|Christopher David Shone 1962 -2021 RIP|
At 9:47 pm on 8 April 2021 our long standing director, Chris Shone, suffered a cardiac arrest from which he did not recover. Remarkably, his aged mother in Hermanus, who suffered a stroke of disabling proportions shortly after the death of Chris’s father in 2019 passed away in Hermanus a few hours before Chris died in Chris Barnard Memorial Hospital where he was treated after suffering a massive brain aneurysm a week before his death while riding his motorcycle.
Chris will be missed by all at Accountability Now. His brilliant intellect, no nonsense approach and wry sense of humour all contributed to the exacting of accountability. He will be remembered especially for earning a red bag as junior counsel in the Bread Cartel Matter which gave rise to the judicial adoption of a general class action in SA law. In the arms deal litigation around the BAe procurement contract he was junior counsel to John Whitehead SC and saw off dilatory tactics on the part of the Defendants. The matter is ongoing.
There is nobody now to say “moving on swiftly then” or “Have a nice life”(uttered with malice aforethought too) or even that emphatic “Next!”
Rest in Peace Chris. You are truly irreplaceable and will be greatly missed. Your good work for so many, will live on forever.
Rest In Peace Chris Shone. The world has been a better place for you, and you will be dearly missed. Publication of Countering the Corrupt
After a year in the making, Paul Hoffman’s new book was delivered on 8 April. Titled “Countering the Corrupt” it chronicles the conferencing activities arranged by the Konrad Adenauer Stiftung and Accountability Now designed to bring the topic closer to the front of the stove in the political and public discourse of all Africans. The book is electronically available on the Accountability Now website. Those readers who prefer a hard copy can acquire one for free (stocks are limited) by sending a stamped self-addressed A5 size envelope to Accountability Now at PO Box 33, Noordhoek, 7979. Efforts are underway to get a copy of the book into the hands of the members of the National Cabinet and the National Assembly. Countering The Corrupt Linking up with Citizens for Integrity which campaigns as “The A Team”
The need for good governance and the reform of the criminal justice administration in SA has brought Accountability Now together in a collaboration with the A Team, a new NPO which has a mandate that addresses moral regeneration as well as good governance and law reform. The originators of the A Team are Koogan Pillay ( formerly of NACS) Willie Hofmeyr, a former ANC MP and recently retired Deputy National Director of Public Prosecutions and Mark Hyman a former member of the ANC NEC sub-committee on Religious and Cultural Affairs. The A Team strolls comfortably through doors previous not open to Accountability Now. The appearance of a Bill of Responsibilities on our website and our participation in the recent SAHRC/OPP conference on corruption and human rights are the early fruits of the collaboration. We anticipate that good developments are possible as a consequence of our participation in the collaboration. The Arms Deal litigation The legal team is working hard to get the matter into court this year. The sense in cancelling the procurement of arms SA does not need, cannot afford and has no enemies on which to use most of the arms procured is likely to appeal more and more to government as the coffers of the state become increasing depleted by the ravages of the pandemic and the lockdown’s effect on the economy. Skillful litigation is a way to promote that sentiment in the right quarters. Know Your Rights Claim Your Rights
We continue to nurture the aspiration to put a hard copy of the handbook on the Constitution into the hands of every high school attendee in SA. The cost of doing so is roughly R 6,00 per copy – with distribution costs this totals some R 30 million. It is possible that government will take an interest in the project now that the new dawn seems to be breaking more visibly than has hitherto been the case, but, a commercial sponsor eager to have its name associated with the re-assertion of constitutionalism in SA is still the most likely source of the funding needed for this ambitious project.
We were delighted by the use of that last remain copies of our original handbook by attorney, Laurie Shone – daughter of Chris – at a Mama Flo workshop on Human Rights Day 2021. There are some photographs on our Facebook page that are well worth a look.
Visit Our Facebook Page The removal from office of the Public Protector.
We continue to take an interest in this topic. The parliamentary process, which could have started in January 2017 had the powers that be not chosen to shield the PP from accounting for her bizarre behaviour, has now taken shape with the majority of ANC MPs supporting the instigation of the inquiry which the Nkabinde Panel recommended in the light of the prima facie evidence it found. Had the PP been required, in January 2017, to answer the 13 questions we asked her then (visit “Public Protector Complaint” on our website) the process would have ended a long time back with far less damage to constitutionalism and the fiscus than has occurred. Expropriation without Compensation.
The proposed amendment of section 25 of the Constitution to allow expropriation without compensation is still heading in a direction which can only be interpreted as a dilution of the rule of law. The rule of law is regarded as supreme in section 1 of the Constitution. It can only be amended if a special majority of 75% of parliament supports the amendment desired. We made this known publicly as soon as the process started and continue to support all efforts to uphold the Constitution on this thorny issue. It is plain that 75% of parliament does not support the amendment sought by those who are in favour of introducing expropriation of property (not just land) into the constitutional dispensation of SA. A new Chapter Nine Integrity Commission.
Our efforts to reform the criminal justice administration have been given a shot in the arm (not a vaccination) from the collaboration with Citizens for Integrity. There is a growing consensus around the form of new institutional arrangements that are required. The sticking point at present is the security of tenure of office of the new corruption busters. We continue to insist that the best practice way forward is the establishment, as a matter of urgency, of a Chapter Nine Institution to investigate and prosecute grand corruption (as to be defined) by parliament. In this we are on the same page as the NEC of the ANC (unusually so) and have wide support within the corridors of power. There is still some resistance to proper independence for the new entity, but, with the help of the A Team, we discern that resistance to be crumbling. The official opposition has let it be known that it is working on a private members motion that will address the issues. Visit the website and keep up with us on social media.
We continue to comment on the issues of the day in a manner which we hope promotes responsiveness to the needs of ordinary people and exacts accountability from those in positions of power and authority. Our commentary is collected on the website and disseminated in cyberspace by the team at Sproute our digital marketers. Accountability Now Masiphumelele.
A meeting with the Mayor of Cape Town is in the offing for the purpose of finding a rights friendly and accountable plan for the future of Masi that does not involve the perpetuation of the ghetto features of this suburb of Cape Town. Let’s hope wise counsel prevails. Our column “the Inconvenient Truth about Masi” will inform our input to the meeting. Read it on the website.
Read More The team at Accountability Now trusts that Easter, Ramadan and Pesach has brought and will bring many blessings. Share Tweet Forward Know your Rights, Claim your Rights – is a great handbook providing a straightforward overview of the Constitution of South Africa, setting out the basic constitutional rights and responsibilities of all South Africans. Download Your Free Copy Accountability Now is committed to upholding South Africa’s constitutionalism through the inculcation of the values of accountability and responsiveness to the needs of the people of the region in its governments, parastatal organisations and civil society, including business and industry.
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