpins the Medium Term Strategic Framework (MTSF) 2014-2019. SoNA 2017 clearly demonstrated that consolidated efforts by government, business and labour in implementing the Nine Point Plan are beginning to have an impact. Cabinet reiterates the President’s call to intensify efforts aimed at driving radical economic transformation and efforts to fast-track implementation.

Cluster Ministers are in the process of post-SoNA media briefings to elaborate on Government’s 2017/18 Programme of Action. The 2017/18 Budget Speech will further map out the allocation of resources to the various government programmes as highlighted by the President.

1.2. The outcomes of the Investing in African Mining Conference that was held in Cape Town demonstrates the country’s competitive advantage in the areas of mining and related fields.

The mining sector remains the cornerstone of the South African economy contributing 8 per cent to the country’s GDP, employing around 460 000 people and earning foreign exchange. South Africa continues to be a productive and rewarding destination for investors in mining with an estimated $2.5 to 3 trillion in non-energy mineral reserves still in-situ.

The amendments to the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act by June 2017 and gazetting of the revised Mining Charter by March 2017 contribute to the creation of an enabling regulatory environment which encourages investment, trade and enterprise development in an equitable and socially responsible manner.

1.3. The Indaba was bolstered by Invest Africa which is a platform for business leaders, investors and entrepreneurs to gain insight and exposure to information and opportunities from Africa.

1.4. Cabinet welcomes the Settlement Agreement reached between the construction industry and Government, also known as the Voluntary Rebuilding Programme (VRP).

This Agreement sets company-level targets for transformation, either through the sale of a minimum of 40% of shares to black South Africans or through partnerships with smaller black-owned construction companies, to help increase their turnover to 25% of the listed company turnover, over a seven-year period.

This is the most far-reaching sector agreement on transformation reached with government to date and can help to give effect to Government's vision of radical economic transformation. It is also a model that can be drawn on for transformation in other sectors.

Cabinet congratulates the signatories to the agreement and urges all other construction companies in the sector who are not currently parties to the agreement, to follow this lead and join in the partnership that is being built, through making similar commitments in order to further boost the transformation of the sector.

1.5. Cabinet applauds all social partners at the National Economic Development and Labour Council (Nedlac) on the historic agreement on the introduction of a National Minimum Wage of R20 an hour with effect from no later than May 2018.

The agreement on a National Minimum Wage and other measures to strengthen labour stability and collective bargaining is an important step in creating a more equal, just and prosperous society as envisaged in the National Development Plan (NDP).

The national minimum wage, which is a floor below which no worker may be paid, will significantly improve the lives of millions of low paid workers and begin to address the challenge of wage inequality.

The wage has been set at an initial level that will make a real difference in the lives of ordinary South Africans while minimising any adverse effects on employment. Businesses that are unable to afford the national minimum wage may apply for a temporary exemption, while measures are being considered to assist fragile sectors of the economy.

1.6. The unemployment challenge remains a top government priority and all programmes and interventions are geared towards turning the situation around, especially in this tough economic environment. Cabinet welcomes the increase in jobs in the economy over the fourth quarter of 2016 when 235 000 jobs were created, according to the Quarterly Labour Force Survey. The increase was largely driven by employment in the country’s services sector, followed by transport and manufacturing.

The growth in jobs over the quarter resulted in a slight decrease in the unemployment rate to 26.5%.

1.7. Cabinet thanks all parents, teachers, lecturers and administrators on the successful start of the 2017 academic year. Education is one of our key priorities and central to achieving Vision 2030 of the National Development Plan (NDP).

1.8. Cabinet commends the dedication of the Class of 2016 as we celebrate the achievement rate increase from 70.7 per cent in 2015 to 72.5 per cent in 2016. Cabinet wishes all learners well and looks forward to further improvement in the achievement rate from the Class of 2017.

Cabinet also commends the learners who will be sitting for the supplementary matric examination between 11 February 2017 and 18 March 2017 for their perseverance.

1.9. As part of government efforts to galvanise society to protect the right to education, the Department of Performance Monitoring and Evaluation will convene the National Development Plan Back to School Izimbizo on 25 February 2017 in all provinces. Education is the foundation for all government programmes and all Members of the Executive will be participating.

Community members are invited to join members of Cabinet, Members of Parliament, Premiers and leaders in local government as they visit schools, tertiary institutions and other educational centres.

1.10. In line with the prescripts of the Freedom Charter that “higher education and technical training shall be opened to all by means of state allowances and scholarships awarded on the basis of merit”, Government through the National Student Financial Aid Scheme is funding more than 20 000 new students at 23 universities.

This is in addition to the 107 000 returning students from 25 universities and 737 747 returning students from 35 Technical and Vocational Education and Training colleges.

1.11. Our government continues to explore various models in finding sustainable solutions to funding and opening up opportunities for the poor and the middle-class to pursue post school education and training. The Ikusasa Student Financial Aid Programme (ISFAP) is an innovative public private partnership led by the Department of Higher Education and Training (DHET) that assists the “missing middle”.

The project is being piloted with six universities and one technical and vocational education training (TVET) college and will be funding the studies of approximately 1 500 students studying in a number of general formative degrees, as well as seven professional qualifications and one artisan qualification for the duration of their studies.

They will also receive academic support, social support, life skills training, mentoring and medical support where required. More than R200 million will be needed to enable the pilot to succeed and will mainly be sourced from the private sector.

1.12. The second World Skills South Africa Competition which is being hosted by the Department of Higher Education and Training at the Inkosi Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre in Durban from 13 to 17 February 2017, celebrates the talent of young artisans and technicians in the country.

It also serves as an advocacy programme to highlight the importance of the artisanal sector in the country’s economy. Winners go on to represent South Africa at the World Skills International Competition in Abu Dhabi in the United Arab Emirates in October 2017.

1.13. President Jacob Zuma’s unannounced visit to Nyanga Police station in Cape Town coincided with the release of the 2015/16 Victims of Crime Survey by Statistics South Africa. The successful visit, as part of the Presidential Siyahlola Monitoring programme, gained first-hand account of work that is being done to fight crime in the area. Departments from the Justice, Crime Prevention and Security Cluster are in the process of attending to challenges faced by the Police Station.

1.14. The Victims of Crime Survey is important as it guides government in formulating its policies in the fight against crime. This is in line with the government priority that All People in South Africa Are and Feel Safe. The results assist in guiding further work that needs to be done, to match the good news on achievements over the last five years, with perceptions and experiences of citizens.

2. Cabinet decisions

2.1. The Implementation Evaluation of the Effectiveness of Environmental Governance in the Mining Sector, included the management response and improvement plan by the Department of Environmental Affairs

The National Environmental Management Act, 1998 defines the environmental management approach that should be integrated across all sectors, including the mining sector. The objective is to ensure that the environmental impacts of mining activities are effectively mitigated or managed. The evaluation assessed the relevance and effectiveness of the legislation and its implementation to achieve this objective.

Cabinet supports the ‘One Environment System’ as proposed in the Improvement Plan with a mandate to consider additional streamlining measures such as further alignment of Specific Environmental Management Acts. Cabinet also supports a discussion on mine closures to ensure environmental protection and to reduce socio-economic risk to surrounding communities.

2.2. The 2015/16 Research and Development (R&D) Tax Incentive Annual Report which is being submitted to Parliament, shows how the R&D Tax Incentive programme is promoting increased private sector R&D investment. This is required to increase the economy’s capacity to boost employment creation, as well as to increase positive spillovers through knowledge transfer and skills development.
From March 2015 to February 2016, the Department of Science and Technology received 189 R&D tax incentive applications from 147 companies.

This increased the total number of companies participating in the incentive programme since its inception in November 2006, to 962. In this period the National Treasury estimates that just over R6 billion in tax revenue was foregone as a result of the R&D tax incentive. Over the same period the incentive supported about R36.1 billion in R&D expenditure.

Of the 962 companies, 47% are Small and Medium Enterprises, 12% are large enterprises (turnover R41 million to R100 million); 32% are very large enterprises (R100 million and above); and 8% did not disclose their turnover size.

2.3. Cabinet approved the introduction of a process for the coordination of the government’s budget for Research & Development (R&D) activities.
The National Development Plan notes that R&D and innovation have a key role to play in improving the competitiveness of the South African economy and in supporting socio-economic development and employment.

South Africa’s critical national scientific infrastructure is obsolete and in urgent need of technological upgrading and modernising to sustain effective service delivery. Such infrastructure is large and expensive, and would require coordinated investment across departments.

The proposed budget coordination will be phased in over the medium term 2016/17 and 2019/20.

2.4. Cabinet was briefed on the progress made in the Square Kilometre Array (SKA) and MeerKAT projects, the planned establishment of the merged South African Radio Astronomy Observatory, and the hosting of the Hydrogen Epoch of Re-ionisation Array (HERA) telescope on the SKA site.

The SKA and MeerKAT constitute one of eighteen Strategic Infrastructure Projects of the Presidential Infrastructure Coordinating Commission. These mega infrastructure projects contribute to the National Development Plan through their potential to promote economic development, unlock economic opportunities and promote job creation.

Good progress is being made on the preparations for SKA-1 in South Africa including the acquisition of land and negotiations on the international treaty and the procurement process. In its ten years the SKA SA Human Capital Development Programme awarded over 800 bursaries, with extensive support to schools in Carnarvon.

The MeerKAT “first light” image of the radio sky produced with only 16 antennae shows more than 13003 radio galaxies in the distant universe, demonstrating that it is the best radio telescope in the Southern Hemisphere and should be the world’s best telescope of its kind, once completed. The full complement of 64 antennae will be installed and operational by March 2018, and is being built with 75% local content so as to prepare the local industry for deeper participation.

HERA is a complementary scientific experiment to advance understanding of early galaxy formation and if funded mainly by the National Science Foundation of the United States in partnership with Cambridge University.

The concept of a single radio astronomy observatory, to be known as the South African Radio Astronomy Observatory will consolidate the different projects and activities of the South African radio astronomy landscape. There are efficiency gains to be made with a single new National Facility under the National Research Foundation.

2.5. The White Paper on National Civil Aviation Policy, which promotes and enhances civil aviation safety, security and environmental compliance, was approved. It also promotes the national interest of South Africa and facilitates the expansion of trade and tourism. Further it promotes the development of an efficient and productive aviation industry, which is capable of competing both locally and internationally.

2.6. Cabinet also approved the National Airports Development Plan which was initiated by the White Paper on National Civil Aviation Policy to address the gaps between the current airport network and the future desired state.

It will guide and support both overall network planning and the development of individual airports integrated within their broader spatial and transport contexts, in consultation with key airport stakeholders.

Airport infrastructure is an integral part of the South African transport system and contributes to the socio-economic development of the country by facilitating domestic and international tourism and trade.

2.7. The draft Comprehensive Maritime Transport Policy 2016, was approved, for public comments.

This provides a national framework to guide the integrated governance, growth, development and transformation of the maritime sector, with a view to unlock the maritime sectors’ full potential and enhance its contribution to the socio-economic development objectives of the country, while contributing to international trade.

This is in line with Government priorities relating to Operation Phakisa on growing the Oceans Economy and broader goals from the National Development Plan 2030 and the National Infrastructure Plan to promote economic growth and to boost job creation.

3. Bills

3.1. Submission of the Draft Marine Spatial Planning Bill, 2016 to Parliament. The Bill provides a legal framework for the development of a marine spatial planning system that promotes economic growth; and is facilitated by coordinating planning across multiple sectors.

It will promote good ocean governance by ensuring involvement of all sectors in joint management and planning in the ocean space. It will also facilitate: conflict resolution (amongst the users of space and regulatory authorities); enhancement of information; knowledge and management in South African ocean space.

The Bill will work towards sustainable development, rather than only conservation or environmental protection, with a view to contribute to more general social and economic objectives. It is also a key initiative of the first Operation Phakisa (Ocean Economy) to unlock our economic potential.

3.2. Submission of the Agricultural Products Standards Amendment Bill to Parliament. The Bill amends the Agricultural Products Standards Act, 1990 (Act No. 119 of 1990)

The Bill aims to strengthen the regulatory framework for agricultural production, health and food safety of certain agricultural products. Such a regulatory framework promotes food safety and creates an enabling environment for increased and sustainable production. This will increase fair trade practices and consumer protection.

3.3. Publication of the Draft Electronic Deeds Registration Systems Bill, 2016, for public comment.

The Bill facilitates the development, establishment and maintenance of an electronic deeds registration system that will provide, amongst other things, for the effective registration of large volumes of deeds as a result of our Government’s land reform measures, improved turn-around times for providing registered deeds and documents to clients; provide country-wide access to deeds registration services; enhanced accuracy of examination and registration; availability of information to the public; and security features including confidentiality.

This also supports the National Development Plan call for measures to be implemented in all government departments and sectors that effectively manage information and technology to ensure that South Africa does not fall victim to a ‘digital divide’.

