The DA can turn De Aar and the province around

Andrew Louw MPL

DA Northern Cape Premier Candidate

Note:  These are remarks made by DA Northern Cape Premier Candidate, Andrew Louw MPL, in De Aar during campaigning with Nosimo Balindlela.

Fellow South Africans, good morning, molweni, goeie more!

It is wonderful to be addressing you here today, in De Aar.

Today is a first for the Northern Cape; never before had we had Nosimo Balindlela visit us. I am honoured to welcome her to the province.

As a former Premier of the Eastern Cape, I have learnt a lot from her first-hand experiences on what it is like to lead a provincial government and address challenges faced by people.

Her experiences strengthen my belief that it is only with a DA ethos and policies, we can govern the Northern Cape better.

Viva Nosimo Balindlela, viva!

Viva Helen Zille, viva!

I can tell you now; the ANC is having sleepless nights over us. They say they aren’t threatened by the Blue Wave, but their actions tell a different story.

Democrats we are not going anywhere, we are here to stay! We have a terrible legacy of Apartheid and inequality.

The new government that came into office in 1994 had an enormous challenge: to reverse the injustice of the past and create a better life for all.

Those early days of democracy were not perfect. There is no perfect government anywhere in the world. But things did change for the better under Presidents Mandela and Mbeki.

However things have changed and our hope has turned into despair.

With the election of Jacob Zuma to the highest office as President, we have gone backwards as a country.

Today millions of South Africans are still denied access to economic opportunities and the Northern Cape has been no different.

One in four residents of our province lives in poverty, and the expanded unemployment rate in the province is at 34.8%.

Democrats of De Aar, these are real people we are talking about, not random statistics.

Contrary to what Premier Sylvia Lucas said during her State of the Province Address, this is definitely not a good story.

The DA believes in real permanent jobs, not just the EPWP. However under the Zuma ANC, these EPWP jobs are used as a means of limiting people’s freedoms.

They are given to people who are told they have to be card carrying members of the ANC.People’s poverty and joblessness is abused by power-drunk and crooked ANC cadres.

Democrats, the Zuma ANC paints a picture of a province on top of the fight against corruption.

However, is this truly the reality experienced by people on the ground?

Where else in the country does one find two sitting MEC’s, namely John Block and Alvin Botes, facing serious charges of fraud and corruption in a court of law, remaining in office?

But the reality is the Zuma ANC under the provincial political leadership of John Block, not only tolerate corruption and fraud, but reward it.

Democrats, through poor governance and chronic under-spending of budget, this government has limited the potential for hundreds of thousands of residents.

Residents of Noupoort who had written on a nearby mountain, “2014 NO VOTE”, indicated during our door-to-door campaigning that their ‘no vote’ will now be a DA vote on 7 May. Indeed with their support, we can win the Northern Cape.

Recent audit outcomes reveal that only one provincial department and one entity in the Northern Cape got a clean audit; and 65% of municipalities got bad audit outcomes.

Because of the poor governance the provincial government and municipalities cannot deal with corruption, and crooked cadres do as they please in government. Various work and economic projects meant to create opportunity have failed due to poor governance and corruption.

Democrats, we are ready to govern!

The DA Northern Cape has a clear plan to tackle unemployment andcorruption.

To drastically increase job creation we must improve the quality of the education we provide.

Our plan is to extend opportunity to young people looking for work by creating one million internships nationally to give experience to young job seekers.

We will develop Opportunity Centres in each district, serving as a one-stop-shop for young job-seekers and entrepreneurs.

To further support youth development, we will implement the Youth Wage Subsidy, apprenticeships and internships.Our plan seeks to create a Northern Cape, of entrepreneurs.

We will establish a cross-departmental team to engage with the private sector and civil society

In our first 100 days, we will audit and investigate all existing contracts in government with the aim of cancelling those that are corrupt and unlawful, and eliminating waste.

Our DA government will fire corrupt officials, not shield or “redeploy” them. Our administration would make it illegal for public servants and politicians to do business with the state.

Democrats, these are just some of our plans for the province. It is time we choose a better story to tell for our beloved province.

Our Northern Cape manifesto is nothing less than a plan to enfranchise the many into the social and economic life of the province.We Democrats are returning power to the people!

De Aar it is time we vote into government a party that stands together with the people of this province for change, together for jobs; and together for a better Northern Cape.