Speech: SOPA Response

Mr Rodney Lentit MPP

Independent Democrats

“State of the Province Response”

21 February 2012

Honourable Deputy Speaker

In her State of the Province Address, Premier Helen Zille mentioned that the only sustainable way to beat poverty is by creating opportunities for growth and jobs.

One of the fundamental building blocks the Honourable Premier highlighted to achieving this goal is to educate our children.

One of the key factors in improving our quality of education is incorporating reliable technology sources in our schools, especially from the foundation phase upward.

Deputy Speaker

The success of this government is largely due to monitoring its progress, and the objective approach to remedy its delivery.

The challenges and external factors that hamper the course of action must be noted.

The series of new initiatives announced by the Premier may not always run smoothly, but Hon Deputy Speaker, I can assure you that I will use my oversight role to assist and support these initiatives as far as possible.

Deputy Speaker

Minister Donald Grant’s implementing of compulsory testing for matric markers, the National Department of Basic Education is now also planning to introduce competency tests for all matric markers. This is evident of a visionary and forward thinking government that leads and national government is following.

The Premier’s vision for positioning the Western Cape as a broadband access leader in our country is one step closer to bridging the divides in our schools. The common vision that we have as Members of this house is to create and enhance the existing Information Technology Centres in every school in the province.

We have to make up for the period in which our country has lagged behind many other African countries when it comes to increasing internet usage and access.

Deputy Speaker, if this government can achieve within the next two years, the goal of their pilot project which is to create the largest mesh network in the world to connect all households in Khayelitsha, Mitchell’s Plain and Saldanha Bay, including the Industrial Development Zone footprint – we would be that much closer to empowering our youth and reducing crime and poverty if this project is conducted properly and is given the necessary support from partners identified by this government.

In conclusion Deputy Speaker,

Unlike President Jacob Zuma during his State of the Nation Address where he patted himself on the back and extended numerous olive branches to himself and the unions, let us continue to be critical of our challenges and our successes because this government has already proven that we are "Better Together".

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