For the ACDP, transformation of the economy means greater inclusivity and not exclusivity as we have seen in the past and present.
Those with skills and experience must be valued and encouraged to continue to use their skills in the service of South Africa. It is these skills and this experience that must help to expand the economy, to draw more and more people into jobs and to help skill more and more people. In this way people will be able to move away from having to rely on government grants and to become self-reliant.
We all want a South Africa with a vibrant, healthy economy where jobs and opportunities are in abundance and the government serves the people. The path to this begins with the skilling of people - ranging from a greater focus on diverse basic and tertiary education to driving adult education programs that are linked to industry needs.
Yes, transforming the economy does begin with our children even before formal schooling begins. This is where the foundation blocks are laid and the ACDP will focus on making Grade R available at all schools and early childhood development facilities accessible in all areas. These children must then progress through ‘a world class education system’ and not be casualties of experimental schooling. An example of this is the education Zimbabweans accessed over so many years. Their education happened to be the Cambridge system - which has given generations of Zimbabweans an enviable ability not only to know facts but to apply them together with a desire to work hard and support their families.
Education must be career focused encouraging individual talents and giving youth the tools to be enthusiastic, skilled employees or innovative entrepreneurs.
By revitalizing the apprenticeship model and expanding the Employment Tax Incentive the ACDP will encourage businesses to provide paid internships for school leavers. A confident youth who are contributing to society and earning a living are far more likely to be positive about a bright future and willing to build rather than destroy what they have.
Women of course play an integral role in transforming the economy. According to the Electoral Commission after the first voter registration weekend last year, 82% of all new registrations were under the age of 30 and of these, approximately 54% were young women. With these statistics, common sense alone demands that this influential sector be promoted and facilitated. As the Book of Proverbs points out women are not only capable of being hands on in business, farming and trading but they can speak with wisdom that inspires confidence.
Once the economy is surging, unions have an important role in monitoring fair labour practices and the health, safety and wellbeing of workers. However, unions themselves must be accountable as unfair influence in appointments and opting for crippling protests over negotiation undermine progress.
The creation of an enabling environment is crucial in encouraging industrial and other growth and development. Access to better health care, infrastructure development, a professional, impartial and streamlined public service and technological progress are all key.
The promotion of local and foreign direct investment is also hugely dependent on the protection of property rights. This issue is at the heart of transformation as people put money where they feel confident it will give them a return. Local and international confidence will also increase, the ACDP believes as the safety of farmers and farm workers is taken seriously.
The Bible teachings against dishonesty, stealing and killing - and loving one another - are sorely missing in our schools today and the consequences are all too evident. The ACDP believes prayer and scripture in schools will bring the fundamental changes needed to transform hearts, minds and behaviour in South Africa that will result in a thriving economy that truly serves the people.”
ISSUED BY: CHERYLLYN DUDLEY MP
19 February 2019