The Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) government will own more of Telkom, the country’s semi-private telecommunications group.
This was outlined at its elections manifesto for the 2019 general elections launched yesterday at the Giant Stadium in Soshanguve.
The EFF, which is well known for its nationalisation drive, said that it will own 60% of Telkom to enable the state to create more jobs. Currently, the state owns xx of Telkom and xx
The party led by Julius Malema says its government will require Telkom to spend 25% of its annual profits on ICT infrastructure over the next five years.
The EFF has promised to establish a subsidiary of Telkom which will specifically focus on the production of ICT hardware and software by 2023, creating 15 000 jobs, 7 500 of which will be reserved for women.
The manifesto document states that the EFF will establish an ICT hardware manufacturing hub in Ekurhuleni focusing on computers and micro-chip development and manufacturing by 2024, creating 45 000 jobs, 25 000 of which will be reserved for women.
By 2024, the EFF promised to create an ICT software development hub in Cape Town, creating 40 000 jobs, 20 000 of which will be reserved for women. It will also establish an ICT software development hub in eThekwini by 2024, creating 40 000 jobs, 20 000 of which will be reserved for women.
The manifesto further stated that the EFF plans provide free Wi-Fi for all state-owned public transport systems, clinics, hospitals, government buildings, schools and institutions of higher learning.
The EFF government will establish free Wi-Fi parks in wards.
The party says it will allocate much-needed spectrum in a manner that seeks to drive the transformation of the communications sector, break the concentration of control, drive industrialisation, and prioritise state-owned companies which have the highest representation of black people, women and the youth.
Among other legislative instruments, the EFF wants to use to build the state, including creating digital plans for each government department, SOE.
Furthemore, the EFF promises to interest-free loans to start-ups in the ICT sector by 2021, with 55% of loans to be allocated to women and the youth. It will also assist black and particularly black female-owned telecommunications companies to enter the market in partnership with the state.