Deputy President, South Africa is a beacon in Africa for the protection of the rights of LGBTIQ+ community. You have quoted from the Bill of Rights, which is the backlog of the rights that we are talking about. But what you have not touched on is the recent judgement of the Constitutional Court that says whilst we respect the sovereignty of our neighbours, we must always strive to ensure that our relations with our neighbours are guided by relations with a just equal, peaceful, human rights orientated and contribute to the democratic order.
Now Deputy President, 34 countries in Africa has anti-gay legislation in their books. The irony is the majority of this legislation is actually colonial error legislation, it is not African, and it's the European legislation. That is the legislation, that's the irony. In places like Sudan, Somalia, Somali land,
Moratoria, Northern Nigerian, homosexuality is punishable by death. Uganda wants to make homosexuality punishable by death. In places like Kenya, there was recently an attempt to appeal anti-gay legislation. The Kenyan High Court turned it down and it's not only the gay community being targeted. Heterosexual allies like myself, I am an ally of the community, if I lived in Nigeria, I can go to jail for 10 years for assisting a homosexual friend.
So my question to you, surely as the man tasked with assisting the President in the running of this country, I am asking you here and now to take a principle stand and with pride. Take a stand and condemn the actions of African legislators across Africa involved in the Human Rights abuse. I ask you to do that, hon Deputy President. [Applause.]
It is not easy as the way you say it. My position and your position, more or less similar, and I have said we are called upon by our Constitution to respect the sovereignty of any state. And we must mind what we say about other people. There are agreed platform, multilateral platform like AU, SADC, all those are platforms where these matters can be discussed. But you can't put yourself to be morally above others. You can't put your belief to be the belief of the rest of the world. The way we believe in
things as South Africans, we must not impose our beliefs to anyone. But we will seek to negotiate. We will seek to persuade people to see things the way that we see them and we are going to use the platforms that are provided. So let us not be arrogant and think that we are the best out of this world. We are going to use these given platforms to raise our case and to raise our matters. The AU has all these platforms, especially the African Commission on Human Rights which is a body of the AU. That is the best platform and I am sure with time, this matter is going to be on the agenda of the AU and our leaders will discuss it and find common consensus. Thank you very much. [Applause.]
Thank you very much hon President for your response. Both Uganda and South Africa are sovereign states as you pointed out and they are both bound by the constitutive act of the African Union and they are both members of the African Union and the expectation is that, both countries must respect the protocols of the AU, that is the common cause. Is there anything that binds us as a country to interfere in the internal affairs of another country, irrespective of where we stand as a country? And I think you answered that question quite well. But is there anything that binds us to interfere in the internal affairs of Uganda, as some members expect us to do? Thank you very much.
Well, as we stand here we are a country that is responsible for its own affairs. But as a country, we are part and puzzle of countries of the world. We associate and we have joint certain multilateral forums where we co-operate and we see things the same way. We persuade one another. And you would realise that in some of these multilateral forums, it is not always hunky-dory, where everything is nice. There are moments were there is tension amongst these countries on the issues that are on the table.
So, I am saying, don't seek to impose what you believe is right in your country and you impose it on others. That is wrong but there are mechanisms that are put in place that you can use to persuade one another because our beliefs and our religions are not the same. Now, we come from different backgrounds, therefore as a country we are a sovereign country, guided by our own Constitution that we have adopted.
But if a country goes and puts a law and the law in terms of their Constitution is acceptable, that is it. But this question that you are talking about, just for your interest sake, the Constitutional Court of Uganda is nullified the act. Now it has nullified the act and the Ugandan government has announced its intention to
reintroduce the Act. That was already signed by the President into an Act but it did not meet the constitutional standard.
There were issues that were raised in that Act so the Constitutional Court nullified it. Now the Act is back in the National Assembly of Uganda and the intention of government is to reintroduce the Act. So we are talking about a matter that is still on the table of the people of Uganda. They are discussing it and I am sure we must be decent enough to keep our mouth shut. [Laughter.] [Applause.]