4. Issues in the Environment

4.1. Cabinet joins President Jacob Zuma in extending condolences to the families and friends of mentally ill patients who died in Gauteng. Government, and society at large, has a responsibility to protect and care for the vulnerable. Cabinet commends the Minister of Health, Dr Aaron Motsoaledi for appointing the Health Ombudsman to investigate all wrong doings committed by health institutions and health practitioners.

Further, the action being taken by the Premier of Gauteng, David Makhura, based on the report of the Health Ombudsman, is welcomed. Cabinet further calls on Premier Makhura to ensure that appropriate disciplinary action is taken against all who may have conducted themselves improperly or negligently.

4.2. Cabinet was concerned about the disorderly behaviour displayed at the Opening of Parliament which not only infringe on the rights of others in Parliament, but on the rights of all South Africans. Parliament is one of South Africa’s founding democratic institutions, established by the Constitution, to uphold the Bill of Rights and account to the people of South Africa – all of whom have entrusted us with the responsibility of leading them towards a better life. Members of Parliament, as representatives of the people must put the interests of all South Africans first and reassert the role of this important institution.

4.3. Cabinet was apprised on Tropical Cyclone Dineo, with South Africa set to experience severe storms and heavy rains starting from today, Thursday, 16 February 2017 until the weekend - Sunday 19 February 2017. The Cyclone will affect Mpumalanga, the extreme northern parts of Kwa Zulu Natal and Limpopo. This will mostly affect – Kruger National Park, Enhlanzeni, Vhembe, Mopani and Waterberg district Municipalities. The eastern parts of Limpopo may also experience high levels of rainfall on Friday, estimated at 200 mm over a 24-hour period.

The National Disaster Management Centre (NDMC) and the National Joint Operations Centre (NATJOC) comprising of various government departments and institutions have assessed the situation and activated three Provincial Joint Operations Centres (PROVJOC) in Limpopo, Mpumalanga and KwaZulu-Natal. This multi-sectoral approach will assist where the need arises to ensure safety of communities and to minimise the impact.

Government is appealing to all affected communities to take extra care ahead of this coming cyclone. Communities are discouraged from crossing flooded roads, bridges and rivers. We also urge parents, care givers and guardians to ensure the safety of their children during the storms. Communities must work together to ensure the safety of people. Please listen for warnings and information on Tropical Cyclone Dineo which is being broadcast across all local radio stations.

4.4. Cabinet fully supports the intervention and community engagement by the government delegation, being led by Minister of Home Affairs, Malusi Gigaba, and the Gauteng Community Safety MEC Sizakele Nkosi-Malobane to engage on issues affecting communities in the area, in particular matters around policing and the alleged illegal activities of migrants.

Cabinet supports the Minister’s call for “a whole of state approach” to these legitimate issues raised by communities, which will be addressed through: the establishment of a Border Management Authority that will help in better managing our borders, documentation of all people living in South Africa, effective policing and ensuring compliance to the laws and the Constitution of the Republic by citizens and foreign nationals.

Cabinet gives full support to the security cluster, to ensure that these matters are resolved to the satisfaction of the South African public. This will require better dialogue around policing between communities and the authorities. Cabinet further wishes to call for responsible public comments by all leaders and representatives, issues must be handled in a responsible manner.

4.5. In a separate incident, Cabinet condemns the attacks on fans, players and officials during the Absa Premiership match between Mamelodi Sundowns and Orlando Pirates at Loftus Versfeld which left 13 people injured.

Such behaviour and acts of hooliganism brings the sport into disrepute, reflects negatively on the country and requires stringent action from soccer authorities that must act swiftly to ensure such acts are not repeated.

5. Sympathy and congratulatory messages

5.1. Cabinet expresses its condolences to family, friends and the rugby fraternity on the passing of former Springbok captain Joost van der Westhuizen. President Jacob Zuma had also declared a Special Provincial Official Funeral to commemorate the South African rugby legend.

5.2. Cabinet welcomes the election of Chad's Foreign Minister, Moussa Faki Mahamat, as the new Chairperson of the African Union Commission, replacing South Africa's Dr Nkosazana-Dlamini Zuma.

5.3. Cabinet welcomes the appointment of Minister Jeff Radebe, as a South African ambassador for Global Citizens, and will form part of a movement of eight million Global Citizens across the world. This is a network of top celebrities, policymakers, business leaders, activists and stakeholders committed to tackling the world's biggest challenges and ending extreme poverty. It’s work is aligned to the National Development Plan goals of ending poverty and reducing inequality, and benefits the development framework for the continent - Agenda 2063.

5.4. The Minister of Science and Technology, Naledi Pandor, is also being honoured by the American Association for the Advancement of Science for her role in science diplomacy in Boston, United States, today.

5.5. Cabinet congratulates the winners of the annual Ubuntu Awards, hosted by the Department of International Relations and Cooperation to celebrate South African citizens who play an active role in projecting a positive image of South Africa internationally. These included: Winnie Madikizela-Mandela; Siyabulela Xuza; Pretty Yende; Esther Mahlangu; Gertrude Shope; and Chinese Ambassador Tian Xuejun. Sasol, Babies Behind Bars and the Desmond Tutu HIV Foundation were also recognised.

5.6. Cabinet also congratulates the South African Sevens team also known as the Blitzboks for winning the Sydney Rugby Sevens World Series tournament. This is their second win since the beginning of the year after the Blitzboks won the HSBC Wellington Sevens in January.

6. Appointments

All appointments are subject to the verification of qualifications and the relevant clearance.
6.1. Ms. Claire Busetti to the National Research Foundation Board.
6.2. Mr. KW Vukela as the Deputy Director-General: Service Delivery at the Department of Public Service and Administration.
6.3. Ms. JL Meyer as the Chief Financial Officer at Government Printing Works.

Donald Liphoko
Cell: 082 901 0766

Statement on the Cabinet meeting of 1 March 2017

1. Implementation of Government Programmes

1.1. Cabinet supports the commitments made in the 2017 National Budget to advance radical economic transformation and draw more South Africans into the economy towards inclusive growth. In the main the budget acknowledges that growth without transformation would only reinforce the inequitable patterns from the past.

Redistribution in support of education, health services and municipal functions in rural areas remains the central thrust of our spending programmes. Procurement reforms continue to improve the effectiveness of public spending and opening opportunities for small business participation.

Budget allocations support economic growth and development: R3.9 billion for small, medium and micro enterprises and cooperatives; R4.2 billion for industrial infrastructure in special economic zones and industrial parks; R1.9 billion for broadband implementation, R3.9 billion for the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, an additional R494 million for tourism promotion, an additional R266m to support the aquaculture sector and realise the goals of the Oceans Economy Phakisa Operation, and spending on agriculture, rural development and land reform amounting to nearly R30 billion by 2019/20.

The budget plays a central role in transformation by promoting redistribution and directing scarce resources towards catalytic investments in human and physical capital.

1.2. In recognition of our need to invest in the future of youth, the budget ensures that financially needy students can access tertiary education. The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NSFAS) has provided funding to over 300 000 new and returning students to study at universities and Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) colleges across the country in 2017. The fund expects to add a further 100 000 students this year. The R15 billion allocated to NSFAS by government will assist in alleviating the financial burden faced by financially needy and missing middle students.

1.3. Following the successful launch of Operation Phakisa in sectors such as the Oceans Economy, Health and Basic Education, President Jacob Zuma launched the Operation Phakisa for Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development on 24 February 2017. Operation Phakisa is derived from Malaysia’s Big Fast Results methodology which Malaysia used successfully to achieve rapid economic transformation; and having been successfully adapted to South African conditions, it now forms part of our Nine Point Plan Implementation toolkit.

Operation Phakisa for Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development seeks to achieve inclusive growth, as prescribed by the vision of the NDP and aims at contributing to stimulating economic growth, fostering job creation, and transforming the agricultural value chain. It further seeks to ensure equitable access to land, both towards economic development and agrarian transformation.

The programme will review existing producer support models and develop finance models aimed at fast tracking land reform, given the urgent need for government to make progress in food security. Furthermore, the programme seeks to address constraints in ensuring equitable access to land, both towards economic development and agrarian transformation. These include land reform, rural development, labour, grains, livestock, horticulture and producer support.

1.4. In 2016, over 10 million tourist arrivals were recorded in South Africa, a 13 per cent increase from 2015. Our thriving tourism industry is testament to the close collaboration between government, organised labour and business led by the Department of Tourism together with South African Tourism to unlock the full economic benefits of our tourism assets. We call on all industry partners to continue developing and promoting tourism so that it may benefit local communities through jobs and infrastructure development.

1.5. As part of Government focus to unlock the potential of SMME’s and township enterprises, South Africa will host the Global Entrepreneurship Congress between the 13 and16 March 2017 in Johannesburg. The congress is an inter-disciplinary gathering of start-up champions that attracts 4 000 delegates from more than 150 countries.  Thought-leaders, entrepreneurs, investors, researchers and policymakers who have become part of a global movement that advances entrepreneurship as a means to build economies and improve human welfare, will attend.

This is the first time the congress will be hosted in Africa and provides an opportunity for South Africa and the rest of the continent to ignite its entrepreneurial spirit.  

1.6. South Africa commemorated the start of Human Rights Month on 1 March 2017 under the theme: “The Year of OR Tambo: Unity in Action in Advancing Human Rights” to raise awareness and promote respect for basic human rights.

Human Rights Month will be celebrated across the country leading to the national celebrations on Human Rights Day on 21 March 2017 in Ginsberg, King William’s Town in the Eastern Cape.

On the day, President Jacob Zuma will officially handover the memorial grave site of Steve Bantu Biko to the Biko-family. This is part of celebrating and promoting unity in line with the vision of OR Tambo.

1.7. Cabinet also noted the outcome of the Competition Commission investigation into alleged foreign exchange collusion and awaits the conclusion of the Competition Tribunal proceedings, including its findings and decision on the appropriate sanction.

1.8. As we commemorate National Water Month in March 2017 under the theme: “Human Rights for Water and Sanitation”, all South Africans are reminded to conserve water to ensure sustainability of future supply.

Cabinet was briefed on the proposal by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO) to host World Water Day in South Africa on 22 March 2017 under the theme: “Waste Water the untapped resource”.

President Jacob Zuma who is a member of the United Nations High Level Panel on Water Action Plan will open the event, by launching the World Water Development Report 2017 on wastewater and related activities.

1.9. Cabinet welcomes the progress made on the distribution of animal feeds to support farmers in the country’s drought affected areas. The initiative is part of the R212 million in support, which government has made available in 2016/17 to assist affected farmers across the country.

Provinces have also made R198 million available through equitable share funding, and funds from the Prevention and Mitigation of Disaster Risk programme were used to drill boreholes and construct fire breaks.

1.10. In order to assist with the difficulties with regard to water availability in the Western Cape, attempts need to be instituted to provide greater comfort in the form of additional alternate water supply sources that must be on standby should inadequate water be received for this season.

To further curb excessive water use, the Department of Water and Sanitation has informed the agricultural sector of 10% additional water restrictions.  The water restrictions will remain until the dams fill up to 85% of their capacity.

1.11. As the country welcomes the much needed rains which will go a long way in relieving the country from the effects of drought, dams and rivers are showing signs of increasing volumes. The possibility of flash flooding remains high. We call on communities to remain vigilant of flash flooding which could lead to the loss of life, destruction to property and infrastructure. Government and its agencies are actively monitoring the situation and are ready to act where necessary.

1.12. President Jacob Zuma will deliver his annual address to the National House of Traditional Leaders on 3 March 2017.

Emanating from the Address a Programme of Action will be developed and implemented by the House and the Department of Traditional Affairs. The official opening of the house will also celebrate 20 years since it was constituted.

1.13. President Jacob Zuma will lead a South African government delegation to the SADC Extraordinary Summit on 18 March 2017, in the Kingdom of Swaziland. SADC continues to serve as the primary vehicle for South Africa’s foreign policy to achieve regional development and integration within our region.

It is expected that the Summit will deliberate on, amongst other things, the state of peace and security in the region, with particular focus on the developments in the Kingdom of Lesotho and the Democratic Republic of Congo and the implementation of the Revised Regional Indicative Strategic Plan.

South Africa as the incoming Chair of SADC is scheduled to host the next SADC Ordinary Summit in August 2017.

1.14. On 8 March President Jacob Zuma will undertake an official State Visit to Indonesia. Both South Africa and Indonesia are one of the largest economies in their respective regions, and endowed with rich natural and maritime resources.

1.15. This will be preceded by the Leaders' Summit of the Indian Ocean RIM Association (IORA) from 6 to 7 March 2017, which will also commemorate IORA's 20th anniversary. At that Summit, President Widodo will hand over the chairship of IORA to South Africa.

South Africa and Indonesia are both founding members of IORA, which comprises 21 coastal states of the Indian Ocean. South Africa served as Vice Chair from 2015 to early 2017 and will serve as Chair from 2017 to 2019.

2. Cabinet decisions

2.1. Cabinet approved the gazetting of the draft Mine Water Management Policy for public comment. Mine Water Management, including Acid Mine Drainage, remains a major environmental challenge.

The Policy provides the basis for holding parties potentially liable for negative effects and damages of Acid Mine Drainage related pollution and/or any other negative impacts that can be related to it. The policy also seeks to propose mechanisms that mining houses should explore to better manage their water.

