KEYNOTE ADDRESS BY THE HONOURABLE JEFF RADEBE, MP, MINISTER
IN THE PRESIDENCY FOR PLANNING, MONITORING AND EVALUATION; AT THE OCCASION OF
THE LAUNCH THE NDP YOUTH AMBASSADORS; ROOM 5, RIVONIA MALL, RIVONIA
The Director General of the Department of
Planning Monitoring and Evaluation (DPME), Ms Mpumi Mpofu
The CEO of the NYDA, Mr Sifiso Mtsweni
Business leaders and NDP partners Delegates
from the various stakeholders represented here
Our Special Guests — The NDP Youth Ambassadors
Ladies and gentlemen
gathered here this evening to conclude what has been an extremely busy month in
South Africa. The month of September has been celebrated since the dawn of
democracy as National Heritage month. This year’s heritage month marks the 5th
anniversary of the National Development Plan (NDP), which was unanimously
adopted by parliament on 12 September 2012.
NDP anniversary coincides with the passing of a great visionary and proponent
of Black Consciousness, Steve Biko. Biko was brutally killed by the apartheid
police on 12 September 1977 at the tender age of 30. As we commemorate the 40th
anniversary of his passing, his incisive words reverberate beyond the grave.
His message in a letter to his wife and three children, remain instructive to
all of us:
devoted my life to see equality for blacks, and at the same time, I’ve denied
the needs of my family. Please understand that I take these actions, not out of
selfishness or arrogance, but to preserve a South Africa worth living in for
blacks and whites.”
injunction from Biko compels us to strive for an equal and more prosperous
society as espoused in the NDP. In this year of Oliver Tambo, a patriot who
selflessly dedicated his life to the struggle for the liberation in South
Africa, we must engage in very bold steps to make positive change in the lives
of the people of our country.
must cherish the ideals espoused by all those who sacrificed their lives for us
to be free. The best way to honour them is by empowering the youth. Young
people must be at the forefront of fundamental change. We must derive
inspiration from the profound words of our liberation struggle stalwart O.R.
Tambo, when he says:
children of any nation are its future. A country, a movement, a person that
does not value its youth and children does not deserve its future.”
in respect of this vision that the overarching plan of South Africa – the
National Development Plan – is futuristic in its orientation. The NDP outlines
the envisaged development trajectory in our journey towards the year 2030. The
young people of today are the ones who will witness the fruition of our Vision
2030. It is against this backdrop that youth development is a matter of
national importance. For we know that when we invest in the youth, we invest in
the future of our country.
often say that the youth are the leaders of tomorrow. The converse is also true
that our journey towards a better tomorrow begins today. It is in this regard
that the NDP singles out the youth as the major catalysts in boosting economic
growth. Youth empowerment is therefore central in the NDP strategies. Our event
this evening is premised on the view that the youth are the main drivers of the
NDP and ought to be the main beneficiaries of economic transformation.
in view of this realisation that the Department of Planning, Monitoring and
Evaluation (DPME), initiated a number of NDP programmes that are youth
oriented. To mark the milestone of five years, the Department organised a
series of activities to advance the principles and the ideals of the NDP.
Wednesday, 12 September, President Jacob Zuma addressed us on the achievements
of the NDP over the past five years. I followed with a public lecture at UNISA,
Pretoria, where I reflected on lessons learnt and explored strategies for
enhancing effective implementation of this noble plan.
have established a formidable partnership with the Department of Basic
Education, wherein we launched the annual NDP Learner competitions. The primary
objective of the competitions is to create awareness and educate the youth from
an early age about the NDP as the overarching plan of the country.