Chairperson, Deputy President, what is happening in Uganda is bad, it's sickening and repulsive. It should not happen in Uganda. It should not happen in Nigeria. It should not even happen anywhere in the world. How people sleep with one another, where they sleep with each other, should never concern any of us. Now, the silence of South Africa is questionable. We ask ourselves if this is driven by fear or cowardice. Deputy President, as a member state of the African Union, at this stage, shouldn't you have already written a strong condemnation statement relating to the disgust actions of the Ugandan government? Thank you.
Malibongwe igama ... [Inaudible.] [Laughter.] [Interjections.]
Well, I am going to restate what I said. We will always respect the sovereignty of the Ugandan people and their government. And, we will only seek to persuade one another in the platforms that are provided for when we find that opportunity. But, in terms of the survey that has been made, in 33 African countries which exhibited intolerance towards homosexuals in 2014 and 2015, it stood at 78%.
Now it is a belief system of people and you might say they are backwards and I am a bit forward, I can understand, I can tolerate this and that. But as we stand, that survey, out of 55 African countries, 78% are showing intolerance. That means they can't tolerate it. It means it is in their belief system. So, it is a matter of persuading them and says; this is how we think as South Africans. And, we think it safeguards the Human Rights of every person, it protects every person; it protects the freedom of every person. But you can't impose yourself. No! Thank you very much. [Applause.]
Chair, I am back and I am here and I have from our member Nhanha. [Interjections.] Deputy President, something
bothered me about your response to one of the questions on the same issue where you mentioned, essentially, and I am paraphrasing here that regarding Human Rights abuses that we would respect the sovereignty of state totally.
So, as to not condemn and state and not to go into any state, the natural consequence, if you go to the end of that, which would mean that any nation in Africa could do anything. They could even murder their population as government. But we will only intervene if that government calls upon us to do so. Which then would create a violation ethically, in terms of who we are as South Africans and our members of the consecutive active African Union as well?
I don't think merely condemning an unethical act amounts to violate to sovereignty. So essentially Deputy President, what I am asking is taking into account what I have said and taking into account matters such as the Al-Bashir case in the past. Is this national government committed to solving Human Rights abuses and is this national government truly devoted to Human Rights? Thank you Deputy President.
Well, I must assure South Africans that as this government. Now it is a belief system of people and you might
say they are backwards and I am a bit forward, I can understand, I can tolerate this and that. But as we stand, that survey, out of 55 African countries, 78% are showing intolerance. That means they can't tolerate it. It means it is in their belief system. So, it is a matter of persuading them and says; this is how we think as South Africans. And, we think it safeguards the Human Rights of every person, it protects every person; it protects the freedom of every person. But you can't impose yourself. No! Thank you very much. [Applause.]
Chairperson, the question being raised by hon Mohai it's very important when we have to consider the impact of climate change especially on food production and agricultural sector as a whole. Recently, we have experienced drought in provinces like the Free State, Northern Cape and the Eastern Cape, and partly, it's because of climate change.
For example, if considering areas such as Namaqua District in the Northern Cape and Gariep District, the situation for farmers and communities depended on crop and livestock farming, has been very challenging. The Intergovernmental Panel ... [Interjections.] Is there anything that I can try?
Hon members, of course we know that there's a limit. There are only four supplementary questions allowed and there is waving of papers and so on, just creating an additional drama that can be avoided. So, please bear with those of us who are Presiding Officers. There's no space for other supplementary questions as only four of them are allowed. Deputy President, can you please proceed?
That was very unkind. Well, what can you do? When you are in Rome, you must do what the Romans do. [Laughter.] The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has identified South Africa as a hotspot for climate change. For our part as South Africa we have undertaken risk and vulnerability assessment in all our provinces through the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries, and we continue to support the development of provincial adaptation plans.