2.2. Cabinet was briefed on the progress report of the Inter-Ministerial Committee for the Revitalisation of Distressed Mining Communities’ implementation of relevant findings from its Australian Mining Industry Benchmarking Study tour of 24 to 28 August 2015.

The study tour was premised on the Rapid Appraisal of the Policy and Regulatory Systems Governing the Mining Sector which compared the policy and legislative frameworks governing the mining sector as well as the practices of mining companies in Australia, Chile, South Africa and Zambia.

Highlights of progress include partnerships between government and mining companies in delivering decent housing and living conditions for mine workers and community members; A review of mining companies water treatment plants is being conducted to assess the possibility of infrastructure partnerships. The development of mining towns spatial transformation plans has been finalised for five municipalities. Catalytic economic development projects are being implemented in labour sending areas, with an emphasis on the advancement of the agriculture sector in mining communities; and fast tracking of increased access to medical assessments for ex-mineworkers, community members and current mineworkers.

Cabinet approved for the Departments of Labour and Mineral Resources to study the different Australian mine commuting models to assist long haul South African migrant mineworkers to commute home more frequently.

Cabinet also approved for the Department of Health work closely with the Department of Mineral Resources and other partners in the provision of supportive services to ex-mineworkers in dealing with occupational diseases, with a view to reducing and preventing mine related occupational health challenges.

A request was made for the Department of Human Settlements to fast track the implementation of integrated human settlements projects in collaboration with mining companies.

2.3. Cabinet approved the improvement plan based on the findings and recommendations of the synthesis evaluation of whether the provision of state subsidised housing has addressed asset poverty for households and local municipalities.

Over 3 million houses have been provided through the government housing programme. 2.8 million of the houses are delivered through the capital subsidy which confers individual ownership of a free standing house to households earning less than R3500 per month. Evidence affirms housing as an important component of the social wage package and households’ safety net.

2.4. Cabinet approved the report on the Implementation Evaluation of the Funza Lushaka Bursary Programme as well as the Management Response and Improvement from the Department of Basic Education. This was part of the 2014/15 National Evaluation Plan.

Cabinet approved that the Department of Basic Education retains the Programme which was established in 2007 to increase the supply of competent teachers specialising in priority areas. The Department will also consider the expansion and supplementation of the Programme.

Empirical evidence shows that the design of the Programme is relevant in terms of its political, economic and social context. It is also largely appropriate in terms of the complex environment in which it is implemented. The Programme has implemented continuous improvements in its strategy, including the introduction of a district-based recruitment system in 2012. It has made an important contribution to a substantial increase in enrolment in initial teacher education

2.5. Cabinet was briefed on the Disability Index Framework and approved the piloting of the Disability Inequality Index. Cabinet also supports the government-wide disaggregation of all data sets in terms of gender, disability and age.

The Disability Inequality Index is a key tool for tracking inequality between persons with disabilities and persons without disabilities, and provides a strategic high level quick scan on the measurement of the inequality gap. This assists in targeting government interventions more inclusively.

The process of disaggregation will enable timeous responses by government to the experiences of compounded vulnerabilities. The Policy alignments and improvements on their own, cannot reduce these inequalities, without a systematic and consistent measurement of the inequality gap.

2.6. Cabinet approved the Policy for Social Service Practitioners, 2016. The overarching outcome is delivery of responsive and quality developmental social services, through the regulation of social service practitioners. This creates an enabling framework that will broaden the human resource profile of the social development sector, so as to improve the care and protection services provided to vulnerable groups.

There is a need for a diverse cadres of social service practitioners including community development practitioner, care givers, and Early Childhood Development practitioners; to respond to legislative reforms, the changing needs of communities, and socio-economic conditions in the social welfare services sector.

2.7. Cabinet approved The Directive on the Determination of other Categories of Designated Employees Required to Disclose Their Financial Interests, which will be implemented with effect from 1 April 2017.

The risks to good governance arising from conflict of interest situations do not only face employees in senior management positions. The eDisclosure system is being reconfigured to enable other categories of employees to disclose their financial interests on-line and for the verification process to take place at the departmental level.

2.8. Cabinet approved South Africa’s Phase 3 Written Follow-up Country Report regarding the implementation of the OECD Convention on Combating Bribery and Foreign Public Officials in International Business Transactions (Anti-Bribery Convention).

The report outlines the concerted efforts of government to detect, investigate and prosecute foreign bribery cases. This Convention focuses on the use of domestic law to criminalise bribery of foreign officials. It applies to active and passive bribery, but excludes bribery that is purely domestic and bribery where the direct or indirect recipient of a benefit is not a public official.

Phase 1 focussed on identification of legal instruments and mechanisms that countries have adopted to combat foreign bribery. Phase 2 focussed on the application and effectiveness of such instruments and mechanisms. Phase 3 sought to determine the impact of the country’s adoption of the Convention. Phase 4, which commenced in 2016, is focussing on key group-wide cross-cutting issues related to enforcement efforts and changes in the domestic legislation or institutional framework of the Parties.

2.9. Cabinet approved the proposed measures set out in the Business Case to reposition the Department of Home Affairs. The Department must be positioned within the security system of the state so that it contributes to national security and is able to protect its people, systems and data.

This will better enable the department to deliver against its full mandate as a critical enabler of inclusive economic development, national security, effective service delivery and efficient administration.

2.10. Cabinet approved that the South African Police Service release the national crime statistics report for the trimester of 2016/17. As is the case of the annual crime report, this report will cover the provincial and national incidence of crime. The crime statistics are generated from crime data recorded at station level.

The quarterly releases will enable government to monitor key targets, in particular the reduction of reported serious crimes, as set out in the Medium Term Strategic Framework and could also be utilised as early warning to strengthen the crime prevention operations and strategies of Government.

2.11. Cabinet was briefed on the Minister of Police’s intention to declare an amnesty in terms of the Firearms Control Act, 2000 (Act No 60 of 2000), for a period of six months to maximise the participation of the community, and will commence on 1 April 2017 and end on 30 September 2017.

The amnesty will reduce the circulation of illegally possessed firearms which will in turn result in the reduction of contact crimes.

The amnesty will focus on the following holders of firearms and/or ammunition in South Africa:
a) Persons in possession of illegal firearms and/or ammunition in circulation, including those involved in one or more criminal activities; and
b) Persons who inherited firearms and/ or ammunition and failed to comply with the provisions of the Firearms Controls Act.

2.12. Cabinet approved the National Anti-gangsterism Strategy to address gangsterism in all its manifestations by way of an all-government approach. This is aligned to the National Development Plan to ensure that people living in South Africa feel safe at home, schools and work, and enjoy community life free of fear. This also recognises that crime and violence are not just a security issue, but have deep social and economic roots and consequences.

2.13. Cabinet approved South Africa’s 3rd cycle Universal Periodic Review country report, to be presented for review by the Universal Periodic Review Working Group, at the United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council in May 2017.

The report reflects on the progress made by South Africa in realising the human rights and fundamental freedoms contained in the Constitution.

The Universal Periodic Review is a unique process which involves a review of human rights records of all 193 UN Member States once every four years. It provides an opportunity for all States to declare what actions they have taken to improve the human rights situations in their countries and to overcome challenges to the enjoyment of human rights. It also includes a sharing of best human rights practices around the globe.

2.14.      Cabinet approved submission of the 1st Quadrennial Country Report on the 2005 Convention on the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions, to UNESCO.

The Convention recognises that cultural goods and services convey identity, values and meaning. Culture has the potential to become one of the strongest contributors to the economy, to social cohesion and to poverty alleviation.

Success indicators are the adoption of four complementary strategies: The Mzansi Golden Economy Strategy; the Social Cohesion Strategy; the National Development Plan and the New Growth Path Strategy; and fully established Department of Arts and Culture agencies with Boards. South Africa has also made substantive progress in recognising the importance of indigenous languages in policy and legislation.

3. Bills

3.1. Cabinet approved the National Public Health Institutes of South Africa Bill for tabling in Parliament. It provides for the establishment of the National Public Health Institutes of South Africa (NAPHISA), its functions, powers and duties.

NAPHISA aims to provide integrated and coordinated disease and injury surveillance, research, monitoring and evaluation of services and intervention directed towards the major public health problems affecting persons in South Africa. This will increase the capacity to monitor communicable, non-communicable diseases and injuries, which will aid in the early detection, prevention, and response to these conditions. This will ultimately contribute to the control of diseases and reduction of morbidity and mortality.

NAPHISA will be a national resource that serves public health interest and is intended to provide for a system of health protection that focuses on access, equity, efficiency and quality.

3.2. Cabinet approved for the National Health Laboratory Service Amendment Bill to be tabled in Parliament. This amends the National Health Laboratory Service Act, 2000 (Act No 37 of 2000).

The proposed amendments seek to improve the governance, accountability, and financial sustainability of the National Health Laboratory Service. This will enable the national service to provide diagnostic health laboratory services more cost effectively and with greater efficiency, so as to increase the quality of clinical care provided to patients through timely and judicious clinical management.

3.3. Cabinet approved that the Older Persons Amendment Bill, 2016 be published for public comment. The Bill amends the Older Persons Act 13 of 2006. The amendments make specific reference to protection and compliance measures which will contribute in provide a safe and protective environment for older persons.

The Bills aims to strengthen the monitoring and evaluation measures on services to older persons by putting in place effective enforcement measures for non-compliance which includes the imposition of penalties. This will ensure that older persons have access to quality services such as social, health, community based, and residential care.

3.4. Cabinet approved the publication of the Fund Raising Amendment Bill, 2016 for public comment. Further, Cabinet approved for the repeal of the existing funds and the consolidation of their assets and liabilities to one Fund. The Bill amends the Fund Raising Act, 1978 which is outdated.

The Bill streamlines responses to disasters and allows for the deployment of risk mitigation and developmental strategies through the consolidation of the existing funds including their respective assets and liabilities into one National Social Development and Relief Fund. The fund raising capabilities of the Act will be restored and the fund will not only be able to react when social relief is needed, but will act to mitigate risks and develop communities.

3.5. Cabinet approved the submission of the National Environmental Management Laws Amendment Bill, 2016 to Parliament. This amends the National Environmental Act, 1998 (Act No. 107 of 1998) as well as a number of Specific Environmental Management Acts.

This will strengthen: integrated environmental management; one environmental management system; compliance and enforcement measures; biodiversity and conservation; air quality management; waste management; and integrated coastal management.

3.6. Cabinet approved for the Draft Regulation of Agricultural Land Holdings Bill, 2017 to be published for public comment. Land Reform is necessary to unlock the potential for a dynamic, growing and employment-creating agricultural sector.

Amongst others, the Bill gives effect to the establishment of the Land Commission which will ensure a transparent and more conducive regulatory environment for the generation and utilisation of policy-relevant information on ownership and usage of agricultural land.

This will improve the state’s ability to monitor and evaluate its compliance with the constitutional directive to ensure land tenure and related reforms, with the intent of taking measures to redress the results of past racial discrimination.

This contributes to the National Development Plan’s vision for rural revitalisation, inclusive economic growth and poverty reduction which also rests on creating more equitable access to land and tenure security for all South Africans.

3.7. Cabinet approved for the publication of the Property Practitioners Bill, 2016 in the Government Gazette for public comment. The Bill repeals the current Estate Agency Affairs Act, 1976 (Act No. 112 of 1976).

The Bill responds to the changing market conditions and dynamics, and strives to create an enabling environment to enhance economic activity within the real estate market.

It also addresses the need to enhance compliance and enforcement, as well as to ensure transformation in the sector and to regulate the conduct and behaviour of property practitioners.

This is aligned to the National Development Plan which calls for the transformation of human settlements and the national space economy through, amongst others, a review of housing policies and legislative frameworks to better realise constitutional rights. This will ensure that the delivery of housing is used to restructure towns and cities and strengthen the livelihood prospects of households.

3.8. Cabinet approved the Home Loan and Mortgage Disclosure Amendment Bill, 2016 to be published for public comment. The Bill amends the Home Loan and Mortgage Disclosure Act, 2000 (Act No. 63 of 2000).

The Bill addresses human settlements challenges identified in the National Development Plan. This includes: dysfunctional settlement patterns across the country; challenges facing towns and cities; weak spatial planning and governance capabilities.

The Bill seeks to provide for housing finance which is in line with section 26 of the Constitution, which stipulates that “everyone has a right to adequate housing”. It further empowers the Office of Disclosure to receive and investigate complaints regarding home loans. This will encourage compliance by financial institutions and will contribute to improved lending patterns and trends of financial institutions regarding home loans.

3.9. Cabinet approved for the publication of the Traditional Leadership and Governance Framework Amendment Bill, 2016, in the Government Gazette for public comment. This amends the Traditional Leadership and Governance Framework Act, 2003 (Act No. 41 of 2003).

The amendments deal with the challenges being experienced with the constitution and reconstitution of traditional leadership structures and, where applicable, the disestablishment of certain structures.

