Annual General Conference – 13 October 2007

32nd ANNUAL GENERAL CONFERENCE OF THE INKATHA FREEDOM PARTY
ON THE THEME ‘EACH ONE’S ROLE IN A CRISIS AND THE FORTHCOMING ELECTION’

EMANDLENI/MATLENG, ULUNDI : 12-14 OCTOBER 2007

RESOLUTIONS

The Annual General Conference of the Party met in Ulundi on October 12-14, 2007 and unanimously adopted the following:

RESOLUTION 1: SELF-HELP AND SELF-RELIANCE: KEY FACTORS IN ESTABLISHING SOCIO-ECONOMIC STABILITY AND IN CURBING GROWING UNREST

That the citizens of South Africa, of whom a majority can be categorized as poor, ill-educated, under-employed, unemployed and currently unemployable, need to be confronted with the reality that the present Government of the Republic is not able now, and nor will it be able in the foreseeable future, to adequately meet the growing needs of their human security and general expectations of “a better life for all”.

Furthermore, that the Inkatha Freedom Party believes the potential for widespread social unrest is now more dangerous than ever before as the culture of entitlement and disruptive behaviour – long motivated by the ANC Alliance in its quest for political power – has now become a formidable social force witnessed in violent strike action, mass demonstrations, rampaging university students and burning barricades in our townships.

We therefore:

  1. Urge Government to prioritize self-help programmes and projects in which citizens can be mobilized to help themselves and their communities – including the construction of appropriate housing and associated community infrastructure;
  2. Urge that these self-help projects be designed to ensure that the immediate beneficiaries – both men and women – are enabled by the transfer of general trade skills including brick laying, plumbing, tiling, carpentry, electrical wiring and so on;
  3. Urge that public-private partnerships be established to utilise tertiary education data bases in an effort to match a wide-range of students seeking financial assistance with enabling part-time employment;

RESOLUTION 2: THE NATION MOBILISING FOR THE 2009 ELECTIONS – THE IFP CHAMPIONING FREE AND TRANSPARENT POLL

Noting that after thirteen years in power the ANC has disintegrated into a breeding ground of corruption, malaise and drift from the values contained in the Freedom Charter and that the pending general election in 2009 has the potential to unleash events which could have long-lasting and negative influences

We therefore:

  1. Resolve to bolster future IFP electoral success by establishing an IFP branch in every ward and, where possible, to locate the branch close to voting stations;
  2. Propose to task the members of the National Council instructed to launch branches with monitoring their work and reporting truthfully on the performance of these branches during their constitutionally-mandated terms of office;
  3. Intend to ensure that branch recruitment is an ongoing process and does not end with the inauguration of the branch;
  4. Intend to train branch committees with election training;
  5. Intend to ensure that Party structures observe all provisions of the Party constitution;
  6. Intend to remove Party leaders who create ‘no go’ areas and other hindrances against other Party leaders;
  7. Resolve to instil discipline and promote political education by reviving local camps for IFP cadres;
  8. Intend to urge all party structures to motivate that all South Africans obtain their ID document and are registered in time to vote in the 2009 general election;
  9. Demand that political parties ensure that only competent and accountable candidates rooted in moral principles be placed on their election lists;
  10. Pledge that the IFP will thoroughly interrogate the competency, honesty and integrity of its own candidates during the party’s election lists process;
  11. Intend to provide election material timeously for all provinces;
  12. Intend to identify and train Party agents well in advance;
  13. Intend to establish a tailored programme to target floating voters and other interest groups;
  14. Intend to implement a cogent governance strategy to include monitoring the performance and assessment of public representatives.

