Durban – The Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) delivered its manifesto at the Chatsworth Stadium in Durban on Sunday with the simple message ‘Trust Us’.
Thousands of party supporters appeared unwavering in the light drizzle as the party told them about the key issues it will take into the May 8 elections.
IFP President Mangosuthu Buthelezi said the past ten years had revealed that trust was lacking in many political parties but he said the party had acted with integrity.
“There is no need to reinvent the wheel with catchy slogans. We are still saying ‘Trust Us’ because integrity is still at the heart of the IFP, and it’s still the foundation for building social justice and economic justice for all South Africans.
“We understand the simple truth that the economic salvation promised by political freedom has not materialised despite all the promises and all the talk-shops and all the resources thrown at the problem. What’s missing is the right value system. Without the right value system, the leadership of our country is bound to fail.”
On the land issue, Buthelezi said his party believed that land expropriation is necessary. “We affirm the Constitution in its belief that there should be some level of compensation.”
Buthelezi said the party could be trusted to get the economy working; promote social cohesion; to be tough on crime; fight gender-based violence; promote responsible land reform; to fix the education system; to improve the healthcare system and to protect the environment.
Buthelezi said employment issues were crucial to their party policies.
“We want to remove obstacles to people finding jobs. That includes lowering the cost of data to make access to the Internet and email affordable for everyone. South Africa has some of the highest data costs of any country in Africa, never mind the rest of the world. If we want to grow our economy and open opportunities, we need to get these basics right.”
Buthelezi also focused on education, saying it is a necessary condition for sustainable, effective development.
“Education is the most potent tool with which to bridge the inequalities in our society. It is the most potent tool to place our people at the centre of our move into the future, and to secure our rightful place in the global community. We, therefore, champion free, quality Early Childhood Development, Primary, Secondary and Higher Education, and training for all our people. So that our children don’t get to school exhausted and hungry, the IFP insists on free scholar transport and effective nutrition schemes in all public schools.”
Giving children the best possible chance at achieving their potential would enable the country to move forward, he said.