SA 2025 - Planning our Future
The Helen Suzman Foundation hosted a lively panel discussion at the Rosebank Hotel, 14 October 2009. The discussion covered two new Green Papers: National Strategic Planning and Improving Government Performance, submitted by Trevor Manuel and Collins Chabane respectively.
This Quarterly Roundtable Series discussion was made possible through generous funding by the Open Society Foundation For South Africa.
The Helen Suzman Foundation hosted a lively panel discussion at the Rosebank Hotel on the 14 October 2009. Former HSF director Raenette Taljaard chaired the discussion and the panel made up of Neren Rau (CEO Sacci), Aubrey Matshiqi (independent analyst), Azar Jammine (Econometrix) and William Gumede (independent analyst) provided thought provoking and substantive comment. The discussion covered two new Green Papers: National Strategic Planning and Improving Government Performance, submitted by Trevor Manuel and Collins Chabane respectively.
Raenette provided the context to the discussion by saying that the Planning Commissions of India, Brazil and Botswana all have a bearing on the national project that Manuel is leading. She said however that there are institutional, constitutional and political questions that need to be urgently addressed during the policy process.
Neren Rau started off the panel discussion. He mentioned that
theoretically the papers were setting South Africa on the right path
but that delivery in the short-term needed to receive more notice to
ensure that the Zuma administration could be held accountable for
delivery. Mr Rau echoed Raenette’s opening comments
(institutional concerns) by saying that the articulation of the role of
Minister Manuel vis a vis the Deputy President was conspicuously
absent. He was also concerned that although the unions had been
mentioned in the paper, the role of business was not satisfactorily
acknowledged. Rau closed on a philosophical note saying that civil
society should take on an increased role and government a decreased
role in a democracy. He noted that these sentiments were not reflected
in the paper on National Strategic Planning.
Azar Jammine expressed his frustration at the constant discussions
about how to solve problems of service delivery and the Green Paper’s
lack of focus on the urgency of decision making on all matters
concerning the governing of the state and the lack of human resources
available to make the important decisions. Building resources Jammine
said, is a very long term project. He also questioned the overriding
emphasis by government on growth when there is an almost exact
correlation of the South African growth rate with the growth rate of
the rest of the world.
Alliance ‘will stifle growth’ by Zukile Majova (Sowetan)
Zuma reforms not possible in five years by Wilson Johwa (Business Day)
Manuel out to ‘accrue too much power’ by Karima Brown (Business Day)