JOHANNESBURG - The African National Congress (ANC) on Sunday urged government to use the 2017 State of the Nation address (Sona) to “give expression to the 12 urgent tasks of the movement” in respect of economic transformation.
The Sona was used by government to “report on the state of our country, progress we are making in realising our vision of a national democratic society, and the key actions required to move us closer and faster to the ultimate objective of a united, non-racial, non-sexist, democratic, and prosperous society”, ANC spokesman Zizi Kodwa said in a statement.
“As per ANC NEC [national executive committee] lekgotla, radical economic transformation refers to a fundamental change in the structure, systems, institutions, and patterns of ownership and control of the economy in favour of all South Africans, especially the poor, the majority of whom are African and female.
“Our main objective remains the liberation of blacks in general and Africans in particular. Its components include the creation of jobs, accelerating shared and inclusive growth, transforming the structure of production and ownership of means of production, and enabling the talents and productive potential of our people to flourish. At the heart of radical socio-economic transformation is an effective state that is decisive in its pursuit of structural change,” he said.
To achieve decisive advances towards radical economic transformation, the ANC urged government to use the Sona to “give expression to the 12 urgent tasks of the movement being”:
- Return the land to the people using Constitutional means;
- Invest money in township and rural communities and ensure building of post-apartheid cities in rural areas and vibrant businesses in the townships;
- No less than 30 percent of all government spending must go to black businesses and small, medium, and micro enterprises;
- Massive roll-out of broadband infrastructure, ensuring connectivity of schools, universities, hospitals, police stations, and other public spaces;
- Implement the Maputo Declaration and ensure 10 percent of GDP goes to agricultural development;
- Turn South Africa into a construction site, deliver water, sanitation, roads, electricity, and houses;
- Diversify ownership in the financial services sector, licence the Post Bank, introduce new players, and transform the industry in favour of the people as a whole;
- Finalise the national minimum wage to give income security to all the people;
- Increase the requirement for black ownership in mines, ensure that a significant amount is in the hands of the workers, and advanced local beneficiation;
- Implement free higher education for the poor and produce no less than 5000 PhDs per annum by 2030 and urgently generate more artisans;
- Review SA’s trade policies to prioritise national interest and support and promote local businesses; and
- Mercilessly deal with corruption, fighting both the “tigers and the flies”.
African News Agency