Budget Vote Speech - Main Address by Honourable Ms Maite Nkoana-Mashabane, Minister in The Presidency For Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities
19 May 2022
Chairperson of the Portfolio Committee
It is an honor to present the 2022 Budget Vote Speech of the Department of Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities in the 25th Year Anniversary of the South African Constitution coming into effect.
The coming into effect of our democratic constitution marked a decisive break from the apartheid past and it ushered in a new South Africa based on democratic values of human dignity, non-racialism, non-sexism and freedom.
While women in their diversity played a crucial role in the drafting and development of this world renowned constitution, women continue to suffer the second pandemic of Gender-Based Violence and Femicide perpetrated by men and economic exclusion.
However, regardless of all these gendered challenges, women of South Africa are still standing!!!
More resolute than before, and in order to realise the promises enshrined in the constitution,
One of the stalwarts of our liberation struggle, Mme Gertrude Shope once said and I quote "Every generation has got a responsibility to know what its mission is. Mine was to liberate the country, what is yours"
As the Department of Women, Youth and Persons with Disabilities, we will continue, in line with our mandate to advocate, monitor, evaluate, and regulate for the rights and empowerment of women, youth and persons with disabilities, as enshrined in the constitution.
The empowerment of women, youth and persons with disabilities cannot be achieved without the socio-economic transformation of society. We must advocate for the acceleration of economic growth to overcome the triple challenges of inequality, unemployment and poverty, which are the breeding ground for GBVF
We are determined to ensure that in the eight (8) years remaining to reach the 50/50 target of gender equality in accordance with Goal: 5 of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) on gender equality and the commitments made at the 5th World Conference of Women in Beijing through the Beijing Platform for Action and its critical areas of concern.
In this regard, South Africa has joined the Generation Equality Forum to accelerate the implementation of programms and projects to reach these projects by 2030.
In order to eradicate the pandemic of Gender-Based Violence and Femicide, it is critical that we all implement the National Strategic Plan on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide.
Accordingly, the impact of the National Strategic Plan can only be realized when all sectors of society play their part.
I am pleased to inform this august house that the Inter-Ministerial Committee which I Chair, continue to do its work of coordinating the implementation of the National Strategic Plan.
In this regard, the Department plays a leadership role in advocating for, coordinating, monitoring, and evaluating the implementation of the National Strategic Plan.
To date, several strides have been made including the following:
- The National Council on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide Draft Bill is currently being consulted with NEDLAC and will be tabled in Parliament in June 2022.
- The Multi-Sectoral GBVF Rapid Response Teams are in the process of being established in all provinces, District and Local Municipality levels.
- We are working closely with Municipalities and Sector Departments, through COGTA to ensure integration of the priorities of the NSP: GBVF into the District Development Model and Integrated Development Plans.
- Through the European Union funded programme, Technical Monitors and Data Capturers have been placed in three pilot provinces in KwaZulu-Natal, Eastern Cape and Gauteng to enhance the capacity of provinces to implement the NSP and the Gender Budgeting Framework. The plan is to roll out this support in the remaining 6 provinces during the 2022/23 financial year.
- Through the GIZ funding, the Department is developing the National Prevention Strategy on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide.
- We have ensured that National Departments integrate the GBVF priorities into their Strategic and Annual Performance Plans.
- The Department coordinate and consolidate the submission of the monthly progress reports on the implementation of the National Strategic Plan to the President.
- We have, in partnership with SANTACO, initiated the training of taxi drivers and owners on Gender-Based Violence and Femicide.
On 4 May 2022, I launched the South African Gender Assessment Report in partnership with the World Bank which highlights that overall, South Africa has made progress toward gender equality since 1994.
- South Africa is among the top 10 of countries globally to have successfully implemented reforms to improve women's legal rights.
- South Africa is ranked 18 globally according to the WEF Gender Gap Index, 2021.
- South Africa, second (2) in SADC states according to the WEF Gender Gap Index, 2021.
