Zuma: Forget our differences - unite behind NDP

President Jacob Zuma (David Harrison, M&G)

President Jacob Zuma (David Harrison, M&G)

President Jacob Zuma has called for all parties represented in Parliament to unite behind the National Development Plan.

"The NDP provides perfect platform to unite behind a common goal. We should be all ready to rise above sectional interests and work towards a better life for all," Zuma told Parliament on Thursday in his reply to debate of his State Of The Nation address.

After a week in which his State Of The Nation address was slammed by opposition parties for having lack of vision, Zuma encoruaged his political foes should measure their criticism with cooperative action with government.

"Sometimes the way the opposition acts, I wonder if they love South Africa," the president said.

"It is important that we as political parties find common ground to work towards achieving things of national importance."

Zuma added that he had instructed all government departments to incorporate the NDP into their own departmental plans and that opposition parties too should work to make it a reality. "We can disagree on as many issues as we want to btut we must find issues where we put our country and our people first," he said.

The NDP plots a course of action for South Africa until 2030, including proposals of completely eradicating poverty and moving the reducing South Africa’s Gini coefficient inequality rating from 0.7 in 2009 to 0.6 in the next 17 years.

It was crafted by the national planning commission (NPC), which is chaired by Planning Minister Trevor Manuel. So far it has been championed by Zuma, the ANC and many opposition parties as the ideal plan to provide a roadmap for South Africa's future.

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