Deputy Speaker, every year in the Fifth Parliament, the EFF has raised the issue of the
establishment of a state-owned construction company and other proposals and made this recommendation in the portfolio committee. However, the committee refused to see the basic logic, and instead, we ended up with site issues, which will not change how the Department of Public Works must do its work. The committee refused to see this basic logic.
This is what we proposed in the committee. Firstly, we need a state-owned construction company to build all state infrastructure including roads, houses offices and recreational infrastructure.
Secondly, we need a database of all state-owned buildings that are available, especially close to the institutions of higher learning, for them to be converted into suitable use for the different purposes for free. This database must be publically available for the entrepreneurs to apply for use of these buildings at no cost.
Thirdly, government must build shopping malls, manage these facilities and invite local manufacturers, companies to sell their products in these malls.
Furthermore, government must move away from renting offices and build their own offices. It is much cheaper and sustainable.
Lastly, the EPWP is a programme that has failed and there is overwhelming evidence that the programme will never achieve its intended results. What we need to do with the programme is to absorb all workers into jobs that do not demand skills, pay the minimum wage, provide them with structured training, together with education opportunities so that they can find employment elsewhere in future.
We continue to make these proposals because they will solve most of the problems facing government infrastructure, and the report again failed to appreciate these realities. On that note, we reject the report.