We watched as the African National Congress descended on the Moses Mabhida stadium to launch its manifesto ahead of the 2019 general elections. In what was really a stage-managed show of unity for the divided ANC, we heard more of the same old broken promises from Cyril Ramaphosa. After 107 years of existence and almost 25 years in government, it is now clear that the party is a hollow version of its former self.
By recycling the same old ideas or failed interventions, Ramaphosa has not convinced the nation that his ANC has what it takes to build a South Africa that is united and where the economic inequalities of the past are redressed.
The party has broken our government with empty promises and corruption and it is clear that it will always put itself above the people. It is also utterly incapable of managing the real problems South Africa faces.
While the ANC is yet again attempting to pull the wool over the eyes over the South African people, hundreds of thousands of matriculants are staring the reality of unemployment in the face. A better life has only been brought to those within the ranks of the ANC, while the majority of the country languishes.
Ramaphosa today promised that “at the centre of our manifesto is a plan to create many more jobs”. Therein lies the real tragedy of the failed governance of the ANC — millions of young people left behind with little prospects of escaping poverty. The facts speak for themselves: South Africa has the world’s worst rate of youth unemployment.
Since the 2014 elections, 591,000 more young people aged 15-34 years old have joined the ranks of the unemployed.
One out of every two young people doesn’t have access to a job. Currently, a shocking 7.9 million youths are not in employment, education or training.
If the DA is elected to national government, we will put creating fair access to real and long-term jobs at the forefront of our efforts. We see entrepreneurs as the real job creators, not the government. We will introduce a voluntary national service, offering one year of income and skills development for school leavers.
This will give school leavers valuable work experience and it will go a long way to empower, not only them but also the economy at large.
Since the “new dawn”, the jobs bloodbath has continued with 278,000 people of out a job. The fact is clearer than ever that the ANC has no workable plan to grow the economy.
Ramaphosa’s promise to create 275,000 jobs a year should be seen for what it is: Hollow rhetoric from a party that has proved it cannot deliver.
This is the legacy of broken promises, this is the legacy of lining the pockets of cronies. The ANC again promised to fight against corruption by stating:
“We will intensify the fight against corruption in government, in the ANC and across society.”
In the past 20 years, South Africa has lost R700-billion to corruption. That is equivalent to more than half of the annual budget. Clearly, the rot of corruption is rife in ANC.
The fleecing of the public purse has directly led to communities across the country waiting more than two decades for services.
The ANC cannot achieve the South African dream of One South Africa For All.
A DA national government will realise a South Africa where corruption is not tolerated, there is fair access to jobs, our police are honest and professional, our borders are secure and our government is committed to speeding up service delivery for all. Only the DA can build One South Africa for All. A South Africa that is united and where the economic inequalities of the past are redressed. DM
Solly Malatsi is national spokesperson for the DA.