RESOLUTION 3: INSTRUCTIONS FOR BRANCH MEMBERS AND LEADERS AHEAD OF THE 2009 ELECTIONS

Noting that the party must fully prepare during the whole of the next year for the general election in 2009, instructs all members and branch leadership structures to:

  1. Continuously conduct voter registration surveys in all voting districts;
  2. Mobilise to encourage and ensure that all persons have their ID books;
  3. Assist persons in obtaining ID books and voter registration;
  4. Notify leadership, in detail, of all problems relating to citizens obtaining ID books and registering to vote in areas in which they reside;
  5. Ensure they are visible and accessible as IFP activists and promote the political platforms of the party;
  6. Ensure branch membership is renewed and recorded annually and fund-raise according to party guidelines;
  7. Commence party and community voter education campaigns and ensure that party information is readily available for distribution and discussion;
  8. Fully report to leadership the political “climate” in all voting districts with special reference to attempts to create “no go” areas by the use of intimidation and document all relevant and factual information for the party’s IEC representatives;
  9. Seek new constituencies beyond existing branch structures;
  10. Design IFP election campaign material relevant to your various constituencies for approval by leadership;
  11. Begin preliminary processes of identifying, mentoring, encouraging and investigating possible new leadership candidates within and beyond the party for future consideration for inclusion on to the party’s election lists;
  12. Ensure that women and youth in all structures develop their own distinctive IFP election issue campaigns in all voting districts, which are relevant to the communities in which they live;
  13. Continue to promote and protect non-racism and gender equality in all structures.

RESOLUTION 4: THE NEED TO EXPOSE MISUSE OF STATE RESOURCES – CORRUPTION AND MISMANAGEMENT MUST BE STOPPED

The exposure of numerous instances of corruption and mismanagement of State resources is cause for national alarm. From Local Government and Provincial structures through to Parliament and other State bodies, the criminal abuse of public funds has become a regular occurrence.

We therefore:

  1. Call for vigilance by all IFP public representatives and citizens in general to expose all instances of abuse or reasonable suspicions of abuse they encounter;
  2. Request that relevant information at their disposal in this regard be provided to multiple sources in an effort to ensure appropriate and thorough investigations and to keep detailed records of whom they have contacted and when;
  3. Note that with the 2009 general election looming, IFP members and supporters in positions of authority must continue to exercise extreme caution that resources under their control are not abused in any way whatsoever for party-political purposes;
  4. Intend to publicise with vigour instances of public officials who avoid disciplinary action by resigning prior to investigation;
    Urge leadership to authorize ongoing studies of the perceived manipulation of public funding and resources being used to promote the
  5. ANC including imbizos and stage-managed events which are often televised live by the SABC and to vigorously engage the IEC, the SABC and ICASA in this regard.
  6. Call upon the Provincial Government and implement in IFP-managed municipalities the old “open tender” system where all tenders were delivered by a tenderer in sealed envelopes at a predetermined time and opened in the presence of all tenderers and the quantum of each tender was read out at the opening;
  7. Urge Government to tackle meaningfully the widespread allocation of subsidies to unqualified recipients, particularly housing subsidies to employees whose income exceeds the limits imposed by the respective subsidy regulations;
  8. Intend to intensify our campaign against the proposed legislative complex in Pietermaritzburg, expected to cost a staggering R600-million.

RESOLUTION 5: COMBATING POOR PUBLIC SERVICE DELIVERY – WHY CITIZENS AND GOVERNMENT NEED CALL CENTRES TO RAPIDLY IDENTIFY PROBLEMS

The IFP is appalled by reports relating to the contempt with which some Government employees treat members of the general public. These complaints range, for example, from the maltreatment and indifference by some nurses of sick and injured persons to allegations and proof of corruption within the SAPS and Home Affairs. Clearly inter-action and clear lines of communication between affected persons and Government departments and their leadership are required.

We therefore call for the following proposals to be prioritised by Government as a matter of urgency:

  1. All public servants at all levels must clearly wear name badges at all times and it must be enacted that it will be an offence to conceal this identification at any time;
  2. All public places (police stations, hospitals, clinics, Government offices etc.) throughout South Africa must have widely and visibly displayed “hot line” telephone numbers to which all persons can immediately and without cost to themselves report any action which they reasonably believe to be unacceptable and/or palpably wrong;
  3. All “hot lines” to be installed using available ICT technology and linked to national, provincial and local call centres which will record and thereafter enable investigation and rapid response to all complaints and/or information received;
  4. All Government departments at all levels must receive regular reports of all information received, action/response timelines and ensure appropriate investigation and responses;
  5. All Government departments must widely advertise this service and institute education programmes as to its use and relevance;
  6. All vexatious behaviour by members of the public must be deemed to have appropriate and salutary consequences;

RESOLUTION 6: CRIME AND JUSTICE – A NATIONAL CRISIS: HOW AND WHY CITIZENS MUST GET INVOLVED IN FIGHTING CRIME

It is an indisputable fact that South African citizens live for the most part in fear of violent crime and in the knowledge that their safety and security are in peril each and every day of their lives. IFP Conferences repeatedly highlight this national crisis and we continue to lament various national and international research surveys which purport to show that South Africa is one of the most violent and dangerous societies in the world.

