“State has to create opportunities, you need to take them” - Madonsela

BY CHARL BOSCH - OCTOBER 24, 2014

Public Protector Thuli Madonsela has said that government should focus on putting its people first instead of concentrating on themselves.

Addressing a packed Goldfields Auditorium at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s (NMMU) North campus in Port Elizabeth yesterday, as part of her Youth Dialogue session, Madonsela said that the key role of a state is to “regulate fairly and deliver on the promises it has made”.

“The majority of people in government needs to be educated, so as to act as our eyes and guide us. Education is the building blocks to others,” Madonsela said to rapturous applause.

She also added that the ideal South Africa, is one where the people and the state should work together to help achieve the South African dream.

“Through transparency, we know what those in power are doing. We are all co-creators of the South Africa we want. We have the best constitution in the world and the brightest young minds in society, thus, we need to work together to behave those who act like animals,” she said.

Madonsela warned that although government continues to play the key role in society, it is up to the youth to not back down.

“The state has a duty to help people help themselves and promote equality. Although we say that government should put the people first, we [the youth] hold the keys to the South Africa we want. Do not turn away when presented with a closed door, push until it opens.”

Responding to a question about the recent threats made against her office with regards to her investigation into the upgrades at President Jacob Zuma’s Nkandla residence, Madonsela stated although she appreciates the concern, the rights of the public protector are enshrined by the constitution.

“The power of the public protector’s office comes from the constitution. There is no other body that can overwrite the public protector’s decision,” Madonsela said to mass applause.

 

CAPTION: Public Protector Thuli Madonsela reacting to questions during her Youth Dialogue session at the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University’s North campus in Port Elizabeth yesterday. FILE IMAGE