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Discussion on the SAAF and other southern African air forces.
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PostPosted: 20 Mar 2013, 16:35 
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boertjie wrote:
You guys has the perception that the opposition can contribute to actual governance, because that is mostly how it works in "normal" democracies. Not in SA though. Just look how much difference the opposition can really make by comparing their seats in government to that of the ruling party and then reality sets in.
Maynier has complained many times about the way he is dismissed or ignored in the standing committee for defense. They put him there to show they "believe" in cooperative governance but because they have such a huge majority, they can simply ignore his inputs. Same goes for the rest of Parliament, provincial parliaments and municipalities. This is a problem we've had even in the "old SA". Their is no adequate opposition in SA and therefore the ruling party, in fact, governs by themselves.

Was Maynier not part of the team who worked on the new defense review?

#-o Me thinks we're well of topic now, cable theft and security of military installations is out the door now :roll:


It dose not change the fact he only complians never mentions how to fix the problem just comes with problems. Bring me soultions not problems

How much imput did he give though.

My post above yours put the thing to rest. Silvermine base was never breached the game reserve was. Somthing mr Maynier faid to mention.


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PostPosted: 20 Mar 2013, 17:00 
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boertjie wrote:
You guys has the perception that the opposition can contribute to actual governance, because that is mostly how it works in "normal" democracies. Not in SA though. Just look how much difference the opposition can really make by comparing their seats in government to that of the ruling party and then reality sets in.
Maynier has complained many times about the way he is dismissed or ignored in the standing committee for defense. They put him there to show they "believe" in cooperative governance but because they have such a huge majority, they can simply ignore his inputs. Same goes for the rest of Parliament, provincial parliaments and municipalities. This is a problem we've had even in the "old SA". Their is no adequate opposition in SA and therefore the ruling party, in fact, governs by themselves.

Was Maynier not part of the team who worked on the new defense review?

#-o Me thinks we're well of topic now, cable theft and security of military installations is out the door now :roll:

Heh, it may be off-topic but I think it's been an interesting diversion.

I agree that opposition MPs in general have virtually no power within Parliamentary committees because of the complete control the ANC has in the National Assembly and National Council of Provinces, so it's understandable that their ability to directly change executive branch policy is limited. It's not Maynier's fault that he can raise the outrageous use of VIP jets again and again and be completely ignored and it's good that he continues to raise it anyway. So yes, I don't blame Maynier for the SANDF's problems, even though under our system of government he's technically partially responsible it. Responsibility without real power is nearly meaningless.

But the duty of oversight is not merely to make statements and vote in committee, it's to do whatever is in your small amount of power to fix broken policy and you get to build up your political capital and prove your ability to govern at the same time. That's why the DA publishes alternative budgets, proposes and promotes ideas like the Youth Wage Subsidy and when criticising a government policy attempts to provide an alternative solution that'll in their view work better. It's not easy and not always perfect, but it's better than making speeches. When Zille became DA leader she specifically set out to offer not just opposition but an alternative, a policy which led directly to the party's now-strong governing position in the Western Cape where it's able to prove itself.

As an example of where oversight could be approached from a different angle, take the never-ending controversy around the President's legal requirement to notify Parliament of troop deployments. As the law is so ambiguous, the DA and ANC have polar opposite views on the legality of these notifications and there's no hope of resolving it. The DA hasn't even chosen to take it to court, which says something about their belief in the strength of their case. A different and possibly better strategy might be for Maynier to introduce a Private Member's Bill that would, in clear and innocuous terms, make the President's reporting obligations (especially the deadline) explicit. Even in the likely event that the ANC votes the bill down the DA will win political capital for the ANC's irrationality and if the bill passes so much the better.

Similarly, what Maynier's colleagues have learnt is that by drawing up and alternative budget, policy or strategy you achieve so much more than just criticising because you create a point of comparison. People respond badly to just being told something is wrong, they find it far easier to look at two options and decide which one they thinks makes more sense.

Frankly, I don't bear any ill-will towards Maynier specifically, I just think he's in the wrong portfolio and unsuited to being a shadow minister. My views on this are informed by my desire to have better oversight of the SANDF, for the opposition to be able to grow its influence and for defence policy to be debated properly. With the trauma of the Arms Deal having been so extreme it's a bad thing that the debate about our Defence Force's future and its acquisitions is happening mostly out of the public eye between a very small number of people.

Maynier wasn't on the Defence Review Committee, nor have I heard him mention it except perhaps in passing.


Last edited by Darren on 21 Mar 2013, 11:03, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: 21 Mar 2013, 07:59 
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Joined: 25 Mar 2010, 23:01
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Darren wrote:
As I'm partially responsible for this thread going so far off-topic, let me clarify:

My frustration with Maynier is not because he criticizes the SANDF, rather it's that he plays to the crowd and condemns the popular stuff ...


That's rich, the ANC are masters at this: "All the countries failings are still blamed on apartheid."


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PostPosted: 20 May 2019, 15:09 
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I stumbled across this old thread and thought I'd update it. As I drive quite often on the Blue Route freeway, I can see a new fence being installed over the last few months around the perimeter of the Silvermine complex. This is good news at least. I guess it's better late than never.

I also heard the Hydrographic office is being upgraded too. Probably in relation to the acquisition of the new hydrographic survey ship for the SAN.


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