Three big issues the cabinet lekgotla plans to address

08 October 2020 - 13:53
Minister in the presidency Jackson Mthembu.
Minister in the presidency Jackson Mthembu.
Image: Freddy Mavunda/Business Day

Economic recovery, employment and dealing with crime and corruption. These are some of the issues that the government plans to seek solutions for during the cabinet’s two-day lekgotla.

This is according to minister in the presidency Jackson Mthembu, who said the focus of the lekgotla was on economic reconstruction and recovery after the devastation caused by Covid-19.  

The virtual cabinet lekgotla kicked off on Wednesday afternoon and continues until Thursday.

Economic recovery plan

Speaking at a media briefing, Mthembu said the Covid-19 pandemic had had a devastating effect on the country and the government had to make things right with a recovery plan.

“This lekgotla will focus on economic recovery. As we all know that Covid-19 has had serious devastation on our lives, the economy, employment, and businesses.

“So, therefore, as government, we must come up with a reconstruction and recovery plan,” said Mthembu.

Employment

He said some of the “pillars” that will inform the recovery will be presented at the lekgotla.

These will include enhancing public and private infrastructure, ensuring mass employment takes place after millions of job losses, and how government can localise the reconstruction and recovery of the economy.

The latest stats revealed that the unemployment rate decreased from 30.1% in the first quarter of 2020 to 23.3% in the second quarter.

The national statistical service said this was due to the number of people who were actively looking for jobs during the lockdown.

“To fall into the category of unemployed, people must be actively looking for work, which wasn't possible during the lockdown. These people, therefore, fall into the 'not economically active' category. The expanded unemployment rate increased to 42%,” said Stats SA.

Crime and corruption

Mthembu said one of the priorities SA has to deal with, apart from economic growth, is crime and corruption.

“We have seen crime and corruption rear their ugly heads, so this government lekgotla will also look into how we look into crime and corruption,” he said.

“We need to look at how we do justice to the public purse. What do you do in the wake of what has happened to boost expenditures of the public purse and public finance?”

Over the past weeks, the Hawks have been clamping down on high-profile businessmen and politicians.

TimesLIVE reported that seven suspects, including former Mangaung mayor Sarah ‘Olly’ Mlamleli and businessman Edwin Sodi, appeared in the Free State High Court last week after being accused of corruption and money laundering linked to a multimillion-rand tender deal.

Delivering the closing address after the ANC's national executive committee (NEC) lekgotla on Monday, President Cyril Ramaphosa condoned the arrest of several senior party members and government figures on fraud and corruption charges.

He said no stone must be left unturned in dealing with crime and corruption.

TimesLIVE


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