“Honourable House Chairperson,
The ACDP notes that the Department of Mineral Resources and Energy is mandated to ensure transparent and efficient regulation of South Africa’s mineral resources and minerals industry and to ensure the secure and sustainable provision of energy in support of economic growth. Additionally, it has the medium-term priorities of:
- Regulating the petroleum sector;
- Ensuring mine health, safety and equity
- Rehabilitating mines and the environment
- Extending access to electricity;
- Enhancing energy efficiency; and
- Managing nuclear energy in accordance with international commitments.
Clearly this Department has failed in carrying out all the aspects of its mandate and has failed to implement all its stated medium-term priorities. Chief of these failures has to be the failure to ensure, the secure and sustainable provision of energy in support of economic growth.
The ACDP notes that access to electricity has been greatly extended, however, government has failed to keep up with demand due to poor planning, maladministration, nepotism, looting, theft, state capture, missing billions, and rampant corruption resulting in an inability to keep the lights on.
Honourable House Chairperson, I have consistently said that an area where South Africa can increase its potential for economic growth, development and job creation is the beneficiation of its extracted minerals, where beneficiation transforms a mineral, or group of minerals, into a higher-value product, which can be consumed locally or exported. Our country is rich in a variety of minerals which includes gold, diamonds, iron ore, platinum, manganese, chromium, copper, uranium, silver, beryllium, titanium, among others.
Sadly, the ruling party, over the last 29-30 years, has failed to implement the necessary structural reform, while perpetuating the legacy of our colonial past by continuing to be exporters of our raw materials and importers of valued- added products. This is corroborated by the fact that our level of beneficiation is negligible, when compared to the quantity of exported raw materials.
It is time for change, and the ACDP stands ready to implement the required change which benefits our citizens, develops our economy, creates jobs, and gives back to ordinary South Africans the pride and dignity they deserve.”