RESOLUTIONS OF THE 32nd ANNUAL CONFERENCE IFP WOMEN’S BRIGADE ON THE THEME
“IFP WOMEN’S BRIGADE – THE CUSTODIANS OF THE IFP’S ONE VISION, ONE MISSION, ONE PARTY”
EMANDLENI/MATLENG, ULUNDI: 25-27 MARCH 2011
RESOLUTION 1: THE ROLE OF THE WOMEN’S BRIGADE IN THE UPCOMING LOCAL GOVERNMENT ELECTIONS
- that the upcoming local government elections will in many ways determine the fate of South Africa emerging as a multi-party democracy in which citizens should have the maximum possibility to define their own needs in their own communities, and whose voices should — irrespective of their political allegiances — be respected in local policy making; and
- that the upcoming 2011 elections will be a watershed election for the IFP as it will represent the Party with the opportunity to not only retain the 32 municipalities it controls in KwaZulu Natal but to expand its support base throughout South Africa.
- To call upon all women in the IFP to join hands and to work together and harder than ever before to make the 2011 local elections a success for the IFP and to call on members to fully implement the election campaign requirements of the Party which will be outlined in the Party’s manifesto;
- To ensure that identified party agents and volunteers are properly trained and capacitated so that that they can diligently serve the Party, prior to and on polling day;
- To mobilise further support for the IFP and to become activists for the Party by visibly campaigning and promoting the leadership and policies of the Party;
- To call on all IFP women to be at the forefront of ensuring that we recruit at least 50 volunteers to drive our local government election campaign in each Voting District in KwaZulu-Natal and in each Voting District elsewhere in South Africa where the party sees it fit;
- To act as watchdogs to identify, expose and report to the IEC and appropriate authorities all incidents of political intolerance and intimidation of voters by the ANC-alliance and NFP members and supporters;
- To pledge that the IFP Women’s Brigade will continue to represent the politics of hope and change; will continue to be ready to better serve all South Africans than any other Party and will continue to expose all that is wrong in South Africa and support what is right;
- To call on all members and supporters to vow to serve their country as never before, which requires mass mobilisation and unity to chart a new course for the governance of our nation and to make a solemn promise that the needs of the people will be paramount in all our programmes of action.
RESOLUTION 2: PRIORITIES OF IFP WOMEN: FAMILY, POLITICAL RELEVANCE, SELFLESS SERVICE TO OUR NATION
- that women constitute more than half of the IFP’s membership, and further noting that the party’s core commitment to voters that it exist as a political party to serve the people of South Africa and to do so in the spirit of ubuntu/botho.
- To take the lead in our communities and our country at large as we drive a campaign of moral revival, by teaching and espousing respect and humanity towards others, while championing the belief that “charity begins at home”.
- To accept that the Party can only succeed in achieving increasing support of voters if all its members act with honesty, integrity and vigour in espousing the values and policies of the IFP and by pledging to work as servants and not masters of the people of our country;
- To view the support of families, family values and faith-based values as central in all our endeavours to build a non-racial, non-sexist, nation in which the human rights of all women, men and children are respected and protected in deed and not just, as is the case at present, in words encapsulated in the Constitution of the Republic;
- To resolve to espouse the political relevance of the Party as one which rejects the ANC’s failed policies and failed leadership, which has resulted in wide scale mismanagement and service delivery failures especially at local government level, by representing the politics of hope and politics underpinned by moral values with the aim of deepening democracy and taking it closer to the people.
RESOLUTION 3: THE ROLE OF THE WOMEN’S BRIGADE IN CHAMPIONING WOMEN’S DEVELOPMENT AND EMPOWERMENT IN SOUTH AFRICA
- that, in general, all racial and ethnic groups in South Africa have long-standing beliefs concerning gender roles and most are based on the premise that women are less important, equal or less deserving of power, than men.
- To lead from the front in changing South Africa from a patriarchal, unequal society into one which sees women as equal players;
- To acknowledge the reality that empowering women will empower the nation and that the nation will not prosper if the development of women is further neglected;
- To call on all IFP women to continue to help themselves and each other in the spirit of ubuntu/botho to battle the ravages of gender inequality, dispossession, discrimination and alienation from socio-economic resources;
- To support efforts to mobilise women and strengthen women’s empowerment movements while continuing to advocate for equal representation for women in the workplace.
RESOLUTION 4: THE ROLE OF THE WOMEN’S BRIGADE IN THE RESTORATION OF DISCIPLINE: ONE VISION, ONE MISSION, ONE PARTY
- the recent turmoil in the IFP and the breakdown in its traditional values of tolerance and respect for its leaders, which have resulted in the formation of a breakaway party based on resentment and unfulfilled personal ambition and that such a Party can serve the only possible purpose which is to weaken South Africa’s already fragmented opposition.
