Youth Leaders Implore President Cyril Ramaphosa for Inclusion in New Cabinet

Youth Leaders Implore President Cyril Ramaphosa for Inclusion in New Cabinet

Calls to include the youth in strategic political, economic, and civil sectors are gaining traction. Luyolo Dwesi, a young Algoa Park activist in Gqeberha and a member of the United Nations (UN) Youth Advisory Panel, spoke exclusively to Briefly News, supporting the insistence of African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) leader Collen Malatji in this regard.

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Tshepiso Mametela is a seasoned journalist and an evening/weekend editor at Briefly News. Mametela, who reported live from the presidential inauguration of Cyril Ramaphosa, has written articles on politics, crime, court cases, and various other topics.

Youth leaders call for inclusion in President Cyril Ramaphosa's new government
ANCYL leader Collen Malatji and UN Youth Advisory Panel member Luyolo Dwesi call for a new course in SA politics. Images: Jeffrey Abrahams and Supplied
Source: UGC

JOHANNESBURG — President Cyril Ramaphosa's second term in the hot seat begins earnestly, with the expectation of millions at his back.

These include none more than those of the youth seeking their share in the policy and reform decision-making pie shaping their lives after Ramaphosa's inauguration at the Union Buildings on Wednesday, 19 June.

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Youth want inclusion in strategic sectors

Youth leaders and activists have long pushed for youth involvement in strategic sectors of governance and the economy.

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It comes as little surprise then that the African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) is urging Ramaphosa to consider young appointees in his new cabinet of the seventh administration.

ANCYL leader Collen Malatji told a media briefing on Thursday that he hoped to see younger and fresher ministers and deputy ministers comprise the cabinet.

“We have seen about 20 young people under the age of 35 included as Members of Parliament (MPs),” Malatji said.
“The number under the age of 40 or 50 is a significant step towards [transforming] our leadership to reflect the demographics of society, in which the youth form an integral part.”

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Briefly News understands 14 of the party's national executive committee (NEC) members have made it to the National Assembly, with others serving in provincial legislatures.

They include former Gauteng Member of the Provincial Legislature (MPL), Fasiha Hassan, who spoke to Briefly News during the presidential inauguration.

“Despite not reaching all of our targets yet, these outcomes provide hope that our leadership will, over time, mirror society's youthful and dynamic nature,” Malatji said.

Entrusting the youth with more

In an exclusive interview with Briefly News, United Nations (UN) Youth Advisory Panel member Luyolo Dwesi thrust his weight behind the calls for youth inclusion in the cabinet.

"It is important to include youth with the capacity [to lead] to restore our people’s hope through proper governance," Dwesi said.
"When the president adds them to his cabinet, they must instil confidence in society that young people can be in strategic positions.

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"[The young leaders elected] must also know that they represent us as a sector of society and a generation.
"They must open doors for us so we can open them for the next generation."

Dwesi called on a youthful appointment in the Ministry of Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities.

"Even if deputised, young people must be included in strategic departments such as trade, industry and competition, mineral resources and energy, finance and education.
"The government should accelerate our educational system by ensuring the current curriculum prepares learners for the opportunities presented by the national and global economies to reduce unemployment."

He said the new administration must create a conducive environment and accelerate a robust economy that addresses the challenges of youth unemployment, poverty, crime and inequality.

"Youth inclusivity must be a priority," he said.
"This seventh administration must support organs of state such as civil society organisations, business associations, etc.

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"As we speak, a group of progressive young people have formed a structure of business networks called the South African Youth Trade Association.
"This will create a database of youth-led businesses, while the structure advocates for policies that will ensure the benefits of economic growth are equitably distributed."

South Africa welcomes youthful faces to Parliament

In related news, Briefly News previously reported that various political parties responded to calls to bring young people into Parliament in a groundbreaking move for South African politics.

Action SA and the Patriotic Alliance (PA) were among the parties that happily obliged. However, as many South Africans were happy to see fresh faces, some were not thrilled.

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Source: Briefly News

Tshepiso Mametela avatar

Tshepiso Mametela Tshepiso Mametela is a seasoned journalist with eight years of experience writing for online and print publications. He is an evening/weekend editor at Briefly News. He was a general news reporter for The Herald, a senior sports contributor at Opera News SA, and a reporter for Caxton Local Media’s Bedfordview and Edenvale News and Joburg East Express community titles. He has attended media workshops, including the crime and court reporting one by the Wits Justice Project and Wits Centre for Journalism in 2024. He was a member of the Forum of Community Journalists (FCJ) from 2018 to 2020.