National youth service to start this year - Zuma

2016-02-18 15:35

Cape Town - South Africa's national youth service programme will be rolled out this year, President Jacob Zuma said on Thursday.

The programme is aimed at giving young people a sense of solidarity, service and self sacrifice to the nation, as well as build patriotism.

Zuma said more than 100,000 young people have already been participating in programmes such as the ''War on Leaks'', the Youth Build Programme and the National Rural Youth Service Corps.

Zuma asked business executives to get together with the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) to offer to mentor young people in line with a mentorship programme the government launched last Youth Day, 16 June.

He was replying to DA MP Phumzille van Damme who pleaded with him to do something to help the despairing youth of South Africa who do not have jobs to look forward to.

Zuma said government now has a ''National Youth Policy 2020" which will focus on:

- Economic participation and transformation;

- Education skills and second chances;

- Health care and combating substance abuse;

- Nation building and social cohesion;

- Effective and responsive youth development institutions.

These targets have been added to the annual performance plans of departments.

On Tuesday, Deputy Minister in the Presidency Buti Manamela said 3242 people had received grants of between R10,000 and R100,000 from the NYDA over the last three years.

It had also created close to 11,000 jobs through the investments made in a variety of projects. 

He said there was ''no red-tape. No favoritism. No political connection.''

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