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Address by ANC Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa at the ANC Gauteng manifesto launch rally in Atteridgeville

19 January 2014

Today we launch our manifesto in Gauteng Province. It is a manifesto that will lead us to victory in the upcoming 2014 National and Provincial elections.Our manifesto is dedicated to Tata Madiba and is about carrying Madiba`s legacy forward and getting us to continue to act together to move South Africa forward.

While we have made significant progress over the last 20 years towards the achievement of a better life for all, the 2014 election is about the future.This election are about the steps that we need to take as a nation to move South Africa forward. And it is about the work we still need to do to tackle unemployment, poverty and inequality.

The ANC election manifesto outlines far-reaching measures to grow our economy, create work and improve the quality of life of all South Africans. These measures are ambitious, and yet achievable and affordable.

20 years ago we began a journey to eradicate the legacy of apartheid. We have the experience. We are not mafikizolos or mafika namahlanje or mafika kusasa. We know how to govern. The lives of our people have vastly improved and South Africa is a much better place than it was before 1994.

The achievements of the last 20 years provide a foundation on which we can build a better South Africa for everyone. They give us confidence that, working together, we can indeed do more. And they demonstrate that the ANC has the ability, the desire, the experience and the commitment to continue to lead the ongoing struggle for a better life for all.

Significant progress has been made in many areas - in the provision of housing, electricity, water, sanitation and infrastructure; in reduction of maternal and child mortality; and in access to basic education.

We have put in place a democratic constitution, a bill of rights and robust democratic institutions. We have worked hard to transform the fragmented apartheid state into a developmental state that can serve the interests of all South Africans.

We halted the economic decline of the final years of apartheid and set the economy on a path of growth. Before the global financial crisis of 2008, we had enjoyed the longest period of sustained economic growth in our history, and we were steadily creating new jobs in the economy.We have not been sleeping on the job.

Over the last 5 years, the ANC has worked together with all South Africans to do more to fight poverty and unemployment and reduce inequality. Despite the negative global economic situation, we built on the social gains achieved since 1994. More of our people were lifted out of extreme poverty; we created more jobs; expanded social grants; gave access to housing and basic services to our people; and further improved access to better education and health care. The economy regained the one million jobs lost as a result of the 2008 global economic crisis. Employment is now higher than it has ever been.

We have put in place the National Development Plan. We have developed our capacity to monitor and evaluate implementation at all levels.We are taking bold and decisive steps.The challenges facing our country are immense. Poverty, inequality and unemployment still affect the lives of many people. Corruption continues. Our economy continues to feel the effects of the global economic slowdown. This calls for bold and decisive steps to place the economy on a qualitatively different path.

In the next five years, the ANC will advance the objectives of the NDP to eradicate poverty, increase employment, create sustainable livelihoods and reduce inequality by 2030.

Together we will empower young South Africans through access to training, work experience, jobs and entrepreneurial opportunities.Twice as many young people attended university and twice as many graduated in 2012 than in 1994. Students from FET colleges and universities of technology will be placed in workplaces to gain practical work experience.

The public sector will increase the number of spaces for FET graduates and unemployed graduates to get experiential training.The private sector will be encouraged to make use of youth employment incentive schemes. We will introduce new regulations to ensure there is no displacement of older workers.

Together we will transform our rural areas.We have done much to address the legacy of land dispossession.Through our land reform programme, 5,000 farms have been transferred to black people, benefiting over 200,000 families. Nearly 80,000 land claims have been settled, benefiting 1.8 million people.But many people still do not have access to land and do not have the means to productively farm the land. Rural areas are underdeveloped and poverty is widespread.

In the next five years, the ANC will focus on meeting the basic needs of rural people, land reform and rural enterprise development.

  • We will invest in agricultural infrastructure in support of small-holder farmer development, prioritising former homeland communal areas.
  • The willing buyer, willing seller approach no longer works. We will implement the provisions in the Constitution to speed up land reform.

Together we will ensure decent living conditions and sustainable human settlements.Our housing policies have led to the growth of home ownership and expanded access to basic services.Over 3.3 million free houses have been built, benefiting more than 16 million people. About 12 million households have access to electricity, 7 million more than in 1994.Around 92% of South Africans have access to potable water, compared to 60% in 1996.Nearly 500 informal settlements have been replaced with quality housing and basic services.