The aim is to ensure proper reconstitution of tribal authorities as traditional councils; establishment of kingship and queenship councils; and disestablishment of community authorities.

3.10. Cabinet approved for the International Arbitration Bill to be introduced into Parliament. The aim of the Bill is to improve access to justice services and to ensure the realisation of the National Development Plan target of expanding trade and investment and positioning South Africa in the world.

The Bill incorporates the Model Law on International Commercial Arbitration, as adopted by the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law.  This can be used by business to resolve their international commercial disputes and in terms of which parties can obtain arbitral awards that are legally enforceable. Such a move could contribute to increased economic growth and investment as well as ensure that South Africa is an attractive venue for parties around the world to resolve their commercial disputes.

4. Issues in the Environment

4.1. Cabinet joins President Jacob Zuma in calling for restraint amidst tensions between some South Africans and foreign nationals. The violence which accompanied recent community protests in Tshwane is unacceptable and has no place in our democracy. The South African Police Service (SAPS) is prepared to provide a speedy response to incidents of violence and looting. 

Crime is our common enemy and by working together we can address the issues that concern our communities. There is however no room for acts of violence or intimidation.  No grievance can ever justify members of the community taking the law into their own hands.

By acting within the law we can make our communities safer and more secure. Citizens must work with the SAPS and other law enforcement agencies to root out crime in our communities.

4.2. Government notes the concerns of contracted coal transporters regarding the impact that renewable energy projects may have on the supply of coal to Eskom, which may affect jobs in their industry. Government is open to constructive engagement with the legitimate leaders of the coal trucking industry to address issues.

Government must act responsibly in its energy planning to ensure sustainable and affordable energy supply. The system relies on a combination of base load (coal and nuclear) and intermittent supply of electricity (renewables and gas). It is clear from the draft 2016 Integrated Resource Plan that South Africa will continue to deploy coal electricity in the energy mix.

4.3. Cabinet notes the ruling by the North Gauteng High Court on South Africa's decision to withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC). Cabinet is aware that Parliament is considering an appropriate course of action.

Cabinet abides by the ruling and has established a technical task team to develop a compliance road map.

4.4. Commander-in-Chief of the South African National Defence Force President Jacob Zuma officiated at the 5th Armed Forces Day celebrations which was held in Durban in conjunction the 100 years commemoration of the sinking of the SS Mendi which was held in the United Kingdom respectively. Cabinet honours and remembers members of the South African Native Labour Corps who lost their lives during the worst ever maritime accident in the military history of South Africa. These were brave men who had responded to a call by the Imperial power at that time to serve.

4.5. Following the positive identification of the Fall Army Worm infestation, government led by the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries is continuing with the assessment of spread and damage, as well as awareness actions to provide farmers with accurate technical information and control options as well as to ensure the responsible emergency registration of agricultural chemicals.

The department has also initiated a pest action group, which meets regularly to evaluate progress and results with all provincial departments of agriculture, industry members and research organisations. The South African Emergency Plant Pest Response Plan, which deals with new pest detections, is already in motion to fight Fall Army Worm. Government will continue with its engagement with the Southern African Development Community to ensure that early warnings of these biological threats are in place.

4.6. Cabinet wishes commuters who were injured when two trains collided at the Rosslyn train station north of Pretoria a speedy recovery and conveys its gratitude to emergency services for their quick response in assisting the injured. 

The work by the board of inquiry in conducting a comprehensive investigation into the cause of the accident and circumstances around it must be prioritised in order to prevent future occurrences.

5. Condolences and Sympathy

5.1. Cabinet joins President Jacob Zuma in conveying its condolences to the family of Judge Essa Moosa, who was a shining light of the judiciary who served South Africa with distinction before retiring as a judge of the Western Cape High Court in 2011. He will remembered for his dedication to promoting and protecting human rights, as well as his selfless dedication to the rule of law. Before ascending to the judiciary he served as a human rights lawyer and was at the forefront of challenging apartheid violations such as detention without trial. He was also a founding member of the National Association of Democratic Lawyers

5.2. President Jacob Zuma has declared a Special Provincial Official Funeral for the late struggle veteran and a former Robben Island prisoner, Mr Collen Monde Mkunqwana who passed on last week on 21 February 2017. Mr Mkunqwana was a descendent of Mr Makhanda Nxele, a warrior who led the attack against the British in Grahamstown, the municipality is now named after Makana.

Details of the funeral will be communicated by the Eastern Cape Provincial Government.

5.3. Cabinet also conveyed its condolences to the family of Mirriam Tladi, South Africa’s mother of literature and first woman novelist. Mme Tladi who was awarded the order of Ikhamanga broke through literacy bounds despite being barred from Witwatersrand University on discriminating apartheid ground.

5.4. Cabinet joins President Jacob Zuma in conveying its condolences to the families of the three South African Navy members and three construction workers from the Department of Public Works who died while working in a sewer pit at Naval Base in Durban. The three soldiers were trying to assist workers of the Department of Public Works who were struggling to breathe underground.

5.5. Cabinet conveys its condolences to the families of the seven people who died in a multi-vehicle accident on the R34 between Vryheid and Dundee when a truck and two light vehicles collided.

5.6. The country’s thoughts and prayers are with the family of young Richard Thole who allegedly fell down an abandoned mine shaft in Boksburg, on Saturday. Cabinet thanks the rescue team who are making every effort to ensure that Richard is returned to his mother.

5.7. Cabinet sends it condolences to the family and friends who lost loved ones during the flooding in North West, Rustenburg area.

6. Congratulations

6.1. Cabinet congratulates Ambassador Xawier Carrim on his assumption of office as Chair of the General Council of the World Trade Organisation on 28 February 2017. This is the first time a South African has been elected to this position and only the fourth time this office has been held by an African.

6.2. Cabinet congratulates the Airports Company South Africa for ranking within the top ten companies which manage the most punctual airports in the world, according to OAG Aviation Worldwide. OR Tambo International Airport achieved 8th place in the large airports category, Cape Town International Airport ranked 6th in the medium airports category while the King Shaka International Airport ranked 10th in the small airports category.

6.3. Cabinet congratulates Mamelodi Sundowns for winning the Confederation of African Football (CAF) Super Cup. Sundowns proved that they are the best team in the Continent after beating TP Mazembe 1-0. We are hopeful this win will go a long way towards inspiring other teams to follow in the footsteps of Mamelodi Sundowns.

7. Appointments

All appointments are subject to the verification of qualifications and the relevant clearance.

7.1. Ms. Zanele Monnakgotla as a Non-Executive Member to the South African Bureau of Standards Board.

7.2. Non-Executive Directors to the South African Special Risk Insurance Association State Owned Company (SOC) Limited:
a) Ms Tando Mbatsha (re-appointment); and
b) Ms Tshwarelo Moutlane (re-appointment).

7.3. Non-Executive Directors to the Land and Agricultural Development Bank Board:
a) Ms Dumo Motau (re-appointment);
b) Ms Thembekile Thelma Ngcobo (re-appointment); and
c) Ms Gugu Mtetwa.

7.4. Mr. TS Mokoena as the Director-General of the Department of Mineral Resources.

Donald Liphoko
Cell: 082 901 0766

Statement on the Cabinet meeting of 15 March 2017

1. Cabinet decisions

1.1. Cabinet deliberated on the Third Quarter Outcomes Performance Update Reports for the period October to December 2016, which monitor implementation of Government’s Programme of Action in line with the provisions of the Medium Term Strategic Framework and the National Development Plan

Respective Cluster Ministers, through the GCIS, will coordinate cluster media briefings to present departmental milestones reached in the period.

The following highlights will be elaborated on during Ministerial cluster briefings.

a.  Economic Transformation

1.2. Economic Transformation requires radical change in the productive base of the South African economy; it also requires changing the patterns of participation by previously disadvantaged individuals in the economy.

1.3. Following Government’s announcement that it would create 100 black industrialists over the medium term to bring about economic transformation, 27 Black Industrialists have been supported since the inception of the programme, 9 of which were supported in this quarter.

1.4. Government support resulted in a total projected private-sector investment of R956m while 1 053 jobs are projected to be established. Additionally, the Industrial Development Corporations’ (IDC) gross funding for black industrialists amounted to R4, 575 billion, from quarter one of 2015/16 to quarter three of 2016/17.

b. Investment

1.5.    In an effort to boost confidence levels, Government through Invest SA has identified 40 high-impact projects that are ready for implementation within the next two years. Support from the Department of Trade and Industry attracted R4bn in private-sector investment, with the potential to save and create approximately 3 614 jobs in the September-December 2017 quarter.

The Dube Trade-Port attracted R1.3bn of private-sector investment while the OR Tambo International Airport SEZ attracted R260m in private sector investment.

1.6. Economic diplomacy initiatives undertaken yielded increased sales of manufactured value-added exports by R247 million which brings the cumulative total for the year to R4. 105 billion.

1.7. Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) confirms that South Africa remains a preferred investment destination. The Q3 additions to the Pipeline represent potential FDI of R4.55 billion particularly in the energy and chemicals sector. This brings the total potential FDI to R34.892 billion. Officials are working extensively to move these potential investments from the pipeline to actual investment.

1.8. President Jacob Zuma will launch the Invest SA National One Stop Shop tomorrow Friday 17 March 2017 at the dti Campus in Pretoria, Sunnyside.

c. Small Business Development

1.9. As part of implementing the 30% ‘set aside’ of total procurement expenditure for SMMEs, National Treasury has reviewed the Preferential Procurement Policy Framework Act Regulations and gazetted amendments in January 2017.

1.10. In the reporting quarter – The Department of Small Business Development supported 1,388 township enterprises and 48 co-operatives, through incentives.

1.11. National and provincial Government are collaborating to revitalise local industrial parks, so as to support existing businesses and to attract new businesses. as Already, the Komani Industrial Park (Eastern Cape) accommodates 30 companies and employs 555 people, while Botshabelo Park (Free State) supports the livelihoods of about 10 000 people.

d.  Agriculture and Rural Development

1.12. While prolonged drought conditions, since 2014, has started to taper in the fourth quarter of 2016 as rainfall brought new hope to our economy, the impact will take a few months. The recent outbreak of the Fall Armyworm in Limpopo poses a new risk to crops.

1.13. During the quarter, 374 299 hectares of underutilised land were cultivated on farms under the Recapitalisation and Development Programme. Despite the drought there was a 50% achievement of the target for food production as compared to the previous three quarters.

1.14. 244 073 people benefitted from the food security initiatives including those that were fed at Community Nutrition Development Centres. The Department of Social Development procured produce from 43 local cooperatives at R1 684 238.21 in line with 75% local procurement proposals.

1.15. 6 784 179 learners from 10 300 (quintile 1-3) primary and secondary schools benefitted from the National School Nutrition Programme. 5 408 service providers (1 142 Community Base Co-operatives, 3 112 SMMEs and 1 154 retail/ wholesalers) have been contracted to supply food products to schools. 541 121 youth and 291 304 women benefitted from the interventions implemented in the rural areas in this quarter.

e. Infrastructure

  • Energy

1.14.  46 382 households were connected to grid or micro scheme electricity and 2116 households were connected to off grid technology. Furthermore 141 191 rural indigent households gained access to free basic electricity. Construction of Nwaabe Integrated Energy Centre has been completed.

1.15. The Department of Energy finalised the procurement of 31 100 solar home systems for installation (planned annual target of 20 000). Installation will commence in the fourth quarter.

1.16. Government has continued the rollout of the Independent Power Producer (IPP) Programme with the following achievements: (i) unlocking of R201bn from the Renewable IPP Programme; (ii) The Renewables are now supplying 3 175MW to the Grid; (iii) the project information memorandum for the gas IPP has been completed with the Request For Proposal to be issued before the end of the new financial year; and (iv) 900MW was procured from the coal IPP.

  • Accelerated School Infrastructure Delivery

1.17. In eradicating infrastructure backlog in rural schools: one schools grant was completed, which was funded through the Accelerated School Infrastructure Delivery Initiative, 389 schools gained access to water, 57 schools gained access to electricity and 157 schools were provided with decent sanitation.

In addition the following were allocated to implementing agencies: 293 school building projects; 959 school water projects; 535 electricity projects and 585 sanitation projects.

  • Health Infrastructure

1.18. Progress in eradicating infrastructure backlogs in health facilities includes: progress in the maintenance of 70 clinics and Community Health Centres, 18 hospitals and 67 health facilities in districts where the National Health Insurance is being piloted. The construction of 3 Primary Health Care Centres and three Community Care Centres was completed; and the construction of 4 Community Health Care Centres is in progress.

  • Water and Sanitation

1.19. 29 626 households gained access to piped water during the quarter under review. The construction of Ncora water treatment works and Kalahari East to Mier pipeline has been completed; Jozini Pongolapoort and Gariep Dam are in the final stages of construction. In addition 98 water development and 51 sanitation projects have been completed.

