Take education seriously, urges Zuma

2013-06-14 14:43
Gallery  |  click on thumbnail to view larger image

ANC holds rally in Soweto

Nelson Mandela was acknowledged during an ANC rally in Soweto attended by President Jacob Zuma. See the pictures.

Johannesburg - Everyone should take education seriously, President Jacob Zuma said on Friday.

"If it was up to me, education would not just be free but compulsory," Zuma told students at the University of Johannesburg's Soweto campus.

"Every child would be at school... We need to empower South Africans, all of them."

It should be a crime not to send a child to school, he said.

In what seemed to be a reference to former ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema's statements that he was a dictator, Zuma said: "If I was a dictator I would have many of these prisons turned into colleges. All these young guys who commit crime, take them there.

"[But] I'm not a dictator," he said, laughing.

Youth

Zuma told the students he was interested in what they had to say and what suggestions they had.

He asked what needed to be done to shape the country's future.

Looking at the problems the country faced, people also needed to look at its background.

"Today you can hear people criticising government... They have forgotten that government is trying to face problems that have been there for centuries... they act like only in 1994 we started messing up education," the president said.

"Education has played a very critical role in this country."

Zuma said people could be critical but he knew government was "doing well". Education, finally, had the foundation it did not have in the past.

"Results are beginning to rise, they will never drop again, this is because we now have a foundation."

Students were given the opportunity to interact with Zuma and ask questions after he addressed them.

Hector Pieterson Memorial

Earlier in the day, Zuma attended a wreath-laying ceremony at Hector Pieterson Memorial Square in Orlando West, Soweto.

He was joined by African National Congress leaders in Gauteng. These included premier Nomvula Mokonyane, ANCYL Gauteng leader Lebogang Maile, and Johannesburg mayor Parks Tau.

Pieterson was one of the first children shot by apartheid security forces during a protest in the area on 16 June 1976.

The day is now marked as "Youth Day".

Afterwards, Zuma went on door-to-door visits in the area.

- Were you there? Send us your photos.

Read more on:    jacob zuma  |  johannesburg  |  soweto  |  youth  |  education
NEXT ON NEWS24X

SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
148 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Inside News24

 
/Sport
Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

Hold onto your money. Don`t make rash decisions. Today is not a good day to gamble or take an impulsive risk. Someone may be...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.




Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.