The African National Congress’s 55th National Conference has adopted a number of resolutions geared at reviving and transforming the country’s economy.
The party’s Commission on Economic Transformation resolved that social grants and welfare payments should be protected from inflationary pressures, and expanded to provide for basic incomes as government’s budget allows.
The commission further resolved that restructuring Eskom’s unsustainable debt must be undertaken as a matter of priority in order to overcome rolling blackouts.
The ANC’s Commission on Economic Transformation has determined that adequate coal plant maintenance coupled with the development of a skills base is required to bring Eskom’s power stations back into operation.
The commission says investment plans of the Just Energy Transition Partnership should be effectively implemented through grants and highly concessional finance.
Human Settlements Minister Mamoloko Kubayi says, “Part of the energy space and the conversations we’ve had around energy are always contaminated by competition whether its coal vs renewable which is not supposed to be. That’s why the concept of the energy mix has always been what we prefer, but you find that it contaminates to a point of even the solution that we try to find because it’s either you’re labelled like Mantashe. I was saying a coal fundamentalist or a renewables person, yet we could find neutrality in terms of them supporting each other.”
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The commission has resolved to continue to implement the preferential procurement policy aimed at advancing people who have been disadvantaged by unfair discrimination.
Kubayi says the party remains committed to Black Economic Empowerment and transformation.
“We have been very clear from ANC point of view that transformation remains a critical tool for the African National Congress to transform society but to ensure inclusivity in the economy, therefore we do not even have any intention of renegading on transformation targets or even on BEE. As we dealt and concluded conference, major part of the issues around resolutions you’ll find transformation issues, you’ll find BEE.”
The commission has further resolved to play a leading role in deepening the processes of social compacting around economic policy interventions for long-term sustainable growth and job creation.
ANC NEC Member David Makhura says, “Our constitutional democracy is being threatened by things that we are either stagnant or we are moving in reverse. One of them is that we have chronic poor performance of our economy. Poor performance with regard to employment with regard to transformation can actually reverse the gains of our constitutional democracy.”
The Commission resolved to explore the introduction of a wealth tax to minimize income and wealth inequality. It further reaffirmed previous National Conference resolutions on Economic Transformation, but noted the need to ensure implementation.
President Cyril Ramaphosa officially closes the 55th conference in Mangaung: