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Accountability Now Winter Newsletter 2021

RIP Gavin Michael Williams 1964 – 2021

Shortly after 4 a.m. on 28 July 2021 Gavin Williams suffered a fatal hear attack in hospital due to complications of Covid19 infection. He leaves a grieving wife and two adult children. His colleagues at Global ASP will miss his leadership, energy and dedication.

Gavin was a founding trustee of Accountability Now and in fact signed the Deeds of Donation for the trusts that were formed for the purpose of creating an NGO dedicated to exacting accountability and promoting responsiveness in Southern Africa from all those in positions of authority or power. That was in 2009, the work of Accountability Now continues.

Gavin was a good friend of Accountability Now and one of its major benefactors. Part of the sponsorship of our project to promote the establishment of a Chapter Nine Integrity Commission to deal with serious corruption was landed due to an introduction that Gavin arranged. His interest in the work of Accountability Now did not wane after he resigned as a trustee due to pressure of work in his businesses. He was a larger than life character with a good heart and an admirable moral compass. Because he was so big, fit and strong it is hard to believe that an invisible virus has laid him low. He will be missed at Accountability Now and cannot be forgotten as his signature is all over our founding documents, his influence has helped us prosper, and his determination to make the world a better place than he found it will serve as a example to those who follow. Rest in peace Gavin. Our condolences to your family and colleagues at work, your friends and fellow cyclists.

Hijackers on Board

On a far happier note, congratulations go to Cynthia Stimpel on the publication of her expose of corruption in high places at SAA. Pauli Van Wyk of DM hosted Cynthia to a webinar dedicated to discussing the book during which Cynthia acquitted herself very well despite connectivity issues. Well done Cynthia, we are all very chuffed with your efforts both in writing the book and also during the webinar.

Countering the Corrupt

A reminder that a free electronic copy of the 2021 book on the work of the KAS Rule of Law Project and Accountability Now, written by Paul Hoffman, “Countering the Corrupt”, is available for download from our website (here). We hope to turn it into an audio-book later this year.

Masiphumelele

The wretchedness that is living in a temporary dwelling 6×4 meters in extent during a wet and cold Cape winter continues to spur our efforts to get the authorities to behave accountably and responsibly in swiftly upgrading living conditions in the Masiphumelele informal settlement in the Noordhoek Valley that has suffered from predictable successive fires in summer and flooding in winter due to the lie of the land and the overcrowded conditions in which the people are expected to live.

A Chapter Nine Integrity Commission

The Democratic Alliance has announced its intention to sponsor private members bills aimed at upgrading the capacity of the state to investigate serious corruption. Accountability Now prefers a best practice solution that involves also giving prosecutorial powers to the new body. We are preparing draft legislation establishing and enabling a new Chapter Nine Integrity Commission to deal with serious corruption in SA by  preventing, combating, investigating and prosecuting serious corruption. Our drafts will be presented to the Constitutional Review Committee of the National Assembly for its consideration. A publicity campaign in respect of the need for reform of the limping anti-corruption machinery of state that is currently in existence is in the works and should cross the media radar soon. Many thanks to KAS for its help on this work

The loot of state capture

The evidence given before the Zondo Commission and the reports of Shadow World Investigations suggest that there is a great deal of loot available for recovery if only the political will to act against the corrupt can be mustered. We are working on innovative ways of achieving the magic that gets the looters, the money launderers and the kleptocrats to “pay back the money.”

The rioting and looting sparked by the incarceration of Jacob Zuma

Accountability Now has commented cautiously on this thorny topic here https://accountabilitynow.org.za/new-anti-corruption-body-needed-accountability-flies-out-the-window-as-anc-faction-fighting-spills-on-to-the-streets/.

Know Your Rights Claim Your Rights handbook

We remain ever hopeful that the hard copies of this useful publication will find their way into schools that do not have electronic means of studying the handbook to the Constitution. It is available for free download from our website.

Current Affairs

Readers are reminded that all of our commentary on current affairs via various forms of media is collected on the home page of our website. Business Day has been particularly kind of late with no fewer than nine    letters to the editor and one opinion piece published in the last three months.

Fundraising

If you have read this far you are clearly interested in the work of Accountability Now. The more financial support we have the more we can do. There is much to be done on the accountability front in SA at present.

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