Transcript: Post Cabinet by Themba Maseko, Government Spokesperson

15 June 2010

Presenter: Themba Maseko, Government Spokesperson
Date: 15 June 2010
Venue: Room 153, Union Buildings


Journalist: Regarding the industrial action by the security stewards during the World Cup. Are you aware that there's industrial action in Johannesburg as well ahead of the match tonight and does that change your view at all that it is contained and that it won't be spreading?

Themba Maseko: Look, obviously those plans for Johannesburg must have been announced during the course of the meeting so I'm personally not aware of that one. But all the assurance were from the Minister of Police that our Police Service is ready and on standby and they will deal with any situation that arises in any part of the country. As you are aware an additional 44 000 policemen were actually made available just for the 2010 FIFA World Cup to make sure we can deal with any eventuality. So if there is a situation emerging for the Ellis Park Stadium, I can give the full assurance that the police will be on standby to take charge of the security there. So fans should not have any worries or anything to fear about security arrangements for the games.

Journalist: Was the Council of Education Ministers unanimous in their support for the constitutional change in order to work with adult basic education (ABET) and further education and training (FET) colleges?

Themba Maseko: Well, the report says that the meeting was unanimous on this decision and the documents that I looked at last night indicate that in fact there is a genuine consensus amongst the MECs that this is the best route to go. Remember it is a function that is so important but only one province was able to put together legislation to ensure that there is proper adult basic education and also FET colleges and that province was Gauteng. Most of the provinces have not actually got to the stage where they are able to coordinate this function and make sure they are properly implemented. So provinces are seeing this as a welcome relief; so based on the discussions in Cabinet, I will be surprised if there is any province that could actually come up against and raise a point against this decision.

Journalist: I think there was some mention at the last briefing that an announcement could be made on the Eskom and Transnet chief executives. Was that discussed at all or is it going to be discussed at the next meeting?

Themba Maseko: Donald thanks for being awake and remembering that. The matter was discussed and the recommendation coming from the Eskom board and the Minister have been considered and supported, but the Minister of Public Enterprises will make an announcement in that regard.

Journalist: I want to know with regard to the lifting of the ban of abalone - when does it commence and for how long will this be?

Themba Maseko: We just announced a policy decision here. The Department is planning a briefing to give more details about how this will be implemented but it is an open lifting of the ban. The only provision put in by Cabinet was that the Minister must report every six months to Cabinet how this fishing is proceeding, are the licence holders complying with the existing legislation and what impact is this having on the abalone itself in the oceans out there. So every six months Cabinet will receive a report and if there are any major problems, I'm sure Cabinet will not hesitate to reinstate the ban. The Department will give details on when the lifting of the ban will be effective.

Journalist: There have been reports today about some government departments spending R10 million on World Cup tickets. Did Cabinet say anything about that or how does it feel about that kind of money being spent on World Cup tickets?

Themba Maseko: Well, as we stated we've been sitting in the meeting the whole day so I haven't seen any reports. The position I stated last week still remains that government departments ordinarily should not have purchased tickets and let's be clear - we are talking about government departments as in state departments. However, we did make an exception that there will be one or two departments that could justifiably purchase these tickets and I gave Department of International Relations as one specific where there could be an exception. Department of Sports maybe could be given an exception. However when it comes to state entities like your Eskom and many others, those are agencies of Government that work in the private sector and they may have very good justifiable reasons why they need to acquire these tickets but Ministers in charge of those portfolios will indeed have discussions with those entities to understand why tickets were bought. If there's any further need for any action to be taken that action will be taken but at this particular point in time no buy tickets applies to government departments but agencies that may have very good reasons, especially agencies with their own governance board, would have taken decisions that would have been considered by their boards and they would have been justifiable reasons why they bought the tickets. It's something that's going to be reviewed by the relevant Ministers during the course and after the World Cup.

Journalist: I just wondered whether there was any discussion about the SABC board, if you could share with us what resolution there has been regarding the standoff between board members on the one hand and the chairman on the other.

Themba Maseko: That one was not discussed at this particular meeting and I would imagine that is largely because there is still interaction between the Minister and the board and the chair, so no report was tabled at this Cabinet meeting.

Journalist: Are you expecting a report at some point then?

Themba Maseko: I would imagine if the issue is not resolved the Minister may choose to report to Cabinet at some stage but at this particular point in time no report has been tabled as yet.

Themba Maseko (Government Spokesperson)
Cell: 083 645 0810

Issued by Government Communications (GCIS)