Govt, TAC to work together?

The audio is in isiZulu. See the English summary below.

MABUTHO: Kuleminyaka eyisishagalolunye ikhona inhlangano iTreatment Action Campaign (TAC) ubudlelwano phakathi kwayo kanye nohulumeni oholwa iAfrican National Congress (ANC) buthande ukungabi buhle. Lokhu kungezwani phakathi kwalezinhlangothi kwaqala ukugqama kakhulu ngesikhathi lenhlangano ifaka ingcindezi kuhulumeni ukuthi anikezele ngama anti-retroviral drugs kuwona wonke umuntu wakuleli ophila negciwane le HIV owadingayo ngo September wangonyaka ka 2000.  Emva kwalokho kube sekuba khona izigameko ezahlukene kubalwa ukuyisana ezinkantolo kanye nokukhombana ngeminwe phakathi kwalenhlangano kanye nongqongqoshe wezempilo kuzwelonke, uDr Manto Tshabalala-Msimang. Kodwa muva nje kubukeka sengathi lokhu kungaboni ngaso linye kungase kuphele. Lokhu kulandela inkulumo kalowo ongusihlalo omusha wekomoti elibhekele ezempilo kanye nezemfundo ngaphansi kobuholi obusha beqembu elibusayo, uDr Zweli Mkhize abeyibhekise kwizithunywa ezingu 550 zalenhlangano ebezihambele umhlangano wayo wokukhetha ubuholi bayo obusha. UDr Mkhize utshele amalunga izithunywa zalenhlangano ukuthi kumele kube khona ukusebenzisana, kuphele nokukhombana ngeminwe.

Dr ZWELI MKHIZE: We could avoid ‘€¦fighting and criticizing each other at close and personal level. Our committee role is to ensure that we do not have those kinds of rough encounters. ‘€¦. I get very envious to see a lot of energy that gets spent when we’€™re fighting among each other, instead of fighting against the common problem. I believe that if we were to work together we will be much closer towards defeating the common problem than when we are much scattered.

MABUTHO: Nosekelamongameli wezwe uPhumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka uhambe emazwini ka Dr Mkhize. UMlambo-Ngcuka utshele izithunywa ze TAC ebezihambele lomhlangano walenhlangano ukuthi kumele kube khona ukuxoxisana phakathi kukahulumeni kanye nalenhlangano ngaphambi kokuba kuyiswane ezinkantolo.

PHUMZILE MLAMBO-NGCUKA: I do want to encourage you not to threaten the government. You must be robust with us. You must criticize us, but let’€™s talk first. It’€™s better to talk around the table than to meet in court. Let’€™s start talking. ..Let’€™s stop that unorthodox approach of solving problems.

MABUTHO: Ongusihlalo omusha walenhlangano uNonkosi Khumalo utshele umthombo wezindaba iHealth-e, kwingxoxo ekhethekile, ukuthi inhlangano yakhe izimisele ukusebenzisana nohulumeni weqembu elibusayo ikakhulukazi njengoba selinobuholi obusha.

NONKOSI KHUMALO: Siyathemba ke manje ukuthi njengoba sekunabaphathi abasha kwiqembu le ANC, nababonisa ukuzimisela ukusebenzisana no TAC ekuguquleni indlela iHIV ephethwe ngayo eMzansi Africa, ‘€¦ukuthi izindlela zokusebenza zizo improva. Nathi asifuni ukulwa no hulumeni wethu we ANC kodwa sisaqinisekisa namanje ukuthi uma sibona ukuthi izinto azihambi ngendlela sizoqhubeka siziveze ukuthi azihambi ngendlela. Uma sibona ukuthi asilaleleki sisazoqhubeka futhi senze amatoyitoyi wethu sisebenzise izinkantolo ukwenza ukuthi abantu abaphila ne HIV kanye nabantu besifazane bakwazi ukuthi babhekeleke ezinhlelweni zikahulumeni.

MABUTHO: Nokho okaKhumalo ukhathazekile ngobudlelwano obungebuhle inhlangano yakhe enabo kanye nongqongqoshe wezempilo kuzwelonke, uDr Manto Tshabalala-Msimang. Ukungezwani kuka Tshabalala-Msimang kanye nalenhlangano kuye kwagqama kakhulu ngesikhathi engafiki emhlanganweni walenhlangano naphezu kwesimemo abesitholile.

NONKOSI KHUMALO: Siphatheke kabi kakhulu ukuthi sizwe through abantu bezindaba ukuthi umphathi wezempilo angeke akwazi ukuzo addressa icongress yethu. And ngokwethu kube ithuba elimoshekile elingabe lisebenzisekile ukuthi sikwazi ukuvala ama gaps avulekile over the years ekuphathweni nasekuqinisekeni ukuthi izinhlelo zikahulumeni ziya implementwa. Sizoqhubeka simu engage uMinister ngoba iDepartment yakhe kumele iimplemente at the end of the day. Enye into ekhona ukuthi there is a new ANC NEC which has some powers over what’€™s happening in the functioning of the ANC members who are deployed into government. Sizoyisebenzisa naleyo opportunity ukwenza sure ukuthi siyakwazi ukuvala igebe eselivulekile phakathi kwethu kanye nomnyango wezempilo.

See the English summary below.

Govt, TAC to work together?

Statements made by ANC politicians at the recent national congress of the Treatment Action Campaign (TAC) suggest a move towards better relations between the government and the activist group. The relationship between the two has been at an all-time low over the last few years amid confrontation and mudslinging over the anti-retroviral treatment roll-out plan.

Dr Zweli Mkhize, the new chairperson of the African National Congress subcommittee on education and health, urged  both the TAC and the ANC-led government to stop fighting each other and focus on a ‘€œcommon problem’€.  Mkhize was speaking recently at a three-day TAC congress in Johannesburg.

‘€œWe could avoid ‘€¦fighting and criticizing each other at close and personal level. Our committee role is to ensure that we do not have those kinds of rough encounters… I get very envious to see a lot of energy that gets spent when we’€™re fighting among each other, instead of fighting against the common problem. I believe that if we were to work together we will be much closer towards defeating the common problem than when we are much scattered,’€ said the soft spoken Dr Mkhize.

Next in line to appeal for a smooth working relationship between the two was the country’€™s Deputy President, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka.

‘€œI do want to encourage you not to threaten the government. You must be robust with us. You must criticize us, but let’€™s talk first. It’€™s better to talk around the table than to meet in court. Let’€™s start talking… Let’€™s stop that unorthodox approach of solving problems,’€ Mlambo-Ngcuka said.

The new TAC chairperson, Nonkosi Khumalo, told Health-e that her organisation is ready to work with the new leadership of the ruling party.

‘€œWe hope that with the ANC NEC the relationship with the TAC will improve. We do not want to fight our government, but we will continue to raise our voices when we see something wrong. If we are not taken seriously, we will continue with our pickets and court actions to ensure that the issues pertaining to women and HIV-positive people are taken seriously by the government,’€ said the outspoken Khumalo.

Khumalo is, however, concerned about the poor relationship her organization seems to still have with the Health Minister, Dr Manto Tshabalala-Msimang. The Health Minister was invited to address the TAC congress, but failed to pitch up.

‘€œWe are saddened by the failure of the Minister of Health to address our congress, despite sending her an invitation. We feel it was a good opportunity for both the TAC and the Minister to put the past behind. But, nevertheless, we will continue to engage the Minister of Health because the Department is the one that implements policies at the end of the day. But another option is to work with the new ANC NEC, which has some powers over what is happening in the functioning of the ANC members who are deployed into government’€, said Khumalo.

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