IFP YOUTH BRIGADE 31st ANNUAL CONFERENCE ON THE THEME
“THE IFP YOUTH – CHAMPIONS OF HOPE IN THE FIGHT FOR DEMOCRACY AND DEVELOPMENT”
EMANDLENI-MATLENG, ULUNDI: 11 – 13 March 2011
RESOLUTION 1: THE ROLE OF THE YOUTH BRIGADE IN THE UPCOMING LOCAL GOVERNMENT ELECTIONS
Noting that the 2011 local government elections will provide the Party with an opportunity to regroup, reunite and retain the political leadership and governance of the majority of municipalities in KwaZulu-Natal and to increase its support at grassroots level throughout the rest of South Africa,
- To substantially improve our efforts in all of our constituencies to ensure 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 IFP has a presence;
- To ensure that identified party agents are properly trained and ready to diligently serve the party on polling day;
- To mobilise further support for the IFP by visibly campaigning and promoting the leadership and policies of the party and by fund-raising;
- To rapidly identify, expose and report to the appropriate authorities all incidents of political intolerance and intimidation of voters by the ANC-alliance and NFP members and supporters which we have already experienced in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng;
- To appeal to the IEC and our safety and security services to act efficiently and effectively to ensure that the electoral process is free and fair and that all parties adhere to the prescribed IEC Code of Conduct;
- To ask members and supporters to, if possible, use their cell phones to provide video and picture proof of any acts of electoral violence and intimidation which they may witness and for such evidence to be immediately forwarded to the party leadership in charge of elections for appropriate action thereafter.
RESOLUTION 2: YOUTH DEVELOPMENT IN SOUTH AFRICA VIS-A-VIS THE NYDA
Noting the need for our nation’s youth to be properly organised to promote positive citizenship and to assist in community development, and further noting that the current institutional structures such as the National Youth Development Agency, do not fulfil their mandate because of their lack of focus, political bias, and lack of accountability.
- To call on President Zuma to dissolve the NYDA as it has only served the narrow interests of the ANCYL elite and the ‘tenderpreneurs’ associated with it.
- To contemplate a new youth agency based on the principles of “ubuntu/botho” that would assist youth to learn self-respect and respect for others while developing community leadership, skills training and social skills;
- Such an institution should: a) be focused on implementation rather than mere coordination; b) operate in three spheres of government; c) take the form of a fully-fledged and well-resourced Youth Ministry enabled to rapidly implement positive youth development and take responsibility for all youth affairs.
RESOLUTION 3: A CRITICAL ASSESMENT OF THE ROLE OF THE IFPYB IN THE FIGHT AGAINST HIV/AIDS
Noting that the HIV/Aids pandemic continues to decimate South Africa’s population despite ever increasing government funding earmarked for the fight against it and that youth represents one of the most vulnerable demographic groups affected by it.
- To continue to lead South Africa’s ABC campaign and be the voice for our vulnerable youth as it strives to Abstain, Be Faithful and Condomise;
- To continue to call for responsible behaviour and an acute awareness that HIV/Aids does not discriminate between black and white or between rich and poor – it strikes when it is given the opportunity;
- 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 continue to advise that all persons who are sexually active need to be regularly tested so as to ensure that those who are HIV positive can receive counselling and treatment, and that their partners can also be protected and assisted if necessary, and so that those who are HIV negative can maintain their status.
RESOLUTION 4: THE CHALLENGE OF TRANSFORMING SOUTH AFRICA FROM SLIDING INTO A WELFARE STATE
Noting that the ever increasing proportion of our population relies on social grants in the absence of job opportunities, the disconcerting emergence of a dependency culture among our economically active population and the crucial role that our youth can play in reversing this unsustainable slide into a welfare state.
- To continue to use all public forums to urge the government to sharpen its focus on job creation as an alternative to the expansion of social welfare.
- To actively participate in the formulation of the IFP’s economic policy geared towards growth and employment through opportunity.
- To take the message of self-help and self-reliance as an alternative to dependence on social welfare to our schools, social networks, workplaces and communities.
- To strive for flexibility in the labour market and to campaign for the reduction of the cost of doing business in South Africa so as to encourage direct foreign investment that actually create job opportunities.
- To lead by example and become role models for our youth as they take their schooling and studies seriously and aspire to enter the job market on completion of their formal education and/or aspire to become entrepreneurs and create employment for themselves and others as an alternative to life on social benefits.