1.20. 611 360 households gained access to sanitation services and 20 599 households were served through the Rural Household Infrastructure Grant to eradicate the sanitation backlog: 1 405 buckets were replaced with adequate sanitation services in the formally established settlements.

f.  Education

1.21.  By the end of November 2016 – 89% (4 107 of 4 612) Funza Lushaka graduates eligible for placement in 2016 had been placed in schools which is a 2% improvement from the previous quarter and 4% above the annual target.

1.22. The South African Council for Educators was able to increase the number of educators signed up for participation in the Continuing Professional Teacher Development Management System to a total of 6 572 educators.

1.23. Since implementation of the National Student Financial Aid Scheme recoveries strategy, collections per month have increased as a result of the various initiatives and to date R268.4 million has been collected against the annual target of R285 million.

1.24.    The revised Funding Framework for Universities has been finalised and will be consulted with the university sector before being published.

1.25.    14 077 Artisans have been certified by the National Artisan Moderation Body.  

g.  Health

1.26. Prevention is the cornerstone of the public sector’s efforts to combat HIV and AIDS. As part of HIV Counselling and Testing services, a total of 3 022 988 clients were tested for HIV, against the third quarter target of 2 500 000.

1.27. 221 201 467 male condoms and 6 403 730 female condoms were distributed against the third quarter targets of 150 000 000 and 4 500 000 respectively. 155 188 medical male circumcisions were performed against the quarterly target of 250 000.

1.28. The tuberculosis (TB) new client treatment success rate was 84.2% exceeding the third quarter target of 84%.

1.29. In the third quarter 66.3% of pregnant women visited health facilities before 20 weeks, exceeding the quarter target of 63%.

1.30. Cabinet approved the establishment of the Committee of Ministers, to be chaired by the Minister to Public Service and Administration, to consider determinations on stipulated conditions of service such as: annual salary adjustments, salary scales or levels, performance bonuses, pay incentives and pension benefits. Cabinet also approved that a Government Negotiations Implementation Protocol be developed to ensure a transparent intergovernmental process with appropriate participation.

This creates an effective structure to align employees’ conditions of service in different sectors of the public service and to ensure that the budgetary and broader economic implications are taken into account when adjustments are considered.

1.31. Government’s Programme of Action has played a significant role in GDP growth as reflected in the GDP figures released by Statistics South Africa. In support of the National Development Plan, the country’s Nine Point Plan outlines specific interventions for growing and transforming the economy, creating jobs and attracting investment.

The largest positive contributors were the trade, catering and accommodation industry as well as finance, real estate and business services, which increased by 2,1% and 1,6% respectively.

Each contributed 0, 3 of a percentage point to GDP growth.

2. Implementation of government programmes

2.1. Cabinet joins Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa in welcoming the full endorsement of the minimum wage agreement that was agreed to by labour, government and business under the auspices of the NEDLAC Committee of Principals.

This endorsement is an important milestone in the process of making the National Minimum Wage a reality which will reverse the phenomenon of the “working poor” and allow employees to provide for the daily needs of their families. It also extends our social net to the most vulnerable in our society and helps us build a more inclusive society.

2.2. Government is securing the credibility of qualifications and higher education system. The announcement by the Minister of Higher Education and Training on action to be taken against holders of fake qualifications, including prosecuting and publicly naming and shaming them will contribute to ending the growing prevalence of qualification forgeries.

As at the end of January 2017, a total of 1 276 qualifications (444 national and 832 foreign qualifications) were recorded on SAQA’s list of misrepresented qualifications - with 78 affidavits completed for handover to the Hawks for prosecution.

As part of the regulatory move SAQA will register the names of holders of fake certificates on its website.

2.3. Cabinet is pleased that government's national anti-corruption hotline is helping to identify cases of fraud. As of 31 January this year, 18 778 cases had been referred to government departments and feedback was received on 17 249 cases. Ninety percent of cases had been closed and 3 600 officials had been found guilty of misconduct between 2004 and January 2017.

The majority of public servants are honest and continue to deliver services and do their work.

2.4. In another major anti-corruption initiative, government has moved to ensure that public service employees are barred from doing business with government departments and other organs of state. The transitional period for public servants to declare their activities under the 2016 public service regulations ended on 31 January 2017. By 1 February 2017, those public servants who were conducting business with an organ of state should have resigned from either their businesses, or from the public service employment.

The Department of Public Service and Administration is currently working on collating information on public service employees who failed to comply with the new regulations. Once the process is completed disciplinary processes will be instituted against all who failed to comply.

3. Issues in the environment

3.1. Cabinet deeply regrets the anxiety caused by uncertainty over the payment of social grants to beneficiaries. We are a caring government and the needs of our people are our priority. We are collectively working towards ensuring that grant beneficiaries are not disadvantaged by these unfortunate events.

3.2. Cabinet assures South Africans that we are dealing with the matter at the highest levels. We have approved the establishment of a Ministerial Task Team consisting of the following Ministers: Minister in The Presidency responsible for Planning, Monitoring and Evaluation (convenor), Social Development, Finance, Science and Technology, Home Affairs, Telecommunications and Postal Services and State Security.

The Task Team has been mandated to address the following:

  • Following the Constitutional Court judgement – to consider proposals with a view to strengthening conditionalities as well as consequence management (immediate) and identifying an appropriate transitional period;
  • Ensure the payment of grants as from 1 April 2017;
  • Seek legal advice on the viability of further legal action by the State, especially in addressing unlawful and irregular conduct where necessary;
  • Reviewing the conduct of the South African Social Security Agency especially in relation to its administrative capacity and management and making a recommendation;
  • Developing a contingent plan; and
  • Devising a comprehensive institutionalised payment system for grants.

3.3. Cabinet warmly acknowledges the dedication and professional service of the South African Police Service as well as the outpouring of support messages and citizens who mobilised to find Baby Siwaphiwe Mbambo. This demonstrates that when South Africans work together we can make a difference in the lives of the most vulnerable.

President Jacob Zuma has undertaken that Government will take visible action to combat crime in the Mhlabuyalingana Local Municipality in northern KwaZulu-Natal which is causing tension between South Africans and Mozambicans.

Cabinet joins the President in urging the local communities of Mhlabuyalingana and surrounding municipalities of Mkhanyakude, Hlabisa and Jozini to renew their trust in the police and work together with them to combat cross-border crime especially the car hijackings in the area.

National Departments particularly of the Police, Defence, State Security, Home Affairs, Social Development and others will make a strong intervention after the President’s visit, working with the Provincial government and municipalities.

3.4. While parts of the country have received much needed rains with dam levels showing significant improvement with some even full to capacity, the persistent drought in the Western Cape is dire even though water saving strategies are being implemented.

Engagements between national and provincial sector departments as well as municipalities are ongoing in an effort to minimise the impact. Water remain a scarce resource in South Africa and all water users – domestic and commercial are urged to continue using water efficiently.

3.5. Cabinet joins President Jacob Zuma in congratulating President Nana Addo Akufo-Addo of the Republic of Ghana on the milestone occasion of Ghana’s 60th independence anniversary on 6 March 2017.

3.6. Cabinet joins the Minister of Communications in celebrating the South African national winners of the SADC Media Awards. The awards recognise excellence in journalism and encourages media practitioners in member states to cover issues pertaining to the region for the purposes of promoting regional integration and cooperation. The South African media are invited to submit their entries for the 2017 SADC Media Awards Competition, before the closing date of 20 March 2017.

3.7. Cabinet was briefed on progress and preparations for the O.R Tambo Centenary Celebrations for 2017 under the theme: “Life and Legacy of O.R Tambo”. The year-long country-wide programme for awareness creation, educational, celebratory and honouring activities builds-up to the fully-fledged centenary celebrations on 27 October 2017, and concludes in early December 2017 with a musical tribute at Mbizana, Wild Coast Casino. This year long national discourse reaffirms the significant role played by O.R Tambo in the struggle for liberation and attainment of Freedom and Democracy.

All National and Commemorative days for 2017 will be utilised as platforms for the O.R Tambo Centenary Celebrations. Cabinet calls on all sectors to align their programme and content to the theme and objectives of the O.R Tambo Centenary Celebrations.

4. Congratulations

4.1. Cabinet congratulates the Minister of Environmental Affairs‚ Edna Molewa‚ who will be appointed as the first Chancellor of the Sefako Makgatho Health Sciences University.

4.2.  Cabinet commends the five young South African scientists nominated by the Academy of Science of South Africa, who join 400 other young scientists from 76 countries selected to participate in this year’s 67th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting in Lindau, Germany. They are Dr Hlamulo Makelane, University of the Western Cape; Frederick Malan, University of Pretoria; Funeka Nkosi, University of the Witwatersrand; Retha Peach, North-West University, and Dr Mark Williams-Wynn, University of KwaZulu-Natal. The meeting will take place from 25 to 30 June 2017 with 31 laureates expected to participate.

4.3. Cabinet congratulates the all-female team of researchers from the University of Cape Town, along with Gasnat Shaboodien and Sarah Krause, and researchers from Italy who discovered the heart attack gene. This landmark medical discovery has the potential to prevent hundreds of cardiac-related deaths every year.

4.4. The Department of Sports and Recreation South Africa and the South African Revenue Services was jointly awarded with the Pan South African Language Board Multilingualism Award in the Government/Public Sector category. They received this accolade in recognition of their drive to promote multilingualism in South Africa.

4.5. The successful handover of the commission chairmanship of the African Union from Dr. Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to Moussa Faki Mahamat of Chad. Cabinet wishes him all success.

4.6. Cabinet congratulates Amajita for their performance at the Under 20 African Cup of Nations, in Zambia. They reached the semi-finals and in so doing secured South Africa's place at the 2017 FIFA Under 20 World Cup to be hosted in South Korea.

5. Condolences and well wishes

5.1. Cabinet sends condolences to the family and friends of those who lost loved ones in the fires which razed Cape Town’s informal settlements leaving thousands of people displaced.
Government has erected two marques to facilitate registration for those who have lost security documents and four halls are accommodating those who have been displaced, where basic necessities such as water and food parcels are being made available.

Various government departments have intervened to provide support and services to minimise the impact on communities.

Cabinet thanks Aid organisations and volunteers who are assisting with relief operations in the area.

5.2. Cabinet also wishes anti-apartheid veteran Winnie Madikizela-Mandela well during her stay in hospital, and urge the nation to keep her and her family in their thoughts and prayers at this time.

5.3. Cabinet joins President Jacob Zuma in wishing struggle stalwart Ahmed Kathrada a speedy recovery from his illness. He is one of our three surviving Rivonia Trialists and we urge the nation to keep him and his family in their thoughts and prayers at this time.

Mr Donald Liphoko
Contact: 082 901 0766

Statement on the Cabinet meeting of 29 March 2017

Cabinet met on Wednesday, 29 March 2017 at the Union Buildings. President Jacob Zuma chaired the Cabinet meeting, which was postponed to later in the afternoon, to enable members to attend the funeral of struggle stalwart Mr Ahmed Kathrada.

The meeting took place as the country moves from Human Rights Month and commemorating sacrifices in our struggle for democracy towards celebrating Freedom Month which saw the first democratic elections in 1994 give birth to freedom and constitutional democracy in South Africa.

1. Cabinet decisions

1.1. Cabinet approved the ninth annual iteration of the Industrial Policy Action (IPAP) 2017/18 to 2019/20 which addresses the key challenges of economic and industrial growth and race based poverty, inequality and unemployment. This is a key component of President Jacob Zuma’s Nine Point Plan and is aligned to the policy perspective of Radical Economic Transformation.

IPAP has scored significant successes in a number of key areas: saving many firms and jobs, supporting sectors which are indispensable to South Africa’s’ prospects for longer term industrialisation and opening new areas of economic growth to build on our comparative advantage and create globally competitive industrial capabilities.

Drivers of IPAP 2017-2020 include: a redoubled commitment to Radical Economic Transformation; ongoing efforts to secure shared and inclusive growth; rapid acceleration of the Black Industrialist Programme, and a much stronger and ongoing focus on labour intensity across the value chains that link the primary sectors of the economy to the manufacturing and services sectors coupled with a stepped-up export effort.

1.2. Cabinet was briefed on the findings of the 2014/15 National Survey of Research and Experimental Development (R&D Survey).

South Africa’s Gross Expenditure of R&D (GERD) was R29, 345 billion in 2014/15. This is a nominal increase of 14.4% from R25, 661 billion in 2013/14. This is the fourth consecutive year that GERD has increased after the contraction in 2009/10 and 2010/11. GERD as a percentage of GDP, a key indicator of R&D intensity in the economy, increased to 0, 77% in 2014/15.

Adequate and appropriate investment in R&D is required to achieve the objectives of the National Development Plan.

1.3. Cabinet supports the first biennial report on The State of Climate Change Science and Technology in South Africa.

The Report, which will be made widely available, provides a critical assessment and comparative overview of climate change scientific research and related technological innovations. It makes eight recommendations to improve the state of climate change science and technology in South Africa and position the country as a continental and global player in climate change science and technology. This will be used to strengthen, mitigation and adaptation strategies against climate change.

