The African National Congress (ANC) and the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) have taken their election campaigns to poverty stricken deep rural areas.
The ANC held a motorcade parade at KwaNongoma in northern KZN while the IFP took its campaign to eMaqadini-Ndwedwe north of Durban.
In its campaign the IFP called for the establishment of a Youth Ministry while the ANC’s campaign focused on Wednesday’s by-elections taking place at KwaNongoma.
As the May general elections draw closer, both parties are pulling all the stops to sway the voters.
The IFP’s campaign to eMaqadini focused on education challenges. The party is calling for a Youth Ministry that will champion youth programmes. Party Education spokesperson Mntomuhle Khawula says that the youth ministry will help in coordinating all youth programmes.
He adds that it will focus on youth development which the NYDA and the Youth Commission has vainly tried to address. “The Youth Commission was established, it failed and again the NYDA was established and it has failed.”
According to party Deputy President Mzamo Buthelezi the country’s education system is collapsing. He blamed the government for what he calls passing pupils in Matric with lower grades. “ The government has concentrated on quantity versus quality, because the government today is saying people have passed by 70% but if you look into how many of those have got Bachelors to be admitted at universities very few.”
Buthelezi adds that the IFP is concerned about the fact that most of the learners cannot be absorbed in tertiary institutions.
Kwa-Nongoma municipality is composed of 19 NFP councillors, 14 IFP while the ANC has six.
Meanwhile the ANC is focusing on increasing its numbers in the province. Since 2011 municipal elections, the ANC began making inroads in the former IFP stronghold. In the recent by-elections in the area, the party snatched away a ward previously under IFP control.
The KwaNongoma municipality is composed of 19 NFP councillors, 14 IFP while the ANC has six.
ANC Provincial Executive Committee member Mxolisi Kaunda says that they hope to do even better in Wednesday elections.
He adds that the democratic society has enabled the party to campaign freely in the former IFP’s stronghold.
The ANC is planning a massive march to the Zululand District Municipality next month to voice their dissatisfaction about service delivery in the area.
The District Municipality is co-governed by the ANC/NFP coalition.
– By Vusi Makhosini