Letters to the Editor
Don't ask us to vote for the very people who rob us, ANC
As South Africans prepare themselves for this election year, all eyes will be on the ANC. These national elections will indeed be the most difficult and challenging for the party following a decade of disappointing leadership under former president Jacob Zuma.
The party's extended national executive committee (NEC) sat last weekend to discuss a list of potential candidates to be deployed to provincial legislatures and parliament after the elections. The NEC resolved to undertake a vetting process of its nominated leaders, in part to check whether or not they have been corrupt.
But if NEC members are the ones conducting the vetting process, this action will seem unfair as those members will have vested interests because they will also be nominees.
Another challenge is having ANC leaders whose integrity has been questioned appearing on the nomination lists. Although those leaders have not been found guilty of corruption, in the public eye they have played a role in the corruption that has unfolded in recent years.
Although Zuma is highly unlikely to accept the nomination to parliament, his nomination sends a strong message that the ANC appears unwilling to change.
It will be very interesting to see if those implicated in corruption are nominated for parliamentary and legislature deployment. The ANC needs to remember that the people who will be going to the polls are not their ordinary branch members, but the millions of South Africans who want to see serious changes in the country so that a better life for all can be enjoyed.
If the party is not willing to change, it will be punished at the polls.
- Thabo Tswai, Ga-Rankuwa
CLIFTON: WE NEED MORE FACTS
The Clifton beach saga seems a molehill turned into a mountain, with the ANC tactically using the incident to gain advantage, but offering no convincing evidence of there being a racial motive for the warning by the security company of the area being unsafe after sunset.
"Cape Town beach dispute unearths the spectre of unrepentant apartheid", by the ANC's provincial secretary Faiez Jacobs, and Cape Town mayor Dan Plato's take on the matter, "Race-baiting and political opportunism at the heart of Clifton drama", (both published January 6) as well as the interview with the member of his mayoral committee for security, JP Smith, weaken the claim of racism by the ANC, who, by the way, falsely attempted to make white privilege the sacrificial lamb.
Surely PPA, the security company, needs to explain itself and provide a sworn statement by the two security guards involved, giving clarity on the matter?
- Ted O'Connor, Albertskroon
MEDICAL AIDS' PRIORITIES ARE OFF
I would like to air my views on medical aids and how we, the public and the medical fraternity, are being ripped off.
Of our total premiums, only 30% is paid to doctors. The rest is spent on hospitals - not the doctors who work there.
In 2012, medical schemes received 9.4% more in contributions from their members - a total of almost R117.5bn. Of this, R103.7bn (88%) was paid out in healthcare benefits. Of this, 36.7% was spent on hospital services, almost 90% to private hospitals. Payments to medical specialists amounted to 23.3% of the total, and GPs received 7.2%.
Total non-health-care expenditure came to R8.8bn. This included administration fees, fees paid for managed care, broker fees and insurance. A big part of the medical bill consists of treatment for lifestyle-related conditions such as hypertension and type-2 diabetes, with hypertension drugs topping the list. What other profession is dictated to by the insurance that the client chooses?
The medical fraternity spend a huge part of their adult lives getting the skills to offer life saving and health to people, and they would rather pay the insurers than the people who actually do the health service? There is never "overcharging" for health; only "under-reimbursement" by the insurers who overcharge for the premiums.
I recently had a repair to a meniscus tear in my left knee as well as drainage of a Baker's Cyst, and the Discovery consultant told me there would be a shortfall of R7,300 to be paid to Olivedale Hospital by us. Why? She tells me incorrectly that the medical doctors are overcharging. Get your facts straight people! We're tired of being ripped off. Methinks something is terribly wrong here!
- Arlene Chaperon, Sharonlea
WATCH WHAT"S HAPPENING IN SUDAN
I'm writing to you regarding the lack of appropriate coverage of the recent popular uprising in Sudan. Your silence towards the brutal attacks on peaceful protesters enables the Sudanese government to continue killing civilians with impunity.
Reports by activists confirmed that snipers and agents of the Sudanese security services along with the militia of the ruling National Congress Party have killed more than 30 protesters, including children.
Media platforms with big influence such as yours have a moral obligation to highlight human rights violations and pressure their governments to respond to the voices of the millions of oppressed people in Sudan who are looking for democracy, freedom and dignity.
As part of the Sudanese community in SA, I appeal to South African media platforms to highlight and to put some pressure on the South African government to support the Sudanese revolution.
- Mukhlid Yousif, Johannesburg