Quality education for economic freedom

By Drum Digital
13 April 2012

Economic freedom would only be achieved if South Africa strived to have an educated society, ANC secretary general Gwede Mantashe said on Thursday.

He told the ANC's education summit in Pretoria: "This summit should highlight that economic freedom is only achievable when we succeed in developing the productive forces in our country."

Skilled and educated South Africans would create a productive country.

"Our success or failure to improve our education will determine whether or not we remain a leading economy in the continent."

Mantashe said predictions of Nigeria and other African countries developing stronger economies than South Africa in the next few years would come true if the country's education standard remained the same.

"When we succeed at placing research at the cutting edge of our development agenda we will be a winning nation, recognised as such internationally."

He said the summit should measure the performance of education in the country in terms of the ANC's 2009 manifesto. This manifesto committed the party to eradicating illiteracy by 2014, introducing childhood education systems and increasing the output of graduates. Mantashe said the summit should be used to assess progress on these commitments.

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