Madam Speaker, hon President and Deputy President, hon members of this House, fellow South Africans.
Indeed, at this very moment a child is born in this country. That child will be born in a modern high-tech hospital, most likely in a hospital that has a 3D-scan and she will be surrounded by both her parents there. That same child will soon be taken home in a place that will be protected by private security. She will later attend a school with teachers who are present all the time and ultimately she will be one of the few who learn how to code and have opportunity. That child will get through university and ultimately will have a career that stretches out before her. Of course, she will have to work hard, but you can be guaranteed that, in fact, her future will always be there if she chooses to exercise that opportunity.
But fellow South Africans, at the same time as all of that, there will be another child.
Ono ke ngwana yo o tla belegelwang kwa kliliniking. Ngwana yo o tlileng go bolawa ke tlala.
That will be a child who will grow up in a community gripped by fear. She will have no choice but to go to the school nearest to her and she will know that even when she goes to school there may not be teachers in that classroom. She will know that when she goes to that school she will walk for kilometres if she's in a rural community.
Ngwana oo o tlile go nna kwa lekeisheneng koo e leng gore ditsotsi di tlabo di mo tsenella ko ntlong.
Maybe it might happen that she will finish school, maybe it might happen that she will get a degree, maybe it might happen. But in truth, many of us are starting to know that if she's not one of the lucky ones she's unlikely to work, she's unlikely to find a job.
Fellow South Africans, this is the South Africa that we live in, this is our country. [Applause.] We live in two separate worlds. When we speak about inequality it's not just a question of income inequality, it's an inequality of opportunities, it's an inequality of dreams and it's an inequality of possibilities. We live in a country of outsiders and insiders. And right now we are making no headway in breaking down that wall between those who have and those who have not.
The tragedy is that on Thursday evening the President gave a vision of a future of South Africa with hi-tech cities, high- speed trains and classrooms where children are taught to code and analyse data and no child goes hungry.
Mr President, I get that. My greatest fear is simply this: Is that, that will only be available to a few of our children and many of our children in this country would be left out of opportunities in our nation. [Applause.]
It cannot be a South Africa for some and not a South Africa for all. And that's why in the DA we have a dream motivated building one South Africa for all. [Applause.]
Hon members, three stats released this past month paint a very dire picture. It's a picture of a record unemployment that now stands at 38%. It's a picture where our economy contracted by 3,2% and ultimately that shows that our investment is declining. If you read that picture, you can see that our country is in crisis. It's a crisis that we need to face head on.
Our priority must be to fix what is broken in South Africa and to build a South Africa where we can be guaranteed an equality of opportunities. The party of an equal shot, not an equal outcome. So, to do that, we must table reforms. We need a bold plan, we need the right budget, we need the right people and most importantly, we need a plan.
We need to stop debating the mandate of the SA Reserve Bank, it's already in the Constitution, what we need to do is get on with the business of doing. [Applause.]
So, Mr President, while you are looking to build smart cities, I want to say "Why don't we make the cities that we have, already, smart?" [Applause.] "Why don't we broaden access and connect young people to information and opportunities that remain available to a few?"
At one place to start, Mr President, is with the allocation of broad spectrum, we will not reduce data cost until that decision is settled.
So, Mr President, furthermore, instead of building a new bullet train let's rather fix and protect the trains we have and give them to provinces to run. [Applause.]
We need interventions that will ultimately ensure that we halve unemployment in our lifetime and make sure that, in fact, we give young people a national civilian service where they can work.
Let me tell you something, by the end of the 19th Century cities like New York and London were facing a crisis that seemed to
have no solution. As these cities grew and developed, the thousands and thousands of horses needed to transport people around had left the streets knee-deep in manure.
New York had to employ an army of workers to clear the streets every day. In London, The Times newspaper reported back in 1894 that every street in the city would be buried under nine feet of manure within 50 years.
Of course, this didn't happen. And the reason for that was because there was a bold new solution. In fact, instead of us having horses, let's rather make cars.
Henry Ford's new and affordable motorcar had replaced horses in the cities, the manure problem went away, and of course, history was changed forever.
If we want to challenge the issues that we face today, we cannot be giving solutions that give us faster horses, what we need is bold and new interventions that transition South Africa.
All that the President wanted to give us on Thursday is a faster horse. We need a plan and we need one now, urgently, towards a South Africa of the future. And this plan must respond to these three challenges, Mr President, it must respond to what are we going to do around climate, what are we going to do around technology and what are we going to do around disease management.
So, we must ask ourselves these simple questions: What kind of South Africa do we want our children to inherit? What kind of skills do we need to help them with to step into the future? And can we make sure that our population and our cities are resilient? These are the questions we to have.
We no longer have the luxury of talking about climate. The fact of the matter is that even during these elections we saw floods in KwaZulu-Natal and a drought her in the Western Cape.
So, in truth, if we don't attend to this question and build cities that are resilient, it doesn't matter who is in government, South Africa will face difficult days ahead.
