Cape Town - Deputy Finance Minister David Masondo has defended President Cyril Ramaphosa’s comments in the State of the Nation Address that the private sector creates jobs and not the government.
Ramaphosa was slammed by EFF leader Julius Malema during the Sona debate, who said his comments had led many people to lose hope in finding jobs.
He said Ramaphosa has not provided direction on these issues, which was critical as millions of people were unemployed.
He said more people have continued to lose their jobs. In other countries the State was central in job creation.
In his Sona speech, Ramaphosa had said 80% of jobs were created by the private sector and the government created an enabling environment.
But Malema said Ramaphosa was shifting his responsibility and relied on the private sector.
Masondo came to Ramaphosa’s defence, saying there were factors that led to the involvement of the private sector in job creation.
“I am going to divert a bit, particularly on the distortion and falsification of what the President of the Republic said on the relationship between the state and business.
“The point here is that the ANC seeks to build a developmental state and the developmental state is not meant to obliterate the private sector. That’s the first thing we need to accept.
“Instead it is meant to work with the private sector in order to drive the process of development. It’s about catching up, but catching up with the developed world.
“All late developers, including South Korea and the United States always face about five obstacles for them to carry out development,” said Masondo.
The first obstacle, he said, was access to the market. That is where the government gets involved for the private sector to invest and create jobs.
The second obstacle is finance and that is where the parties come together.
Masondo said the third point is technology, which was important. The two last points related to skills and network industries.
Masondo said all these issues were important in ensuring the private sector was involved in job creation.
“The way we differ with other parties that have become self-appointed spokesperson of the president is that we don’t believe that the market itself on its own can solve the problems of underdevelopment but it’s a combination of the state and working with the market to realise that,” said Masondo.