Zille: Entrepreneurship to fight poverty

2013-02-23 10:58

Western Cape Premier Helen Zille delivered a seemingly pro-poor state of the province address yesterday in which she emphasised entrepreunership to fight poverty in poor communities and called on parents to take a leading role educating their children.

Zille said the Western Cape government had established the Partnership Network, which offers “a full range of support services to new entrepreneurs”.

She committed her government to improving the quality of education, health, fighting violent crimes and creating jobs.

She expressed a “deep sense of horror” at the brutal rapes and murders experienced in the country and said the province planned to increase funding for its victim empowerment programme from R7.8 million to R17.7 million.

Zille said 76% of the annual budget was directed towards opening opportunities for people in poor communities, through education, health, services, housing and social development programmes.

What Zille didn’t say

1. She avoided the issues of school closures and housing backlogs.

2. Zille was also silent on addressing the living and working conditions of farm workers after recent protests in the sector in which workers were demanding R150 a day.

Instead, she said farmers had been paying an average of R100 a day before the strike, warning that that the sector was likely to see “significant job losses” due to demands for more wages.

She said land reform in the province had been most successful in the country, highlighting land reform must address “the legacy that has left 30% of South Africa’s most fertile land unproductive, under tribal tenure”.

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