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Bapela gets the axe ahead of ANC's NGC

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Obed Bapela has been sacked in his capacity as ANC head of foreign policy. Jewish Report Online has also obtained a PDF document of over 200 pages which is the complete discussion document for the party’s national general council meeting to be held this month. We publish the complete document as a PDF - which could be a wonderful download and print-out for observant users who would enjoy looking through it over the religious long weekend.
by ANT KATZ | Oct 02, 2015

Two weeks ago the Sunday Independent broke the news of the pending big “shake-up” of the leadership of ANC portfolio committee heads. As predicted, the ANC's foreign affairs committee head, Obed Bapela, was removed from his party position, but he remains a deputy minister in the Presidency.

Bapela has crossed swords with the South African Jewish community twice over the past six weeks, especially his threats - aimed predominantly at young South African Jews (see links below story).

After being at the centre of these controversial and embarrassing events, both SA communal Jewry and the State of Israel can rest more comfortably ahead of the forthcoming ANC national general council meeting. (It must be mentioned that Bapela had immediately been repudiated by Minister of Home Affairs Malusi Gigaba.)


CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE ANC NGC DISCUSSION DOCUMENT

The Sunday Independent also speculated at “likely changes to the provinces ahead of the 2019 national and provincial elections, and possibly even to the powers of municipalities. Considering that such changes have been suggested before, this is likely to be correct,” according to Stephen Grootes, who has recently started writing on the Daily Maverick again.

LAST WEEK GROOTES wrote: “There are wholesale changes to the way the ANC is going to manage its policy commissions. Almost all their former chairpersons are out, including Obed Bapela who said in his former position as International Relations Commission chairperson that the ANC is looking at doing away with dual citizenship.

“The entire economic commission is being rejigged: there used to be one called simply 'Economic Transformation', and now it is being split up into one focusing on economic development, and another concentrating on the primary economy.

“A new structure will also be created that will use professional economists to develop proper capacity to understand and study the economy. No doubt, (Economic Development Minister) Ebrahim Patel and (Minister of Trade and Industry) Rob Davies will be hoping to control the appointments to that structure, as it could prove to be important in the longer run.”

In the NGC 2015 discussion document, the only references that Jewish Report could find relating to the Israel/Palestine issue, were:

  • The ANC continues to pledge solidarity with the people of Palestine, advocating for a two-state solution as a resolution to the continued ongoing conflict situation between Palestine and Israel.
  • The ANC has participated and will continue to participate in activities of the week-long programme on Israeli Apartheid Week in solidarity with the Palestinians.

On the positive side…

The foreign relations portfolio committee, however, takes upon itself assisting in the future promotion of business and tourism. This can only bode well for Israel/SA relations as the vast majority of tourism and business this country does in the Middle East is with Israel. Not only that, but South Africa enjoys a trade surplus with Israel.

The report says:

Another important element in the enhancement of our national interest abroad is the creation of a strong economic diplomacy strategy. Some among the important elements underpinning economic diplomacy are:

  • Market and brand South Africa globally;
  • Investment promotion;
  • Skills and technology transfer;
  • Promotion of joint ventures between South African and foreign companies; and
  • Tourism promotion.

The usual rhetoric is, of course, also ever-present - but to a lesser extent than one would have expected. The foreign relations section of the document is extensive. Among the expected Palestinian-leaning statements in the document are:

  • Our history and support for the Palestinian struggle for freedom is one that is also linked in our historical and shared struggles. Our own history of apartheid therefore demands that as South Africa we are required and morally obliged to support the Palestinian fight for freedom, equality and the right to self-determination.
  • As part of South Africa’s contribution to international diplomatic efforts towards the resolution of the Palestinian-Israeli conflict, President (Jacob) Zuma appointed Comrades Zola Skweyiya and former Minister Aziz Pahad as special envoys to the Middle East to convey his grave concern over the then escalating violence, the civilian displacement and the deterioration of the humanitarian situation in the Gaza Strip.
  • The special envoys have travelled to the region including Palestine, Israel, Egypt,
    Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Iran, Turkey and Saudi Arabia to convey the President’s message of concern.
  • (Palestinian Authority) President Mahmoud Abbas paid a historic state visit to South Africa. South Africa has pledged US$1million towards humanitarian assistance in Gaza.
  • After the bombardment and the killings of innocent Palestinians by the Israeli military, the ANC issued a statement of condemnation and joined solidarity marches and programmes for a free Palestine. The ANC commends all provinces, the Leagues and the Alliance for their participation on the campaign.

 


Related reads on SAJR Online

DUAL CITIZENS: BAPELA GETS BLOODY NOSE FROM ANC posted September 11

BOARD, FED JOINT STATEMENT TO BAPELA with many more links

BAPELA'S RANT IN CONFLICT WITH DEMOCRACY by Board Chair MARY KLUK

KATHRADA FOUNDATION SLAMS C-RABBI’S ‘THREATS’ OVER BAPELA by ANT KATZ

DUAL CITIZENSHIP: BAPELA RELUCTANT TO CALL IT QUITS

BOARD DENOUNCES BAPELA’S ‘UNDEMOCRATIC PROPOSALS’ by MARY KLUK

BATTLE BETWEEN ANC-16 AND THE BDS includes links to older stories






CLICK HERE TO DOWNLOAD THE ANC NGC DISCUSSION DOCUMENT

 

The Sunday Independent also speculated at “likely changes to the provinces ahead 

2 Comments

  1. 2 BDS WORKS 03 Oct
    Obed Bapela on Dual Citizenship, ‘Imperialism’ & why the ANC’s not naive... Obed Bapela, Deputy Minister in the SA Presidency tells Tim Modise that Israel is an apartheid state that oppresses the Palestinians. He says this is why South Africa discourages dual citizenship of the local Jewish community. Bapela says the ANC is opposed to the imperialist agenda of the US and its allies, and therefore pledges solidarity with progressive movements and countries of the world. He denies that China is an emerging colonial power and rejects the criticism that the ANC is naïve in its understanding of the global politics – Tim Modise
  2. 1 nat cheiman 07 Oct
    Beware of imperialists and colonialists. They are bad people but they make great luxury cars.

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