Ladies and gentlemen
Comrades and compatriots
Members of the media
It gives me great pleasure to announce a team of men and women who I will work with during the Sixth Administration of our Democratic Dispensation.
These men and women who will constitute the Free State Executive Council for the current Administration, are committed to working hard to ensure that we embark on radical steps towards changing the lives of our people.
The process of nominating members of the Executive Council was not an easy one for me and the ANC. The Free State province is blessed with many talented, skilled and knowledgeable people who are capable to serve our people with dedication.
As we announce the new EXCO today, we also pay tribute to brave women who protested and marched against Pass Laws and the 1913 Land Act. It was on this day, One Hundred and Six Days ago, when many women were arrested for defying the carrying of passes, as well as against land dispossession against Black people.
We pay tribute to the courageous women who were arrested in Bloemfontein, Winburg, Jagersfontein and other parts of the province for their role in the struggle against an unjust system. Today we are free because of their sacrifices.
It is a matter of concern that today, One Hundred and Six Years after these women protested against the Land Act, the majority of our people remain landless. As the Free State Executive Council, we commit to work with municipalities and the national government to ensure that our people are given land for residential, commercial as well as religious purposes.
We fully support the ongoing processes to expropriate land without compensation, and we will work together with all stakeholders to ensure that, where people are given land, production and food security are not compromised.
In line with the ANC’s 2019 Election Manifesto, I want to commit myself and the team that we will be announcing today to write a new chapter of renewal. Together with the masses of our people, we shall begin a process to write a chapter to eradicate poverty, inequality and unemployment.
The struggle for radical socio-economic change is the cornerstone of our mandate, and we shall ensure that the visions contained in the Freedom Charter are realised.
We are concerned about the high levels of unemployment, especially amongst the youth. Statistics show that almost Three Hundred Thousand youth are unemployed in Free State. This represents 48% of the entire unemployed population. Re tlo sebetsa ka matla ho HLASELA tlhokeho ya mesebetsi, haholo ho batjha ba rona le bomme.
We commit to work together with the National Government. our municipalities and the private sector to fight youth unemployment, and develop radical programmes towards youth development.
We collectively commit to work together with the people to uproot the cancer of corruption, and to ensure that we abide by the principles of sound financial management and good governance.
As stated in the State of the Province Address I delivered in February this year, our people should find compassion, humility, honesty, respect and trust in the glory of the ANC, its leadership and its government. This is a commitment I made in my capacity as the Premier, and on behalf of the Executive Council I will be leading.
After consulting with different stakeholders, I have decided to constitute the Free State Executive Council as follows:
MEC for Agriculture & Rural Development: Mr. William Bulwane
MEC for Cooperative Governance & Traditional Affairs: Mr. Thembeni Nxangisa
MEC for Economic, Small Business Development, Tourism & Environmental Affairs: Mr. Makalo Mohale
MEC for Education: Mr. Tate Makgoe
MEC for Finance: Ms. Gadija Brown
MEC for Health: Ms. Montseng Tsiu
MEC for Police, Roads and Transport: Mr. Sam Mashinini
MEC Ffor Public Works & Human Settlements: Ms. Motshidisi Koloi
MEC for Social Development: Ms. Mamiki Qabathe
MEC for Sport, Arts, Culture and Recreation: Ms. Limakatso Mahasa
On behalf of the people of the Free State, I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate and welcome these new members of the Executive Council. I would like to make a commitment that, working together with this team, I will ensure quality service delivery for all our people.
What you see in front of you is a powerful team. We are a team of servants of the people who have said to the people of the Free State; “Thuma Thina”.
I would like to close my address by quoting the words of one of the icons of the struggle, Mama Charlotte Maxeke. I direct the words of Mama Charlotte Maxeke to the Members of the Executive Council, and I quote: “This work is not for yourselves – kill that spirit of self, and do not live above your people, but live with them”.
I thank you!