Government has launched a broadband infrastructure project in the OR Tambo District, in the Eastern Cape, to empower youth and communities through technology and access to skills.
Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa on Friday said the project, which has been deliberately located in a rural area, is the beginning of a nationwide programme that has the potential to improve the quality of service delivery and rejuvenate rural economies.
He was addressing the 20 years Commemoration of the Eastern Cape House of Traditional Leaders at Bhisho Stadium in the Eastern Cape.
“It is essential that traditional leaders are integrally involved in the roll-out of this infrastructure because of the promise it holds for the enhancement of rural life.”
He commended the provincial House of Traditional Leaders for taking the lead on critical matters relating to the role in society of traditional leadership.
He said government will support provincial initiatives to finalise the development of a strategy on claims and disputes aimed at reducing conflicts in a comprehensive manner.
Capacity building for leaders
“We are pleased to note also that the province is implementing a capacity building strategy for traditional leaders. Royal families will be capacitated and assisted to maintain their dignity, respect and good standing in their communities.”
He said the success of such capacity building programmes hinges on the stabilisation of traditional leadership institutions, especially at Kingship level.
“We applaud the engagement processes between the provincial government and Kings to establish a Kings Forum.”
The Deputy President said the forum is a platform which will focus on issues of development, uniformity of traditional structures, capacity building and share best practices to benefit Kingdoms and their traditional communities.
“This Forum, I am told, will facilitate exchange programmes with Kingdoms in other African countries to learn from other approaches to culture, tradition, custom and development. We commend the work done by the provincial government to develop an infrastructure strategy for traditional leadership institutions.”