Critically, in dealing with the behavioural change in the management of scarce resources that are impacted by climate change, our government continues to prioritise educating our communities and industry players on the effects of climate change, the risks, the
mitigation and adaption strategies. Given our commitments under the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, we continue to endeavour to reduce the dependency of our energy from fossil fuel sources to cleaner ones including renewable energies.
To this end, Cabinet has recently approved the Integrated Resource Plan 2019 as part of government commitment to reduce reliance on coal as a source of energy to less than 20% by 2050. South Africa is also a water- scarce country and we should therefore look into technologies that improve precision irrigation for our agricultural sector. The SA Weather Services, in partnership with the Department of Environment, Forestry and Fisheries, has initiated the development of the National Framework for Climate Change Services.
This is aimed at providing updates on climate and weather information to guide decision making. One of these framework significant products to be developed is the early warning system which will be critical for all climate sensitive sectors including agriculture. The SA National Biodiversity Institute co-ordinates the implementation of Adaptation Fund Projects in Limpopo, KwaZulu-Natal and the Northern Cape.
These projects are aimed at developing communities and small-scale farmers in early warning systems, climate-proof settlements as well as climate- resilient agriculture. Government is currently in the process of developing the National Adaptation Strategy that articulates intervention to strengthen capacity building awareness including mainstreaming climate change in school curricula.
The National Adaptation Strategy will act as a common reference point for climate change adaptation efforts in the whole country. I will focus on key sectors such as water, health, agriculture, biodiversity, oceans and the coasts. In our efforts to finance the climate change response initiatives, South Africa has concluded bilateral agreements with Germany that will enable the provision of support to South Africa's response initiatives through the Climate Support Programme as well as the Government of Flanders in Belgium through the third country support strategy focusing on climate adaptation.
On partnering with Higher Education Institution, the horticulture, milling, grain and meat industries have identified climate change as a key skill driver within their sectors. To this end, in responding to the emerging skills challenges, the AgriSETA in collaboration with Higher Education Institution is prioritising the training of
Environmental Research Scientists, Conservation Officers, Environmental Officers, Research and Agricultural Scientists. These programmes that we are talking about will be predominantly driven through the allocation of bursaries and graduate placement programmes.
The other participating institutions include the Agricultural Research Council, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, the Water Research Commission, the University of Wits, University of Cape Town, University of Stellenbosch, Rhodes University and the Free State University. Furthermore, the National School of Government has included mainstream climate change module in their compulsory induction programme which will benefit government officials at selected levels.
In this regard, we call upon government, business and civil society to collectively participate in tackling challenges that are posed by climate change. As a signatory to the Paris Agreement on Climate Change, South Africa is committed to reduce carbon emissions from the energy sector in particular in line with our 2016 intended national determined contribution. Thank you very much. [Applause.]
Through you chairperson, Comrade Deputy President, thank you for shedding light on this important matter and giving clarity in terms of government approach towards this complex phenomenon of climate change. Deputy President, we're particularly encouraged by undivided attention given to protect agricultural production as agricultural remains key focus area, and also encouraged by the National Adaptation Strategy that is underway. Emphasis on education for vulnerable communities is most welcomed and needs to be intensified, even ourselves as Members of Parliament need to play critical role as we are empowered by government information as discharged in Parliament.
Deputy President, you have said a call on private sector to participate meaningfully in the climate risk and mitigation management and lastly Deputy President, you correctly pointed out that the vulnerability assessment in all provinces is concluded. Is the issue of building resilient infrastructure to respond adequately to climate change also considered? I thank you.
Chairperson, climate change is a real risk and it impacts negatively on food security, it will impact very negatively on water scarcity, air quality, it will further deepen poverty and push those who are disadvantaged further to extreme
positions. Therefore, it is important for all of us to stand up and work towards mitigating all the effects of climate change. The only way to do this is to try and conserve our environment. Conservation is as very important like pollution of air and water.
So, as a society or nation, we must take care of our actions that seek to disrupt the balance of nature. When we pollute air or water we are disrupting the balance of nature. There is life in water and all of us are breathing the air. So, our everyday actions must be in such a way that we are consciously aware that if we pollute water or air, it will affect us either negatively or positively.
