Port Elizabeth – The African National Congress’s greatest crime is not Nkandla, but a poor education system, Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane said on Tuesday.
“The ANC’s greatest crime is not Nkandla, it is the fact that they have failed the education system of South Africa. It is a crime that on June 16, 21 years later, our education is considered one of the worst in the world,” he said at a Youth Day event at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University.
Young people could not be asked to finish high school with teachers who could not get the basics right or pass the exams they set for pupils.
“When the ANC government says we will give tenders to a few politically connected people, under the DA we say we want to give what no money can take away, what nobody can rob from you, a quality education.
“The fact is that if my mother, who was a cashier, can one day have a son with two masters degrees, then the dream for this country is the fact that a child of a domestic worker or gardener can one day be a doctor, a lawyer, a nurse. We will rewrite the script.”
He spoke out against corruption and said President Jacob Zuma’s time was running out.
‘Your time is running out’
“We cannot tolerate corruption. Corruption is robbing young South Africans of their future. When corruption gets into you, it stops you from even being able to think. You end up telling university graduates that a swimming pool can be a fire pool. How can you tell people that?”
“We have traded the future of South Africa for the benefit of one person, and we are here to say, as the youth of 2015, to that one person, your time is running out!”
“We want the best in government so that they can serve the people of this country.”
Maimane was accompanied by DA federal chairperson and Mandela Bay mayoral candidate Athol Trollip, and DA national youth leader and MP Yusuf Cassim. The auditorium was packed to capacity with DA supporters of all ages, from toddlers to pensioners, with hundreds more waiting outside to catch a glimpse of the man dubbed the Obama of Soweto.
He said the DA did not want principals elected by unions. The SA Democratic Teachers’ Union had to protect the rights of teachers, but should not have the right to elect principals.
“Principals must be chosen because they can lead a school, not because they are politically connected.”
Maimane criticised student representative councils, saying their members had a reputation for drinking, when their job was to fight for the prosperity of young people.
“The drunk ones only want to protect leaders and spend money for themselves. The sober ones are in the DA because they recognise that the DA is the party for the future, not going backwards,” he said.
Derrick Spies, News24