Addressing the inaugural session of the National Planning Commission at the Union Buildings in Pretoria on Tuesday, President Jacob Zuma admitted that the government has often taken a sectoral and short-term view that has hampered development.
“Taking a long-term and independent view will add impetus, focus and coherence to our work,” he told the new commissioners. “This will no doubt lead to an improved performance in government.”
He said that the mandate of the commission is to take a broad, cross-cutting, independent and critical view of South Africa. He said it will help define the South Africa we seek to achieve in 20 years’ time and to map out a path to achieve those objectives.
“Your expertise in the areas of finance, industry, telecommunications, biotechnology, water engineering, rural development, governance, energy, education, health, food security, and climate change, among others, will go a long way to delivering the kind of South Africa we envisage,” the president said.
He added: “The National Planning Commission will revitalise the work of government. By drawing on the best available expertise, the commission will be able to identify and confront challenges head-on.”
He told the 24 members of the commission that it is expected to put forward solid research, sound evidence and clear recommendations for government.
“The commission will also work with broader society to draw on the best expertise, consult the relevant stakeholders and help to shape a consensus on what to do about the key challenges facing us,” he said. — I-Net Bridge