DA has long called on parents to act responsibly for SA
JOHN Godsiff correctly points to lack of parental responsibility as the cause of social problems but disingenuously avers that the DA has ignored this to focus solely on addressing the problem as one of education.
If John had taken the time to revisit Premier Helen Zille’s opening address to the Provincial Legislature in May, he would find concurrence.
“We must not allow the constitutional imperative of individual responsibility to lapse by default. We will emphasise, in particular, the responsibility of parents. Parental – and especially paternal – responsibility must become ingrained in our culture.
“Unless it does, our development as a society will remain a pipe-dream.
“This will be the underlying goal of our social development strategies and projects.”
I have personally heard MECs Theuns Botha (Health) and Ivan Meyer (Social Services) warn of the dangers of teenage pregnancy, maternal neglect and the lack of responsibility shown by fathers, as lamented by John, at public meetings in Bellville South and Atlantis.
DA shadow spokesperson for Women, Youth, Children & People with Disabilities, Denise Robinson, drew attention to these perils at a Women’s Day lunch in Kensington last year.
Some of the audiences felt that a positive message would have been more appropriate. Therein lies the problem.
The response to this appeal for individual responsibility is to decry the perceived pontificating and arrogance shown to adults. A classic case of shooting the messenger.
On a visit to a Khayelitsha Matric class last October, MEC for Education, Donald Grant discovered only 19 of the 226 pupils present. He blamed parents and not the education system.
The DA is certainly not “doing nothing” but until parents accept responsibility for themselves and their offspring, no government, whether at provincial, national or international level, can correct “the root cause of serious social problems”.