Minister in the Presidency Mondli Gungubele said on Thursday that intense discussions on the social compact announced by President Cyril Ramaphosa are underway, with all stakeholders having goals on where to take the country’s economy.
In his State of the Nation Address in February, Ramaphosa announced 100 days for a new social compact to be agreed, with the aim of getting all South Africans to join hands in dealing with joblessness, poverty and inequality.
The discussions are also expected to look at structural reforms in the energy, transport, digital migration and water sectors.
Addressing the media following a Cabinet meeting, Gungubele said when Ramaphosa gave the deadline of 100 days, he was trying to express the urgency of the compact.
He said there were no new timelines but the concern was that the discussions must be finalised and all stakeholders find one another.
Cabinet strongly condemned all acts of racism in the country including the reported incidents at the Good Hope Seminary High School and Stellenbosch University.
Last week a Stellenbosch University student was expelled following inhumane acts, which has also forced the institution to revise its racism policy.
“These deplorable acts go against the constitutional values on which our democratic country was founded, which include human dignity, non-racialism, non-sexism, social justice, equity and respect. The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa of 1996 is our guide towards eradicating the despicable divisions and injustices of the past. Parents are urged to teach their children to reject racism and embrace diversity as part of our concerted drive to promote nation-building and social cohesion,” Gungubele said.
He urged South Africans to work together to expose racism wherever it is treated as a norm and to send a clear message that there was no space for it in a democratic country.
There have been reports that National Treasury director-general Dondo Mogajane will leave on June 7 when his contract expires. He has served government for 23 years.
The Minister said there would be an appointment when he left but insisted that he was hard at work.
Gungubele said Finance Minister Enoch Godongwana, who was currently attending the World Economic Forum in Davos, would fill the post as soon as Mogajane left, as it was a critical post for the country’s economy.
Cabinet welcomed what it called a successful visit by German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, on Wednesday.
Ramaphosa and Scholz discussed ways to enhance cooperation in energy and climate change, trade and investment and the response to Covid-19 and the vaccine demand.
They also reflected on the development of African food and energy security, as well as the conflict in Ukraine and its impact on the international economy.
Gungubele explained that Germany was not only South Africa’s second-largest trading partner but it was also the third-largest source of overseas tourists and a major investor and a development partner.
CHILD LABOUR CONFERENCE
Cabinet welcomed the successful conclusion of the fifth global conference on the elimination of child labour, which was held in Durban last week.
Cabinet hoped the discussions on good practices would help in the elimination of child and forced labour.