2013-11-07 06:18

I've been thinking, a sometimes dangerous endeavour I know but hear me out.

In a country where a Cabinet minister can fail so dismally in her charge that school children are left without text books for the better half of a year, you would think that the private sexual indiscretions of a private citizen( Zwelinzima Vavi) holds no public office) would not even raise an eye brow, but it has, and why?

I will not delve into the nitty gritty of the Vavi scandal because, firstly as mentioned it is a private matter between Mr. Vavi, his wife and his family and secondlybecause the entire issue has by now been re-hashed ad nauseum. In brief : Zwelinzima Vavi was accused of rape and of breaking Cosatu employment rules. He is fighting back with a charge of extortion against the rape accused and a claim of a political war against him.
Now, the last four words of the above pique my interest. It was generally accepted  public knowledge that should Cosatu general secretary Zwelinzima Vavi be suspended from the federation of trade unions, e-tolling will be given the green light. Vavi was, to my knowledge, the only influential figure to oppose e-tolls. The only one to highlight that we would be charged exorbitant fees, with Sanral citing penalties in their loan deals.
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see the out and out purge of Mr. Vavi by the political elites and those whom E-tolling will benefit handsomely. He described e-tolling as economic apartheid during a march, demanding that government focus on improving public transport. Below is but a selection of quotes by Mr. Vavi is respect of E-tolling:
“We’ve come here to fire a warning shot, we still have a lot of bullets. We will make e-tolling unworkable like we did to apartheid,”
“We say to the ANC: On this issue (e-tolling), you’re wrong, “ANC leadership must listen to the masses,”

“Political labels hang on our necks but economic wealth resides elsewhere,”

I am not the only one who views what happened to Mr. Vavi as a concerted political campaign to discredit him and push on with E-tolls:

A Twitter user suggested Vavi’s suspension was a result of his stance against the controversial e-tolling system set to be implemented on Gauteng’s freeways, but SARS spokesperson Adrian Lackay denied this.

“SARS seeks to apply the tax and customs laws it administers with fairness, in a transparent and even-handed manner without any external influence,” the Times Live quoted Lackay as saying.

“No single person in SARS can decide who to investigate, who to audit, who to settle tax debts with and who not to… There is absolutely no legal basis for SARS to target any taxpayer for political reasons.”

The same Twitter user suggested president Jacob Zuma, who signed the e-toll bill into law, will send his “dogs” (SARS) after Vavi should he continue to express his opposition. Mr. Vavi had tweeted, "We not going to buy those etags - we not going to cooperate with privatization of inner city highways without a fight".

OUTA chaired by Mr. Wayne Duvenage had this to say:

"This is clearly the situation with regards to the e-tolling debacle, where the public engagement process was extremely dismal and even at this late stage, when it is not too late to halt this highly rejected and ill-conceived plan, the authorities continue to ignore the views of the people on this matter. Had meaningful public participation on e-tolling been undertaken in 2007, the authorities would have learned then of the difficulties they now face, all of which has given rise to the rejection of the e-toll scheme. This would not have meant a cancellation of the freeway upgrade, but instead, a meaningful engagement process by Sanral [the South African National Roads Agency] at the time could very well have provided an acceptable, more efficient and most amenable solution for society to pay for the infrastructural requirements."

On 6 November 2012 Cosatu Gauteng secretary, Mr. Dumisani Dakile, called on Gauteng residents to join it in the fight against e-tolls, stating:

“We’ll be hosting a massive march, also in the form of a stayaway, on November 14, but we are still in discussions with the metro police.We are continuing to call on members of the public not to buy e-tags... We must ensure that the system is rendered unworkable.”



AB praises selfless skipper

2010-11-21 18:15

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