South African’s National Liberation Movement
THE AFRICAN NATIONAL CONGRESS APPLAUDS THE WORK DONE BY GOVERNMENT AMIDST CHALLENGES
This year’s State of the Nation Address is expected to reflect on the gains we have made as a nation as well as affirm our determination to defend our democracy from opportunistic elements that are set on undermining the unstoppable programme of transformation. The address must be a beacon of hope as it accounts on commitments made whilst pointing us all in the direction that must now be taken to transform South Africa in the interest of a better life for all.
President Cyril Ramaphosa will deliver the address amidst both progress and challenges. Drawing from its experience, the ANC remains steadfast in its resolve to overcome these challenges and continue steering South Africa toward prosperity. Some details of this progress made are worthy of highlighting.
Setting the Stage: South Africa’s Global Presence:
We celebrate our nation’s achievements on the global stage, from asserting moral leadership to showcasing the talents of our people in sports, music, and beyond. Despite global shocks like the Covid-19 pandemic and geopolitical unrest, South Africa’s resilience shines through, propelling us on an upward trajectory despite economic setbacks. This year’s State of the Nation marks the culmination of an extraordinary term of office characterized by several severe global shocks as well as the rise of South Africa’s prominence as an international moral authority on the global stage.South Africa’s achievements include significant contributions in various international arenas such as Palestine, BRICS, and more. Additionally, the country boasts remarkable talents in sports, music, and other fields, exemplified by heroes like the Springboks, Bafana Bafana, and award-winning musicians like Lady Smith Black Mambazo and most recently Grammy award winner, Tyla. Indeed, South Africans demonstrate remarkable talent and resilience on the global stage.
Economic Impact of Global Shocks:
The Covid-19 pandemic and other global crises have had far-reaching effects on the economy, disrupting trade, food supplies, and global health systems. South Africa, with its highly industrialized and globalized economy, faced significant challenges as well. Despite these hurdles, South Africa has demonstrated notable economic resilience. While the economy experienced contraction, the nation remains on an upward trajectory, supported by various economic measures and policies.
Tackling Corruption and Reinforcing Governance:
The sixth administration faced the daunting task of reinvigorating and fortifying the state, which had been weakened by corruption and counter-revolutionary elements. Through concerted efforts, significant progress has been made in combating corruption and rebuilding state institutions. These efforts lay a solid foundation for the future and promise long-term benefits for all South Africans.
The ANC-led government has dramatically improved access to education from early childhood right through to post-school education. Nearly every young person aged 15-24 years is literate, and adult literacy now stands at 85%, up from only 64% in 1996. Under apartheid, the law prevented black people from entering skilled occupations.
Today we have a growing black and skilled professional sector. Many interventions have been introduced, including school fee exemption, the school nutrition programme and scholar transport which ensures that poverty does not stand in the way of children’s access to quality education. It isthis administration that has seen the highest percent of people writing matric and passing matric, a testament to the ANC’s commitment to education for all. has been under this administration.
NSFAS (National Student Financial Aid Scheme) has been a crucial intervention for over 1.3 million of South African students, providing access to higher education for those who may otherwise struggle to afford it. However, as with any large-scale program, there are areas that require refinement and improvement. It’s imperative for the government to continue refining the NSFAS system to ensure that it remains effective, efficient, and accessible to all deserving students. This includes addressing issues such as application processes, disbursement timelines, and support services to enhance the overall experience and impact of NSFAS on the lives of South African students.
Our work in promoting universal access to quality healthcare has made a tremendous impact. This includes free access to health care for pregnant women and children under 5 years to reduce infant and maternal mortality, and sustained investment in the building of healthcare facilities in even the most rural areas.
