KZN Premier sets up Youth Directorate

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Pretoria - KwaZulu-Natal Premier Senzo Mchunu has announced the creation of a Chief Directorate on Youth Development in the Premier’s Office to co-ordinate youth development initiatives in the province.

“We will be creating a Chief Directorate on Youth Development in the Office of the Premier. The directorate will co-ordinate all youth development initiatives in the province to ensure synergies. 

“It will focus on research on youth development and promote the interests of young people in general. All of these should be done by September 2014,” he said.

The premier made the announcement during his State of the Province Address on Thursday.

He said the KwaZulu-Natal Youth Development Council will be established with people drawn from different experiences to work on a part-time basis.

The council will be serviced by the secretariat attached to the Chief Directorate. 

“There is also a need for a comprehensive Youth Development Strategy. It is for this reason that a youth summit will be convened to consider all the above and other matters on youth development,” he said

Poverty eradication

The premier said the province will throw its full weight behind poverty eradication.

“We will be intensifying support of vulnerable groups, in particular mothers and children, the disabled, communities on commercial farms and informal settlements.

“We have adopted a Poverty Eradication Programme and Package. This programme will ensure that as government, we work with all non-governmental partners to eradicate poverty through our Operation Sukuma Sakhe,” Premier Mchunu said.

He said the province aimed to increase employment from 2.4 million in 2010, to 4.5 million in 2030.

He said focus will also be placed on small and medium business, as they are the largest contributors to new employment opportunities.

“We want to increase the number of jobs through the establishment of SMMEs and co-ops by at least 300 000. We are encouraging our compatriots in the townships and in rural areas to work hard and rekindle their interests in business,” he said.

According to the premier, the newly established KwaZulu-Natal Small Business Development Agency and the National Ministry of Small Business Development will serve as their vehicles as they refocus on small businesses.

Agriculture

Premier Mchunu said his provincial government’s targets for the agricultural sector over the next five years are to increase employment in agriculture from the current 110 000 jobs to 200 000 jobs.

“We want to facilitate at least 1 000 new farmer entrants and to bring one million hectares of unproductive land back into commercial agricultural production,” he said. - SAnews.gov.za

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