Wednesday, 26 September, we hosted the NDP Schools’ debate competition. It was
truly inspiring to listen to young people analyzing the NDP and the state of
our nation. I am deeply grateful to the Department of Basic Education and
schools that participated in this programme.
take this opportunity to congratulate all the participants and especially the
overall winner, Sanele Sthembiso Khoza from Malabela High School in
KwaZulu-Natal, and the runner-up Lindi Innocent Nkosi, from Mashishing High
School in Mpumalanga province. These young people are some of our brightest
stars that will illuminate our growth path in our collective journey towards
the year 2030.
quite significant that as we conclude our anniversary month, we are gathered
here to officially launch the NDP Youth Brand Ambassadors programme. The last
time I saw many of you was on the first day of the month at the Union
Buildings, where I hosted a breakfast meeting. It is wonderful to meet you
again as we conclude the month, now as the official NDP Brand Ambassadors!
would recall that we have come a long way to be where we are today. Some of you
were selected from the winners and the nominees of the South African Youth
Awards (SAYA), held at the St. George Hotel in March this year. It is our view
that the full value of an award cannot be realised unless the winner contributes
towards the development of their communities. We want to see young people
directly involved in imparting skills and nurturing other young talents.
have stood out as potential ambassadors as a result of the public nomination
process. We embarked on a public nomination process where we put out a call for
young people to submit their names and motivate why they think they deserve to
be the NDP Brand Ambassadors. We have had overwhelming response from young
people across the country. You emerged head and shoulders above the rest.
to all of you for making the final cut. The selection criteria for candidates
is a stringent one, and involved a rigorous process to ensure that we select
the best candidates for specific fields. I am confident as ambassadors you will
serve the country with honour and diligence and enthusiastically champion the
values and principles of the NDP.
ambassadors you will be expected to serve as role models to young people in the
country and should be respectable as members of society. You must see yourselves
as agents of change and be willing to dedicate their time in the service of the
South African people.
NDP Brand Ambassador Programme is premised on promoting youth entrepreneurship
to boost economic growth, increase employment, and reduce poverty and
inequality. As government, our mission is to transform the economic landscape
and make it more inclusive and address the challenges of poverty, unemployment
economic indicators show that the youth remains the hardest hit by the triple
challenges of poverty, unemployment and inequality. These are some of the
challenges that we must collectively address with the urgency that they deserve
to pave a better future for our country
important to note that the scourge of unemployment is not a government problem
alone. It is a societal problem. Youth development is a matter of national
importance. To ignore the plight of the youth will be a major risk in the
socio-economic condition of our country. Let us join hands and wage a fierce
fight against youth unemployment.
business and civil society organisations must work together to combat youth
unemployment. They should provide skills development opportunities through
training, internships and mentorship for young graduates and budding
entrepreneurs. This is how we can establish a solid foundation for rapid and
inclusive economic growth in our country. This is a clarion call to prospective
partners, especially businesses, to join hands with us in empowering the youth.
nations all across the globe enhance their chances of prosperity through
investment in new ideas, new innovations and new opportunities. Young people
must be given opportunities to explore their talents and unleash their creative
potential. We need innovative young entrepreneurs who will play a meaningful
role in the renewal of our economy. Entrepreneurship is a fundamental endeavour
for economic emancipation especially in our rapidly changing industrial
extend a word of gratitude to the businesses that have come on board in support
of youth empowerment initiatives. We embark on these initiatives conscious of
the fact that we would not achieve everything without the assistance of the
business sector. I can assure all businesses that are interested in
contributing to this programme that it is a worthy investment. I also invite
other interested parties to join hands with us in empowering the youth.
country enhances its prosperity through investment in new ideas, new
opportunities and new jobs. It is our local innovators and entrepreneurs who
will ultimately create the millions of jobs that we need to grow an inclusive
must create an enabling environment for young people to explore their talents
and unleash their creative potential. Youth should never be deprived of
opportunities to explore their potential on account of lack of resources. We
must do all we can to support youth development. When we empower the youth, we
empower the nation.
people, you must be at the forefront of fundamental change. Try to make a
difference in your chosen vocation. Youth must embrace the opportunities that
our country and democracy affords you. You should draw inspiration from the
incisive words of Frantz Fanon:
generation must discover its mission, fulfil it or betray it, in relative
have now been declared as the NDP Brand Ambassadors. You must always bear in
mind that you are no longer representing yourself as an individual. As an ambassador
you are the face of our country. You represent the nation. You represent your
generation. You must leave a legacy that you will be proud of. This is your
opportunity to make South Africa a better place.