Question 12 (cont):
We are grateful that the Department of Environmental Affairs is reaching out to a number of research institutions; it is reaching out to a number of universities so that all of us can spread this message and can make people aware of their actions, if their actions are detrimental to the environment people must be made aware.
Our actions must be supportive of the environment so we reduce the risk of climate change. The biggest challenge that we are facing as the country is carbon emission, mainly driven out of our power
stations and it is about time that we take the necessary steps to reduce the emission.
There are technologies that we can use to help us reduce the emission in our power stations. So, that is one step that we must
take so we steam ahead with our efforts to reduce the emissions and ensure that we impact climate change in a positive way rather than in a negative way. So yes, we are doing everything in our power to ensure that we mitigate circumstances that can worsen our climate change.
Now, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, CSIR, has made an announcement on 1 November 2019 about certain things that we must look at. The first announcement was about the month of September which has been dubbed as exceedingly the warmest month on record. The year 2019 has been among the five warmest years on earth in our recorded history. This has just been announced recently.
If we look at what the sum total of the climate change of the year, 2019 has been the warmest year. The sixth warmest years on record globally since 1880 will be the last six years which is 2014 through to 2019 with the peak occurring during the strong El Nio years of
2016. The year 2016 has been the pick. Now, climate change is influenced by our actions, the way we behave and the way we interact with nature. So, it's important that we must be schooled. We must be aware of how best we should interact with nature.
But the best way is not to disrupt nature in a negative way. If you chop trees, you must know that you are disrupting nature. If you pollute water, you must know you are disrupting nature. If you pollute the atmosphere, you must know you are disrupting nature and the consequences can be dire. Thank you very much. [Applause.]
Sekela Mongameli, akusiyona imfihlo ukuthi abantu abaningi abazuzayo yilaba bantu bezolimo ikakhulukazi abalimi abakhulu. Iningi labantu alikwazi ngisho nokutshala ukuze bakwazi ukubeka ibhodwe eziko baze baye ezitolo bayothenga. Singabaxwayisa abantu ngalezi zinguquko zezimo zezulu kuze kubuye iNkosi kodwa kuzokwenzeka futhi akukho esingakwenza ngalokho. Umbuzo wami-ke ukuze ukwazi ukuthi ungiphendule kahle ukuthi, uzokusheshisa nini ukuthi ubuyise umhlaba kubantu ngoba abantu bethu abakwazi ngisho ukutshala ngenxa yokuthi umhlaba abanawo?
Nanokuthi lobu buchwepheshe obusetshenziswa ngamanye amazwe ukuthi bakwazi ukutshala ngisho noma kukhona izomiso, la eNingizimu Afrika sizokwazi nini ukuthi sibanikeze abantu lobo buchwepheshe ukuthi bakwazi ukutshala ukuze bakwazi ukondla bona kanye nemindeni yabo? Ngiyabonga.
USEKELA MONGAMELI: Siyabonga. Cha, kubalulekile ukuthi nanoma-ke sibheka ukuthi umhlaba kufuneka ubuyele ebantwini, kufuneka futhi sibheke ukuthi uma sesiwulethile lowo mhlaba loyo ebantwini bayakwazi yini ukuwusebenzisa ngendlela efanele. Bayakwazi futhi ukuthibawugcine umhlaba lo usesimweni esiwulungele ukuthi ungakhiqiza ukudla.
Ngoba-ke uma sikhuluma ngalokhu kuguquka kwesimo sezulu sikhuluma ngezinguquko ezibakhona ngenxa yezenzo zethu. Namuhla-ke siwuphendule umhlaba lo sawenza izindawo zokulahla udoti. Kukhona izinto eziningi esizifaka la emhlabathini bese ziyawubulala lomhlaba ukuthi ungabe usakhiqiza.