RESOLUTION 5: THE DANGER OF RESORTING TO FAILED ECONOMIC STRATEGIES SUCH AS THE PROPOSAL TO NATIONALISE MINES AND OTHER MAJOR INDUSTRIES
Noting the ill-conceived advocacy of the nationalisation of mines by the ANC Youth League as a cure for South Africa’s chronic unemployment and poverty, and that nationalisation as an economic policy has failed to address redistribution of wealth in every country where it has been put to test.
- To call on government to put an end to the ANCYL’s call for public debate on the subject of nationalisation that has been restricted to an uncritical promotion of fringe views that do not make economic sense.
- To urge the government to reaffirm the constitutional protection of private property and the rule of law as a guarantee of South Africa’s future growth and prosperity.
- To urge the government to reassure our mining companies that their property rights will always be protected by our Constitution and, in doing so, reassure foreign investors that their investments into South Africa’s industries are safe.
RESOLUTION 6: THE ROLE OF THE YOUTH BRIGADE IN THE RESTORATION OF DISCIPLINE AND CONSOLIDATION OF UNITY WITHIN THE PARTY BEYOND THE RECENT RUCTIONS
Noting 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 applaud the role the IFPYB 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 all structures of the IFPYB 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 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.
RESOLUTION 7: THE STATE OF SOUTH AFRICA’S EDUCATION SYSTEM
Noting that the South African Democratic Students Movement (SADESMO) has consistently demanded that the Department of Basic Education implement free education from grade 1 to grade 12, and that the current policy of no fee schools which is implemented selectively does not address the issue of access to education for all.
- To express gratitude to SADESMO’s persistent advocacy of free education for all and the impact it has had on the public debate on this subject.
- To reiterate the IFP’s commitment to education as an instrument for the upliftment of our disadvantaged communities dating back to Inkatha’s call for Education for Liberation as opposed to the ANC’s call for Liberation Before Education.
- To continue to deplore the discrepancies between the government’s commitment to improved education and its spending patterns that prioritise wasteful projects at the expense of education, especially under-resourced, struggling rural schools.
- To call on government to review the National Students Financial Aids Scheme (NSFAS), which has failed in its mandate of providing assistance to all those who wish to access tertiary education.
- To reaffirm the IFP’s view, that in order to provide quality education for all, we need to develop a highly-qualified, well-paid and motivated cadre of educators, which can only be achieved through the re-introduction of teacher training colleges.
- To reassert the long held view that education is the cornerstone of opportunity and the best form of affirmative action there is and as such it provides the best return of public investment.
RESOLUTION 8: COALITION: WHAT IS THE POSITION OF THE YOUTH BRIGADE?
Noting the call by some opposition parties that there is an urgent need for the realignment of South Africa’s fragmented opposition politics, which has led to the merger of the Independent Democrats with the Democratic Alliance,
- To re-affirm our view that co-operation among like-minded potential organisations is necessary to promote matters of common interests.
- To nevertheless warn that since politics is the art of the possible, that such cooperation and mergers of different political parties should always serve the interests of the membership of those political parties and should therefore enjoy maximum support of the ordinary members of participating organisations.
- That more intensive debate should be embarked upon, within political organizations, in order to determine that which will eventually in the best interest of South Africa, before concrete steps are taking in this direction.
RESOLUTION 9: SUPPORT FOR THE NEW IFPYB LEADERSHIP
Noting that the 31st IFPYB Conference is an elective conference that decides on who will take the organisation forward and transform it into a truly effective arm of the IFP for mobilising youth and that the new leadership that emerges from this conference cannot achieve its goals without broad-based support from the organisation’s branches and affiliates.
- To thank the outgoing leadership of the IFPYB, especially its former Acting Chairperson Mrs Pat Lebenya-Ntanzi 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 IFPYB 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.
RESOLUTION 10: IFPYB’S CONTINUED SUPPORT FOR THE LEADERSHIP OF PRINCE MANGOSUTHU BUTHELEZI
Noting 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 express its profound gratitude to our President for his patience which we have no doubt, was sorely tested time and again and for his forbearance in promoting our best interests while also attempting to protect us from our mistakes.
- To offer him our respect and admiration for his tireless dedication to promoting the rights of all South Africans and, in particular, highlighting the centrality of our families and our communities in building a South Africa in which there is decency, democracy and prosperity for all.
- To acknowledge that while our sincere expressions of support for our President are well meant they are, nevertheless, just words and the best way in which we can truly thank our leader is by hard work on the ground – day after day and night after night – and by doing our utmost to ensure that the IFP is victorious in the upcoming local government elections.