In KwaZulu-Natal this week to celebrate the anniversary of his party, President Cyril Ramaphosa committed himself to the ideals the founder of the party, Langalibalele Dube had dreamt of when he created one of Africa’s oldest political movements
Speaking at the Ohlange Institute in Inanda, KZN, President Cyril Ramaphosa delivered the ANCs January 8 Statement and outlined the party’s priorities for this year.
The location for this announcement had been chosen for the day as it was the birthplace of John Langalibalele Dube, the founder of the party.
According to Ramaphosa, the ANC had returned to Inanda to pay respect at Dube’s gravesite and report back to him on the progress of the ANC.
“We shall not rest until the sunshine that Langalibalele Dube spoke about, the sunshine of the new civilization rises and shines upon our people. We shall not rest until we have built the national democratic society that the people of South Africa yearn for,” said President Ramaphosa.”
Accompanying him to the site where several top officials in the party, including former president Jacob Zuma.
Ramaphosa summed up the achievements of the party, saying that since coming into power the ANC had brought electricity and running water to more households, access to health care and 3 million homes have been built.
However, Ramaphosa is determined that more needs to be done in the following areas:
The President called for focus on the early development of children.
“We want the young ones from the ages of two to three years to enter into early childhood development because the learning of a child starts while they are still young. If we focus on the first 1 000 days, that is where we will be able to have a population that is moving with the times,”
Ramaphosa also noted that the recent announcement of the 78.2% matric pass rate shows progress in the education sector.
He maintained that there remains room for improvement but township and rural schools are changing for the better and improving their results.
Despite the progress made in addressing gender inequality, the President feels more needs to be done in order to provide a safe society for women.
“We must hang our heads in shame that even as we make progress in forging a non-sexist society, women in our country continue to be confronted with unprecedented levels of abuse, violence and murder, often by those who are closest to them. This is a national crisis that we are determined to bring to an end so that all South African women can live in peace, safety, and dignity.”
Land expropriation without compensation
Addressing one of the most debated topics this year, Ramaphosa revealed that South Africa will implement the land expropriation without compensation policy.
“We are now embarking on a new phase of accelerated land reform, which will contribute significantly to building economies and agriculture. The land will return to the hands of our people.”
Despite the numerous victories noted in this area, the President said numerous people are still suffering in poverty, without basic needs being met and millions unemployed.
“It is our task as the sons and daughters of John Langalibalele Dube to place the needs of these people at the centre of our every effort. We still have to create more jobs. We want to call on all South Africans to work together to ensure that all South Africans share in prosperity and [can] grow our economy,”
With this event completed, the ANC now moves its attention to their election manifesto launch, which takes place this Saturday at the Moses Mabhida Stadium.
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