Opposition parties ‘welcome’ NDP

Cape Town - Opposition parties came out in support of the National Development Plan (NDP) on Wednesday, but voiced doubts over the government's will to put it into practice.

The party leaders spoke in the National Assembly shortly after Planning Minister Trevor Manuel handed the revised document to President Jacob Zuma during an official sitting of the House.

Democratic Alliance parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko welcomed the plan.

“We believe that the plan’s success or failure will entirely depend on if the president will rise to the challenge of aligning his policies with the goals and objectives of the NDP,” she said.

The DA agreed that the high unemployment rate and the poor quality of education were two of the country's most urgent problems.

Mazibuko questioned whether the government could convince players like the Congress of SA Trade Unions and the SA Communist Party to buy-in to the plan.

“Many of the ideas proposed in the NDP are rooted in an analytical framework that clashes with the beliefs and ideology of the ANC's alliance partners,” said Mazibuko.

Congress of the People leader Mosiuoa Lekota said he was excited about the contents of the plan.

However, he also questioned whether the government had the ability to deliver on its objectives.

“Cope asks for the refined plan to be implemented against a tight time-frame and against a greater level of accountability,” said Lekota.

Improving the ability of the state found favour with Cope.

“Lack of resources has never been as severe a problem in our country as the lack of capability. In other words, we are referring here to the lack of ability within a large segment of the public service to perform required actions to the level required, because of a lack of expertise and capacity.” - Sapa