A REVISED GOVERNANCE FRAMEWORK

South Africa needs a fresh political and moral framework to solve its current moral crisis and to restore trust levels among all stakeholders in society.

NNM PROPOSES THE FOLLOWING CHANGES TO OUR GOVERNANCE SYSTEM:

A system in which the authentic voice of the people can be heard at the highest levels of decision making. 

This will be made possible through the following mechanisms:

  • ELECTION OF LEADERS CONSIDERED TO BE ETHICAL, TRUSTWORTHY AND INCORRUPTIBLE BY THEIR COMMUNITIES. 
  • This necessitates a system that allows voters to elect their leaders directly, instead of relying on political parties to impose leaders on them. 
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  • A NATIONALLY ADOPTED BILL OF VALUES,  that underpin all governance to ensure accountability, ethical conduct, and effective service delivery. 
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  • A PEOPLE’S ASSEMBLY, where the people can discuss and express their views, which get taken up to parliament and other legislative bodies.   This system operates through LOCAL PEOPLE’S ASSEMBLIES AND COUNCILS (PAs & PCs).

The proposed governance model is explained in detail below.

THE NNM GOVERNANCE PROPOSAL

There-in lies the reason NNM advocates this system. In that it is the only way to inculcate a culture of incorruptible, accountable, people-centred, and service-oriented governance in our government.  The above is, therefore the fundamental premise of the governance system recommended by the Movement, whose major pillars are the following:

  • Change the electoral system from proportional representation to a constituency based system.

This means changing to a system that allows for Independent Parliamentarians to be elected by the people directly (constituency based), instead of the current system in which Parliamentarians are appointed by political parties only (proportional). The constituency-based system would enable citizens to exercise their constitutionally guaranteed right to stand for public office independently at a national and provincial level. This is not possible under the current electoral system. (High Level Report 2017, P524).

Out of the 400 seats in parliament, the Reports recommend that 300 should go to Independent Representatives, and only 100 remain for proportional party representatives.

  • Change the governance system to one that allows the general populace to exercise their constitutional right to participate effectively in national decisions affecting their lives.

To make this possible, the Movement proposes a system of Peoples Assemblies and Councils, comprised of existing organizations, and where necessary, new Assemblies to be formed in communities all over South Africa. This is how the people get organized to make input to national issues.

  • Revise the Constitution in order to ensure re-alignment with Absolute Ethical Values. This will mean re-interpretation of our Constitution to allow for accommodation of guiding ethics. For this purpose, we propose the adoption of a nationally-accepted Bill of Values.
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  • Prioritise nation-building through interventions that prioritse equitable development and poverty alleviation, particularly of disadvantaged communities.

The people, through NNM will develop Policy Frameworks that are open and transparent and that will incorporate input from all South Africans, on the Economy, Finance, Education, Health Care, Social Services, Land, Banking, Arts and Entertainment, Media, Housing, Food Security, Water, Sanitation, Safety and Security, Prisoner rehabilitation., which will lead to regeneration of broken Families, broken Communities, the People and ultimately, the Nation.

  • Recognise the Constitutional rights of all diversities of people groups in South Africa, including full recognition of the first nation and all indigenous royal kingdoms and non-partisan communities in their diversities.

WHY THE NEED FOR THESE FAR REACHING CHANGES

The reasons why South Africa needs these changes are spelt out very clearly in both Reports, which outline the major weaknesses in our governance system, that must be remedied. We here provide a brief outline thereof. The following is quoted from the Motlanthe High Level Report of 2017, P 524.

  • “One of the major challenges with the current electoral system is the weakness in holding politicians to account to the electorate.
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  • Members of Parliament are NOT directly appointed by voters, but rather by their party, based on candidate lists submitted to the Electoral Commission ahead of the elections.
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  • This makes them beholden to the party and its leadership rather than voters and places party politics and loyalties ahead of effectiveness and delivery.
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  • By contrast, a constituency system will hold politicians more directly accountable to the voters and will better ensure that election promises are kept for fear of being voted out.
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  • Such a system will serve to limit the power of individual party leaders and encourage MPs to vote in accordance with the needs and desires of their constituencies rather than only following party lines.”
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  • The current system does not lend itself to participation by the electorate in the selection of This is an inherent weakness in all systems using closed candidate lists. The difference is, however, that the current system does not lend itself to ever evolving into having open lists where the electorate may rank candidates according to preference, since the lists simply contain too many names for that to be practical. The recommended 69-constituency option is, however, eminently suited to its candidate lists (three to seven names) becoming open lists that people can choose from.
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  • In addition, the proportional representation system distances Parliament from the people. Although constituency offices do exist, most people are unaware of their constituency representatives or of the existence of such offices. A constituency-based system would bridge this gap by ensuring that people directly elect the representatives they want in a multi-member constituency-based system.

The High Level Report recommends that the accountability of Parliament to the public should be strengthened, by more direct linkages between Members of Parliament and their constituencies. The feedback loop from communities to legislation depends in part on the electoral system in place.

