Gauteng 'leads our country' in terms of jobs and education, says Makhura
Gauteng premier David Makhura used his state of the province address (Sopa) on Monday to draw comparisons between his government and that of the Western Cape.
In a spirited address delivered at the Alberton Civic Centre in Ekurhuleni, Makhura blew his own horn while playing down the successes achieved under Helen Zille in the Western Cape.
Makhura's speech was dominated by what the ANC government in the province had done since 1994, with particular emphasis on the past five years under his watch.
On job creation, he lauded his government for having created 490,000 new jobs in the past five years, adding that this was ahead of Zille's administration, which he claims "created 50,000 jobs in 10 years".
"In case you do not understand the full implication of these numbers, an example is the Western Cape celebrating the fact that they created 50,000 jobs in 10 years, when here in Gauteng we have created 490,000 only in five years, not in 10 years," he said.
On investment, Makhura said Gauteng had attracted foreign direct investment to the tune of R199bn in five years and created 30,000 jobs in the process. He took another jab at the Western Cape, which he said "is celebrating the investment of R100bn and 19,000 jobs over 10 years, when we are talking of what we have achieved only in five years."
Makhura said Gauteng led the way for the matric pass rate in 2018, a position previously dominated by Western Cape. He said eight of the 10 top performing districts in the matric class of 2018 were in Gauteng.
Over the past 25 years, our province has transformed our racialised education system inherited from apartheid to a qualitatively improved system for all learners, including those from the township.David Makhura
"Gauteng also leads our country in gearing our education for the future through the deployment of ICT to improve learning and teaching at our schools," he added.
"Over the past 25 years, our province has transformed our racialised education system inherited from apartheid to a qualitatively improved system for all learners, including those from the township.
"In the past five years alone, we have have provided 1.2-million girl learners with dignity packs, 1.1-million learners receive meals on a daily basis in our schools and 500,000 learners have received school uniforms."
The premier highlighted the doubling of the province's population from 7.8-million in 1996 to 15-million today, meaning that one in every four South Africans now resides in Gauteng.
The number of those employed in the province increased from 2.6-million in 1996 to 5.1-million in 2018.
The number of people accessing public education and public healthcare in the province has also increased. In 2019 there are 2.3-million learners in public education, up from 1.2-million in 1994. The provincial public healthcare system now serves 20-million people per year, compared to 7-million in 1994.
Makhura also lauded the ANC government in Gauteng for boosting the provincial life expectancy from 54 years in 2006 to 64 years in 2018.