Cape Times

A 12-point plan to right listing SA ship


I HAD a dream.

I was watching a mass of ANC delegates singing, dancing and waving their hands while they waited to be seated for the delayed opening of their congress. This seemed to take so long that I fell asleep.

I was transporte­d, and floated into the maelstrom – I suddenly found myself a candidate. And, as happens in dreams, I was suddenly elected to the leadership of the ANC.

I was called on to speak, but found my mouth dry and my notepad bare. All I knew was that our country was in a bad state – my need to announce a plan to rescue us from our current milieu was urgent. I hastily sat down and franticall­y scribbled down some points:

1. Appoint on merit, a competent and honest management at Eskom – avoid temptation to appoint cadres.

2. Teachers must complete teaching college attendance, pass exams and be subject to inspection.

3. If tertiary students are to have their loans converted to grants, failing students must repay their loans. 4. Sell SAA, SABC, Denel and Eskom. 5. Hold government department­s to budgeted spending.

6. Parliament­ary representa­tion should be supplement­ed to have a constituen­cy representa­tive basis.

7. Halve the number of cabinet positions and make appointmen­ts on merit.

8. Set up an RDP house building company with proper inspection; prospectiv­e house owners should have to pay a deposit, be given title and be required to pay rates, as well as power and water.

9. Vigorously pursue private sector managers involved in illegal monopoly or collaborat­ive exploitati­on.

10. Trade union strike action should only result after a majority secret ballot of union membership.

11. All government tenders to be opened in public and awarded to the best offer.

12. Open multiple training colleges for prospectiv­e artisans and farmers, with students being employed by private companies or farms on an apprentice basis.

And then I woke up and blinked myself into reality. Congress delegates were still singing and trying to find their seats. I looked ruefully at my list and wondered whether it would be of any use to those on the podium. Mike Brownlee Hermanus

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