It recommends further that Parliament should introduce legislation that provides for a system of public review of appointees to Cabinet, Provincial Executive Committees and Mayoral Committees. (Page 518)

THE RECOMMENDED CONSTITUENCY BASED SYSTEM IN BRIEF

In 2002 Parliament appointed an electoral task team (ETT) led by Dr Frederick Van Zyl Slabbert to draw up a NEW ELECTORAL ACT. The majority of this panel felt that electoral reform was necessary to ensure ‘multi-member constituencies together electing 300 members of the National Assembly and a compensatory closed national list providing 100 members (giving a total of 400 members)’.

In terms of this proposal, there would be 69 multi-member constituencies. The number of representatives to be elected in a constituency would vary, depending on the number of voters, from three to seven for a national election, and 300 of the 400 members of the National Assembly would be elected, initially, from closed constituency lists in this way. The remaining 100 representatives would be allocated from closed national lists in order to restore overall proportionality.

LEGITIMACY OF THIS MODEL OF GOVERNANCE:

This is a legitimate model that has already been recommended to Parliament by legitimate structures. 

The Governance System proposed herein is NOT A NEW CONCEPT, nor is it a creation of NNM.  Its a system that’s already been recommended to the Parliament of South Africa, in 2003 and again in 2017, by legitimate, Cabinet sanctioned structures. NNM is simply raising awareness and calling the nation’s attention to the existence of TWO REPORTS, both of which recommended this system.

Both of these Reports, were presented to Parliament, but were pushed aside and not implemented. We the people believe that the state of the nation currently makes it an urgent priority for the recommendations in these Reports to be implemented, to remedy current limitations in our governance system. The two Reports are;

  • The REPORT OF THE ELECTORAL TASK TEAM chaired by Dr Frederick Van Zyl Slabbert, in January 2003, which was later re-inforced by –
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  • The REPORT OF THE HIGH LEVEL PANEL ON THE ASSESSMENT OF KEY LEGISLATION AND THE ACCELERATION OF FUNDAMENTAL CHANGE, chaired by former President Mr Kgalema Motlanthe, in November 2017.

RECOMMENDATIONS FROM THESE REPORTS

The Montlanthe High Level Report of 2017 simply repeated the recommendations made in the Van Zyl Slabbert Report, that a constituency based electoral system be put in place to replace the current proportional representation electoral system. The reason for this, according to both Reports is that it is the best electoral model to ensure individual accountability of political Leaders.

 The, Report recommends that Parliament amend the Electoral Act to provide for an electoral system that makes members of Parliament accountable to defined constituencies in a proportional representation and constituency system for national elections, and that a process should be in place to appoint key officials in a transparent manner.  (Page 34).

The Report further recommends that the legislative process should be overhauled. Stating that there have been a series of judgments from the Constitutional Court about the need for effective public participation in the legislative process. The Panel was concerned about repeated failures to sufficiently engage those directly affected through inclusive public hearings, as evidenced by these judgments. (Page 34).

 

BUILDING A NEW NATION THROUGH INCLUSIVE ETHICAL PEOPLES GOVERNANCE

 We, the New Nation Movement of South Africa are establishing a peoples movement designed to reclaim the ideal of the nation that ‘the people shall govern’.

THE GOALS WE AIM TO ACHIEVE

  1. TRUE DEMOCRACY:  To restore the people’s democratic right to elect ethical, incorruptible Servant Leaders, directly, to ensure accountable, just governance of the nation’s resources. (as per the Van Zyl Slabbert Electoral Model).
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  3. PARTICIPATORY DEMOCRACY:  To restore the power to govern into the hands of the people. We claim back the people’s right to make input to decisions that affect the nation. 
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  5. ACCOUNTABLE LEADERSHIP:  To restore ethical leadership among all sectors of our society. This requires a Constitution aligned with absolute ethical Values, to ensure a bright, secure, future for our children. 
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  7. EQUITABLE NATION-BUILDING: To take control of our lives, by exploring  people-driven solutions for equitable development, wealth redistribution, and upliftment of those still in disadvantaged conditions.

 HOW WE PLAN TO IMPLEMENT THIS

  • Adoption of a nationally-accepted Bill of Values.
  • A values-based Constitution that will reflect absolute values, balanced by the God-given freedoms of choice for all the people: individual, family, cultural, and religious freedoms, these freedoms are aligned to the values contained in the Bill of Values.

Constitutional rights for all the people including full recognition of the first nation and all indigenous royal kingdoms and non-partisan communities in their diversity.

People-driven policy making:  An Annual National Peoples Indaba, collates all inputs and decisions arrived at through various discussions by the people, from Local Peoples Assemblies and Councils.

NNM proposes a system that organises communities in a manner that enables ordinary citizens to participate in the governance of both their communities and the country. The people’s voice will be heard up to the highest levels in Parliament.

This system will operate through existing societal structures and groupings of  the ordinary populace, referred to as People’s Assemblies, Local Peoples Assemblies and Councils that elect Leaders (as part of the movement).

Through these, all South Africans are able to make inputs to national policy. A culture of nation-building is thus firmly developed throughout the nation.

The Movement becomes a way for the people to jointly express their views, opinions and convictions about matters of social and national concern.