The damage done to our national economy as a result of all manner of criminal behaviour — which is now obviously systemic and endemic throughout our society — is incalculable. The human suffering is a tragedy of immense proportions.

As far as crime statistics are concerned, we therefore:

Continue to urge that Government provides Parliament with far more accurate and relevant crime statistics than is currently the case;

As far as the South African Police Service is concerned, we therefore:

  1. Continue to salute the bravery, hard work and sacrifice of the majority of law enforcement personnel and encourage increased remuneration for them;
  2. Continue to urge that Government prioritizes increasing professionalism and high levels of training throughout the criminal justice system;
  3. Continue to urge citizens to be proactive in supporting community/police forums and other self-help community safety initiatives;
  4. Continue to urge citizens to immediately and factually report corruption and instances of unprofessional behaviour of police, correctional service and justice department officers and officials;
  5. Propose that the funds currently allocated to the civilian secretariat (designed to monitor the work of the SAPS but without much achievement) in the nine provinces be redirected to finance, recruit and train more police personnel and build and equip more police stations;
  6. Intend to actively campaign against the politicization of the SAPS by appointing to key positions individuals without the required professional background and expertise.

As far as the criminal justice system is concerned, we therefore:

  1. Propose to reform the current dual system of attorneys and advocates which raises the cost of justice for all citizens;
  2. Intend to actively campaign against the politicisation of the judiciary by exposing the instances of interference by the executive in judicial matters;
  3. Propose to boost the criminal justice system personnel both qualitatively and quantitatively in order to radically reduce the backlogs in litigations which continue to deny justice to citizens;
  4. Propose to empower traditional authorities’ courts in the legal disputes of civil and communal nature (within their jurisdiction) in order to reduce the cost of justice and extend its availability

As far as correctional services are concerned, we therefore:

  1. Urge the criminal justice system to respect the judiciary’s independence by not interfering in sentencing and restricting parole to exceptional circumstances;
  2. Advocate provision by the Department of Correctional Services of comprehensive and mandatory training and rehabilitation schemes for offenders in order to facilitate their social reintegration.

RESOLUTION 7: SOCIAL WELFARE NEEDS TRANSPARENCY AND ACCOUNTABILITY

About 12 million South Africans currently receive old age, disability and child support grants and in the current financial year Government will spend more than R62 billion in paying for social grants.

We note, however:

  1. The payment system for grants is continuously wracked with inefficiency and corruption;
  2. Some 44 percent of children that are eligible for child support grants are estimated not to be receiving them due to the absence of official identity documents;
  3. Children’s organizations have taken the Government to court to force it to accept other forms of identification to enable children to access child support grants;

Conference therefore:

  1. Registers its support for the ongoing court case against Government to enable children to provide other forms of identity to access the support grants;
  2. Urges Government to speed up its anti-corruption drive throughout the social welfare system by employing the full range of law enforcement agencies to expose and prosecute fraudsters;

RESOLUTION 8: EDUCATION – VIOLENCE IN OUR SCHOOLS

Increasing levels of violence in our schools is cause for considerable alarm. It is clear that increasing numbers of parents take too little responsibility for the actions of their children and this has invariably led to a lack of discipline in homes, in public and in a lack of respect for all types of authority.

We therefore:

  1. Continue to promote a culture of respect in our homes, churches, schools and in all other walks of life;
  2. Request that members and supporters partner with community and religious organizations to advance the “respect for all” agenda;
  3. Insist that the party’s public representatives at all levels and on a constant basis promote and publicise the party’s stance on morality and societal values of respect, discipline and ubuntu botho.

