Key DA proposals in Zuma speech - Zille

2011-02-11 22:31

Cape Town - It was encouraging to hear President Jacob Zuma announce key DA policy proposals in his state of the nation address, Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille said on Friday.

"... shows that the years of research, debate, and interventions by the DA in opposition are having an impact," Zille wrote in her weekly newsletter SA Today.

"It is very important in a maturing democracy that areas of policy consensus emerge between government and opposition. In certain areas of public policy, we are slowly moving in that direction."

She said the compulsory literacy and numeracy testing of all grade 3, 6 and 9 pupils was a policy the DA began implementing in the Western Cape ten years ago.

Zuma also mentioned the "Triple T" - teachers, textbooks and time, which Zille said was her "mantra" when she was provincial education minister.

"It is gratifying to hear that the president is listening.

"There appears to be a willingness on the part of national government to be pragmatic about policy-making. If a policy is proven to work or is based on a sound idea then it should be adopted, whichever party it originates from."

Lacks overall vision

She cited the DA's social development policy, released before the election last year, as another example.

The policy proposed that child support grants be given on condition that the child had been immunised, had adequate food and had been attending school regularly.

All this would ensure that the benefits of the grant were felt directly by the child and that the reliance on grants would decrease over time.

"In his [Zuma] speech last night [Thursday], the President promised something very similar: '...the social grants will be linked to economic activity and community development, to enable short-term beneficiaries to become self-supporting in the long run'", said Zille.

On the speech in entirety, Zille said Zuma looked relaxed and more confident than he did last year.

She said while it lacked "an overall vision", it did contain "important and welcome" policy announcements.

"The R9bn jobs fund seems to be the Youth Wage Subsidy announced by the President last year, but rebranded, perhaps to sidestep union opposition.

"It is a great pity that ideological resistance to this idea inside the ANC-alliance has prevented this subsidy from being implemented thus far, but the idea remains a good one. It has been central to the DA's jobs policies for many years," said Zille.

Unwelcome intrusion

She added that the DA had welcomed an income tax allowance incentive when it was announced by Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies last year, and would do so again.

The incentive amounts to R20bn in tax breaks to promote investments, expansions and upgrades in the manufacturing sector.

"These ideas - if implemented correctly - will make it easier to get a job and easier to create a job."

She said that some of Zuma's announcements did, however, amount to an "unwelcome intrusion" of the state into sectors where businesses would operate more efficiently, generate more taxes and employ more workers.

She cited the creation of a state mining company and the upgrading of Postbank into a fully-fledged state-owned bank as examples.

"Mining and banking are sectors which should be regulated to maximise equity and economic efficiency, and where the state should extract taxes and royalties. Any involvement by government beyond this will crowd out the private sector, embed inefficiencies and destroy economic value."

Zille said she would announce the Western Cape's plan to outline the DA's vision for the province during her state of the province address next Friday.

  • G.du Plessis - 2011-02-11 22:39

    Nice to see consensus.

  • Macho Mike - 2011-02-11 22:57

    Zuma is a top caitiff, and always will be.

  • braveinternetguy - 2011-02-11 23:50

    A strategically brilliant and well-timed move by the DA to capitalize (and deservedly so, it appears) on the president's speech. I'm quite impressed!

      Stox - 2011-02-18 23:16

      Very crafty. It's nice to hear clever people speaking in a governmental capacity.

  • Bonzo - 2011-02-12 01:40

    Well done to Helen Zille. Not only are policies formulated by her and the DA now adopted by government, but she is able to hear the president himself conceding this by implication in his State of the Nation address. Further, it was good to hear Zuma complimenting Cape Town on at least three occasions in his speech. At last the ANC is taking to heart the message and the achievements of the DA.

  • genevieve - 2011-02-12 08:17

    Godzille has more balls than the whole of the ANC put together. She utilises her testosterone in her brain, to make the Western Cape work, while Zuma uses his testosterone to make little bastards.

  • huh - 2011-02-12 09:12

    Zille's ideas are nothing more than meaningless sloganomics. She has forgotten that she runs the Western Cape and has had the opportunity to implement her so-called policies. Nobody has stopped her and the Western Cape remains as affected and substance-abuse infected. Zuma's plans are useless and anyone claiming to have a hand in them, is a few cards short. Whatever Zille and Zuma offer cannot work (the soccer thing was a bigger 'injection' which failed so we do not even have to wait and see). SA is looking for solutions which neither Zille nor the Zuma-ANC have. Zille's brownie points will leave skidmarks.

      pointblankza - 2011-02-12 10:41

      Huh? Er, no she hasn't forgotten seeing it is the best run province with a 100% unqualified audit. Service delivery is the best in the country, and that is a direct consequence of DA policies... You do not really know much do you, huh? Be honest..

      Hendrik - 2011-02-12 10:52

      Going to start your own party aren't you? idiot

      tfbornman - 2011-02-14 08:51

      @Huh, look at this article before you give your opinions about Zille

  • maseratifitt - 2011-02-12 09:47

    This is one of the things I have against political parties. Even if they agree on something, it will be used to accentuate division. We really don't need them, and the one that is positively toxic to South Africa is the ANC.

  • Saffer - 2011-02-12 10:40

    @ huh Huh???

  • Kyle_logan - 2011-02-12 21:20

    Nicely said. however there is no way Zuma or the ANC will say any of these ideas came from anyone else... they will claim that it was their idea all along.... and the idiot masses will fall for it!

  • Snoopy88 - 2011-02-14 08:44

    Now why fiddle with banking and mining? Concentrate on what you're suppose to be doing! How about ensuring that every single poor community has a Women's Clinic to provide antenatal care, abortions and contraceptive without judgement!

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