Address Delivered by the Deputy President, Phumzile Mlambo-Ngcuka,
at the Department of Home Affairs Conference on Foreign Offices Operations, at
the Birchwood Hotel Conference Centre, 6 February 2006
Minister of Home
Affairs, Nosiviwe Mapisa-Nqakula,
Minister of Foreign Affairs, Dr. Nkosazana
Minister of Labour, Membathisi Mdladlana,
Minister of Trade
and Industry, Mandisi Mpahlwa,
Chief Executive Officers
of various companies,
Congratulations on this important conference which can only
serve to improve the performance of the department and facilitate greater intergovernmental
co-ordination. Many of us have not always understood the strategic nature of this
department as a political, social and economic department.
is there when you are
(2) when you graduate from being
a minor to an adult
(3) when you get married or
(4) divorce and when
(5) travel in and outside your country and
(6) when you die.
error at any of these critical points in life can be devastating, traumatic and
even destiny changing to an individual and or family.
Home Affairs is key
(1) efficiency of movement of goods and services.
(2) It can
impact positively on our exports and therefore significant earnings for the country,
(3) frustrate import of essential goods and services, movement of people
be they are tourists, families and business.
In each case a mistake can
be very costly emotionally, financially and politically.
Home Affairs is
also a key security department, our national security depends very much on how
we manage our borders, so that only those we want are within our borders, and
those we seek to detain and keep in check within our borders must not leave our
shores without our knowledge.
Those of you who are stationed overseas are
part of our frontline staff and therefore the face of our nation, how you deal
with people and with how you render services makes us a losing or a winning nation.
and Gentlemen, this is a key department for the success of Accelerated and Shared
Growth Initiative of South Africa.
Your workshop follows State of the Nation
Address (SONA) where the President has unveiled to the nation ASGISA.
department is one of our crucial department for attracting Foreign Direct Investment
(FDI), Skills, Tourism, Market Access, Exports and Imports which are key and supporting
elements of ASGISA for example those inputs which we have got from other countries.
In ASGISA we seek to:
1. Half unemployment and poverty by
2. Average of Growth of at least 6% of GDP by 2014,
3. We want Sustainable
and Shared Growth, we admit that notwithstanding our good macro-economic balance
unemployment and poverty is still too high as President said "Years of freedom
have been very good for business"
ASGISA is not a new economic policy.
It is mostly micro economic reforms within a GEAR Macro economic framework. It
is about the efficiency of the state, better conditions for business, closing
the skills gap in short and long term, linking the 1st and 2nd economy, clearing
up on Governance and Red tape, corruption etc, that impacts on delivering at all
levels of government and critical within specific departments like DTI, DME, HA,
We are addressing a phenomena of growth that is driven by commodity
prices to consumer spending both variables are therefore risky.
key Initiatives in ASGI-SA are:
billion to be spent by SOE, government departments, PPP in the current METF, ESKOM,
Transnet, Water, ACSA/2010, Roads, Habours, Rail, Clinics and Schools.
The MAKE or BREAK of this much needed R320 billion Public
investment which is the best ever Fixed investment the country has ever seen could
fall flat in the short term because of artisan skills and high level scarce and
priority skills some of which we have to import!. If we lose it on HRD and Skills
we will lose momentum and goodwill!
Skills needs for key sectors of the
economy face similar challenges. i.e. We do not have any of them in South Africa.
The long term quality of education and curriculum relevance needs attention, it
will help us to have our critical pool of skills.
Private sector has told
us they have problems with Home Affairs when it comes to bringing in scarce skills,
spouses of South Africans and in general turn around time is too long at desk
level and going through border gates by air or road can be a nightmare. It
has been alleged.
Scarce skills that we have identified for the
agent ASGISA include:
Ø Sectors to be promoted:
following are the sectors we have identified as priority and are ready to implement
pending minor outstanding matters.
- (i) Tourism and
- Skills, movement of people also arise here, including issues
of flights, visas are also relevant.
- These two sectors represent quick
win sectors for both 1st and 2nd economy so we cannot go wrong.
- I think
Home Affairs must be part of the ASGI-SA Help Team responsible for removing bottlenecks.
- Other sectors which are priority but are still work in progress include,
Bio-fuels, Chemicals, Agriculture, Mineral beneficiation, Creative industries
Clothing, Textile, wood and pulp paper.
o Issues such a competition, import
parity pricing, incentive scheme still need to be finalised in some of the sectors.
For all of them skills are a challenge!
Access to Finance Micro and for small
Micro - R10 000 and below
2. Small - R10 000 - R250 000
funds include R1 billion from IDC, Khula, Umsobomvu, Financial services, Charter
and other BEE charters.
- Preferential Procurement by SOE's and government
to be given attention and paying SMMEs on time Government have to set aside 10
items for SMMEs.
- Targeting a 100 000 new SMME p/a.
- Easy regulatory
burden for SMME's.
- A set of proposal are under consideration by Cabinet
in that regard.
- Further second economy initiatives will target youth.
Unemployed graduates. A national youth service, care for vulnerable children through
the big brother big sister programmes, are some of the Umsobomvu Programmes. Education
support and start businesses are also part of the work the DTI and DOE are busy
- Youth will be targeted for artisan training at FET, learnerships
and apprenticeships. We hope to place some trainees in companies outside South
- Expanded Public Works will include early childhood care givers
and road construction will also be significantly up-scaled. In all of EPWP programs
we need to pay attention to quality of skills.
- Housing challenges also
enjoy priority in ASGI-SA especially the lower middle class who cannot find homes
for R250 thousand to R150 million.
- Women have identified, skills Access
to finance, specific sectors that will help to engender ASGISA viz; Tourism, Agriculture,
Creative Industries & BPO.
- A fund which will target women is being
launched tomorrow by Business Partners and Khula.
A placement program
for women in infrastructure will start by May essentially providing project management,
site management and project finance and all other aspects of infrastructure development.
Project: There are a range of infrastructure and Sectoral Initiatives.
and Service Delivery:
As far as local government is concerned we will
be deploying scarce skills. We have established a database in the last few months
and will be ready to deploy mainly retired South Africans from May 2006 at least
90 of them have been screened, interviewed and approved. We are recruiting foreigners
as well for mentoring in Local Economic Development, Engineering and Financial
Focus on bottlenecks at local government levels and
bottlenecks at all levels of Governments across departments, SOEs, those who issue
licenses, permits, approvals and visas frontline officials in borders.
I cannot over emphasize the relevance of this department
- Tourism and BPO
- Skills in general especially
- Import and Exports
- Security and Corruption
is meant to assist us perform better and profile the country well and share growth.
this regard we received of what sounded like service delivery breakdown at some
of our borders last December. I hope the matter has been canvassed with the department
at the right levels.
Your Ministry and department has been seized with
efforts to root out corruption and improve service delivery. It is a battle have
to win, any failure always receive widespread publicity. As you know The Minister,
deputy Minister or Director General can only do so much, they need from all of
you. I thank you.
I know you are equal to the task, we depend on you when
we are born, marry, divorce, go out of the country and even at death. You inform
cabinet that we are officially dead.
I thank you.