Christi Nortier | Daily Maverick | 19 February 2020|
Civil society organisations have been making submissions to the Zondo Commission for the past year. The Civil Society Working Group publicly launched a joint statement that was presented to the commission this week. It summarises their recommended strategies to ensure that State Capture does not continue. They hope their evidence-based suggestions will bolster the findings of the commission and provide an ‘Agenda for Action’.
The Civil Society Working Group’s joint statement is based on the premise that the fight against State Capture and corruption is intricately intertwined with the fight against inequality and poverty.
They hope this document, a summary of 15 recommendation documents put together by the group’s members, will bolster the commission’s findings by providing an evidence-based, concrete roadmap for how to reform the public and private sector systems which allowed for state capture to take place.
The group was established in November 2018 and Open Secrets is the secretariat and convener of the group. The Open Society Foundation funded the working group’s meetings, the publication of the report and the advocacy work around the people’s hearing.
Members, who have consulted with one another and the public while compiling their submissions over several months, include Black Sash, Equal Education, Treatment Action Campaign, Right to Know Campaign, Ahmed Kathrada Foundation and the Platform to Protect Whistle-blowers in Africa.
“The reality is that South Africa’s struggle for social justice and human rights will not be realised if those who loot with impunity, in the public and private sector, remain unaccountable,” said Zen Mathe, a researcher for Open Secrets.
“That is why this group of civil society organisations got together around the Zondo Commission and that is why we found the effort and the strength and encouragement to continue this work throughout last year to make evidence-based submissions into State Capture.”