Northern Cape provincial Executive Council Lekgotla outcomes
11 Feb 2010
The Northern Cape provincial executive council has successfully concluded a two day Cabinet Lekgotla (Bosberaad) that took place at the Good hope Game Reserve near Barkley West.
The purpose of the lekgotla was to assess government performance and reflect on the implementation mandate. The lekgotla was constituted by all the Members of the Executive Council, the acting director general, mayors and municipal managers from the district municipalities as well as senior government officials.
In her opening address to the Lekgotla, the Premier, Ms Hazel Jenkins, noted that government was well on track to deliver on its mandate to improve the quality of our people’s lives. She has also once more committed the provincial government to “speed up effective service delivery to all our people in the province”.
The discussions were guided by the key priority areas of government which includes:
* creation of decent jobs
* campaign against crime and corruption
* rural development
* strong local government and sustainable human settlements
The lekgotla reaffirmed education as a key priority of our government. It also expressed its grave unhappiness and dissatisfaction about the poor 2009 matric results and urged the education department to immediately implement a drastic education turn around strategy. A Quality Education and Teaching for all campaign will be launched. This campaign will mobilise our communities, the parents, learners, teachers and education officials to be active participants in education. This will also include the enforcement of the “non negotiable” that teachers must teach for seven hours, be in class on time and teach.
It has been noted that there were many achievements in improving access to healthcare, however much more still needs to be done in terms of quality of care, making services available to all citizens of the Northern Cape and ensuring better health outcomes. The provincial government will aim to reduce inequalities in our health system, improve quality of care and public facilities, and boost our human resources and step up the fight against HIV and AIDS and other diseases. Health reforms will involve mobilisation of available resources in both private and public health sectors to ensure improved health outcomes for all South Africans.
The province will mount an effective campaign for HIV and AIDS prevention and treatment campaign, which includes a campaign for HIV and AIDS testing and counselling, involving mobilisation of our society. The province will also commence with an awareness campaign around the dangers of non-communicable diseases.
The Cabinet Lekgotla supports the development of local governments turn around strategy framework, led by the national Minister of Cooperative Governance and Traditional Affair, Mr Sicelo Shiceka and implemented by government at all levels, with the full involvement of communities. The intention of the turnaround strategy is to deliver quality, affordable and reliable services in a sustainable manner to all our communities.
It was agreed to work towards a comprehensive and integrated approach to rural development which will focus on the following: food security, transformation of the apartheid spatial reality, expansion of provision of social and economic infrastructure, the plight of farm workers and farm dwellers and the systematic promotion of cooperatives.
Creation of decent jobs
We have also closely looked at the provincial economy with the view of turning it around. Employment creation, quality jobs and sustainable livelihood can only be a reality if we work on concrete concessions that the various stakeholders are prepared to make. Labour absorbing sectors need to be identified and resources must be invested accordingly. Structural weaknesses in the economy were identified and must be addressed, building on the good work that has been done over the last sixteen years.
The lekgotla expressed their view at the fact that creating decent jobs must be the cornerstone of all economic policies. One area that will require specific attention is the area of quality education and training and skills development. Where people are not suitably educated or skilled, the chances are very high that they will forever remain trapped in low wage, exploitative jobs or not get any jobs at all. The departments must also work in a coordinated and integrated manner to address issues of job creation.
Serious attention must also be paid to issues of mining and the broader question of how to exploit or utilise our strategic mineral resources to the social and economic advantage of ordinary citizens of the Northern Cape.
Revitalisation of the rail network
The lekgotla received a report on the revitalisation of our rail network in especially the De Aar area. It was of the view that the revitalisation of the rail network will indeed stimulate the local economy and serve as a catalyst for the creation of jobs and addressing the issues of unemployment and inequality.
Members present at the lekgotla reaffirmed their commitment to root out crime in all its manifestations. Serious attempts will be made to combat violence and crimes against women and children by increasing the capacity of the criminal justice system to deal with such violence. The police have strengthened their institutional capacity to combat all forms of crime in the province and during the 2010 FIFA World Cup.
Sport, 2010 FIFA World Cup
The Premier and the executive have worked extremely hard to lobby an international team to set up base camp in the Northern Cape. The Premier stated that, “We are very delighted for the trust and vote of confidence placed in us by the Uruguay national team who will be based in Kimberley for the duration of this prestigious tournament. We are ready as a province to host them and are looking forward to welcome them to the warmth and friendliness of our people. We believe this will unlock enormous tourist opportunities for our people and showcase the province as a preferred tourist destination to the world.”
The provincial government is confident that the programme of action that will emanate from this Cabinet Lekgotla will steer our government in the right direction to better the lives of all our people.
Issued by: Office of the Premier, Northern Cape Provincial Government
11 February 2010
Source: Northern Cape Provincial Government (http://www.northern-cape.gov.za)
Issued by: Northern Cape Provincial Government
11 Feb 2010
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