Johannesburg - Planning Minister Trevor Manuel said he will not be taking up a job outside South Africa following his decision to step back from active politics.
“I have nowhere to go, no one else wants me so South Africa is stuck with me,” he told a business breakfast in Bloemfontein, organised by the ANC’s Progressive Business Forum.
Manuel announced last week that he would not be available for nomination to the ANC’s national executive committee (NEC), sparking speculation about how long he will remain in his role in government.
Manuel said he would continue with his job as planning minister.
Manuel confirmed the announcement by president Jacob Zuma that school inspectors would be brought back into classrooms to hold teachers accountable.
He said the role of teachers have changed: “If you’ve been at the chalk board for 30 years, you’re probably not well-equipped to deal with the demands of teaching today. A teacher is no longer a dispenser of knowledge, but a guide.”
But he said older teachers should not be summarily kicked out.
“[If older teachers leave] we lose experience from classrooms and this is a worrying trend,” he said.
Manuel also took aim at corruption, saying South Africa “can’t be tolerant of even a little bit of corruption”.
When asked about the security upgrade at the home of president Jacob Zuma at Nkandla, he admitted “most south Africans are unhappy with what is happening at Nkandla”, but insisted no corruption had been found there.
He said the election of businessman Cyril Ramaphosa to deputy president of the ANC is a boon for the planning commission, of which Ramaphosa is the deputy chairperson.
Manuel said Ramaphosa devoted “an immense amount of time” to the commission.
“I hope that it continues,” he added.
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