- To alert the membership of the IFP to the dangers posed by the forces of darkness that are still trying to destabilise the Party and to oppose and resist all forms of anarchic tendencies which seek to usurp control of the IFP and derail it from its hallowed values and principles;
- To applaud the exemplary role the IFPWB has played in supporting the founding principles of the IFP against an onslaught from its detractors from the so-called ‘Friends of VZ’ who have now established the NFP.
- To support one another and all structures of the IFPWB in their efforts to restore discipline and consolidate the IFP’s unity because without discipline and unity the IFP cannot succeed in the upcoming local government elections and beyond.
- To lead as we initiate programmes such as workshops to teach our members about the Party’s Constitution, which will capacitate them as ordinary members of the Party and especially when they take up leadership roles, and to initiate projects such as stokvels which will create a feeling of camaraderie and unity amongst our women;
- To use all public forums to spread the message that the newly formed NFP is an ANC-sponsored project designed to finally destroy the IFP and that casting a vote for the NFP is the same as casting a vote for the ANC.
- To work tirelessly to revive the spirit of the members and supporters of the IFP and so that we can fulfill our mission of being the custodians of one IFP, with one vision and one mission.
RESOLUTIONS 5: THE ROLE OF THE WOMEN’S BRIGADE IN COMBATTING CRIME AND VIOLENCE THROUGHOUT SOUTH AFRICA, ESPECIALLY VIOLENCE AGAINST WOMEN AND CHILDREN
- The pre-eminent responsibility of any government is to ensure the safety and security of its citizens. Without it none of the other policy goals have much significance;
- that while the political battle for gender equity has partly been won, the social and economic battles women face are far from over and that levels of violence against women remain alarmingly high and that women remain extremely vulnerable to rape, sexual abuse and domestic violence and
- That we have witnessed a total collapse of the rule of law in South Africa and that corruption has become endemic.
- To attempt to mobilise South African women to further encourage the majority of men of moral honesty and undoubted integrity in our nation to assist in trying to create circumstances in which men are discouraged from becoming perpetrators of violence;
- To form partnerships with men to address the issue of violence against women and children, as to date public and citizens responses, although well meaning, have been inadequate and have not produced the required results;
- To salute those men who have already publicly committed themselves to this cause including mobilisation in this regard;
- To accept that good family structures are crucial to the effort of eradicating all forms of violence – which forms the basis of IFP policy – but to further recognise that the breakdown of family structures which prevails in our society today is one of the major reasons for South Africa’s high crime rate;
- To focus and find solutions for the causes of abuse — as identified by academics and others — which most often translates into gender-based violence: the absence of male role models; exposure to childhood abuse; poor education and lack of vocational skills; a lack of religious and spiritual beliefs; overcrowded housing; no sense of community; no exposure to appropriate recreation facilities and so on;
- To call on all sectors within the South African society to become advocates in a campaign to end all forms violence and crime, and that therefore traditional, religious and cultural leadership must play an ongoing crucial role in assisting in addressing this dreadful and destructive phenomena in our society;
- To urge our public representatives to continue to agitate for proper law enforcement and to call on Government to provide adequate resources for effective, efficient and professional policing.
- To call on Government to make it one of its main priorities to develop a highly qualified, well paid and highly motivated cadre of crime fighters to make South Africa safe, which can only be achieved by creating better working conditions for our police force.
RESOLUTION 6: WOMEN: TAKING A STAND TO ENSURE QUALITY EDUCATION FOR THEIR CHILDREN
- that in spite of a relatively large budget, our education system remains in crisis while shortcomings throughout our education system continue to hamper progress;
- that ANC policies, year after year, have not produced results;
- that numeracy and literacy skills among the majority of South Africa’s learners are unacceptably low; and
- that it is clear that the country lacks a majority of highly qualified, well paid and highly motivated educators.
- To reinforce the belief of the President of the IFP that “the policies of today form the people of tomorrow” and that education is at the core of all of the IFP’s policies and programmes;
- To once again state that an IFP-led Government would immediately devolve policy-making to provinces allowing them to formulate their own education policies suitable to their diverse needs;
- To call for the reintroduction of life skills subjects that can go a long way to assist women to create job opportunities for themselves such as agriculture and handiwork;
- To call for a greater focus on childhood development by calling on the Education Department to ensure that every community has early childhood development facilities, such as crèches, and to call on the IFP-controlled municipalities to support such initiatives;
- To promote community engagement as crucial to bettering our system of education and constructive parent, teacher, learner interaction;
- To continue to advocate that all barriers to learning must be removed and that therefore the impact of poverty and inequality must urgently be addressed. Education should be free up to and including Grade 12 and tertiary education must be made far more affordable;
- To call for the reintroduction of well-resourced teacher training colleges and for specific bursaries targeting subjects such as maths and science;
- To insist that the numbers, quality of teachers and resources at rural schools be prioritised;
- To urge that Government make it a priority to develop a highly qualified, well-paid and highly motivated cadre of educators to achieve quality education;
- To urge that parents to insist that a culture of accountability throughout the system must be instigated at educator and management levels; and to call on the Government to revisit laws which are lenient with regard to anti-social behaviour of both educators and learners.