1.4. Cabinet approved the publication of the Information Communications Technology (ICT) Small, Medium and Micro-sized Enterprises (SMME) Support Strategy for public comment. The Strategy aims to develop strategic interventions to accelerate the development and growth of small enterprises in the ICT sector, and to facilitate increase in the levels of uptake and usage of ICTs by the general small business sector.

1.5. Cabinet approved publication of the National E-Strategy for public comment.

The e-Strategy articulates the vision for the development of an inclusive information society and knowledge economy for the country that is based on the needs of the citizens, business and public sector. This provides a platform for South Africans to integrate technology in their lives in a manner that is beneficial to society as a whole.

The aim is to develop a people centric caring knowledge based society, transforming the South African society and the economy based on access and utilisation of modern information communication technologies.

1.6. Cabinet approved publication of the National e-Government Strategy and Roadmap for public comment.
This Strategy guides the digital transformation of the public service into an inclusive digital society, so as to better enable citizens to benefit from the opportunities offered by digital technologies to improve their quality of life.

This will contribute towards the realisation of the objectives of the National Development Plan as well as leverage Government plans and programmes to provide Government services in an effective manner.

1.7. Cabinet approved the National Road Safety Strategy 2016-2030. This addresses the challenges and gaps identified by the Department of Transport on the implementation of the previous strategies, including the 2006 National Road Safety Strategy.

This contributes to the attainment of the National Development Plan goal to “reduce injuries, accidents, and violence by 50% from 2010 levels”. It also responds to the need to create an efficient, competitive and responsive economic infrastructure network to ensure safe and secure road infrastructure.

Road crashes have a dire consequence on families and communities as they result in a loss of life and place an increased burden on the social security and welfare system.

1.8. Cabinet approved publication of the Draft National Tourism Sector Strategy for public comment. This is South Africa’s tourism growth and development framework.

The Strategy aims to increase direct contribution of tourism to the economy from R118 billion to R302 billion by 2026 through collaborative planning, and the implementation of agreed priority actions.

Implementation of the current National Tourism Sector Strategy has contributed to significant growth in terms of tourist volumes, contribution to Gross Domestic Product, and a significant positive trade balance and job creation. The next growth phase focusses on inclusive growth and transformation in the sector.

1.9. Cabinet approved the National Strategic Plan (NSP) for Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), Tuberculosis (TB) and Sexually Transmitted Infections (STIs) 2017-2022.

South Africa’s response to the HIV and TB epidemics means that the average South African now lives nearly a decade longer than they did in 2004. The rate of HIV infections have declined as have deaths from TB.

This fourth NSP seeks to scale up successes while introducing new strategies to prevent new infections, identify infected people sooner and successfully treat and care for them. It outlines the strategic framework for a multi-sectoral partnership to accelerate progress in reducing the morbidity and mortality associated with HIV, TB and STIs. This is aligned to the National Development Plan which acknowledges the profound effect that HIV and TB have in slowing national development.

1.10. Cabinet was briefed on the Ministerial Committee Report on the draft Policy Framework for Disability in the Post-School Education and Training System, which made recommendations towards the development of a Strategic Disability Policy Framework.

This gives expression to the Constitution on the removal of barriers to integrating vulnerable groups in mainstream society as participating members of society.

1.11. Cabinet approved the submission of the Revised Convention on the Recognition of Studies, Certificates, Diplomas, Degrees and other Academic Qualifications in Higher Education in African States to Parliament for ratification. The Minister of Higher Education and Training will deposit the ratified instrument with the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organisation (UNESCO).

This Revised Convention aims to provide an enabling environment across African States for the recognition of higher education qualifications such as certificates, diplomas, degrees and other academic qualifications herby allowing for the mobility of learners, academics and workers across the continent.

1.12. Cabinet approved the publication of the National Policy for an Integrated Career Development System for South Africa, for public comment.

The Policy provides for an enabling environment for Career Development Services provision through policies, guidelines, protocols, mechanisms, structures, shared responsibilities and collaboration. This will go further in ensuring that all citizens of all ages, have access to quality career information and career development services throughout their lives, so that they are able to make better and more informed career and life decisions that deliver high levels of employment and help to increase sustainable economic growth in the country and enhance their full participation in the overall development of South Africa.

This is aligned to the National Development Plan which recommends the promotion of economic growth and employment, matching of unemployed workers to jobs, increasing skills development and the numbers of university graduates.

1.13. Cabinet was briefed on progress made on the Review of the Criminal Justice System and on the modernisation of the Criminal Justice System through the Integrated Justice System Programme.

Cabinet approved the broad framework for the development of an Integrated Criminal Justice System which will address challenges and shortcomings across the criminal justice value chain.

The Integrated Criminal Justice System is geared towards strengthening the cooperation and integration of law enforcement agencies in realising the strategic objective of the National Development Plan – of building safer communities and creating a resilient anti-corruption Criminal Justice System. This contributes to the Outcome that All People in South Africa are and Feel Safe.

1.14. Cabinet approved for the release of a Discussion Document for public consultation purposes which will result in the development of “a whole of government and societal approach” National Anti-Corruption Strategy.

The Strategy is intended to address corruption, both in the public and private sectors as identified in the National Development Plan. The measures introduced aim to create a resilient anti-corruption system that promotes multi-sectoral collaboration across all sectors.

1.15. Cabinet approved the new White Paper on International Migration. This is a policy framework that will guide the comprehensive review of immigration and other related legislation.

The White Paper affirms South Africa’s sovereign right to determine the admission and residence conditions for foreign nationals in line with its national interest. It provides a progressive vision for South Africa to maximise the benefits of well-managed international migration while minimising the associated risks. International migration should be embraced while guarding sovereignty, peace and security.

1.16. Cabinet supports the Naturalisation Ceremony to be conducted by the Department of Home Affairs and approves that it be compulsory for persons who are granted citizenship by naturalisation to attend the ceremony. Cabinet also approved that magistrate courts, amongst others, be utilised for conducting Naturalisation ceremonies.

The Ceremony provides an opportunity to induct new citizens on their rights and responsibilities and to take an oath of allegiance in front of the Minister. This will contribute to social cohesion by highlighting the need for South Africans to welcome foreign nationals who have acquired South African citizenship.

1.17. Cabinet was briefed on the work done by the Presidential Creative Industries Task Team of Deputy Ministers. The Task Team chaired by the Deputy Minister in the Presidency provides a strategic platform for decision-makers in government, civil society and the private sector to discuss collective action that will accelerate transformation in the creative industry. Issues that are dealt with include: piracy, copyright protection and infringement, local content and airplay, social security including income smoothing, organisation the industry in particular performers, transformation of the sector and skills development.

The work of the Task Team supports government’s Mzansi Golden Economy, which facilities employment creation, enhances both social equity and competitiveness and mobilises domestic investment around activities that could create sustainable employment. Working with many industry players and across government departments, the Task Team initiated a number of interventions to unlock and optimize the performance industry throughout the value chain some of which include the introduction of the Copyright Amendment Bill and the Performers Protection Bill to Parliament; improvement of frequency of anti-piracy raids etc.  

1.18. Cabinet approved South Africa’s revised offer in the Southern African Development Community (SADC) Trade in Services Negotiation relating to the construction and transport sectors.

This promotes domestic growth of priority sectors including by expanding the market access opportunities for South African service exports.

Service liberalisation represents a key step in the deeper integration of SADC and contributes to the establishment of a regional market that will support the emergence and development of regional firms to provide services to a larger regional market. This contributes to the National Development Plan’s objectives of promoting regional economic integration and the development of the African continent.

1.19. Cabinet approved the tabling of the accession to the Amended Nairobi Convention for the Protection, Management and Development of the Marine and Coastal Environment of the Western Indian Ocean, in Parliament.

This provides a mechanism for regional cooperation, coordination and collaborative actions in the Eastern and Southern African region. This will enable Contracting Parties to harness resources and expertise from a wide range of stakeholders and interest groups towards solving interlinked problems of the coastal and marine environment including critical national and transboundary issues.

Accession will combat pollution and ensure sound environmental management of coastal and marine resources which affects food security, health and potential for economic growth.

1.20. Cabinet was briefed on the outcomes of the 22nd Session of the Conference of Parties (COP22) to the United Nations Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), and the 12th Session of the Conference of Parties serving as the Meeting of Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (CMP 12), which was held from 7 to 18 November 2016, Marrakech Morocco.

Marrakesh COP 22 was an important transitional moment from years of negotiations that produced the Paris Agreement to implementation of adaptation and mitigation actions. COP 22 objectives were largely achieved in line with the South African mandate.

1.21. Cabinet approved the South African negotiating mandate to serve as a basis for engagement at the Basel, Rotterdam and Stockholm Convention (COPs), to be held from 24 April to 5 May 2017 in Geneva.

The aim is to work towards environmentally sound management of chemicals and waste in order to embrace sustainability of human health and the environment.

1.22. Cabinet approved the submission of the Initial Country Report on the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights to the United Nations Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights.

The attainment of socioeconomic rights forms a vital part of the Constitution and the National Development Plan. Since the advent of democracy South Africa has made important strides in progressively realising the socio-economic rights of her people. In the past 18 years we have built democratic institutions, transformed the public service, extended basic service, stabilised the economy and taken our rightful place in the family of nations. Despite these successes poverty, inequality and unemployment remain our key challenges.

2. Bills

2.1. Cabinet approved the introduction of the Road Accident Benefit Scheme Bill, 2017 into Parliament. The Bill provides for a social security scheme for victims of road accidents by making provision for a new motor vehicle accident benefit scheme called the Road Accident Benefit Scheme, replacing the current Road Accident Fund.

2.2. Cabinet approved publication of the Repeal of the Overvaal Resorts Limited Bill, 2017 for public comment. This repeals the Overvaal Resorts Limited Act 123 of 1997, which is the founding legislation of Aventura. This complete the disposal/ winding down of Aventura.

Cabinet took a decision on 22 August 2001 to dispose of Aventura resorts which were considered non-core assets of Government.

2.3. Cabinet approved the introduction of the Defence Amendment Bill, 2017 into Parliament. The Bill aligns the Defence Act, 2002 (Act No 42 of 2002) with current Departmental organisational requirements that will enhance the efficiency of the Department of Defence. The amendments are organisational in nature and apply internally to the Department of Defence.

2.4. Cabinet approved the introduction of the Legal Practice Amendment Bill, 2017 into Parliament.

The Bill amends the Legal Practice Act, 2014 (Act 28 of 2014) in order to address practical and technical issues of a non-contentious nature.

The Bill also seeks to regulate the prescription of the areas of jurisdiction of the Provincial Councils, to provide that only practicing legal practitioners may perform certain acts or render certain services, to further regulate the duties of banks in respect of trust accounts, to regulate the duration of the National Forum on the Legal Profession and to provide for the dissolution date of the law societies.

3. Community Engagement

3.1. Members of the Executive across the three spheres of government will interact with South Africans countrywide during the National Imbizo Focus Week from 17 to 23 April 2017 under the theme “Together we move South Africa forward”.

Cabinet encourages all South Africans to be active and responsible citizens, engage government leaders on programmes that are being implemented to improve people’s lives and hold them to account. GCIS will coordinate the programme, details of which will be available on

4. Implementation of Government Programmes

4.1. President Jacob Zuma will convene the third Presidential Local Government Summit from 6 to 7 April 2017 under the theme ”Transforming Municipal Spaces for Radical Social and Economic Development”.

The Summit will focus on strengthening the local government system as part of the second phase of the Back to Basics programme. In addition, it will address spatial injustice and spatial dislocation which continue to impact on the lives of our people.

Other areas include: building resilient communities to avoid and reduce the impact of disasters; and forging whole-of government agreements to advance radical social and economic transformation at a local level.

Local government is everybody's business – Cabinet calls on public and private stakeholders, civil society and the business community at large to rally behind the programmes aimed at supporting municipalities.

4.2. The 3rd Local Government Tourism Conference will take place from 3 to 4 April 2017 at Emperors Palace, Gauteng under the theme: '"Tourism planning is everybody’s business.” The conference will focus on growing tourism in the country by integrating it into all provincial and municipal growth and development strategies.

4.3. The South African National Parks (SANParks) will host a Tourism Investment Summit on 4 April 2017, focusing on 55 new investment opportunities. Over the past 15 years, SANParks has progressively increased the number of Public Private Partnership’s transactions, covering a wide range of projects, including accommodation, restaurants, retail, activities, Skukuza airport and the Table Mountain Aerial Cableway.

4.4. President Jacob Zuma, as the Chairperson of the Heads of State Committee on the United Nations (UN) High Level Panel on Water, officially opened the United Nations World Water Day Summit and Expo and also launched the 17th edition of UN’s World Water Development Report, which focuses on the critical role of wastewater management for vibrant economies, resilient societies and the maintenance of healthy environments across the globe.

Cabinet welcomes the pledge by the High Level Panel on Water to work closely with all water stakeholders to ensure water related targets of 2030 Agenda and beyond are achieved.

The Sustainable Development Goals include a target to ensure everyone has access to safe water by 2030, making water a key issue in the fight to eradicate extreme poverty. Water and sanitation is at the core of sustainable development, critical to human survival and the environment.

