10 December 2020
For immediate release
KZN PREMIER CALLS FOR AMENDMENT TO CONSTITUTION AND PFMA
KwaZulu-Natal Premier Sihle Zikalala has today called for radical amendments to the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa and sections of the PFMA in order to speed up the economic transformation of the country.
Speaking at the Mandela Capture Site in Howick during celebrations to mark the 24th anniversary since the signing of the Constitution Premier Zikalala said it was necessary to examine “sections of the Constitution such as section 25 should be amended as soon as possible in order to give effect to expropriation of land without compensation. Access to land has become one of the stumbling blocks to the transformation of the economy and the empowerment of Black people including women and the youth.
“The Constitution is an expression of the aspirations of our people. It is a living document that must serve the interest of society including redress. Based on the will of the people and the needs of society, it can be amended. In this regard, we must forge ahead in reviewing our prescripts that hinder transformation especially section 25 of the Constitution to give effect to land redistribution, including enforcing expropriation of land without compensation.
The Constitution was signed into law in 1996 by President Nelson Mandela during an occasion held in Sharpeville on the 10th of December. The anniversary celebrations were held at the Mandela Capture Site which was Madiba’s last place as a free person when he was captured in August 1962 and was later sentenced to life on Robben Island.
Premier Zikalala stressed that that the Constitution of South Africa is a living document which should reflect the aspirations of all the people of South Africa attain a united, non-racial, non-sexist and prosperous country.
“Equally, we must fight the killings of farmers and agree that violence and murder is not a solution to our problems. At the end, we must achieve peaceful coexistence and harmony where all people will enjoy decent livelihoods and where their human rights are protected. At this juncture, we urge all our people to embrace the Constitution and to familiarise themselves with this supreme law of the land. Let us unite and fight the demon of racism that continues to bedevil farming areas, where people are subjected to unspeakable atrocities and inhumane living conditions
Premier Zikalala said based on the recent judgment of the court the PFMA may also be seen as an impediment that would make it almost impossible to achieve the goals of transforming KwaZulu Natal and the rest of South Africa.
“The recent court judgement on the Black Economic Empowerment clearly calls on us to review the Public Finance Management Act of 1999 to give effect to radical economic transformation. The persistent economic imbalance continues to marginalise the black majority with small and micro enterprises stifled by monopolies. Without enforcing radical economic transformation, blacks in general and Africans in particular will remain at the periphery as if they have no government that they voted to represent their aspirations. The task of building a prosperous society is the responsibility of all amongst us. When we say South Africa belongs to all who live in it, we equally mean the betterment of our country lies in our hands, as equal compatriots: African, White, Coloured and Indian communities,” said Premier Zikalala.
Turning to the Constitution the Premier said it was a tool to address the challenges of patriarchy and work towards the empowerment of girls and women, while making sure that they are protected from violent attacks and abuse.
“Let us strengthen the fight against patriarchal domination which subject women to discrimination and suppression. Women have equal rights like all of us. We must uproot the scourge of gender based violence by ensuring that men take full responsibility in helping our nation in the arrest of rapists and men who ruin the lives of women. Women economic emancipation is key to eliminating patriarchy and gender based violence and must be mainstreamed and executed by all government spheres and departments.
PREMIER ZIKALALA REACTS TO KZN HIT BY A SECOND WAVE
Premier Zikalala also used the occasion to react for the first time publicly to the inclusion of KwaZulu-Natal by Minister of Health Zweli Mkhize as one of the four provinces that are driving the second wave of Covid-19 in the country.
“The rapidly rising number of new infections and deaths that we are now seeing should serve as a wake-up call for us as citizens of this province.
We must all acknowledge that we are now in grave danger of a real calamity of large-scale infections and deaths that might be even worse than what we saw during the first wave.
As we have said before, Government will never win this fight alone. It will take nothing less than a deliberate and concerted effort by each and every individual to take the necessary precautions to avoid contracting COVID - 19 and spreading it to others. We therefore call upon our fellow compatriots to play their part.
Let's avoid congregating in large gatherings; ensure we wear our face masks; wash our hands with water and soap or alcohol-based sanitiser; and maintain social distance.
We call on all of us to be mindful that world we live in is still engulfed by the global and deadly pandemic – the covid-19. Let us work together and arrest the outbreak of the second wave which Health Minister Dr Mkhize has said our own province, the Eastern Cape, the Western Cape, and Gauteng are the major contributors to the new alarming figures which have once again gone beyond 6000 in one day. We implore everyone to observe the safety protocols which include the regular washing of hands, social distancing, avoiding handshakes, avoiding crowded places, and wearing face masks. We call on all the people of this province especially our young people, to take their place in the fight against the Corona Virus as foot soldiers in order to ensure that we are saved from the worst effects of this pandemic”
As the country looks forward to next year the 25th anniversary since the signing of the Constitution Premier Zikalala called on the entire population should familiarise themselves with the Constitution of the country.
“In 2020, we need to do more to ensure that the poorest of the poor in our country have access to justice, that they have access to free legal aid so that they can be able to enforce their rights. We must refuse as a society that only the rich and powerful can have access to justice. We applaud organisations like the Legal Resource Centre which for years have been enabling the poor to have legal representation. We also thank many law clinics associated with law schools at our tertiary institutions for helping the poor to enforce their rights. There are also individuals and organisations that offer legal services pro- bono, and we salute them. The need is still huge and we need many more legal eagles to offer their services for free, especially to the many impoverished women who face domestic violence and gender-based abuse”.
Issued by the KwaZulu-Natal Provincial Government
For more information contact: Lennox Mabaso – Provincial Government Communication on 0828842403
Thami Ngidi – Director Premier Communication - 0663066793