Malema cronies set to cash in
Sabelo Ndlangisa, Paddy Harper, Sizwe sama Yende and Piet Rampedi
Johannesburg - Cronies of ANC Youth League (ANCYL) president Julius Malema are set to cash in on funds for youth development in the provinces.
The Inkatha Freedom Party Youth Brigade (IFPYB) and the Progressive Youth Alliance – a body consisting of, among others, the league, the SA Students Congress, the Congress of SA Students (Cosas) and the Young Communist League (YCL) – have claimed that the ANCYL had packed the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) provincial advisory boards with its members.
Almost all NYDA chairpersons on the provincial boards and their deputies – whose names were announced last week – were close to or sympathetic to Malema.
Some of Malema’s allies who were appointed to the provincial boards included Limpopo ANCYL leader Frans Moswane; his Eastern Cape counterpart, Ayanda Matiti; North West ANCYL chair Keobakile Babuile; and Mpumalanga ANCYL treasurer Lerato Theko.
Moswane was elected at a chaotic ANCYL conference in Makhado, Limpopo, while Matiti took over the reins on the back of a divisive Eastern Cape provincial conference.
The group will apparently be paid a combined R9m a year in salaries for advising the NYDA national leadership on youth issues in their provinces.
Appointment to the 63 provincial positions means they will have a say in how part of the NYDA’s R370m-a-year budget will be spent.
Only one of the full-time officials, Aimee Franklin, comes from the Democratic Alliance.
NYDA chair Andile Lungisa would not say how much the board members would be paid, saying “the remuneration information is confidential”.
Lungisa denied claims that the board was mainly made up of ANCYL members, saying organisations and individuals had submitted 477 names and that the NYDA had whittled down the shortlist.
“We do not have information on party membership of all members of the NYDA provincial advisory boards. However, provincial advisory board members were nominated by various organisations.
“The process of nominations and, ultimately, appointments was open to all young people and youth formations. The process was rigorous and spanned five months,” he said.
YCL national deputy secretary Khaye Nkwanyana disagrees.
“Our agreement last year was that if the chairperson comes from the ANCYL, the deputy must come from the YCL. Now our comrades from the ANCYL have decided to change everything. And this has something to do with the current political turmoil within our alliance.”
He said the YCL national working committee would meet to discuss the matter.
It has also emerged that the NYDA, which President Jacob Zuma praised in June for helping to create jobs, has failed to achieve most of its 68 performance targets.
The organisation’s yearly report says 44 of its targets could not be achieved, while nine of them could not even be measured.
However, the report shows that despite its lacklustre performance, the NYDA management paid itself a performance bonus of R1m.
DA parliamentary leader Athol Trollip slammed the bonuses.
“That an organisation which has failed to perform, supposedly due to financial constraints, sees fit to devote such considerable resources to the financial benefit of its management is a serious indictment of the ANC’s culture of using state resources to line the pockets of underperforming cadres deployed to government posts,” he said.
NYDA chief executive Steven Ngubeni said the R1m bonus went to all the 416 employees except him.
He said the organisation had done well – even exceeding its target of creating 36 300 jobs – but this was not factored in as the auditor general wanted documented proof of the jobs.
“On the basis of figures, we believe they have performed,” said Ngubeni.
Serve just Malema
Mpumalanga YCL secretary Mandla Tebane said the nomination of his league’s Gert Sibande and regional secretary Nhlakanipho Zuma did not make the board representative of all sectors of the youth.
“We don’t think this board is there to serve the interests of the youth, and its composition tells us that something is wrong. It will serve one individual – Julius Malema. Zuma is a YCL member, but he was on the ANCYL’s list anyway. He is their person,” Tebane said.
“We will mobilise the youth from all sectors against these nominations. Our battle is not for YCL representation, but for the opposition as well, be it the Inkatha Freedom Party or the DA. When setting up such a structure, all sectors of the youth, such as people with disabilities and the opposition, need to be considered,” Tebane said.
Enraged IFPYB leaders in KwaZulu-Natal called on Zuma to disband the newly appointed NYDA board members.
The IFPYB’s outburst follows the exclusion of its members from the provincial board.
IFPYB leader Pat Lebenya-Ntanzi accused the ANCYL of hijacking the election process to put its members on the board.
“The election process was flawed, so we demand the whole process be reviewed,” Lebenya-Ntanzi said.
She said the IFPYB would demand a review of the process and for the NYDA not to be used as an extension of the ANCYL.
“This is a national public entity, funded by taxpayers. It should serve all young people and address the issues of their development.
“If they are concerned about issues affecting young people, the young people from various organisations should be part of the NYDA, not just one political party.”
In Limpopo, the provincial board was dubbed “a Malema political militia”.
It included Mokgadi Motheme, deputy provincial secretary of the YCL, who is seen as part of a group backing Malema in his ongoing battle with YCL national secretary Buti Manamela.
Motheme was suspended for allegedly being part of anti-Manamela YCL members who disrupted a party meeting in Mokopane two weeks ago.
YCL Limpopo secretary Pat Makape said his organisation did not support Motheme’s candidacy.
“That NYDA provincial board is not a structure to be taken seriously.
“It is just a boyfriend and girlfriend which is an extension of the ANCYL,” said Makape.
Cosas provincial secretary Sammy Makhubele said they would not recognise the board.
“The NYDA cannot be led by Moswane. As the Progressive Youth Alliance, we agreed that we want Joyce Tsipa, but because of the pressure (Limpopo Premier) Cassel Mathale is getting from Julius, he appointed Moswane.