Ngakhoke, singamane sijahe nje ukuthi silethe umhlaba. Kufuneka sifundise abantu ukuthi, uma wenza lokhu, uwawulimaza umhlaba lo, ngeke kwazi futhi ukuthi uphinde uthole ukudla kulowo mhlaba.
Ngakhoke, ibalulekile indaba esixoxa ngayo, ukuguquka kwesimo sezulu elethwe yizenzo zethu.
Izinto esizenzayo ekuphileni kwethu, indlela esiziphatha ngayo, iyayilimaza imvelo bese kwenzeka izinto ebesingazazi ukuthi, hhawu, phela la kulo mhlaba sasithi uma sifake imbewu bese kubakhona okumilayo kodwa manje akusamili ngoba kunezinto esizenzilo kulo mhlaba sawubulala.
Kubalulekile-ke ukuthi sisukume sonke sibambisane sibafundise abalimi ikakhulukazi laba abalimayo ukuthi uma befuna ukuwugcina ukhiqiza umhlaba wabo, kufuneka bangakwenzi lokhu, benze lokhu benze lokhuya. Ngiyabonga.
Sihlalo, Sekela Mongameli, ngithanda nje ukuthi ngifakazise ikakhulukazi eKwazulu-Natal ukuthi, cha, izigceme zonke zinazo izikhungo zenhlekelele.
Sinazo nje, okumnandi, ukuthi sinawo uMnyango Kahulumeni Wokubambisana kanye Nezindaba Zezendabuko oholwa umfana omncane wakaHlomuka ogijima aze abashe abemfushane aqikelelele ukuthi kuwowonke amakhaya bayakwazi ukuthi izinhlelo zokuqwashisa umphakathi ngesimo sezulu kubanjani.
Siphinde sibe noMnyango Wezokuthuthukiswa Komphakathi, umama uKhoza nangu la emuva kwami, ugijima aze abe mufushane kulezi zikhungo ukuxe aqikelele ukuthi uma sekuqale lesi simo zonke izimo zime ngokuhle. Bese kuba ... [Ubuwelewele.] hhayibo ngiyandlalela, ezolimo la emuva kwami, umhlonishwa u- Sithole-Moloi ogijima naye aze abe mufushane ngezolimo, ezoqwashisa omama basemakhaya isikakhulu ukuthi ymangabe inhlekelele ifika kubanjani.
Bese kubakhona uMnyango Wezemisebenzi Yomphakathi, u-Fraser, ngiyeza ngawo, okuwuyena obonelela ukuthi izakhiwo ezikhona, thina-ke eKwazulu-Natal, kwaziwa ukuthi abantu uma inhlekelele ikhona la, abantu bayangena la, ukuthi abantu baphephe babekahle.
Sekela Mongameli, bese-ke ngiyabuza-ke la, yiyiphi inqubekela phambili uHulumeni eseyenzile ekwakheni izingqalasizinda zezakhiwo ezibhekene nesimo sezulu na? Nokuthi likhona yini iqhinga lokuqinisekisa ukuthi izwe lethu selisesimweni sokuqondana nezimo ezimbi kakhulu kulezi zinhlekelele zemvelo? Ngiyabonga, Sekela Mongameli.
USEKELA MONGAMELI: Cha! Ngiyabonga. Izimo lezi ziyehlukana futhi nje ngeke ngithi likhona izwe elithi likulindele ukubhekana nanoma ngabe yisiphi isimo. Izimo lezi ziyehlukana kodwa kunezinto okufanele
ukuthi siziqaphele sizilungise kodwa kubakhona okuba ngaphezu kwamandla ethu.
Kodwa, into yokuqala ukuthi kufanele ukuthi yonke into ezosivelela ezosehlela sikwazi ukuyibona iseza. Ukuze sizilungiselele kufanele kube nalento esithi i-early warning system sikhone ukubona ukuthi uma kunesiphepho esizayo, sizokwenza lokhu, sizokwenza lokhuya bese abantu sibathuthe endaweni ethile sibabeke endaweni ethile.
