ANC calls on government to alleviate impact of VAT increase

Karabo Ngoepe
PRETORIA – The African National Congress has called on government to soften the blow of the increase in Value-Added Tax on the poor following the announcement by finance minister Malusi Gigaba during his budget speech.
During the party’s National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting held in Tshwane over the weekend, it was agreed that government has to protect the poor by ensuring that zero-rated and tax exempted items don’t go up.
“It was the view of the NEC that government must consider a further range of measures to alleviate any negative consequences on the poor that may be occasioned by the VAT increase, including additions to the list of zero-rated and tax exempted items,” Secretary-General Ace Magashule said.
“The NEC committed to continue engagements with all social partners on this and other matters arising from the State of the Nation Address and the Budget.”
He said the NEC also took note of the BRICS Summit to be hosted by South Africa in July 2018 and directed government to conclude preparations in respect of the important gathering.
Magashule further added the NEC  confirmed the constitutional amendments and the resolutions of the 54th National Conference and they would now be publicly released.
The meeting also finalised the deployments of NEC members to Sub-Committees and Provinces.
“NEC resolved that the following comrades be deployed full-time at the ANC Headquarters, Chief Albert Luthuli House: Senzo Mchunu: Organising and Campaigns, Dakota Legoete: Organising and Campaigns, Pule Mabe: National Spokesperson, Zizi Kodwa: Presidency,” he said.
The above appointments will be doing some of the duties entrusted in the Secretary General’s office but Magashule indicated that he was not worried about those members encroaching on his powers within the organisation.
Rumours have been doing the rounds that President Cyril Ramaphosa wants to remove Magashule and replace him with Mchunu.
“The Secretary General’s powers are very clear in terms of the constitution. There is no way comrade Mchunu will go there to neutralise the powers of the SG,” he said.

Other Provincial deployments included party Deputy President David Mabuza as the chairperson of the deployment committee, Jessie Duarte as the coordinator.

Other names:
Barbara Creecy- drafting committee
Constitutional and Legal Affairs-Zweli Mkhize
Information and Publicity-Nkenke Kekana
Education, Health, Science & Technology-Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma
Economic Transformation: Enoch Godongwana
International Relations: Lindiwe Zulu
National Disciplinary Committee: Edna Molewa
Organising & Campaigns: Senzo Mchunu (Chair) Dakota Legoete (D. Chair)
National Elections Committee: Fikile Mbalula
Political Education: Nathi Mthethwa (Chair) David Masondo (D. Chair)
Peace & Stability: Tony Yengeni
Social Transformation: Lindiwe Sisulu
Archives Committee: Baleka Mbete
Policy Monitoring & Evaluation: Jeff Radebe
National Disciplinary Committee of Appeal: Nomvula Mokonyane
Cultural & Religious Affairs: Mathole Motshekga
Legislature & Governance: Phumulo Masualle
National Dispute Resolution Committee: Jessie Duarte
Gender & Equity: Thandi Modise
Political Committee: Baleka Mbete
Convenors to provinces:
Eastern Cape: Hlengiwe Mkhize
Free State: Siyabonga Cwele
Gauteng: Joe Maswanganyi
KwaZulu-Natal: Nocawe Mafu
Limpopo: Thoko Didiza
Mpumalanga: Gwen Ramakgopa
Northern Cape: Collen Maine
North West: Obed Bapela
Western Cape: Bheki Cele