4.5. Government's National One Stop which was launched by President Zuma on 17 March 2017, is now operational and open for business to all investors. It serves as a focal point and an interdepartmental clearing house to providing a streamlined and professional service to those wanting to set up a business or invest in South Africa. All these services are now available under one roof.

4.6. President Jacob Zuma has expanded the reach of the Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on Migration by including all Provincial Premiers and the South African Local Government Association (Salga) as members.

This will ensure a coordinated focus on all aspects of migration including South Africa’s migration policy, ways in which various sectors can work with government to promote orderly migration and the fostering of good relations between citizens and foreign nationals.

4.7. As we conclude Human Rights Month Cabinet thanks South Africans who joined the nation’s celebration on Human Rights Day, which honoured our struggle heroes who fought for the many rights we enjoy today. This included commemoration of the 40th anniversary of the death of Bantu Steve Biko.

Celebration of our national heroes ensures that our youth and future generations know and understand their contribution and what they stood for.

4.8. We have witnessed an alarming increase in the number of racist incidents, which detracts from the gains that we have made as a democracy.

We must cherish that we live in a country that enshrines human rights and dignity. These gains came at a great price. People lost their lives. We should never forget the sacrifices that were made for our freedom and democracy. We must continue to build a South Africa that will enshrine the human rights of all, regardless of their class, gender or geographical location.

4.9. Cabinet calls on all South Africans to join in National Freedom Day and Freedom Month celebrations. Freedom Month and National Freedom Day marks the dawn of freedom and democracy in our country, and our journey from a country which was marred by hatred and divisions to a society where we build a common future.

Freedom Month celebrations promote the National Development Plan as our long-term vision for partnerships to attain the South Africa as articulated in the Constitution, our Bill of Rights and the historic Freedom Charter of 1955.

4.10. Cabinet invites all high school learners to participate in the 2017 SADC secondary schools essay competition, which is open to all secondary schools students in the SADC region.

The topic for the SADC Secondary School Essay Competition for 2017 is "Harnessing Sustainable Energy for Regional Economic Development"

The Department of Basic Education will assist learners who wish to enter the essay competition. Three selected essays from each province will be forwarded to the Department of Basic Education by 5 May 2017. The three national winning essays will be submitted to the SADC Secretariat on 31 May 2017.

5. Issues in the Environment

5.1. Government has welcomed the Constitutional Court’s judgement on the payment of grants. The Inter-Ministerial Committee (IMC) on Comprehensive Social Security, chaired by President Jacob Zuma has been hard at work to ensure that Government continues to pay more than 17 million social grants to qualifying beneficiaries from 1 April 2017.

Beneficiaries receiving social grants from merchants and banks will be paid on 1 April 2017 while those using SASSA pay points will be paid from 3 April 2017. Social grant beneficiaries must take note of their respective pay days, which appears on the slips received on their previous pay date, in March 2017. The SASSA call centre, toll free: 0800 60 10 11 will be open to assist beneficiaries with all their enquiries. Arrangements have been made to ensure that the SOCPEN system is available for investigation and verification of the status of grant applications.

Government’s social assistance programme remains an important safety net for millions of South Africans. It is at the heart of government’s poverty alleviation programme, and has helped to restore the dignity of our people. We are a caring Government continually striving to improve the living conditions of poor, vulnerable and underprivileged South Africans.

5.2. Cabinet affirms that the rights and safety of all women in our society must be protected. The recent incidents of sexual assault on women, particularly by taxi drivers is a cause for concern.
Cabinet commends the brave women who have come forward to report these incidents and appeals to communities to assist to find the perpetrators of violence against women and children.

5.3. Cabinet reiterates the commitments made by President Jacob Zuma’s during his address at the 17th National Teachers' Awards: that Action will be taken against teachers who continue to use corporal punishment in schools, this is unlawful and action will be taken against teachers who break the law and violate the dignity and personal safety of children. The problem of teenage pregnancies and crime in some schools, such as gang violence, drugs, alcohol and bullying are also being prioritised.

5.4. Cabinet has noted with concern increasing incidents of taxi violence in some parts of the country. All role players in the taxi industry are urged to engage in dialogue and seek solutions to the underlying issues so that they don't negatively affect commuters who depend on their services. Cabinet calls on the transport sector and law enforcement agencies to work together to tackle the resurgence of taxi violence.

5.5. Cabinet is deeply concerned over the break-in at the offices of the Chief Justice where several computers were stolen. Such acts of criminality strike at the very heart of our constitutional democracy and have no place in our society.

The Justice Crime Prevention and Security cluster reiterates its commitment to fighting crime and calls on communities to report suspicious activities to relevant authorities.

5.6. Cabinet welcomes the Competition Commission’s investigation into allegations of cartel conduct in the fresh produce sector and awaits its speedy conclusion. Uncompetitive behaviour affects the most country’s most vulnerable households and undermines our national effort to increase the participation of emerging market black farmers in this market.

We applaud the work of the Commission in protecting and upholding the rights of consumers, and our communities.  

5.7. The Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries has requested the Brazilian authority to provide official information and a list of establishments that have been identified in the issue regarding unsafe meat being exported to various countries, which could include South Africa.

The Brazilian authority has been advised to ban all exportation of meat from such establishments until the issue has been resolved to the satisfaction of the South African Veterinary Authority.

5.8. President Jacob Zuma has declared a Special Official Funeral for the late Rivonia Treason Trialist and stalwart of the liberation struggle for a free and democratic South Africa, Mr Ahmed “Kathy” Kathrada.
Cabinet joins President Zuma in sending their deepest condolences to his partner, former minister of Public Enterprises Ms Barbara Hogan, the Kathrada family and his political home, the African National Congress, which Uncle Kathy served selflessly throughout his adult life.

An official memorial service will be organised and the details will be announced in due course.

5.9. Cabinet conveyed condolences to the family and friends of Bloemfontein Celtic founder Dr Petrus Rantlai Molemela. His legacy of a distinguished and much-respected career in South African soccer administration contributed to sport and development of the community.

5.10. Cabinet extended its heartfelt condolences to the family and loved ones of legendary actor and filmmaker Mr Joe “Sdumo” Mafela popularly known as ‘Sdumo’. He will be remembered for his immense contribution to our cultural landscape.

6. Appointments

All appointments are subject to the verification of qualifications and the relevant clearance.

6.1. Board of the Technology Innovation Agency:

a) Mr Edward Christian Kieswetter (Chairperson);
b) Dr Steven Lennon;
c) Ms Joy Sebenzile Matsebula;
d) Mr Thabiso Ramasike;
e) Ms Fuzlin Levy-Hassen;
f) Ms Patience Lethabo Mlengana;
g) Mr Mzwandile Madikizela;
h) Dr Jan van de Loosdrecht;
i) Dr Judy Coates; and
j) Prof Roy Marcus.

6.2. Postbank Board of Directors:

a) Ms Boitumelo Mothelesi;
b) Mr Edward Netshivhulana;
c) Ms Leonora Noluphumzo Noxaka;
d) Mr Ashley Cavel Seymour; and
e) Mr Mark Barnes.

6.3. Re-appointment of Ms Nomsa Motshegare as the Chief Executive Officer of the National Credit Regulator.

6.4. Ms Zodwa Ntuli as the Commissioner for the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment Commission.

6.5. Companies Tribunal:

a) Adv Mohammed Alli Chicktay (Chairperson);
b) Ms Bongekile Zulu;
c) Ms Ishara Kamini Bodasing;
d) Mr Lindelani Daniel Sikhitha;
e) Prof Petrus Albertus Delport (re-appointment);
f) Mr Maake Francis Kganyago (re-appointment);
g) Mr Khashane Manamela (re-appointment);
h) Ms Lucia Glass (re-appointment);
i) Ms Khatija Tootla (re-appointment); and
j) Ms Matshego Jacqueline Ramagaga.

6.6. Mr Jeremiah Lengoasa as the Chief Executive Officer of the South African Weather Service.

Donald Liphoko
Contact: 082 901 0766

Statement on Cabinet meeting of 26 April 2017

Cabinet met on Wednesday, 26 April 2017, at the Union Buildings, on the eve of the 23rd national Freedom Day celebrations. President Jacob Zuma chaired the Cabinet meeting, which welcomed the new Members of the Executive who further complement the existing leadership in government in spear heading implementation of government’s Programme of Action for radical economic transformation and inclusive socio-economic growth.

1. Cabinet decisions

1.1 Cabinet approved for the Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries to co-host the World Aquaculture Society conference in Cape Town from 26 to 30 June 2017.

This contributes to Operation Phakisa Aquaculture Lab which aims to increase aquaculture growth by five-fold in the next five years from 4 000 tons to 20 000 tons, to create 15 000 jobs and increase the contribution of aquaculture towards GDP.

Aquaculture presents a good opportunity to diversify fish production to satisfy local demand, food security, export opportunities and create jobs. Hosting the conference will promote the sector, enhance investment by private sector and donors, and assist in fast-tracking aquaculture development locally through insights from aquaculture strategies from other nations.

1.2 Cabinet approved the establishment of an Inter-Ministerial Committee to oversee and provide strategic direction during the preparations for and hosting of the 37th Ordinary Southern African Development Community (SADC) Summit of Heads of State and Government to be held in August 2017.

The SADC Summit will take place under the theme “Partnering with the Private Sector in Developing Industry and Regional Value Chains”, emphasising the need to address critical factors to implement and achieve SADC’s Industrial Strategy and Action Plan.

South Africa will utilise its position as Chair of SADC to strategically advance the country’s national interests as outlined in the National Development Plan and strengthen regional economic opportunities and security-related matters.

1.3 The Department of Arts and Culture will host a third edition of Africa Month in May 2017. This forms part of South Africa’s contribution to the continents’ celebration on the transition from the Organisation of African Unity, which was established on 25 May 1963, to the current African Union, and its related institutions and programmes.

The celebration of Africa Month contributes to the decolonisation of the African continent through a variety of government and civil society projects under the theme: “A Year of OR Tambo: Building a Better Africa and a Better World”.

Africa Month contributes to the Pan African call for African unity and co-operation, and is used as a platform by all African Union Member States to take stock of progress made towards realising Agenda 2063.

The government-wide month long programme, which will be available on, goes beyond the arts and culture sector to embrace the contributions of the South African Government through economic, political and social factors impacting on the development of the continent. Activities and dialogues are celebratory and educational, all have political and socio-economic benefits for the people of South Africa and the rest of the continent to celebrate their Africaness and recommit to building communities grounded on positive shared African values and principles.

1.4 Cabinet was briefed on the successful hosting of the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA) and Institutions Annual World Library and Information Congress held in South Africa, Cape Town from 15 to 21 August 2015.

The IFLA Cape Town Declaration will be submitted to the African Union Ministers of Culture for concurrence, support and implementation. The Department of Arts and Culture will strengthen efforts to promote a reading culture in South Africa.

2. Implementation of Government Programmes

2.1 Government’s commitment to bolster the economy was reaffirmed during the successful engagement between the Minister of Finance, Malusi Gigaba with investors and the global finance community during the visit to the United States of America for the International Monetary Fund and World Bank Spring Meetings. Minister Gigaba also interacted with domestic investors and the NEDLAC Special Executive Committee chaired by Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa.

The engagements underscored that government’s policy orientation towards prudent fiscal discipline and stringent fiscal consolidation as highlighted in the 2017 National Budget will remain unchanged.

Cabinet calls on all sectors to partner with government to boost confidence and propel the economy towards sustained inclusive growth.

2.2 President Jacob Zuma’s launch of the Maluti-A-Phofung Special Economic Zone (MAP-SEZ) in Tshiame, Harrismith, in the Eastern Free State, on 25 April 2017 demonstrates governments’ promotion of industrial development which is key to the nation’s long-term economic success and prosperity. The priority sectors for the MAP-SEZ are automotive, agro-processing, logistics, ICT, pharmaceuticals and general processing. This creates opportunities for manufacturing as well as a regional and international trade environment with an added value chain within the Maluti-A-Phofung Municipality.

The launch of the SEZ brought the tally of Special Economic Zones in the country to eight. To date the SEZ Programme has collectively attracted over R9.5 billion worth of investments. They have also created over 10 000 direct jobs and 65 000 indirect jobs. The Special Economic Zones also continue to play a role in attracting Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).

This 1038-hectare MAP-SEZ launch forms a key part of the implementation of the Industrial Policy Action Plan which designates Special Economic Zones to accelerate local economic growth and development in specific regions of the country.

2.3 Cabinet welcomes the A.T. Kearney’s 2017 Foreign Direct Investment Confidence report, which indicates that South Africa is the 25th most attractive destination for foreign direct investment globally, the first from the African Continent.

South Africa made a comeback into the index, which publishes the 25 most attractive investment destinations, for the first time since 2014. It ranks with other developing countries such as China (3rd), India (8th); Brazil (16th) and Mexico (17).

This ranking shows that South Africa’s strategic partnership with foreign investors is gaining momentum and further demonstrates that our country’s blueprint on development is yielding results. Improvements in short-term economic prospects and the long-term investment in the country’s manufacturing sector have been cited as some of the key drivers of South Africa’s improved rating on the Index.

