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Dipico: Launch of the Moral Regeneration Charter, Northern Cape (19/02/2003)

19th February 2003


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Date: 19/02/2003
Source: Northern Cape Provincial Government
Title: Dipico: Launch of the Moral Regeneration Charter, Northern Cape


The Chairperson
Distinguished Guests
Ladies and Gentlemen

This day heralds the beginning of a new chapter in our province. This day is characterised by the participation of all sectors of society to assisting government with the spiritual renewal and empowerment of our country as well as addressing the socio-economic needs of our communities.

We will today be introduced to the process to draft a moral charter for our country. We make a special appeal to people across our province to use this opportunity to work towards a charter that all of us in this province can embrace and actively work for its implementation at all levels.

Our collective efforts must ensure that we build a caring, peaceful, compassionate and just society. We will make real progress with the question of moral regeneration of our society if we restore the values of respect, honesty, responsibility, integrity, care and support within our families, and clearly demarcate the lines between right and wrong. In our quest towards the moral society that we desire there are essential issues that we must engage in that cause:

We need to rekindle the spirit of ubuntu and work for a community that cares for one another. We must become a community that respects women. We must work towards an environment where our children are safe and secured, an environment where children are treasured, prepared and empowered to take their rightful place in determining the course of their future.

We must put projects and programmes in place to effectively address poverty and unemployment.

At the time when we launched the RDP of the soul in our province in June 1999, we engaged in that process in response to the overwhelming evidence that we saw in the continuous and steadily slipping away of our morals as evidenced in so many deviant ways which were manifesting themselves in our communities.

Nationally this process culminated in the launch of the Moral Regeneration Movement on 18th April 2002. This movement was aimed at further strengthening the resolve of all social sectors to build our country on a foundation which is morally sound.

Reflecting on the transition from the RDP of the Soul to the MRM, we will discover that many community structures were created to combat the same concerns and issues in different ways engaging the same people. As we will discover, we as a Province called on all religious leaders to take the lead prior to April 18, 2002. The RDP of the Soul has mastered in many a way to unite all recognized faith groups and co-operated with government to further its strategic programmes in creating a better life for all.

These partnerships enabled the people of the province to enjoy the support of many fraternities in structures such as the HIV/AIDS Council, Police Forums, Provincial Crime Committee to name but a few. What is important to note is that all these structures aspire to accomplish the same goal.

The core characteristic of all these structures is the sharing of scarce resources and energies to create a safe environment.

Our vision to create a better life for all by utilizing the MRM, can be realised only if we establish well-managed and strategic partnerships with organs of civil society, local government, business, the NGO sector, organized labour and the religious fraternity via the umbrella body, the MRM.

Government is urgently persuading leaders from the religious fraternity, education, business and local communities to involve them in an integrated and feasible programme to enhance the moral regeneration of our society.

I would seriously like to call on you here present today, to reflect on one or more social statistics, which concerns you most. The question that comes to mind is: "why are these things happening when we have the appropriate people employed and structures in place?"

I believe the answer is simple. We have not fully organized around that what matters most. The MRM in my opinion is one such vehicle to bring us together and organize within a simple set of guidelines to resolving such concerns.

Let us utilise the collective strength that is represented here in us being bound by this common ideal and through our togetherness as government, people of faith, business and all other sectors. We aim to work to turn the tide of destruction that we witness in our country where there are still many forces that are bent on undermining our achievements.

Just as our religious leaders courageously stood up and struggled with us to destroy apartheid, we call on you especially to take the lead in our march foreword to build an even stronger moral foundation for our country where we can all uphold strong ethical values and unshakeable moral convictions.

The moral decay prevalent in our society is to this government a serious cause for concern. It is clear that without us substantially tackling this issue, all our efforts to transform our society will be greatly undermined.

The moral decay in our society manifests itself in a number of ways such as:

- A breakdown of family values and the disintegration of family structures
- Criminality and corruption, as well as discernible brazen disregard for the law
- Lack of respect for the sanctity of human life, and for the next person
- Abuse of women, children and the elderly
- The breakdown of parental control over children
- The abuse of alcohol and the abuse of drugs.

We are horrified at the reality that our communities are no longer save havens where our children can be allowed to be children.

We witness on a daily basis the future of our nation is being callously tampered and trampled upon.

We see on a daily basis our women, mothers being turned into victims of abuse in their homes and in our streets.

Crime prevention has been high on our agenda and as such we have continuously introduced measures designed to address the issue of crime. We have established the provincial crime prevention committee which has yielded significant results.

The provincial Government will continue to pay the necessary attention to the issue of crime. We are conscious of the fact that the safety and security of all our citizens is a fundamental right and constitutes a critical element in our continuing efforts to improve the quality of life of all our people.

The battle against HIV and AIDS is one of the major strategic issues that we as government are dealing with. We have developed an integrated and multi-sectoral approach as part of our strategy to combating the scourge. We continue to encourage efforts to find solutions to the AIDS crisis.

We agree that HIV and AIDS is a major challenge that threatens to undermine our efforts to transform and develop our society from the inequalities and underdevelopment that we inherited from apartheid.

It therefore requires all sectors of our society to rally together our strengths and capabilities in a common struggle to reverse the spread of HIV infection and contain the impact of AIDS in our society.

Assessing the road we have traveled since the inauguration of this province, many structures came about, either initiated by the government or by government and partnership.

I want to salute the RDP of the Soul structure, HIV/AIDS Council, CPFS's, CDF's, and many other structures and initiatives be it NGO's, government, private sector driven for your contribution of preserving the value base of our people.

However, the Moral Regeneration Movement (MRM), calls for a collective effort and we have to ask the question as to what model is the most workable one without doing away with what we created, or , if we have to change, how best do we adapt to this ultimate call.

I want to encourage you to look at what needs to be done

- The adoption of the charter is in May 2003
- We need to attend the strategic planning session of the MRM on 28 February- 1 March 2003
- We must have an interim structure, a coordinator that drive and deliver on the goals of the MRM
- We must have regional, local and a provincial structure in place
- The question is how do we pool our structure, resources and to make this possible energies.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the Deputy President Mr. Jacob Zuma and the MRM committee for their courage and leadership to keep the decay of moral values on the national agenda.

I also wish to thank all participants and their institutions for reserving time to participate and build the MRM.

In conclusion, we rely on the commitment of people just like you to contribute to our goal of achieving a better life for everyone in this wonderful country, we especially rely upon you to promote and uphold the rights of women and children as enshrined in our constitution.

I thank you



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