RESOLUTION 7: WOMEN: LEADING IN THE FIGHT AGAINST HIV AIDS
- that HIV/Aids is ravaging homes and communities throughout South Africa and that its devastating impact effects women and children most severely; and
- that even the recent improvement in the supply of anti-retrovirals cannot wipe away the genocide that was caused by the leadership of the ANC through denialism.
- To deplore the Department of Health’s inability to curb this pandemic and that fact that there is too little understanding of gender issues related to HIV/Aids including the vulnerability of women and the impact of poverty on the prevalence of HIV/Aids infection;
- To continue to be at the forefront as we lead the ABC campaign: Abstain, Be Faithful and Condomise;
- To call on all Women’s Brigade branches to establish HIV/Aids “help desks” to assist persons and families in need of assistance and to continue to promote the benefits of general HIV/Aids awareness, regular testing for HIV, STI’s and virginity testing;
- To continue to plead for solidarity, love and care for all who are afflicted and affected by the disease and an understanding that any of us, if we are not careful, could fall prey to it at any time;
- To call upon all IFP Women’s Brigade members to identify and assist child-headed families and Aids orphans;
- To call on all members, as responsible parents and community members, to ensure that their children receive appropriate safe sex education, which could ensure their survival and prosperity.
RESOLUTION 8: WOMEN COMBATTING POVERTY BY TEACHING SELF-SUFFICIENCY AND SELF-RELIANCE
- that women make up the majority of the poorest of the poor within South Africa;
- that a new shocking report by the Human Rights Commission has revealed that 11.9 million children in South Africa are living in abject poverty;
- To declare war on gross poverty and inequality. Although government has committed itself to halving poverty by 2014, SA has perhaps still the highest inequality of any society in the world;
- To advocate that the proper management of resources, prioritizing the needs of the poorest of the poor and that ending corruption and theft by government officials can bring an end to abject poverty in South Africa;
- To call on all IFP women to promote the IFP’s timeless philosophy of self-help and self-reliance in their communities and to call on Government not only to simply provide for people; but to make it possible for people to help themselves. Specific programmes modelled on this principle, such as vegetable garden community projects must be must be vigorously implemented especially in rural areas;
- To call for the IFP Women’s Brigade Executive Committee to seek an analysis of the efficacy to date of existing local, provincial and national programmes and policies purporting to have the objective of improving the quality and status of the lives of women and to report back all relevant data;
- To call on the Minister of Finance to be far more gender specific in reporting in his national budget analyses how fiscal allocations will actually focus on the upliftment of women so that such intentions can be continually measured against actual service delivery;
- To demand that women must be involved in all aspects of planning poverty relief programmes, especially at local level, aimed at assisting them and their families and must be equally involved in their implementation.
RESOLUTION 9: SUPPORT FOR THE NEW IFPYB LEADERSHIP
- that the 32nd IFPWB Conference was an elective conference which decided on who will lead the organisation forward and transform it into a truly effective arm of the IFP for mobilising women and that the new leadership that emerges from this Conference cannot achieve its goals without strong leadership and broad-based support from the organisation’s branches and affiliates.
- To thank the outgoing leadership of the IFPWB, especially its former Acting Chairperson Mrs kaMadlopha-Mthethwa and the Executive for their dedication and commitment to the organisation.
- To congratulate the newly elected Chairperson and the National Executive Committee and wish them all the best as they begin to restore discipline and unity within the organisation and take it to new heights.
- To urge the rank and file of the IFPWB to give their unstinting support to the new leadership as it goes about fulfilling its stated objectives, chief of which is the IFP’s victory in the upcoming local government elections.
- the life-long service to his people of Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi in his various capacities as traditional leader, public figure and elder statesman, and the continued need for his wisdom, guidance and leadership within the IFP and indeed the whole country.
- To pay tribute to Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi as the people’s watchdog and bastion against South Africa deteriorating towards the tyranny of the majority and abuse of power, especially in his brave efforts to expose the fact that the NFP is an ANC project;
- To record our unwavering commitment to the constitutional principles of the IFP and to the leadership of our President, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi;
- To call on all IFPWB’s to fight by all means to protect and preserve the legacy of Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, which is the legacy of the IFP;
- To applaud our President’s undiminished dedication to the country and the party;
- To express its appreciation and gratitude to our President for his exemplary leadership rooted in honesty, integrity and courage while the IFP was in a time of crisis, and also as the country gears up for the local government election amid adverse social, political and economic circumstances and grave concerns about the future.
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