DA, EFF urge Ramaphosa to make tough choices, testify at Zondo inquiry
The DA and EFF have criticised President Cyril Ramaphosa's budget vote speech.
In his address to parliament on Wednesday, Ramaphosa said the government was not afraid to act and is re-engaging with the intellectual community to harvest ideas that will take the country forward.
He outlined how his government would be different from former president Jacob Zuma's, adding that his administration will speak with one voice.
Maimane takes aim
DA leader Mmusi Maimane said Ramaphosa needed to make some difficult decisions to reignite the economy.
"To achieve this we will need to make tough choices on everything from labour legislation and SOEs to policies on the National Health Insurance (NHI), the national minimum wage and the Reserve Bank," Maimane said. "If the buck does stop at your desk, Mr President, then it is you who will need to make those choices."
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Maimane said sectors like manufacturing need to be revived through tax incentives.
"Let us streamline red tape for business owners, and let us revive sectors like manufacturing through tax incentives. Let us deal decisively with our SOEs.
"Regardless of how it gets resolved, our economy is suffering and we cannot sit idly by," he added.
WATCH: Leader @MmusiMaimane clearly articulates what we need to do as a country for our economy to grow & create jobs for SAns:— Democratic Alliance (@Our_DA) July 17, 2019
Let’s pass the Jobs Act;
Eradicate red tape for Small business;
Let's deal decisively with our SOEs, & split #Eskom into two. #BudgetVote2019 pic.twitter.com/HuDsi5fM46
"B-BBEE has not delivered economic inclusion. It is a fig leaf for redress & it does nothing for 99% of South Africa’s excluded citizens.— Democratic Alliance (@Our_DA) July 17, 2019
Scrap B-BBEE, Mr President, & replace it with a plan that offers real broad-based inclusion in our economy." - @MmusiMaimane#BudgetVote2019 pic.twitter.com/9CgTlHeAxE
Maimane called on Ramaphosa to confirm that he will testify before the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture, which has this week been hearing testimony from Zuma.
“So, Mr President, you sat at number two to number one (Zuma) and you were silent then. Will you be silent now or will you take action and guarantee this house tomorrow, when you come to respond, that you will go to the commission and set the record straight for all South Africans?”
"If you were the man in the arena, Mr President, then the revelations at the #ZondoCommision would have spurred you into action. But yet we see nothing from you.— Democratic Alliance (@Our_DA) July 17, 2019
We need a president who acts, not one who sits idly by." - @MmusiMaimane #BudgetVote2019 pic.twitter.com/Rjj66jupnP
Malema fires ahead
EFF leader Julius Malema said since Ramaphosa rose to power, the country has been heading in different directions politically and there was no evidence there would be improvement in the near future.
"Under Ramaphosa, things are falling apart and South Africa is being auctioned off to a very dangerous minority.
"Mr President, since you rose to power, the country’s political direction is heading into different destinations and the evidence is seen in key states that are not showing any improvement at all, and there is no evidence, whatsoever, that they will improve in the near future," said Malema.
He added that the crisis at Eskom was getting worse, despite a board and management chosen by Ramaphosa to stabilise the institution. This, Malema said, "creates the greatest economic uncertainly", because energy is central to modern industrial development.
[In Case You Missed It]: CIC @Julius_S_Malema responding to President Ramaphosa's Budget Vote— Economic Freedom Fighters (@EFFSouthAfrica) July 17, 2019
He told Mr Ramaphosa that since his rise to power, the country’s political direction is heading into different destinations. #CIConBugdetVote pic.twitter.com/eTwS8aEjxI
Malema said his party found it difficult to support the budget, adding that Ramaphosa was sidelining talented young people.
"These tendencies that are coming from your side, in defiance of Chapter 9 institutions, in protecting corrupt individuals, in isolating young people with talent, it means you are canvassing the same grounds that Zuma canvassed before.
"We did not fight Zuma because he was ugly, we fought with Zuma because, firstly, he outsourced his powers in the ANC to a family and, secondly, he undermined institutions of the state. You are doing the same," he said.
#CIConBudgetVote Malema: ...these tendencies that are coming from your side; defiance of a Chapter 9 Institution, protection of corrupt individuals, isolating young people with talent, it means you are canvassing the same grounds that Zuma canvassed before.— Economic Freedom Fighters (@EFFSouthAfrica) July 17, 2019