The ANC-led government strongly supports the National Health Insurance (NHI) Bill as a vital step towards achieving universal healthcare coverage. The bill aims to ensure equitable access to healthcare services for all South Africans, regardless of their socio-economic status. By pooling resources and addressing disparities, the NHI will improve health outcomes nationwide. The ANC led government is committed to implementing the NHI, advancing health equity and socio-economic development
Empowering Employment Opportunities:
Under the ANC-led administration, there has been a consistent decline in unemployment rates over
seven consecutive quarters. Graduate unemployment has decreased significantly, showcasing the
effectiveness of government policies in stimulating job creation and economic growth. Despite
challenges, the economy has shown resilience, with the number of people with jobs increasing overthe last two years. The Presidential Employment Stimulus has created over 1.2 million work and
livelihood opportunities, representing the largest expansion of public employment in South Africa’s
Economic Resilience Amidst Challenges:
Despite global challenges, South Africa’s economy has shown resilience, with indicators like
inflation rates and GDP demonstrating positive trends. Notably, the country’s GDP has seen growth,
and the South African Revenue Service (SARS) has achieved remarkable levels of tax collection,
reflecting a robust economic performance.
In the past five years we have put in place the following measures to address the energy crisis:
● The renewable energy procurement programme was revived in 2018 to increase generation
capacity and diversify our energy supply. Since then, around 2 500 MW of solar and wind power
has been connected to the grid.
● A further 1 600 MW of projects are in construction.
● Land has been made available next to Eskom power stations in Mpumalanga for renewable
energy projects, which will unlock 1 800 MW of new capacity.
Advancing Women’s Rights and Representation:
The ANC-led government has made remarkable strides in empowering women, with significant
representation in public institutions and policy frameworks aimed at addressing gender-based
violence. Efforts to ensure equal representation and meaningful participation of women in
decision-making processes continue to drive positive change and empower women across South
Building Homes, Communities and Social Security:
The provision of housing to millions of South Africans is one of the great achievements of our
nation. Through the provision of houses, subsidies and serviced sites, government has managed to
provide 4.7 million homes. Nearly two million women are now the proud owners of state houses.Under apartheid all women were denied the right to benefit from state housing and black women
could not own land or houses. Eighty nine percent of households now have access to water, while
85% of South African homes have access to mains electricity. This reduces the household burden
on women and girls who no longer spend hours fetching wood and water.
The ANC has done a lot to tackle poverty head-on through an impactful social security system. Over
the last 30 years our approach has been two-pronged: firstly, through the social wage, which
involves a range of social and economic interventions, including expanding access to quality basic
services, and, secondly, through direct transfers to households in the form of social grants. One of
the most direct actions by our government has been the provision of an effective social security
net. In 1999 only 2.5 million people had access to social relief. Today, more than 18 million people
in our country receive grants. The Social Relief of Distress Grant, introduced during the COVID-19
pandemic to provide relief to unemployed people lays the basis for a future Basic Income Grant.
Crime and Corruption:
Efforts to combat crime and corruption have led to significant reforms in law enforcement agencies and governance systems. Improved governance indicators and law enforcement initiatives demonstrate a commitment to accountability and justice, ensuring a safer and more secure environment for all South Africans.
Governance indicators have shown improvement, as evidenced by the Auditor General’s reports.
The percentage of performance reports with no material findings has increased significantly from 59% in 2018/19 to 71% in 2022/23. Notably, audits of Parliament and provincial legislatures have achieved unqualified outcomes in 100% of cases, with 90% of these audits also attaining a clean audit status, reflecting a positive trajectory in government accountability and financial management.
This administration has increased numbers of police personnel, including the recruitment of 20 000 police trainees an additional 4 000 public- order policing members during 2022 and 2023.20 specialised SAPS Economic Infrastructure Task Teams have been established to work with business, private security and state-owned enterprises to tackle illegal mining, construction site extortion, cable theft and vandalism of economic infrastructure.
By November 2023 the task teams had made over 4 000 arrests for damage of critical infrastructure, 70 arrests for extortion at construction sites and over 3 000 arrests for illegal mining, and confiscated significant quantities of copper cable, rail tracks and other metals.
Securing Borders and Managing Immigration:
To address the immigration issues at our borders the Border Management Authority was launched as South Africa’s third armed force to manage and secure our borders, providing a vital link in government’s efforts to harness the benefits of the African Continental Free Trade Area.
As South Africa prepares for the State of the Nation Address, the ANC remains committed to advancing its vision of a prosperous, inclusive, and equitable society. With President Cyril Ramaphosa’s leadership and the collective efforts of all South Africans, the nation is poised to overcome challenges and build a brighter future for generations to come.
ISSUED BY THE AFRICAN NATIONAL CONGRESS
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