Partnerships delivering high impact outcomes for government

Thursday, June 1, 2017

Cape Town – Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa says partnerships and collaborations have resulted in green shoots for the country in key government programmes.

He said this when participating in a debate on The Presidency’s Budget Vote in the National Assembly on Wednesday.

Dedicating his speech to demonstrating how partnerships are effective in modern day governance, the Deputy President said working together in various endeavours of social and economic interaction has become the new norm around the world.

He said leaders and policymakers who ignore this tried and tested approach to addressing and resolving problems “do so at the peril of preventing societies from moving to higher levels of progress and development”.

“I have seen over the past year how working together can achieve great outcomes on a number of issues where positive outcomes were thought to be impossible.

“Positive outcomes can be achieved if we draw on the energies of all stakeholders to address the challenges that face our people, be they how to grow an inclusive economy, build skills and capabilities, enhance the capacity of the state and promote leadership and partnerships throughout society.

“It can be done, but only if we forge new ways of working together that involve all South Africans in a common struggle to fundamentally transform our economy and our society,” he said.

The Deputy President cited a few examples where new partnerships have resulted in new initiatives, creating the space for collective effort.

This includes the collaboration between social partners in coming up with the R3 500 National Minimum Wage in February this year following two years of consultation.

“Earlier this year, the social partners at Nedlac [National Economic Development and Labour Council] reached a historic agreement on labour stability and the introduction of a national minimum wage.

“Many of us thought the differences between the social partners – particularly a militant labour component and a business class whose main focus is profit – would stand in the way of reaching agreement.

“Following two years of intensive engagement between government, labour, business and the community sector, an agreement was reached,” he said.

The Deputy President said even though social partners at times differed in opinion and position, they all remained committed to an outcome that would be in the best interest of the country.

“Although they were representing the interests of their respective constituencies and although they fought vigorously to protect those interests, they were all keenly aware that over and above everything else, they had to represent the collective interests of the people of South Africa,” he said.

Youth employment initiative

Another initiative, the Deputy President said, was the youth employment initiative, which has seen commitment of business, government and labour collaborate to provide paid internships for up to a million young South Africans over three years.

“We are pleased that a number of companies recognise the importance of making meaningful interventions on skills development.

“It is this recognition that we have encouraged and that has inspired a number of leading companies to form partnerships with various TVET [Technical and Vocational Education and Training] colleges across the country.

“Through these partnerships, companies are providing resources and skills to institutions that are critical to the skills revolution that our country must necessarily undergo,” he said.

Adopt a TVET college

Another programme that has seen collaboration at work includes the “Adopt a TVET College” programme, which the Deputy President said has helped to ensure that the curricula is relevant to the needs of industry.

“Over the course of the last year, more than 700 000 South Africans were engaged in a number of public employment programmes, where they were providing essential public services while receiving a stipend income, gaining work experience and acquiring skills,” he said.

SA National Aids Council

The Deputy President also said he has seen the value of collaboration, leadership, patience, and understanding through the work government does through the SA National Aids Council.

“By bringing together such a wide range of social groupings and interests to forge a common programme to overcome a disease that so fundamentally threatens our society, we are demonstrating what can be achieved if we work together.

“In developing the new National Strategic Plan on HIV, TB and STIs, which was launched in March this year, we had to draw on the insights, experience, learnings and concerns of dozens of different partners, organisations and individuals,” he said. – SAnews.gov.za

 

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