Posted inNews/Politics

Matching reforms to institutional realities

Social service delivery is weak across the developing world. While there is substantial heterogeneity across regions and countries, the picture of failing services is a familiar one. Challenges such as systematically high levels of absenteeism among teachers, doctors and nurses, persistent rates of drug stock outs — particularly in rural health clinics, rates of leakage […]

Posted inGeneralNews/Politics

The rainbow’s back

Mark August 14 2012 as a significant day in South African history because at a most remarkable meeting held in Botrivier on that day, the institutional process of Theewaterskloof (TWK) local government truly engaged, for the first time ever, with the Botrivier community process of democratic participation in the practical matters of local government. After […]

Posted inGeneral

An anatomy of the recent small town riots

When I posted “Is it time for a South African Spring?” on May 3, I never thought that three weeks later the people of my own little town of Botrivier would explode into a furious, day-long demonstration against the Theewaterskloof (TWK) local government. By 5am on May 28 picketers had closed-off the town and tyres […]

Posted inGeneralNews/Politics

Is hierarchical democracy an oxymoron?

I sometimes wonder if the constitutional notion of “participative democracy” is not just an impossible, idealistic dream. We are eighteen years down the road since our 1994 elections and the only hard evidence I have of my participation in our new democracy has been making my mark on a few ballot papers. The countless thousands […]