- South Africa has achieved gender parity in primary and secondary school levels and in closing the gender gap in rates of adult literacy.
- There is notable progress in the number of women in Parliament.
Despite the significant progress made since the dawn of democracy, the report also highlights that women remain marginalized in the mainstream economy and economic opportunities available in the country.
In addition, the persistence of high levels of Gender-Based Violence and Femicide in the country, continue to threaten the livelihoods of marginalized groups and compromise the overall development of our nation.
Our Department has also partnered with the World Bank in collaboration with SARS to release a Report on Women and Trade Facilitation in South Africa.
The findings of the report, highlight the challenges that women in business face with regard to export. The report shows how mainstreaming of gender into matters of custom processes and export procedures can significantly reduce the barriers women continue to face in trade.
On youth issues, I welcome the appointment of the new Board of the National Youth Development Agency (NYDA) and very excited that since the inception of the Agency, we now have the first Executive Chairperson and Deputy Chairperson being young women.
I look forward to working with this new Board in addressing the challenges facing our young people.
I am also delighted to announce that the NYDA Amendment Bill has been tabled in Parliament on 26 April 2022.
Furthermore, the Integrated Youth Development Strategy, as well as the Monitoring and Evaluation Framework of the National Youth Policy 2030 will soon be submitted to Cabinet for approval. These will enable us to monitor the implementation of the National Youth Policy across all sectors.
This year, June 16, will be celebrated in the Eastern Cape and will be addressed by His Excellency, President Cyril Ramaphosa. All members of Parliament are invited to participate in order to interact with young people.
We must harness the potential of our youthful population. This includes the political will by government and captains of industry to ensure an integration of youth across all strategic sectors of our society, especially economy.
The NYDA supports the Presidential Youth Employment Intervention by providing the following:
- SA Youth Mobi- which is a free employment network that provides youth with access learning and employment opportunities
- Youth Explorer-a Youth portal that provides them with a range of information
- mPowa-a location based mobile app that provides employment and entrepreneurship opportunities, wifi spots within their immediate vicinity
In the 2022/2023 financial year, the NYDA will target the following:
- The training of more than 25 000 young people to be youth entrepreneurs.
- 2 000 youth owned enterprises who will receive financial assistance from the NYDA through the NYDA grant programme. These enterprises will go on and create 6 000 jobs in the economy.
- 75 000 young people will be provided with skills development programs to enable them to enter the economy.
- 10 000 young people to be placed in jobs through the National Pathway Management Network.
- 50 000 young people to be recruited in the structured National Youth Service where young people will earn an income, learn skills and increase their employability and offer meaningful quality service to their communities.
- The NYDA will conduct Monitoring and Evaluation reports on the impact of its Grant Program, revitalised National Youth Service and the Community Works Programs
South Africa is the most unequal society in the world.
As a result, the Department has taken a bold position to close this chasm by ensuring that there will not be any mega project in the country which excludes women, youth and persons with disabilities in its inception.
- During March and April 2022, the Department in partnership with the Minister for COGTA, hosted two Izimbizo in the Eastern Cape and Kwazulu-Natal, on the Eastern Seaboard Development to facilitate access to information for women, youth and persons with disabilities on this development and its value chains to ensure their participation.
- In March 2022, the Department procured an exhibition space at the Africa Energy Indaba held in Cape Town, which provided women in the energy sector space to exhibit their work, in order to expose their work to big business in the energy sector in the Continent.
- The Department held three dialogues that focused on renewable energy, financial inclusion and best practice models on the empowerment of women, youth and persons with disabilities.
- We are planning to host another Imbizo on the Eastern Seaboard Development at Alfred Nzo at the end of this month, in partnership with COGTA
- You will recall that in October 2021, His Excellency President Cyril Ramaphosa launched the Women's Economic Assembly (WECONA) that seeks to unlock a minimum of 40% of all procurement opportunities for women-owned businesses across sectoral value chains.
- WECONA has developed a strategy to roll out the structure to provinces to ensure that women owned businesses benefit from preferential procurement processes in all spheres of government and create access to markets in the private sector. It will hold the 2nd WECONA in October 2022.
