IFP unveils 13-point plan to get SA on track

IFP president Velenkosini Hlabisa waves to supporters as he arrives at the Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban for the party’s election manifesto launch on Sunday. Pcture: Doctor Ngcobo/Independent Newspapers

IFP president Velenkosini Hlabisa waves to supporters as he arrives at the Moses Mabhida stadium in Durban for the party’s election manifesto launch on Sunday. Pcture: Doctor Ngcobo/Independent Newspapers

Published Mar 11, 2024


The IFP on Sunday delivered its first manifesto launch without its founding president, the late Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, saying it was focused on “practical approaches and solutions to the biggest crises affecting the nation”.

Party president Velenkosini Hlabisa, addressing thousands of supporters at Moses Mabhida Stadium, delivered a 13-point plan and said the country’s economy had regressed in the past five years, with minimal growth and a lack of job creation.

Hlabisa said with unemployment sitting at 41%, the effect of crime on communities, the devastating impact of load shedding and the high cost of living with increasing fuel prices, the country was on the brink of collapse.

He said employment was critical to delivering social and economic justice for all citizens.

“South Africa has the most pronounced levels of inequality in the world. Our future, our freedom, our dignity depend on our ability to work but our economy has stagnated, causing devastating levels of unemployment specifically among our youth.”

He said the party would support small-scale farming to revitalise the economy and recognise traditional leaders as key players in land management and the transformation of the rural economy. Hlabisa said corruption, coupled with inefficiency and apathy, had eroded the capacity of the government to deliver on its mandates.

“Billions of rand have disappeared in the corrupt hands of our government and as a result the most vulnerable among us have been deprived of opportunities for development and advancement.

“Levels of crime and violence are staggering, particularly among our women and children. The IFP therefore believes immediate and radical reform is required to strengthen the justice system, security, military and intelligence services,” Hlabisa said.

He said the party would support traditional courts and enhance roles for traditional leaders in the provincial and local government spheres “which will help to achieve greater peace and security in our communities”.

He said the country’s education system needed to be rebuilt as it was harming the opportunities for young people to progress.

“We will enhance teaching and learning standards while providing adequate resources in classrooms, libraries, laboratories and every resource a child needs at school in order to develop.”

On healthcare, Hlabisa said the country’s systems faced many challenges that were hindering its ability to provide adequate healthcare services to citizens.

“The IFP will champion universal health coverage with every South African having equitable access to quality and state-sponsored health services.”

Hlabisa said an IFP government would subsidise housing for citizens who could not afford homes.

“We will identify parcels of state land for development by the provincial government and municipalities,” he said.

On infrastructure, Hlabisa said this was vital to deliver basic service delivery.

“Government has been allowed to break down the country’s infrastructure with no programme to repair them.”

He said the party had always placed traditional leadership at the centre of its local government strategy.

“Our founder, the late Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, championed the Ingonyama Trust to keep the communal land of the Zulu kingdom under the custodianship of his majesty, the king.

“We will protect and sustain the institution of the traditional leadership,” Hlabisa said.

He said land ownership was a contentious issue in the country and land reform policies affected how the country produced and protected its food.

“Land has the potential to be the foundation of a renewed economy that we so critically need. The IFP government will commission a full scale land audit to determine who owns what and use these findings to focus on state land where applicable to be farmed commercially,” Hlabisa said.

The Mercury