JOURNAL OF UWC FACULTY OF LAW | ISSN 2077-4907 | Short URL www.ldd.org.za

The slippery slope to state capture: Cadre deployment as an enabler of corruption and a contributor to blurred party–state lines, pp 440-462

Volume: Volume 25 - 2021

Article type: Refereed article

Author/s: Cornelis F Swanepoel

Drawing on both legal and political sources, this article scrutinises the policy of cadre deployment that the African National Congress (ANC), the ruling party in South Africa, has implemented, and continues to apply. The analysis begins by recalling and commenting on the only reported judgment in South African jurisprudence that dealt with the political influencing of municipalities’ exercise of their public power to make appointments, namely, Mlokoti v Amathole District Municipality & another 2009 (6) SA 354 (ECD). What the Mlokoti case has confirmed is that the legal foundation for the exercise of public power is found in the Constitution and its enabling legislation, and not in party political policy, such as the ongoing practice of cadre deployment. In an investigation of cadre deployment, the article then demonstrates that this ANC policy, particularly judging by its stated purpose, is incompatible with the constitutional State and, instead, enables the rise of the shadow State.

Unsurprisingly, therefore, political commentators increasingly observe that, apart from the revelations at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry, State capture in South Africa in fact commenced when the ANC assumed political power in pursuit of the National Democratic Revolution. It is argued that the pursuit of a National Democratic Revolution in South Africa is directly at odds with the vision and goals of the 1994 constitutional pact. Convening a bipartisan national convention on philosophical and other approaches to the fight against corruption may offer a solution. Here, a starting point would be to reconsider the country’s anti-corruption strategies to pay proper attention to the ethical causes of this scourge.

About the author/s

Cornelis F Swanepoel

Research Fellow, Public Law, University of the Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2751-3565

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