Today’s release of a StatsSA report entitled “Poverty trends in South Africa: An examination of absolute poverty from 2006-2015” indicated that since 2011, the number of South Africans living in poverty has risen to an enormous 55.5% of the population, meaning that over 30.4 million South Africans live in poverty under this ANC government.
The report highlights that between 2011 and 2015, poverty actually increased from 53.2% to 55.5%. There can surely be no greater indictment of any government’s performance than the number of people living in poverty actually rising on their watch. After all, the primary objective of being in government must be to improve the lives of the poor.
Crucially, StatsSA cities a list of factors which have led to this increase in poverty – all of which stem from the ANC’s economic policies that have failed to grow the economy and create work. These include policy uncertainty, low and weak economic growth; continuing high unemployment levels; higher consumer prices, and lower investment levels.
We therefore reiterate our call for South Africans to be given the power to usher in the new beginning our country so urgently needs, by going to an early election. The power ought to be in the hands of the people, not politicians.
What is clear is that under the ANC government, poor South Africans are suffering and have lost hope in this ANC-led government bringing freedom and economic opportunity to those who need it the most. The ANC is no longer the voice of the poor.
It is now even more critical that despite the failures of the ANC at national government, local government must diligently focus on delivery for poor South Africans. Where we govern, the DA will continue to prioritize delivering quality services to the poor.