Furthermore, elsewhere in the country people are already responding to technology. We are using solutions like Smartphone screening to detect cervical cancer. This must be something we include as part of our plans in rural healthcare.
I hear everybody speaking about the Fourth industrial Revolution. Fellow South Africans, giving tablets to our children is not the Fourth Industrial Revolution, that's the Third Industrial Revolution. [Applause.]
We should be preparing our children for jobs that don't exist; that's the job now. And, so, the overwhelming majority of our jobs are not going to come from mining or manufacturing, they are going to come from fields such as data mining, digital design, coding and a host of technology-driven micro enterprises.
We need a plan that modernizes our economy for the future. Because lets learn this simple lesson: I grew up with Kodak, I grew up with things like Nokia, but in truth, if you look around this room, nobody uses Nokia phones and nobody is worried about
Kodak. The world has changed. If we don't change with it, learn the lesson from MultiChoice. All of these companies had a monopoly on the world but because of the changes that are taking place were rendered obsolete. The point is simply this, if we don't adept and change to the world that is upon us, we will fall behind and our people will continue to be unemployed. [Applause.]
Mr President, our vision for South Africa is a South Africa for all in which each child has access to quality education, a modernized economy that puts at least a job in every home, that gives access to healthcare and basic services to all, where citizens live in safe communities free from crime and corruption; a South Africa that is reconciled, a prosperous one and a beacon of hope for the developing world.
That's only the first part. The second part is actually that we must table a plan, we must figure out a way as to how do we get there from where we are and therefore, inevitably, we have to make hard decisions. It can't be business as usual. We have to make the tough choices about standing up to unions and alliance
partners. We have to actually upset the network of patronage that has kept so many of the cadres in jobs for far too long despite what they deliver. We have to rethink our policies that haven't worked in the last decade. And ultimately, we have to step out of the mindset and ideology that belongs in a different era.
None of this is easy. These are tough decisions. That's why it hasn't happened. So, instead of talking about real tough reforms, we maybe talk about dreams, we maybe talk about a faster horse; as others on Twitter described it, we maybe talk about Wakanda. [Laughter.]
Fellow South Africans, our nation is in deep crisis. And I believe we can it around if we are willing to act now and make decisive choices. We can begin by building a modernized African country comprised of strong individuals who are able to compete with the best in the world.
Ba ntse ba bua ba re ...
... the best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago. The second best time to plant a tree is today. We need to plant the trees for the future of our children; knowing that we, ourselves, may never sit under those trees, but we must plant them today. [Applause.]
And therefore, fellow South Africans, I want to propose seven reforms that will enable us to become the modern, inclusive country we all dream of. [Interjections.]
The first reform that we must have is the reform to our state- owned enterprises, SOEs. The last thing we need now is to be committing ourselves and billions of rand to decades of this dinosaur called Eskom. We must immediately split Eskom into two entities and have one company for distribution and another for build. We must allow independent power producers to come on board. [Applause.]
Our country is rich in solar, and if we get this right, what independent power producers and solar will do to Eskom will be
what Uber has already done to transport, it will bring change, the change that we need. [Applause.]
When we build new green economies, we can allow for workers to be reskilled and be reincluded in an economy of the future. We need to allow cities to buy energy directly from independent power producers and stop ourselves from being coal dependent in the next ten years. We need change, and we need reform now. And while we are at it Mr President, I hope you can be bold enough to sell SA Airways, SAA, and focus that money on fixing the trains that we need. [Applause.]
The second reform I want to propose is that I want to propose a reform to our education. Fellow South Africans, we have to introduce charter schools. What charter schools are, are a private-public partnership that allows for our children to be able to walk to schools closer to them, that can give them a quality of education that is private school compared. It will make sure we stand up to unions and give the best teachers the best infrastructure and technology for children closest to communities.
Le nna ke lapile ke go bona bana ba rona ba tswa kwa makeisheneng ba tsaya ditekesi le diterena ba ya kwa dikolong tse di kgakala go na le dikoloi gaufi le bone. A re ba fe dikolo tse dib a berekelang kwa ba nnang teng. [Legofi.]
So that teaching our children to code and to analyse is not a luxury for a few but it is a luxury for all our children in South Africa, whether rural or urban. We need reform and we need it now. [Applause.]
The third reform I want to propose, Mr President, is to our healthcare. What remains true is that you might pursue the National Health Insurance, NHI; it is expensive and it is unaffordable. In truth, it will waste further resources and time in an unrealistic pipedream for which we simply can't afford.
So, I would propose that our DA's health plan which gives a range of solutions that will make quality healthcare available for all our citizens. So that whether you are rich or poor you
can gain access to primary healthcare in both public and private healthcare facilities. This solution will provide access to free primary healthcare to be rolled out quicker, cheaper and more fairly. We must also use healthcare technology because this is the future of disease management.
