THE 21st ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE IFP YOUTH BRIGADE
EMANDLENI/MATLENG, ULUNDI : SEPTEMBER 12, 1999
The Youth Brigade of the Inkatha Freedom Party at its 21st Annual Conference unanimously adopted the following resolutions:
The IFP Youth Brigade values the immense and crucial role played by His Excellency the President of the IFP over the past 21 years. The Youth Brigade appreciates the guidance, mentorship and support His Excellency has given the youth, which has carried us through 16 years of the liberation struggle and brought us to this moment: the coming of age of the Youth Brigade of the IFP. As we embark upon the 3rd millennium, we are committed to drawing upon the years of wisdom and expertise of Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi. We therefore resolve:
- to uphold His Excellency’s continued leadership into the 3rd millennium, and
- to uphold the creative, innovative and inspirational ideas that will advance the pragmatic vision of His Excellency as the IFP advances towards the next millennium.
Following recent unfounded media speculation, the Youth Brigade wishes to unanimously express its support for the Premier, Mr LPHM Mtshali, both in the position of National Chairman and Premier of KwaZulu Natal. The Youth Brigade is represented in the highest decision-making structures of the Party and lent its support to the appointment of the Premier from the outset. We therefore resolve:
- to offer our continued support for Premier LPHM Mtshali
- to act to change the vicious media perception to the contrary, and
- to work in co-operation with the plans of the Premier and the provincial government for the regeneration of the province, to ensure success and prosperity.
The revolution of goodwill initiated by His Excellency the President of the IFP is timely and relevant against the problems that beset the entire South Africa. The IFP Youth Brigade accepts the challenge offered by His Excellency the President to make the revolution of goodwill the intellectual property of the youth. We therefore resolve:
- to charge the National Executive Committee of the Youth Brigade to facilitate the establishment of a revolution of goodwill committee with immediate effect, and
- to call upon all the youth of South Africa to actively participate in the activities and programmes formulated by the committee of the revolution of goodwill, for a patriotic regeneration of South Africa.
The Youth Brigade recognises the limited time before the 2000 local government elections, and acknowledges the magnitude of the task at hand. We further recognise the need for an overwhelming IFP victory, and therefore resolve:
- that as the largest sector of the voting population, the youth must commit to taking the initiative in leading the campaign for the local government elections, and working towards the organisation of the necessary logistics
- to charge all the structures of the Youth Brigade to continue and increase the efforts made in the June 2, 1999 elections towards the registration of voters and the acquisition of bar-coded IDs and
- that the Youth Brigade must commit to increasing its presence within communities throughout South Africa in the continuance of the outreach programme initiated at the Annual General Conference and created to promote the relevance of the IFP at grassroots level.
The Youth Brigade recognises the seriousness of the HIV/AIDS scourge which continues unabated, and believes that the youth must be at the forefront of the fight against this disease. We therefore resolve:
- to emphasise abstinence as the most effective means of preventing the spread of HIV/AIDS and to promote a culture of self-respect, morality and responsibility
- to promote communication and trust as the vital keys to the success of a campaign of information, such as that operated in Uganda
- to commit the youth to informing themselves on how to prevent HIV/AIDS, and accept acting responsibly at all times
- to work together within our communities to change wrong social perceptions and superstitions which perpetuate the spread of HIV/AIDS
- to develop a culture of caring and respect which promotes the acceptance and assistance of people living with HIV/AIDS in our communities
- to promote the establishment of information centres, particularly in rural areas, and
- to promote a partnership between government, business, NGOs and communities to curb the spread of HIV/AIDS.
The Youth Brigade recognises the value of the IFP’s policies of self-help and self-reliance, and is determined to promote these to the benefit of all our youth. We agree that the National Youth Service must be used as a vehicle through which to achieve this goal. We therefore resolve:
- that the IFP Youth Brigade must lend it support to the establishment of a National Youth Service as proposed by the National Youth Commission
- to charge the National Executive Committee of the Youth Brigade to interrogate the soon to be released White Paper on the National Youth Service, and to make submissions which reflect our views on the concept of the National Youth Service, and
- to encourage members of the Youth Brigade to commit to participating in the National Youth Service which is a necessary concept whose time has come for our country.
As we face the challenges of the new millennium, it is essential that we move forward in pace with the rapid technological development and the growth of the global village. We must accept the challenge of educating the youth to operate as fully functional citizens of a technological age. We therefore resolve:
- to call upon government to speed up the process of implementing technical skills training and computer literacy
- that the government and the private sector must work in partnership to accelerate the building of skills development centres, specifically in rural areas
- to support the establishment of training camps based on the concept of Emandleni-Matleng, founded by His Excellency Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, which emphasise computer skills training
- to call upon the government to speed up the process of establishing centres that aim at promoting business skills
- to challenge government to give incentives towards the establishment and continued operation of SMMEs with emphasis on rural communities, and
- to call upon each branch of the Youth Brigade to establish an SMME desk to facilitate the availability of business information to our members
Drawing on the long-standing policy of the IFP which regards the empowerment of young women as necessary and essential to enabling women to take up their vital role within our Party, we resolve that:
- as a matter of urgency, the National Executive of the Youth Brigade must develop a programme of action aimed at empowering young women, and that
- this programme of action must be measurable and set targets with time frames, the progress of which the National Executive has the responsibility to monitor.
Appalled by the high incidence of violence and abuse against women and children, the Youth Brigade is committed to contributing towards changing the social perceptions which allow this phenomena to continue, and to act to make our society safe for our women and children. To this end we resolve:
- to promote the development of a culture of respect for young women which does not allow them to be subjugated or treated as lesser human beings, and
- to work in collaboration with organisations opposing the abuse of women and children, to promote awareness of the different forms of abuse: verbal, emotional, psychological and physical.
The IFP Youth Brigade is totally opposed to substance abuse and the consequent perpetration of violence. We therefore resolve:
- to work together with government, business, NGOs and communities to develop programmes aimed at eradicating the culture of violence and negative social patterns
- to promote the resolution of conflicts through peaceful negotiations and open communication, rather than physical violence
- to challenge the media and the entertainment business to act responsibly in choosing their subject matter and content, recognising the role they play in shaping public perceptions, and
- to challenge prominent and public South African figures to promote anti-drug and anti-violence campaigns.