RESOLUTION 9: HIV/AIDS CRISIS CONTINUES

Conference records that Government has achieved little progress in tackling the HIV/Aids epidemic resulting in increasing numbers of persons dying from Aids and estimates that more than 1000 persons become newly infected with HIV every day.

We therefore note with concern:

  1. That the Department of Health is obviously in turmoil following the long period of ill-health of the Minister and the unfortunate dismissal of her deputy;
  2. That the re-structuring of the South African National Aids Council (SANAC) has not produced the required results anticipated.

We therefore propose:

  1. That “dual therapy” treatments must be made freely available at all clinics and hospitals for all mothers giving birth should they be required;
  2. That treatment for HIV/Aids must be streamlined and made more widely available through actively pursuing partnerships with international donor organizations and decentralizing authority to provincial governments and health districts;
  3. That the most important right for persons with HIV/Aids should be the right to non-discrimination;
  4. That all leaders must speak with one voice about the cause of HIV/Aids being a virus and point out that HIV is now as treatable as any other disease and is entirely controllable by following a sensible lifestyle – which means practicing abstention pre-marriage and having unprotected sex only with a partner whose HIV status is known;
  5. That greater attention must be given to education about sexually transmitted infections (STIs) other than HIV and that these must be actively treated as research indicates it will halve HIV rates of infection;
  6. That good nutrition must be promoted for better health but not as a substitute for anti-retrovirals;
  7. That provincial health departments must be given more autonomy and more flexibility to enable appropriate local interventions;
  8. To expose attempts by Government to use the HIV/Aids epidemic as a political tool of patronage by the co-option of certain civil society organizations;
  9. That greater attention should be paid to the funding and monitoring of ethical trials using alternative and traditional medicines and that these medicines should be patented/registered to enable complete transparency as to their general substance, specific ingredients, efficacy and appropriate use.

As far as the IFP’s specific role in the fight against HIV/Aids is concerned, we therefore:

  1. Propose to form support groups on a voluntary basis within our party branches to assist people infected and/or affected with HIV/Aids;
  2. Intend to actively campaign for the benefits of general HIV/Aids awareness, parental (safer) sex education, regular testing for HIV and STI’s, abstinence and virginity testing, HIV-related dangers of substance abuse;
  3. Motivate communities to revive the African tradition of embracing Aids orphans as well as persons who have been socially ostracised because of their HIV status.

RESOLUTION 10: SOUTH AFRICA’S ROLE IN PROMOTING AND PROTECTING A CULTURE OF HUMAN RIGHTS THROUGHOUT AFRICA

The pivotal role that South Africa must continue to play in promoting human rights, democratic governance, an end to bloodshed and the eradication of endemic corruption throughout the Continent of Africa must be acknowledged. The right of all the nations of Africa to assert themselves globally with honesty, integrity and solidarity as equal partners with all other of the world’s nation states is long overdue.

We therefore:

  1. Fully support the role that South Africa must continue to play in Africa in facilitating conflict resolution, peace and socio-economic development;
  2. Encourage the rapid integration of regional economies as the first step towards the economic integration of Africa as a whole;
    Urge that the harmonization of all relevant laws and treaties be effected so as to assist with all matters relating to regional and continental integration;
  3. Acknowledge that without such integration and collective strength enabling the Continent to compete fairly, Africa will continue to be disadvantaged globally in relation to a wide range of critical matters, with trade being an obvious and paramount issue;
  4. Continue to recognise that there will be no development within Africa without peace and that peace is a pre-requisite to economic development;
  5. Accept, with the knowledge of our own experience in South Africa since 1994, that elections by and of themselves are not the complete panacea to the problems of the citizens of any country whatever they may be;
  6. Condemn violations of human rights wherever they take place anywhere in the world.

RESOLUTION 11: PROTECT SOUTH AFRICA’S PROVINCES – REJECT ANC ATTEMPTS TO IMPOSE A UNITARY STATE THROUGH THE BACK DOOR

We record with pride the central role the IFP played in the establishment of Provinces in South Africa and place on record our alarm at the threat emanating from within the ANC to review the present system with a view to possibly even abolishing Provinces.