The fourth reform is that we must reform our labour legislation. Mr President, if we want to be true, we no longer the investment destination of choice because of our rigorous labour legislation. Our current rigid legislation has not only driven away investment, it has also created two classes of citizens: the employed and the unemployed.
So, I am urging, let's look at the tax structure and introduce tax incentives for people who create jobs and setup a jobs and justice fund so that we can invest in research and design, so that we focus on industries of the future.
Let's relook at the national minimum wage in its current form and allow for sectors' specific minimum wage; and in fact, give
young people opt out clauses so that they can participate in the economy.
The fifth reform is that we have to build a capable and a clean state. I find it shocking that we come here in Parliament after the revelations of the Zondo Commission have confirmed one thing, and through cadre deployment and monopoly politics we have ended up with state capture.
In truth, the deployments that have taken place in government, SOEs or Chapter Nine Institutions have resulted in one thing, where cadres put the interest of the party instead of the interest of the citizens first. [Applause.]
It is deeply worrying that there are people who are going to be chairing committees that frankly should be in jail rather than chairing committees. [Applause.]
Mr President, I want to ask you. Let's allow the Public protector to do her job, to table the report into allegations into Bosasa. Let's set up a parliamentary ad hoc committee where
you can come and give your version of the story. And let's stop delaying, let's get to the bottom of this and clean out corruption, once and for all, in South Africa today. [Applause.]
If we are going to reform the state we should have made Cabinet much smaller. Instead, the President made it look as if he's cutting Cabinet and introduced Deputy Ministers, doubled them up. I want to argue this case that we can reduce the state to 15 ministries, eradicate Deputy Ministers and make sure money is available for the people of this country. [Applause.]
The sixth reform I want to table is in fact that we must extend property ownership to millions of dispossessed South Africans. Our history is such that too many were dispossessed, in both urban and rural. Therefore, let's give our citizens the right own title. The right, so that black and white South Africans must be able to access the benefit of owning private property as an economic asset that allows them to transfer wealth to future generations. While we at it, let's give shareholding to younger South Africans so that they can transfer wealth; so that one day we can say we did break the back of the apartheid plan where our
people cannot transfer wealth one generation to the next. [Applause.]
The seventh reform I want to say, Mr President, is that if we want to keep South Africans safe at home, in rural communities, on farms, let us give the SA Police into well run, well trained, highly professional crime- fighting units, let us give this to the hands of the provincial governments. [Applause.] Let us reform policing so that provinces can run it. Hand them over to provincial governments.
Fellow South Africans, if we reform we can begin a way to the future of South Africa. Ten years from now, I want to see a South Africa that looks completely different from today.
We can halve unemployment. DA governments are already forging ahead, and have begun innovating, modernizing and growing the cities. [Interjections.] That's why where we govern, you'll find that unemployment is the lowest in the country due to our obsessive focus on city-led. [Applause.]
Today, Stellenbosch has already got an ecosystem in the most productive in Africa, employing over 40 O00 people; more than Lagos and Nairobi combined, and rightly earning the title of Africa's tech hub.
In terms of renewal energy, eight out of ten municipalities in the Western Cape have already got laws in place to allow for independent solar energy generation; and most of them want to sell energy back to the grid.
This is what a city-led economic growth plan would look like. That's why we are taking this government to court to ask that they must give the rights to the City of Cape Town to be able to generate energy for citizens here. [Applause.] And we will do it to all the cities.
In terms of education, the DA-run Western Cape's investment in the future of eLearning has seen over R1,4 billion invested in the past five years. It's already delivered over 1 160 refreshed computer labs, 28 870 devices for learners and 11 000 resources for our online portal.
To date, 70% of all teachers are trained in eTraining and over 80% of schools are connected to free internet. The Western Cape's retention rate from Grades 10 - 12 is the highest in the country.
In healthcare, already we know that more of our citizens are connected online and we keep 13 million of citizens' online records to make sure we give effective healthcare.
Fellow South Africans, we have already started working.
Ga re bue fela. [Tsenoganong.]
We are working.
So, I want to appeal to you, Mr President, and I also want to appeal to all South Africans: Let's work together to achieve this plan. I have pledged my support to assisting you when you needed support, when you build South Africa, I want to ask you
to help the places where the DA isn't government so that we can continue the work that we have. [Interjections.]
I would urge you, Mr President, let us free up small businesses to create work, let us sell off our beleaguered SOEs, let us modernize and de- unionize our children's basic education. We have a plan and let's begin to work on it.
I want to say this: Every single day in this country I draw inspiration from the teacher who shows up in the classroom despite what has happened, I draw inspiration from the healthcare worker who goes to our hospital, I draw inspiration from the businessman who even when confronted with profit and profit losses still keeps people employed. And in this month I think we need to draw inspiration from the young people of 1976. When they looked out and realised that they could not spend their days dreaming, they decided to take to the streets and fight for what was rightfully theirs.
Mr President, time for talking is over, it is time for us to act, right now. I thank you very much. [Applause.]