Over the next five years, the ANC will:

  • Improve housing conditions in all informal settlements, and unlock well-located land, especially state land, for affordable housing.
  • Provide 1 million housing opportunities.
  • Connect an additional 1.6million households to electricity.
  • Ensure universal access to running water and sanitation.

Together we will improve and expand education and training.We have done much to improve access to education, and have achieved progress in a number of areas. The matric pass rate, for example, increased from 60% in 2009 to 78% in 2013.Loans and bursaries to poor students grew from 2.3 billion in 2008 to 8 billion in 2013. Today, over seven million learners are in no fee schools, up from five million in 2009.

Education and training must be available to all, focusing on young children, students and adults. This requires, among other things, a comprehensive and integrated post-school education and training system.

Over the next five years, the ANC will:

  • Work towards implementing two years of compulsory pre-school education and community-based initiatives to prepare children before the foundation phase of formal schooling.
  • Make interventions, through curriculum and assessment policies, to improve performance in our schools.
  • Give ongoing attention to teacher development. Teacher colleges linked to universities will be re-opened and in-service teacher training intensified.
  • Continue to work towards the eradication of illiteracy through the Kha Ri Gude mass literacy programme.
  • Open two new universities to students and build 1,000 new schools.
  • Enrol one million students in FET colleges in 2014 and an additional 500,000 students in the next five years.

Together we will ensure quality health care for all. We have made great strides in improving the health of all South Africans.Through the `prevention of mother to child transmission` programme, the number of babies born HIV positive was reduced from 24,000 in 2008 to 8,200 in 2011. Average life expectancy has increased.

Over the next five years, we will implement the NHI.

  • We will intensify the campaign against HIV and AIDS to ensure at least 4.6 million people receive antiretrovirals, and expand the male circumcision and HIV-counselling and testing programmes.
  • Ensure chronic medication is available and delivered closer to where patients live, benefiting hundreds of thousands of south africans.

Together we will expand comprehensive social security.Over the last 20 years, the number of people receiving social grants has increased from 3 million to 16 million.
We will increase the number of qualified social workers.

Together we will fight corruption and crime.The ANC is committed to a corruption-free society, ethical behaviour across society and a government that is accountable to the people.Corruption is a broad societal problem prevalent in both the public and private sectors, requiring the commitment of all actors in society to eradicate it.

We must strengthen the bonds of trust and solidarity with our people where these have been broken and continue to listen to and effectively communicate with our people.As the ANC, we need to be at the forefront of efforts to tackle corruption. That effort must start within the movement. We will act against ANC members and ANC elected representatives found guilty in a court of law.

  • Public servants will not be allowed to do business with government.
  • ANC leaders found guilty will be required to resign
  • We will pursue action against companies involved in bid rigging, price fixing and corruption in past and current infrastructure build programmes.

Together we will build a united nation and promote social cohesion. The implementation of our manifesto requires that we all contribute.It builds on our collective identity and national pride as South Africans, and the fact that we have the capacity to act in social solidarity with one another and advance the values of our constitutional democracy.

A nation united in diversity and common purpose can move the country forward.

  • In the next five years the ANC will strengthen participatory democracy in workplaces, schools, hospitals and clinics, and in our communities.
  • We will promote a culture of dialogue, accords and commitments across society as part of our national effort to build a social compact for growth and development.
  • Most importantly, we will continue to work to ensure public representatives are constantly in touch with the people and listen to people`s concerns and needs.

Register now to vote.We need to keep on improving people`s lives and opening up opportunities.To move forward, every South African needs to be part of determining the direction the country will take.We are therefore calling on all South Africans who have not yet done so to register to vote.

Voting stations will be open for registration on the weekend of 8 and 9 February.People can also register now at their municipal offices during office hours.Even if you have registered before, we encourage you to go and check that your name is on the voters` roll with your details correctly captured.

Let us make sure that Gauteng remains ANC territory.

Let us show them who we are.

As the ANC, we further pledge to remain true to our values of courage, service, self-sacrifice, human solidarity, integrity, humility, honesty, hard-work, self-discipline and mutual respect.We will work with our allies and the people to move South Africa forward through the commitments we have set out in this manifesto.

As the leading political representative of South Africans, with unmatched experience, capacity and political determination, the ANC will work to mobilise and unite all our people around this manifesto.

Amandla!