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ANC has no political will to act on Zondo report, says Holomisa at UDM manifesto launch

ANC has no political will to act on Zondo report, says Holomisa at UDM manifesto launch
UDM leader Bantu Holomisa delivers the party manifesto at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand on 2 March 2024. (Photo: UDM / X)

The UDM promised clean governance, an end to load shedding and enhanced crime-fighting at its 2024 manifesto launch.

United Democratic Movement (UDM) leader Bantu Holomisa said that loyalty within the governing ANC was rewarded with protection against investigation and prosecution for those involved in corruption.

“There is no political will to take the guilty to a court of law and it is for this reason that the Zondo Commission’s report is gathering dust in Parliament.

udm manifesto holomisa anc

UDM members at the party manifesto launch held at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand on 2 March 2024. (Photo: UDM / X)

“The reason is simple and unsurprising: The ANC is fingered in the report. How can those that the report identified as involved in corruption be trusted to find solutions to their own immoral and illegal activities?” he said.

He was speaking at the party’s manifesto launch at the Gallagher Convention Centre in Midrand, Gauteng, on 2 March. He said his party would take a zero-tolerance stance on corruption and abuse of power. 

He said the UDM would introduce special courts to investigate and prosecute those in the public and private sectors involved in corruption, while task teams would determine the level of malfeasance and introduce recovery steps.

Holomisa promised to end political leaders’ interference with work done by accounting officers and to depoliticise the civil service and law enforcement agencies so that appointments were made only on merit. Whistle-blowers and civil servants would be incentivised to expose corruption.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Bantu Holomisa: UDM aims to prioritise policies over political personalities in bid to boost public service

In this year’s State of the Nation Address, President Cyril Ramaphosa said the Asset Forfeiture Unit of the National Prosecuting Authority (NPA) was working tirelessly to recover funds stolen in the State Capture era. 

“Freezing orders of R14-billion have been granted to the NPA’s Asset Forfeiture Unit for State Capture-related cases, and around R8.6-billion in corrupt proceeds have been returned to the state.

“A restored and revitalised South African Revenue Service has collected R4.8-billion in unpaid taxes as a result of evidence presented at the [State Capture] Commission, while the Special Investigating Unit has instituted civil litigation to the value of R64-billion,” he said.

Ramaphosa said the government was working towards introducing legislation which would eradicate money laundering and fraud and secure South Africa’s removal from the Financial Action Task Force’s grey list

“With the assistance of business, we have set up a digital forensic capability to support the NPA Investigating Directorate, which in due course will be expanded to support law enforcement more broadly.

“Legislation is currently before Parliament to establish the Investigating Directorate as a permanent entity with full investigating powers,” he said.

Load shedding

Holomisa said the ANC’s failure to maintain a constant supply of electricity was a “disgrace” and said the UDM had solutions to end load shedding.

“Nowhere is the failure to maintain the infrastructure that was given to the ANC more evident than in our energy infrastructure. For almost 15 years now, South Africa has been experiencing debilitating power failures due to the ANC government’s refusal or inability to invest in new power stations because of corruption,” he said.

Read more in Daily Maverick: Desperately seeking voters – NEC rolls out ANC campaign that targets Eskom and corruption

Holomisa proposed a public-private partnership model for Eskom in which the government would hold a 51% stake, with the remainder in the hands of the private sector.

He said the UDM would work towards migrating from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

Crime prevention

The UDM, he said, would enhance coordination between the ministries of justice, police, correctional services, defence and national intelligence while investing more resources in crime intelligence.

It would dedicate more resources to law enforcement agencies to combat crime and push for the implementation of new legislation against gender-based violence and femicide. 

“The law enforcement agencies need to take back the streets. It is as if there is a sensation when criminals are arrested, but that’s where the stories will end. The police must make a good case for the National Prosecuting Authority and the NPA must make sure that they prosecute; the courts must stop postponing cases and mete out the right justice.

“The morale of law enforcement services needs to be boosted by means of the revision of training, promotion policies and salary packs,” Holomisa said.

The UDM received 1% of the vote in the 2014 national elections and 0.45% in the 2019 polls, earning it two seats in the National Assembly.

The party enjoys most of its support in the Eastern Cape, but has declined in the province over the years. The party received 13.6% of votes in the province in 1999, two years after it was founded, but garnered only 2.6% in 2019. DM


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