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Under ANC rule, the only changes to infrastructure were for the worse

(Parliamentary debate: Infrastructure Development Plan)

The only response that the ANC government's grandiose plans for infrastructure development warrants is to say that nothing has changed since President Cyril Ramaphosa made promises about supercities last year and nothing has changed since the relevant Minister, Patricia de Lille, also made promises in Parliament about "implementation, implementation, implementation".

In fact, nothing has changed for the better since 1994. All the changes have been for the worse. Existing towns and cities are not even maintained. So, any plans that the ANC may have for building supercities are doomed to fail.

The following unfolded over the last few years as part of the ANC's "plans for development":

• Power stations are mostly outdated and out of order.
• Dilapidated sewage plants dump massive amounts of raw sewage in rivers every year at a rate of approximately 50 000 litres per second.
• Road networks are old and falling apart.
• Bridges are no longer safe and require urgent maintenance.
• Railways are rusted, have been vandalised or stolen and all train stations have basically been destroyed.
• There is a serious shortage of dams and the ones we do have are being polluted.
• There are also serious shortages of police stations, hospitals, clinics and schools. The existing ones are not being properly maintained either.
• Buildings and other assets are in such a terrible condition that it will take billions of rand to restore them.
• Municipalities do not spend their infrastructure allocations and the backlog in the upkeep of infrastructure is just getting bigger and bigger.

This raises the question of why taxpayers are still expected to support the Department of Public Works and Infrastructure while all seven its entities are dysfunctional and make no contribution to development whatsoever.

The current development plan is nothing more than a further waste of time and money. It seems to be no more than an updated version of the old RDP programme that former President Nelson Mandela implemented in 1994.

President Cyril Ramaphosa's boasting about the private sector's promises to offer assistance amounting to R340 billion means nothing. Not one cent of it is in the bank.

The President is asking the private sector to get involved in projects to create more jobs, but with the government as project manager. Nobody is going to buy into that as long as the ANC is involved. Success can only be achieved if the private sector itself is the project manager.

We have seen over and over again that no money is safe if the ANC has any control over it. Like the Covid-19 emergency fund, it will disappear into cadres' pockets overnight.

Economic growth and investments will only realise if damaging policies, like Affirmative Action (AA), Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) and expropriation without compensation, are abolished. Infrastructure development will occur and grow alongside the economy.

True growth and progress will, however, only be attainable when voters get rid of the ANC on all levels of government and replace it with a government consisting of parties that are reliable like the FF Plus.

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