The Department continues to strengthen the implementation of the Sanitary Dignity Implementation Framework. In this context, we are working on value chain management within the sanitary dignity process. These include empowerment through support programmes to ensure competence in doing business with government.
We must all ensure the full implementation of the threshold for Public Procurement set at 40% for women, 30% for youth and 7% for persons with disabilities.
The Department undertook a rapid evaluation in 2021/22 and the findings are disappointing. Only 16% of Black women-owned businesses benefited in 2020 and 13% in 2021.
In construction 29%; accommodation and food service industry 18%. Sectors such as transportation, wholesale and retail and ICT were the lowest at 3-6% of women-owned businesses benefitting.
Our main challenge in effectively monitoring the progress of women, youth and persons with disabilities is due to the lack of access to disaggregated data. Access to data is critical for making evidence-based planning and programme design and to inform better policy and decision making.
The Department is collaborating with the Department Trade, Industry and Competition and other departments towards mainstreaming Women Youth and Persons with Disabilities into the African Continental Free Trade Area and the development of the African Union Protocol on Women and Trade to facilitate their participation in cross border trading.
To strengthen disability inclusion in line with the UN Convention and AU Protocol, the department has developed and gazetted two frameworks on Universal Access and Design and Reasonable Accommodation.
We welcome Cabinet's approval of the National Strategic Framework on Disability Rights Awareness-Raising Campaigns for Persons with Disabilities. The framework seeks to guide both private and public sectors in ensuring the rights of persons with disabilities are protected.
One of the barriers to participation in the economy for persons with disabilities is access to education. Therefore, in 2021, the Department in partnership with the department of Basic Education hosted the Inclusive Education Summit to discuss key interventions to increase access to education for children with disabilities of school going age.
Exclusion of persons with disabilities continues unabated in workplaces. The disaggregated data collected by the DPSA on employment of persons with disabilities in the public service show that the public service is at 1% of employment of persons with disabilities. This is significantly lower than the 7% proposed across all public sectors.
The research report published by the Department on the Impact of COVID-19 on persons with disabilities highlights recommendations towards upholding rights and improving the living conditions of persons with disabilities during situations of disaster
Parliament is in the process of ratifying the AU Protocol on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities as announced by the President in his SONA reply.
Later this year, the Department will convene the Economic Empowerment Summit for Persons with Disabilities in order to plan and design a strategy that will accelerate an inclusive process of persons with disabilities in the mainstream economy of the country including the Economic Reconstruction and Recovery Plan (ERRP).
I reported in 2021 Budget Vote that the Department has initiated the implementation of the Gender Responsive Planning, Budgeting, Monitoring and Evaluation Framework. We are continuing with this work across all three spheres of Government.
We have broadened the framework to include youth and disability as well.
In 2021/22, we conducted 46 capacity building sessions across the government. At least more than 500 officials have been capacitated on the Framework.
As I am speaking here today, the Department is presenting this framework at the Provincial SALGA Women's Commission Lekgotla at the Western Cape.
Similarly, there are plans to roll out this framework at the local government level in collaboration with SALGA and Department of Cooperative Governance, to capacitate newly appointed councilors.
In the 2021 Budget Vote I informed the house that we will undertake analysis of the draft National Department APPs. In this context, the 2021 M&E Report showed that less than 50% of departments were implementing the Gender Budgeting Framework.
However, the analysis of the 2022/23 draft APPs points to great improvement in inclusion of priorities of women, youth and disability in these plans. We are targeting an increase towards 100% by 2024.
In 2021, I reported that the Department has been engaging with the National Treasury, DPME and the IMF in developing a strategy and road map for gender responsive budgeting.
I am happy to inform this house that there will be a rollout of phase 1 of the project over the coming months by the National Treasury.
In addition, the Department in partnership with the EU hosted a policy dialogue on gender responsive budgeting in February 2022 which included over 700 international and national experts and participants. The aim of this dialogue is to foster discussions on the policy directives for gender responsive budgeting in the country.
