Thabiso Goba12 February 2024 | 11:41

Nasi iSpani programme not an election tactic, says Gauteng ANC

Opposition parties in Gauteng said the ANC was abusing the power of incumbency by using state power for its election strategies, but the Gauteng ANC said it could not sit by while there was high unemployment in the province.

Nasi iSpani programme not an election tactic, says Gauteng ANC

Gauteng Premier Panyaza Lesufi speaking at the launch of the Mayibuye Primary School in Tembisa on 7 February 2024. Picture: X/EducationGP1

JOHANNESBURG - The African National Congress (ANC) in Gauteng has denied allegations from opposition parties that the Nasi iSpani recruitment programme is an election strategy to persuade votes from young people.
 
This weekend, the ANC-led Gauteng government handed over appointment letters to about 32,000 previously unemployed youths as part of the mass jobs programme.
 
Nasi iSpani - the brainchild of Gauteng premier Panyaza Lesufi - has employed well over 40,000 young people since its inception last year.
 
The provincial ANC is holding a lekgotla at the Birchwood Hotel in Boksburg, where it's defended the programme and is set to discuss its election strategy, among other matters.
 
Opposition parties in Gauteng said the ANC was abusing the power of incumbency by using state power for its election strategies.
 
The Democratic Alliance (DA), ActionSA, and even the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) - that the ANC is in coalition with - have promised to repeal the Nasi iSpani programme if they get into power.
 
ANC provincial secretary Thembinkosi Nciza said the ruling party could not sit by and not do anything while there was high youth unemployment in Gauteng.
 
“There’s an outcry of unemployment, and we can come with creative ways to ensure we absolve as many young people as possible, because we don’t want our people to just depend on social grants, we want our people to work.”
 
Nciza said creating job opportunities could not be left solely to the private sector.