We therefore resolve:

  1. To acknowledge the pivotal role the IFP must play in the defence of provinces;
  2. To call on all South Africans to rise to the challenge of resisting the ANC’s attempts at centralising even more power in the national government and within the Presidency of this government;
  3. To recognise subsidiarity as the founding principle upon which to devolve and share power nationally, provincially and locally;
  4. To resist any gerrymandering ostensibly proposed under the guise of rational government such as the proposed merger of the Western Cape and Eastern Cape which is nothing but a naked attempt by the ANC to seize power in the “new” province and to hold it indefinitely;
  5. To recognise that good governance is not promoted by ANC centralisation, and that in the fields of law and order, education, health and many others, centralisation is associated with failure, amounting to a crisis of delivery;
  6. To urge all South Africans to do everything possible to enable the strengthening of the provincial system rather than weakening it, to push for strong municipalities, strong provinces and a strong national government in which each does what it does best and to strenuously reject all notions the ANC might have of reintroducing a unitary state through the back door.

RESOLUTION 12: NATIONAL PRIORITIES AND ISSUES WHICH MUST NOW BE EFFECTIVELY ADDRESSED: RIGID LABOUR LEGISLATION AND THE SKILLS SHORTAGE

Conference recommends that rigid labour legislation affecting business development and issues exacerbating the country’s skills shortage must be urgently reviewed by Government and industry.

We therefore state that:

  1. Continued assertions that our labour laws are inflexible and that they are seriously inhibiting economic growth and business development can no longer be ignored;
  2. A balance must be struck between promoting and protecting the rights of workers and ensuring the growth and survival of job creation and business enterprises;
  3. South Africa’s skills shortage is of national concern and that over-regulation by Government is now recognized as severely impeding the ability of foreign skilled workers to enter the country and contribute to our socio-economic development.

RESOLUTION 13: MAXIMUM GAIN FROM THE 2010 WORLD CUP

Noting that the 2010 World Cup has the potential to put South Africa on the map as a top destination and that the “beautiful game” has the power to draw people together from diverse backgrounds. However, we must not forget a world cup is a once-off opportunity and may not provide the level of sustainable employment now envisaged beyond the tournament.

We therefore resolve:

  1. To urge government and the mass media not to over-estimate the economic benefits that will derive from hosting the event;
  2. To encourage government to prioritise projects whose lifetime span will long outlast the tournament;
  3. To give full Party political support to the tournament’s success.

RESOLUTION 14: THE IFP SALUTES ITS PRESIDENT PRINCE MANGOSUTHU BUTHELEZI

Conference continues to be thankful for the leadership and wisdom it receives from the President of the party, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi.

We therefore express:

  1. Our gratitude for his commitment to us all and to the people of South Africa;
  2. Our thanks for God’s great gift in ensuring his ability to serve us and the nation with dedication, stamina, honesty and integrity.

At the same time, the conference has noted:

  1. the media speculation about alleged demands for a constitutional amendment to establish the position of IFP deputy president from the IFP Youth Brigade;
  2. that the IFPYB has unequivocally distanced itself from such demands and dismissed them formally as an attempt by the party’s detractors to divert our attention from the pertinent issues ahead of the 32nd Annual General Conference;
  3. the speculations, fuelled by the media with apparent references to internal IFP “sources”, that Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi is too old to lead the IFP.

We therefore resolve:

  1. not to deliberate on the subject of IFP deputy president at the conference since the issue has never been put on the conference agenda through regular channels guaranteed both by the party’s constitution and convention;
  2. to treat the suggestions that Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi is too old to lead a political party with the contempt they deserve given his vast political experience, international credentials and unsurpassed personal integrity. We view his age and wisdom as our best asset;
  3. not to be dictated to by some media commentators regarding the mandate of the IFP President who was unanimously elected in 2004 and had his mandate bolstered by a special conference in 2006. It cannot be said that Prince Buthelezi is clinging to power as he resigned after the 2004 election and again in 2006 and was re-instated unopposed by popular demand on both occasions despite not seeking re-election;
  4. to affirm our unwavering confidence in his continued leadership and to exhort him to carry on providing his immense contribution to our party and our country.