Ziyenzeka lezi zinto lezi umhlaba wonke kodwa siyibona inhlekelele iseza bese siyalungiselela bese impilo, abantu, bayathuthwa bayobekwa endaweni ephephile ize idlule leyo nhlekelele ngoba inhlekelele le isuke idalwe isimo sezulu. Esinye isimo lesi singaphezu kwamandla ethu thina bantu esiphila emhlabeni.
Ngoba ngishilo ukuthi, yebo, kufanele sikubone kuseza, i-early warning system, kubekhona futhi lokhu esikulungiselele ukuthi umangabe kubakhona isimo somlilo sikwazi ukuwucisha umlilo. Uma kubakhona isimo sezikhukhula, imvula ibe isibaningi ngokwedlulela kubekhona esingakwenza, sibe namandla athile okuthi sibhekane naleso simo.
Kodwa, ekugcineni kwakho konke singaba nawo amandla okubhekana nesimo sikwazi futhi ukubona ngaphambili ukuthi kuzokwenzeka lokhu nalokhuya. Kodwa, into ekufanele siyiqikelele siyiqaphele yizenzo zethu.
The way we behave on a daily basis as we interact with nature. We must be careful that our interaction with nature affects nature. It affects nature in a very negative way.
Question 12 (cont):
The DEPUTY PRESIDENT (Contd.): In fact, it deteriorates nature.
Manje-ke uma umhlaba wethu ulahlekelwa ukuba umhlaba onothile, uma umoya wethu ulahlekelwa ukuba umoya esingawuphefumula, uma amanzi wethu alahlekelwa ukuhlanzeka kwawo bese kulimaza impilo, sekulimaza umuntu. Umuntu ophuza lawo manzi, umuntu ohogela lowo moya, njengoba sikhuluma, laphayana eNdiya, basenkingeni enkulu ngoba abasakwazi ukuphefumula. Umoya sewungcole kakhulu. Abasazi nabo ukuthi bayophuma kanjani. Kodwa, izinto ababezenza nsuku zonke bezisebenza nokuphikisana nokuhlanzeka komoya.
Njalo nje izinto abazenzayo nsuku zonke zingcolisa umoya. Bathe bayavuka ngelinye ilanga ayi umoya sewungcole kakhulu. Okwamanje-ke sekufanele basebenzise imali eningi ukuze bazame ukuthi umoya lo uhlanzeke. Ngoba abantu sebayalimala, sebayagula. Abantwana balahlekelwe ngamalanga athile okuya esikoleni. Kuphele cishe amaviki amabili noma izinsuku eziyishumi abantwana bangakwazi ukuya esikoleni. Futhi ukungayi kwabantwana esikoleni hayi ukuthi kuzosishintsha isimo. Sebe kwisimo esibi. Vele abantwana laba bazogula. Lesi sizukulwane sizothinteka ngalezi zenzo ebezenzeka isikhathi eside sokungcolisa umoya.
Manje-ke, kubalulekile ukuthi thina sonke kufuneka sisukume sikhuze uma sibona umuntu engcolisa umfula, sisukume sikukhuze lokho. Uma sibona umuntu engcolisa umoya, sisukume sikukhuze lokho. Uma sibona umuntu ebulala umuthi laphaya, umuthi lowo, isihlahla lesi siwukulinganisa kule mvelo. Uma sibulawa leso sihlahla kufanele sikukhuze lokho.
Kuningi ke esingakwenza singayekeleli kuphela kuMnyango Wezemvelo, Amahlathi kanye Nezezinhlanzi. Sonke ...
... if we can act together, but in the main, the biggest polluter in the world currently, is government.
Uhulumeni iwona ongcolisayo. Nathi thina abantu siyangcolisa njengoba sasikhuluma ngomfula i-Vaal, njengoba sasikhuluma ngo- Eskom, yizenzo zethu. Manje ke imiphumela yalokho ...