2.4 In a separate report, the latest Africa Investment Index 2016 by Quantum Global’s independent research arm ranks South Africa fourth most attractive investment destination in Africa after Botswana, Morocco and Egypt. South Africa scored well on the growth factor of GDP, ease of doing business in the country and significant population.

The country’s attractiveness as an investment destination of choice was further highlighted in the African Economic Outlook 2016 report, which places South Africa fourth among the leading African investment destinations in 2015 after Egypt ($10.2 billion), Mozambique ($4.7 billion) and Morocco ($4.2 billion) with $3.6 billion in foreign investment. South Africa continues to build on its strong financial and business base, ranking 47th out of 138 countries in the World Economic Forum Global Competitive Index 2016/17.

2.5 The 27th World Economic Forum on Africa will take place at the Albert Luthuli International Convention Centre in Durban from 3 to 5 May 2017 under the theme: “Achieving Inclusive Growth: Responsive and Responsible Leadership.”

Cabinet welcomes this opportunity for South Africans to engage in dialogue on potential investment opportunities, deeper regional integration and a renewed commitment towards sustainable growth and development in Africa.

Africa is home to some of the world’s fastest growing economies which have attracted increasing interest from global investors. South Africa is the most diversified economy on the continent and plays an integral role in Africa’s advancement.

2.6 The commitment by South Africa and Oman to enhance trade relations, at a business forum on 27 March 2017 between Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies and his Omani counterpart, Dr Ali Bin Masoud Al-Sunaidy, enables South African businesspeople to take advantage of the opportunities that Oman presents, particularly for agricultural and agro-processing industries.

Further, the Department of Trade and Industry’s investment mission to Ghana and Nigeria between the 20 and 25 March 2017 contributed to identifying and creating export markets for South African value-added products and services. It also promotes South African products, service offerings and creates business partnerships between business communities of the respective countries.

Increasing trade on the continent and fostering partnerships with African partners can lead to poverty alleviation, increased trade flows, industrial development and subsequent creation of more jobs, which is key to the economic development of Africa.

2.7 The Minister of Small Business Development, Lindiwe Zulu led the South African delegation at the Estonia business forum which was hosted by the South African Chamber of Commerce and Industry. With Estonia’s economy consisting of 90 per cent SMMEs, South Africa’s partnership bolsters government’s commitment to job creation and the promotion of small, medium-sized and micro enterprises (SMMEs).

2.8 The resilience of our farming sector supported by early warning systems and research, notwithstanding the Fall Army Worm infestation and the drought, was demonstrated by the 2017 estimated commercial maize crop size, which is 84% bigger than the 2016 crop, which was the smallest crop since 2007. The three main maize producing areas, namely the Free State, Mpumalanga and North West provinces are expected to produce 82% of the 2017 crop.

The size of the expected commercial maize crop has been set at 14,324 mill. tons, this is 2,91% (405 050 tons) more than the previous forecast of 13,918 mill. tons.  The area estimate for maize remains at 2,629 mill. ha, while the expected yield is 5,45 t/ha.

2.9 Governments’ commitment to strengthening, developing, and broadening access to universities, is demonstrated in the doubling of student numbers over the past 20 years. This was bolstered by the Minister of Higher Education and Training, Dr Blade Nzimande’s announcement of government spending to the tune of R 7-billion over the next two years on new student housing, laboratories, communications technology, and other essential facilities, as well as essential maintenance and the further expansion of the new universities. A further R 2, 5-billion over the next five years will target historically disadvantaged universities so as to better enable them to realise their full academic potential.

Investment in infrastructure, including teaching and research spaces, equipment, and conducive student living environments is key to ensuring that the universities can deliver on their empowerment mandate

2.10 The Minister of Labour, Mildred Oliphant will lead the national 2017 Workers Month awareness campaign under the theme “Know your rights and responsibilities as a means to promote greater compliance”.

The campaign will raise awareness levels amongst workers in South Africa about their rights and responsibilities. It will also highlight the achievements of workers in South Africa and assess compliance with labour laws. The Month will include surprise inspections in sectors that are considered perpetual offenders. 

Government has passed legislation to deal with the gross inequalities and unfair discrimination which we inherited.  At the centre of our labour laws is the quest to advance economic development, social justice, labour peace and the democratisation of the work place. Cabinet calls on all sectors and to do their part in addressing the inequalities of the past by addressing the slow pace of transformation in the workplace.

2.11 Government embarked on the 6th National Imbizo Focus Week of the current administration from 17 to 23 April 2017. The week was marked by a heightened period of engagements between members of the executive and citizens and contributes to government’s broader plan of improving the lives of all citizens.

Cabinet commends those communities who participated in the izimbizo with government officials across the country, with a view to addressing public service challenges and providing a better life for all.

Other izimbo included: the launch of the Centre for Entrepreneurship at Goldfields TVET College in Welkom, Free State by the Minister of Small Business Development, Ms Lindiwe Zulu. The Centre contributes to addressing the challenge of youth unemployment by providing appropriate support to young people at the early stage of the entrepreneurial journey. 34 engagements were held across the country.

3. Issues in the Environment

3.1 President Jacob Zuma led the 23rd national Freedom Day celebrations on 27 April 2017 under the theme “The year of OR Tambo: Together deepening democracy and building safer and crime-free communities”.

The President’s engagement in Manguzi, Umhlabuyalingana forms part of a national anti-crime campaign, which is also a follow-up to the Presidential Siyahlola Monitoring Programme in March 2017. It highlights the need for urgent action to address cross-border crime especially car hijackings. Government is hard at work in the area to eradicate crime and to address issues from the Umhlabuyalingana community, including challenges around the Isimangaliso Wetland Park.

The celebrations reflect on the country’s achievements since 1994 while mindful of the work that still needs to be done in building a truly united, non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and prosperous South Africa. In Freedom month we celebrate the contribution to our freedom and democracy, of former ANC President and national hero, Oliver Reginald Tambo, who would have turned 100 years old this year had he lived.

3.2 As part of the Freedom Month programme the Minister of Communications, Ayanda Dlodlo, initiated a youth dialogue as part of on-going discussions with youth on what it means to them to “OWN YOUR FREEDOM”, the tag used to follow the discussion on social media.

Cabinet calls on youth to exercise their rights and responsibilities prudently and to respect those who fought for our freedom, that it being enjoyed by all in our democratic country.

3.3 Cabinet welcomes the first meeting of the South Africa-China high level People-to-People Exchange Mechanism (PPEM) which took place from 24 to 27 April. This was the realisation of an agreement from the 2015 State Visit to South Africa between President Jacob Zuma and President Xi Jinping. The IMC on the People-to-People Exchange Mechanism, led by Minister Nathi Mthethwa hosted Vice Premier Lui Yandong and delegates from the People’s Republic of China.

A range of cooperation agreements were signed falling within the two broad themes –Human Capital Development, and Research and Development. The growth of an inclusive economy characterised by radical socio-economic transformation goes hand in hand with building the capacities of our people, especially our youth at various levels.

Cabinet welcomes the donation of medical equipment (made in SA) from the Chinese government, as part of a cooperation agreement in health between Africa and China, this will contribute to improving the quality of services delivered in public hospitals.

Through the co-operation agreements both nations are committed to forge close mutual technical co-operation, teacher training and expertise exchanges in the field of education, particularly in Mathematics, Science and Technology as building blocks for the growth of knowledge economies. Other areas for enhanced cooperation include: culture; communications; health; science and technology; sports; tourism; women affairs and youth.

3.4 Cabinet conveys its condolences to the families and friends of the 235 people who lost their lives due to road accidents over the Easter holiday. The statistics for the period indicate that 50 per cent of the people who died were pedestrians, followed by passengers at 24 per cent and drivers at 19 per cent.

3.5 Cabinet also joins President Jacob Zuma in expressing deep sadness and shock at the passing of 18 school pupils, and two adults during a horrific minibus taxi accident in Bronkhorstspruit, outside Pretoria. We echo the call by President Zuma for law enforcement agencies to swiftly investigate the cause of the accident. 

Cabinet thanks all government departments, NGOs, professionals and businesses who are supporting the affected families as well as learners and staff members from Mahlenga High School and Refano Primary School during this difficult period.

The road carnage, particularly during holidays in South Africa, remains a pressing national concern. In many cases these fatalities could have been prevented through responsible behaviour and use of the country’s roads. Reckless and negligent driving are unacceptable and all South Africans are urged to take personal responsibility for their safety on our roads.

3.6 Cabinet commends the bus transport sector for returning to work after a violence free strike, showing the way for industrial protests. The Minister of Labour’s role must be acknowledged in facilitating the end of the strike for this very important sector of our economy.

3.7 Cabinet is concerned by the recent upswing in violence in Vuwani following the decision by the Municipal Demarcation Board to incorporate it into a new municipality. Cabinet strongly condemns the use of our children as a negotiation tool, the weeks of school shutdown dampens the future of these children who are placed under additional stress. Violence, intimidation, vandalism, or actions that lead to schools being destroyed or learners deprived from going to school has no place in our democracy.

Cabinet acknowledges the work done by the Inter Ministerial Committee, led by the Minister of Cooperative Government and Traditional Affairs Mr Des Van Rooyen and the visit by Safety and Security Minister, Fikile Mbalula, and endorses the view that criminal activities including damage and destruction of property will not be tolerated. President Jacob Zuma is scheduled to meet with VhaVenda King Toni Mphephu Ramabulana and traditional leaders from Vhembe district in a bid to bring stability. Cabinet emphasises that money and resources spent on replacing damaged schools was meant for other programmes.

3.8 Cabinet also called for calm and stability following violent protests in Lichtenburg town and Blydeville Township, in Ditsobotla Local Municipality, North West. Schooling was disrupted, shops were looted and cars as well as several houses were burnt. North West Premier, Supra Mahumapelo, has appointed a team comprising five MECs and two mayors to investigate and address service delivery challenges in the area.

3.9 Cabinet appeals to the Coligny community, in North West to stop their violent protests and allow the South African Police Service in Coligny to complete their investigation into the death of a child, to ensure that justice is served.

Citizens are urged to raise their concerns through existing structures and within the bounds of the law.

3.10 Government commends law enforcement agencies for their response in bringing perpetrators of violence against women and children to book.

In this regard, Cabinet welcomes the swift actions taken by the Hawks’ Human Trafficking Unit and the South African Police Service’s Tactical Response Team who arrested a Durban-based pastor on a charge of human trafficking in Port Elizabeth.

It is the duty and responsibility of all South Africans to work with authorities to protect our women and children from predators and to ensure that we do our part in making our communities safer.

4. Messages

4.1 Cabinet congratulates Zolani Tete for claiming the World Boxing Organisation bantamweight title. This puts him in line for a world unification title – which means that he is now able to challenge for world titles at the four world major boxing associations: World Boxing Council, World Boxing Association and International Boxing Federation.

4.2 Cabinet joins President Jacob Zuma in sending condolences to the family and friends of legendary boxing mentor and trainer, Nick Durandt, who was known for his ability to produce champion boxers and for taking young boys out of the streets and making champions out of them.

5. Appointments

All appointments are subject to the verification of qualifications and the relevant clearance.

5.1 Presidential appointments of members to the National Consumer Tribunal, effective from the date of the relevant Presidential Minute:

Prof. Joseph Mandal Maseko (Executive Chairperson);
Ms Laura Best (Deputy Chairperson);
Mr Lulama Andisa Potwana (full-time member);
Ms Penelope Anne Beck (part-time member);
Adv. Hope Fiona Neo Sephoti (part-time member);
Ms Diane Reinette Terblanche (part-time member);
Ms Nomfundo Maseti (part-time member);
Ms Maleho Margaret Daisy Nkomo (part-time member);
Prof. Bonke Clayton Dumisa (part-time member);
Prof. Tanya Ann Woker (part-time member);
Prof. Kasturi Moodaliyar (part-time member);
Dr Maria Claudina du Toit (part-time member); and
Mr Xolela Christopher May (part-time member);
Mr Fungai Khumbulani Sibanda (part-time member);
Mr Lehlohonolo Lucky Rabotapi (part-time member);
Mr Trevor Albert Bailey (part-time member); and
Adv Frans Kgolela Manamela (part-time member).

5.2 Appointment of non-executive members to the Board of Armaments Corporation of South Africa, Limited (ARMSCOR):

Vice Admiral (retired) RJ Mudimu (Chairperson and re-appointment);
Ms Thuthukile Skweyiya (Deputy Chairperson and re-appointment);
Dr Moses Khanyile (re-appointment);
Mr Ndumiso M Tyibilika (re-appointment);
Mr Raymond Mlungwana Vokwana (re-appointment);
Adv Virginia Lee Anne De La Hunt (re-appointment);
Ms CE Simpson;
Ms T Mhlan; and
Ambassador TJ Ndhlovu.

5.3 Mr Kgabo Mahoai as the Director General to the Department of International Relations and Cooperation.

Enquiries: Willy Hlopheka Baloyi
Contact: 0833907147

Subscribe to
 Union Building