Government has capacity to construct a developmental state-Premier Thandi Modise
8 Sep 2012Government has the capability of constructing a developmental state that is also able to root out poverty, deliver quality services, fight corruption, improve access to quality education, ensure economic growth, and create more jobs in the economy, North West Premier Mme Thandi Modise asserted on Saturday.
Delivering her Turfloop Graduate School of Leadership Public Lecture on Service Delivery and a Developmental State in South Africa hosted by the University of Limpopo at the Bolivia Lodge in Polokwane, Premier Modise said that state intervention should play a major role in terms of growth, if it seeks to create democratic developmental state.
The Premier highlighted that the developmental state in South Africa has the objective of actively intervening in the economy to drive investment in targeted areas to achieve a long term vision of a higher value added, labour absorptive and racially integrated economy.
Modise emphasised that state intervention in society and the economy would ensure the “common good” such as upgrading public service skills because the country is facing significant economic challenges and needs to accelerate the growth rate to create wealth that enhances the standard of living for all South Africans.
She said that this will dramatically increase employment creation; develop industrial capabilities to decrease the country’s dependence on commodity exports; and transform the ownership and management profile of the economy to reflect that of the broader South African population.
“Development is about improving quality of life...about equity and justice. It entails a growing economy in which redistribution is a critical element. The role of the state is to ensure democracy and popular participation. A strong state should have intellectual resources to plan, monitor and stimulate high growth.
It should mobilise and deploy capital into sectors unattractive to private industry in order to address the challenges of poverty, high unemployment, and HIV/AIDS and play an important role in promoting democracy, justice and a human rights culture,” Modise stressed.
She added that the New Growth Plan emphasises that we need to be facilitating the continuous emergence of concrete compacts between government and private interests to pursue specific projects that will take us closer to the achievement of our national goals and further that the National Development Plan places us on a forward—looking trajectory and requires all of us, not just Government, to commit to concrete programmes that will improve the lives of the South African people.
The Premier called on the universities to come on board in producing graduates that will make difference in the public sector, underlining that the National Development Plan emphasises this point and states that "higher education is the major driver of the information/knowledge system, linking it with economic development".
“It goes on to say universities are pivotal to developing a nation. They produce new knowledge, critique information and find new local and global applications of the existing knowledge. They also set norms and standards, ethics and philosophy underpinning a nation’s knowledge capital,” she stressed.
“Achieving a developmental state must be demonstrated through commitment to economic growth, eradication of poverty and reduction of inequality, creating jobs, and eradicating crime and corruption. The targets set in both the New Growth Path and the National Development Plan, however, can only be met if issues of good governance in general and corruption in particular are addressed successfully,” concluded Modise.
”The lecture was thought provoking, insightful and should shape the academic discourse in the disciplines of economics, public administration and development studies,” said Executive Dean at the University, Professor Pumela Msweli in summing up the standing ovation that the Premier received after delivering her lecture.
The address was attended by academic staff and over 200 Masters in Public Administration and Masters in Development and other dignitaries that included the MEC for Financein Limpopo, David Masondo.
Twenty-three year old Shike Kleinkie Maripane, an Honours student said that he was impressed with the Premier’s lecture as she raised some of the pertinent challenges facing municipalities to deliver services. He supported the Premier’s call for communities, councillors and other stakeholders to work together to ensure that government provides services to reduce strikes and protests.
Lesiba Moses Kgwele
Tel: 018 388 3705
Cell: 083 629 1987
Fax: 086 620 4802
Issued by: North West Office of the Premier
8 Sep 2012
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