DA-led Tshwane leads in job-creation
12 June 2018
Today I visited the Ga-Rankuwa Arts and Crafts Centre, a model for expanding opportunities to those left out of the economy.
The programme that I visited today is a good example of why under a DA-led government, the economy grows faster, unemployment is lower, and more and more entrepreneurs have the confidence to start their small businesses. Where we govern, more people have work, and more people have hope of finding work. This is the DA difference that voters can expect in a DA-governed Gauteng.
The flagship project at the centre is the FabLab. The DA-led coalition government in Tshwane, led by Mayor Solly Msimanga, has helped design, manage and fund the FabLab, and has even provided the facilities at Ga-Rankuwa free of charge.
And since taking over the City in 2016, our coalition government has pioneered a Youth Innovation Challenge and a “Hackathon” which, like the FabLab programme, is another opportunity for young entrepreneurs to get the support and they chance they need to thrive. The Hackathon gives young people with innovative service delivery solutions a chance to work with the Mayor in tackling some of the biggest problems in the City.
The primary training that the learners are offered by the programme is run by the City of Tshwane in partnership with other agencies. This programme’s main objective is to work with schools to give these learners access to entrepreneurship, technology and innovation training. The majority of the youth that the FabLab programme works with are as young as grade 9 to 11 learners and all are from poor communities and backgrounds.
And their use of technology is even targeted at finding solutions to service delivery problems. So it was exciting to learn that there are already more than 250 young entrepreneurs who have benefitted from FabLab and are now using tech to help services get to the people.
This programme is only a glimpse into the DA-led administration’s commitment to small businesses in Tshwane. Since taking office in 2016, the City has spent approximately R3 billion with small business suppliers alone, which is almost triple the amount spent by the previous ANC administration.
We must never stop trying to build a South Africa where no one is left behind. And it is SMME programmes like those run at Ga-Rankuwa Arts and Crafts Centre that will continue to be a shining example of previously disadvantaged communities receiving redress and job opportunities being created for young South Africans.
Issued by Mmusi Maimane, Leader of the Democratic Alliance, 12 June 2018