... they are very disastrous, they are very dangerous to the life of the ordinary people, dangerous to the life of the nation. Thank you very much. [Applause.]
Hon Chair, I am giving my question to the hon Oucamp.
Hon Chair, well I was initially recognised by you. You nodded your head so, but thank you very much, hon Labuschagne.
No, I did not.
Well, that does not matter now I am at the podium to speak. Mr Deputy President, thank you very much. It is
commendable that you are giving attention to climate change. However, whatever state of the art early warning systems you are engaging with universities; that is also commendable. However, that is not nearly as accurate as the current situation that we are finding ourselves in.
The Northern Cape and various other areas of South Africa have experienced drought now for more than five years. We do not need early warning systems anymore. That is the reality, now for four or five years already.
So, whilst we are commending you for taking this serious, we also have to ask if all the early warning systems in the world are there, but you are not looking reality in the face. What do they help? All those early warning systems are useless if you do not implement the measures to counter them.
You went to the Northern Cape and you said that the Northern Cape can get R30 million, out of R640 million that was required. So, thank you again for that as well. The point is just what will this government do to at long last implement all the requirements to mitigate this drought, to not only do lip service, but to really look at the plight of the farmers and of all the people suffering
from this current drought that is devastating and implement sufficient measures to counter this? Thank you, Mr Deputy President.
Well thank you very much, hon member. The Northern Cape's situation is been very painful, where a farmer decided to commit suicide. He could not really take it to see his livestock dying. Finally he decided to commit suicide. Well, it is a painful experience, but one thing, early warning system yes, but an early warning system that must be communicated to people.
People must change their actions the way they do things. For instance, here in the Western Cape, we went down to Day Zero and everyday you were given information about the dam levels. We must not do this and we must use water like this and so on. People continued as if nothing has changed. Until the last day when it was said that there is no water now.
Human behaviour is very important. We can blame who ever, but if they tell you to say no, no, watch and let us look after our dams, let us look at our resources and use water sparingly. Do so.
However, we have come to a point where as South Africans we ignore these early warning systems. Well, in the Northern Cape, it is a
different situation. When I was there the farmers told me that they are in that situation for seven to eight years on the consistent drought, but I am saying there as government we could have done better because there are areas along the Orange River where we can plant a lot of fodder and try and supply farmers which currently that is what we did to say this land belongs to government and that land belongs to government we gave that land to the province to plant fodder so that they can feed animals.
I mean we could have reacted better at that time. Now our intervention was not really up to scratch. I am hoping to still work with the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development and with the province to find the way of relocating some of the farmers because there is absolutely nothing that they can do with their land. It is just dry. Probably offer them alternative land where they can relocate their livestock. I mean we need to do some plans to make the farmers there to survive so that there could be food. However, the bottom line is that people must take care and take early warning systems very important.
We are being told now that this warm climate is going to have devastating effects on our agriculture, animals and everything. We must take care and we must use water sparingly. This is the message
now. We must not wait until we are experiencing a problem. South Africans must learn to take early warning systems serious and prepare themselves.
I am happy that certain governments like in KwaZulu-Natal, the province has prepared itself, but it can only do so much. They can only have so many tents and so many beds that they can help people, but they cannot help the entire province. People must be able to take early warning messages serious.
As government we are going to confront the drought, but we can only do so working with our people. We are going to use underground water and we are going to use it sparingly. Let us look after our dams and our resources very careful. We abuse them, we will suffer. Thank you very much. [Applause.]
Thank you very much, Deputy President. As the Deputy President takes his seat, please allow me to say two things. The first one is that we should thank as the NCOP the Deputy President to avail himself to answer the questions. [Applause.]
Secondly, to indicate that the Deputy President is free to now leave us in this venue as our business continues. [Applause.]
Thank you very much.
Lastly, we will now suspend the deliberations of this House for two minutes to allow space so that after these two minutes, we will then convene and begin to have debates and deliberations on the Springbok question as indicated earlier on. Two minutes. Thank you very much.