Polls will be conducted and data collected regarding how people (especially members of the Movement) feel about important matters. This will be put together and presented to Parliament and platforms of national influence, including government structures.

In this way, this civil movement, contributes to building a participative democracy and an inclusive government. Based on the shared values, the Movement will ensure that the people’s voice is heard in a peaceful, orderly manner.

Appropriate mechanisms will be implemented to ensure that those in authority act upon the views expressed by the people, through Representatives in legislative bodies, and other systems.

Government and Electoral Systems in which:

  • The non-partisan electoral system embraces fully the will of the people, through elections, firstly at community level, then district level, then regional (provincial level), then national level;

Parliamentariansare elected directly from within communities, as Independent Representatives of their constituencies.

The Executive President is elected directly by the people, through Peoples Councils,  out of the non-partisan Peoples Assemblies.

The peoples’ government is composed of People’s Assemblies and Councils, who elect Leaders who  are directly accountable to them.

  • Ethical Leadership is from all sectors of our communities, regardless of political lineage. The major criteria, amongst others, is approval by their communities. 
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  • Local Councillors: Implementation of non-partisan ward-based locally elected councils who are directly accountable to their communities, and which, together with the collective input from the people, are responsible for policy formulation, while decision-making processes are consensus-driven. Oversight over policy implementation is carried out by the Executive embedded within Peoples Councils;
    • The presidency is elected directly by the people;
    • The nation’s fundamental pillars of power and authority rest on land, self-governance, and sovereignty which are restored to the people;
    • The governmental structures provide for full accountability to the people, from national level to community level;
    • The governmental systems ensure inclusive provision of resources and services to all the people;
    • The justice system and the judiciary are independent, above reproach, and accountable to all the people. The rule of law is paramount and shall be taught and promoted at all levels in families, communities, businesses, and governmental departments.
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A values-based Selection Procedure for ministers to facilitate the election of ethical, competent, unifying, peace-making leadership from organised families and communities who directly provide socio-economic and social services.

A Judiciary in which South Africa upholds the three independent arms of government. All Institutions of government (Legislature, Executive and Judiciary) and the private sector are subject to constitutional accountability and responsiveness. Office bearers and administrators in both public and private sectors are accountable to the people, and operate and work within the law just like all citizens. In no case is anyone above the constitution, the law, and our national values.

As history shows that peaceful and law-abiding nations are realised through internalisation of values, morals, ethics, and principles, these shall be written in the mind and heart of the people first, through the education system, so that they can apply and live them on a daily basis. The rule of law is derived from divine, natural, indigenous, traditional, and customary (including Dutch-Roman and English) laws. The rule of law shall be encouraged, taught, and promoted in families, communities, businesses, and governments. No one shall be above the law.

Policy Frameworks on Economy, Agriculture, Education, Health Care, Social Service, Banking etc. that are inclusive and transparent, and that will incorporate input from all South Africans which will lead to:

  • A genuinely equitable economy which promotes a freed peoples economy, equitable and just land distribution, and equitable and just property rights;
  • A strong and incorruptible Treasury;
  • An economic system that introduces local resource-based economies;
  • An economic plan that maximises the economic potential of the nation and the individual in such a way that the national concept of ‘Ubuntu’ is achieved.
  • A taxation system will be revised in order to maximise the national income, increase available capital for development, and minimise costs to the citizen.
  • Social Regeneration
    • Regenerating Broken Families, Community, People and the Nation

This includes restoration of the concept of family, recognition of the value of a strong community, and our responsibility to assist the needy members of families, and communities within a caring developmental nation.

  • Health Care

Health Care is holistic, embracing all aspects (body, soul, and spirit) and all means of healing (spiritual, psychological, nutritional, herbal, therapeutic and medical). Health Care is not sick care but is prevention- and maintenance-orientated and rewards practitioners on wellness rather than rewarding procedures, treatments and interventions.

  • Education

Education that embraces impartation of knowledge, appropriate application of knowledge and training in good values and principles for shaping integrity of character and relevant knowledge and skills to ensure future quality of life.

  • Arts and Entertainment, Media

We recognise the unique identities of indigenous, traditional, and cultural groups, and the freedom of all our diverse people to make their own choices with regard to the expression of those identities, within the context of the moral values contained in the Bill of Values.

  • Housing, Food Security, Water, Sanitation

We recognise the universal right of the people to housing, food, clean water and adequate sanitation. Regeneration of the economy enables the implementation of these rights throughout the nation.

  • Safety and Security

The livelihood of the people shall come from their ability to work their own land, govern their own affairs, and build their own villages, communities and cities. Protection of communities shall be ensured by skilled people supported by the police and military where necessary. Safety and security systems generated through prayer and moral values driven through prayer networks from faith and traditional communities throughout the nation will be encouraged.

  • Prisoner and other rehabilitation

Recognising the problem of recidivism of prisoners, we make it of national importance and the responsibility of community leaders and the society at large to rehabilitate prisoners both during incarceration and afterwards – spiritually, psychologically, and physically, and reintroduce them productively into the community.