MEC snubs organised agriculture

The Eastern Cape MEC for Rural Development and Agrarian Reform, Zoleka Capa, continues her pattern of showing disdain for organised agricultural structures in this province.

On Tuesday she failed to arrive to deliver the opening address at the 2014 National Combined Discipline Agriculture Congress at Rhodes University in Grahamstown.

The congress, which ended yesterday, (subs: Thursday, 23 Jan) was held around the theme “Promoting Sustainable Agricultural Production Together” and aimed to bridge gaps between academia, the agricultural industry and government.

Agriculture is the backbone of the economy in the Eastern Cape and one would have thought that the presence of the MEC at this event would be crucial to bridging the gaps. It is imperative for the advancement of agriculture in this province that the provincial government is seen to be willing and able to associate with specialists in this field.

MEC Capa has repeatedly snubbed organised agricultural structures in the province, including the Legislature where she continues the evade questions around her involvement in the Ntinga OR Tambo Development Agency.

The MEC’s alleged conflict of interest and the continued failure of the ANC to act when she causes embarrassment gives the impression that she is untouchable because she is a member of the party’s National Executive Committee.

A laissez-faire attitude by the current political leadership towards organised agriculture is catastrophic for the Eastern Cape and the people living in the rural hinterland. We need to do all we can to promote investment and development in order to create jobs for all, not just the connected few.

The DA once again calls on the ANC to hold MEC Capa to account with regard to her failing portfolio regardless of whether she is a NEC member or not.