Cape Town - We conclude our review of how the provincial executive committee fared in 2021 looking at the vital Social Development, Agriculture, Education and Finance MECs.
In the first review of the past year, we looked Premier Alan Winde, Human Settlements MEC Tertuis Simmers and Health MEC Nomafrench Mbombo, (A look at how Premier Alan Winde and his cabinet members fared in 2021 – Part 1).
In the second review of how the provincial cabinet fared we looked at Transport and Public Works MEC Daylin Mitchell, Local Government, Environmental Affairs and Development Planning MEC Anton Bredell, Community Safety MEC Albert Fritz and Cultural Affairs and Sport MEC Anroux Marais, (A look at how Premier Alan Winde’s cabinet members fared in 2021 – Part 2).
In our conclusion of how the cabinet fared, we look at Social Development MEC Sharna Fernandez, Agriculture MEC Ivan Meyer, Education MEC Debbie Schäfer, Finance and Economic Opportunities MEC David Maynier.
Social Development MEC Sharna Fernandez:
In a province that has such a high incidence of GBV, it seems odd that in a bid to enable social workers in the department to deal with the scourge, only 50 social workers attended a trauma debriefing learning programme rolled out by the department.
It also didn’t sit well that of the 1 657 children placed in foster care during 2021, only 8% were reunited with their families between January and August.
More effort is needed in these areas.
On the plus side, however, when early on in the year Sassa suspended Temporary Disability Grant TDG and Care Dependency Grants she did fight very hard to get them reinstated and held a number of meetings with Sassa to address the challenges.
Agriculture MEC Dr Ivan Meyer:
Meyer refuses to apply the Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (BBBEE) code measures.
He disagrees with the concept that BBBEE is there to address the inequalities of apartheid by attempting to compensate for land that was repossessed and to ensure that the economy is structured to enable the meaningful participation of the majority of its citizens.
He says the issue shouldn’t be seen through the prism of race. Therein lies the problem with regards to the transformation of agriculture.
Education MEC Debbie Schäfer:
Everyone has a view about education and they all think they are right and that those in charge are clueless. Of the things she could be accused of, being clueless about education is not a charge that could easily be levelled against Schäfer.
After all she’s been at the department’s helm since May 2014 under two different premiers. That said, after eight years surely the time has come to slay the perennial dragon of thousands of learners missing out on places every single year.
Finance and Economic Opportunities MEC David Maynier:
In his November 2020 “budget to bounce back,” Maynier said that job creation was the Western Cape government’s top priority.
In April 2021 he announced that 1 166 full-time jobs were created in the BPO sector through his department’s work and skills programme with 69% of the 1 700 youth who took part in the programme being offered full-time contracts with BPO companies.
But between then and the MTBPS in November 2021 there was little, if any, talk about employment opportunities created.
Read more below:
- A look at how Premier Alan Winde and his cabinet members fared in 2021 – Part 1
- A look at how Premier Alan Winde’s cabinet members fared in 2021 – Part 2
- ANC and DA exchange brickbats in reviews of each other’s 2021 performance
- How the ANC fared as opposition in the Western Cape legislature during 2021 - Part 1
- How the ANC fared as opposition in the Western Cape legislature during 2021 - Part 2
- Review of Premier Alan Winde’s performance off the mark, says spokesperson