I would like to thank my comrades in the ANC for the confidence they have shown in electing me as President of our country. As you will know I did not seek this position but was asked at the final hour, when the party showed irreconcilable differences, to put my name forward in order to maintain unity and to take the country and the party forward.
In accepting the appointment as President I have made it absolutely clear that I would only do so if I have the overwhelming support of all sections of the party and that I am given a clear mandate to lead the country from its present malaise as I see fit.
I have required that all sections of the party give me an undertaking to support whatever steps I consider necessary to take to this end and this they have done.
South Africa is not a rich country.
With millions of poor people it is totally inappropriate for government officials and elected representatives to expect to enjoy lifestyles more suited to Middle Eastern oil sheiks. Therefore with immediate effect be taking a number of steps towards turning the country around.
All private aircraft belonging to the government used for the purpose of the President and other politicians are to be sold. I and other ministers will in future travel business class on scheduled airline flights. All government officials shall travel passenger class on scheduled air lines. All unnecessary overseas travel will be stopped and accommodation while away on government business shall be commensurate with position and the country's ability to pay.
All private passenger motor vehicles used by government and politicians at all levels with a current market value in excess of R400 000 are to be disposed and no private passenger vehicle costing in excess of R400 000 will be acquired by the government in the future. All blue light motorcades are to be stopped forthwith, the vehicles disposed of and security personnel redeployed to the SA Police service. The SAPS will establish a VIP protection unit which shall only be used if there is a strong likelihood that the VIP needs such security. Unless exceptional circumstances exist, only the President and Vice President shall be classified as VIPs.
With immediate effect my salary and the salaries of all minsters and senior government officials will be cut by 20% and increases will be determined in future based upon the qualifications, responsibilities and authorities required for each job.
I am quadrupling the budget for the Public Protector's office and the Public Protector has been instructed to take active steps to root out corruption in all levels of government without fear or favour. Anyone suspected of corruption is to be criminally charged and expeditiously brought before the courts. The government will no longer pay the legal fees of officials and politicians who are charged with criminal offences.
In future there will be no more golden handshakes for government officials and state appointees who are dismissed for failing to carry out their duties effectively. They will only receive the minimum retirement benefits to which they are entitled.
All labour legislation which makes it difficult for employers to fire corrupt, useless or lazy employees are to be reviewed and rescinded. If people don't want to work then the employer must be free to replace them.
BEE is cancelled forthwith. It has not achieved its intended objectives, promotes inefficiency and laziness and simply makes the country inefficient and non-competitive.
I expect the inquiry in to the Arms Deal to be expedited. Those responsible for the inquiry will be given all necessary powers to demand documents and statements from anyone concerned. No further payments in respect of the Arms Deal will be made. The aircraft and navy ships acquired to fight an imaginary enemy armed with sophisticated military equipment are to be disposed of. If any of the suppliers for the Arms Deal are found to have bribed local politicians or officials then all contracts with such companies will be declared void and people concerned prosecuted. In future defence spending will be limited to hardware necessary to defend the country's borders, air space, territorial waters and fishing rights against plausible threats.
The country has wasted 18 years and billions of rands on education which has achieved little or nothing to educate and train South Africans to a standard where they can be gainfully employed in the economy. I will be ordering an immediate review of our instructional and teacher resources with the view to investing in country-wide teacher training establishments. Any qualified teachers in retirement will be encouraged to rejoin the country's educational effort. Areas that lack teaching expertise are to be identified and the government will conduct an international recruiting campaign to attract the required skills for the country. Formalised apprentice schemes will be reintroduced and employers encouraged by way of incentives to employ and train apprentices. Technical high schools and colleges are to be established thought the country to educate and train people for those skills areas the country requires.
The distressing levels of crime are to be immediately addressed. The military ranks in the police are to be abolished and the head of the police will be promoted from the ranks of the police. No more political appointments will be made. The money saved from the Arms Deal cuts that I announced will be transferred to the police for new training institutions, forensic laboratories, etc. The NPA and the court systems will be upgraded to ensure better conviction rates for criminals. Those convicted and sent to jail will no longer receive special “holiday” paroles. Criminals will be required to do the time for which they were sentenced. New maximum security prisons will be built in all provinces.
Immediate steps are to be taken to investigate all the country's government run hospitals. Where standards of hygiene, treatment or maintenance are unsatisfactory then the managers of those establishments will be fired and qualified personnel recruited to sort out the mess.
I have cancelled the Protection of Information Act. People are entitled to know what the government is doing or not doing at all levels and we need the media to help us expose corruption, negligence and inefficiency.
All levels of government have been instructed to stop wasting money and management time changing the names of towns, streets and buildings. Names of struggle heroes can be applied to new facilities only.
My government will launch a country-wide promotional campaign warning citizens of the adverse affects of having large families. We must reduce population growth to sustainable levels. The country cannot sustain ever increasing demands for food, housing,water, sewerage services and energy and we must be honest and admit that modern technology has made many traditional jobs redundant. Children born today have little chance of ever obtaining gainful employment and will simply become a burden on a society already racked by exceptionally high levels of unemployment. The government cannot create jobs; only a climate for the private sector to grow and provide more employment opportunities.
These are the initial actions I will be taking and I will progressively have investigated the issues of transport, energy supply, communications, etc. On all issues I will take decisions after consultation with organised business, labour, professional institutions and, where appropriate, civil society. This will be an ongoing consultation and I will always welcome and pay attention to the input from the country's citizens.
I thank you for your attention and welcome your responses.
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