The South African economy was built on mining and agriculture, with land being a key factor. Therefore, my department has signed an MOU with the Department of Agriculture, Land Reform and Rural Development in order to ensure that women, youth and persons with disabilities are mainstreamed in agriculture and land redistribution.
In pursuit of MTSF Priority 7: A better Africa and World, the Department continues its commitment to achieve this priority in the following areas:
We continue to participate in the African Union Specialized Technical Committees.
In November 2021, the country had a very successful session with the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women (CEDAW) Committee on our 5th Periodic Country Report as well as the responses to the CEDAW Inquiry on GBV undertaken by the Committee in 2017.
In March 2022, South Africa successfully chaired the 66th Session of the UN Commission on the Status of Women, under the priority theme: "Empowerment of all women and girls in the context of climate change, environment and disaster risk management in all policies and programmes".
In this regard, I want to congratulate our first female Permanent Representative to the United Nations in New York, Ambassador Mathu Joyini for the excellent manner she conducted the session.
Chairperson, I am happy to report that South Africa met all its international obligations relating to women, youth and persons with disabilities.
In our commitment to strengthen diplomatic relations across the continent, in July we will be hosting the Nelson Mandela Youth Dialogue in partnership with the NYDA, the Nelson Mandela Foundation and others.
This will involve youth from 15 African countries, to promote ethical leadership amongst the Continent's youth and the implementation of the AfCFTA.
Furthermore, we will participate at the upcoming UN Conference of State Parties on Disability in New York and the Commonwealth Meeting of Ministers of Gender in Kigali, Rwanda in June 2022.
The appropriation of the department increases from the 2021/22 Financial Year to 2022/23 Financial Year from R763.5 million to R987.2 million.
It includes an amount of R100,7 million and R681,3 million earmarked for transfer to the CGE and NYDA respectively.
This appropriation includes a baseline increase amounting to R6,9 million for CGE and R200 million for NYDA. The additional allocation for NYDA is earmarked for the implementation of the Presidential Youth Employment Interventions - (Presidential National Youth Service Programme).
Regrettably, only R5 million is allocated for the coordination of the National Strategic Plan on GBVF.
In conclusion, Honorable Chairperson,
I wish to acknowledge the contributions made by the Honorable Chairperson and members of the Portfolio Committee and their continued guidance and support.
I also want to thank the Development Partners for their continued support to the Department.
Further, I also want to thank the Presidential Working Group on Disability, the Disability Rights Machinery, the Youth Machinery and Women's machinery for their continued support.
In addition, I want to thank our Director-General and her team.
We must remain grounded and loyal to the mandate of improving the livelihood of the most vulnerable in society.
We all have a role to play. It doesn't matter how small your contribution is, the collective results will be phenomenal taking from the words of the first African woman to win a Nobel Peace prize, Madam Wangari Maathai I qoute, "it's the little things citizens do. That is what will make the difference"
Therefore, Honorable Members,
I call upon all members of our society not to turn a blind eye when you hear women crying for help.
What is your little thing that will change the narrative of this beloved country?
As our country continues to grapple with the Covid-19 pandemic; and the effects of the recent floods in KwaZulu-Natal, parts of the Eastern Cape and North West- we have been confronted with other horrific incidents of children giving birth to children. For me, these pedophiles who live amongst us in our communities have to be confronted and locked up forever to protect the innocent children.
Let us remember that the most affected of these members of the community are women in their diversity, youth and persons with disabilities as we have witnessed first-hand in temporary shelters.
Finally, as I mentioned earlier, I want to reiterate the words of one of our heroine, elder and role model, Mme Gertrude Shope who said I quote "Every generation has got a responsibility to know what its mission is. Mine was to liberate the country, what is yours"
This generation sitting here in parliament, the ones in the public and private sector and civil society in general; we have 8 years remaining to reach that Generation Equality of 50-50 by 2030, what story will you tell in 2030?
Ke a leboga!