Wednesday, October 29, 2008

An anti-poverty document unveiled in South Africa

South Africa is still trying to press on with poverty elimination. A series of meetings are going on now to come up with the governments strategy.

The South African government unveiled a new strategy document that provides plans to work on.

The South African newspaper theIndependent On-Line did a good job of detailing what the paper says.

Central to this is ending intergenerational poverty through improving the economic situation of households.

Critical elements of this includes maintaining overall economic growth, including through substantial investment in economic infrastructure and appropriate fiscal and monetary policies.

Government support will be targeted at measures to create economic opportunities on a mass scale, including through land reform and agrarian development, support for growth in sustainable, labour-intensive formal activities, and a substantial expansion in public employment schemes.

Thirdly, measures will be instituted to enhance the incomes in cash and kind earned from informal activities, the bulk of which takes place in agriculture, retail and services.

Interventions include expanding opportunities for employment and self-employment, providing quality education and skills and health care, promoting access to assets, including social capital, and promoting social cohesion.

Leaders tried their best to get everyone in on the act today. With sppeches aimed to remind everyone that a group effort is needed to reduce poverty. Deputy President Baleka Mbete was quoted by the South African paper The Times.

"What we are saying is that while government accepts the responsibility to address poverty in our country, it cannot on its own be able to achieve the eradication of poverty without the help of other players in society," said Mbete.

She was speaking at government’s draft anti-poverty strategy meeting held at the Union Buildings in Pretoria.

The discussion document aims to eradicate poverty by creating economic opportunities and enabling communities and individuals to access these.

She said one of things government realised was the need to address problems facing particular groups in society like women and the youth.

Mbete called on all South Africans including civil society and business to get involved in empowering the poor and getting them involved in the economy.

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