|Government must first get its own house in order statement by Co-leader of the UDM (20 May 1998)|
The call by Thabo Mbeki for financial aid from the world community can only be considered legitimate and serious when South Africa gets its own house in order. The announcement that the low-cost housing projects will loose its momentum due to an insufficient national housing budget is a serious charge against the ANC led governments ability to address national priorities. Not only will government fail in targets it setout for itself, but also is it failing dismally in addressing the plight of the poor.
The most important point on the Government agenda, the Presidential Job summit is not getting of the ground. Again, a meeting between the ANC alliance partners to debate an employment strategy was postponed indefinitely. The creation of employment opportunities is the single most important challenge facing South Africa. While housing projects, health services and education is tumbling in like a house of cards all around us, government is also failing in empowering people to provide their own services. Instead, the ANC government and its alliance partners still find time to bicker amongst each other instead of concentrating on the mammoth task ahead.The UDM believes that the creation of employment opportunities is the most important challenge facing South Africa and its citizens. We cannot continue to have 400 000 new entries in the job market every year and not create one single new job opportunity. If South Africa fails in addressing this issue we will have a revolution on our hands. It is for this reason that the UDM identified the creation of employment as its main focus in policy development. The UDM will soon make public its plans for addressing unemployment.