AMBASSADOR Harold E Doley Jr, the founder of the oldest African-American investment banking firm in the US, has responded to the call for a social democratic movement in South Africa made by Sekunjalo Investment Holdings chairman Dr Iqbal Survé, reports
Last month Survé called for the formation of a social democratic movement for anyone that is interested in putting the country first.
The businessman and philanthropist pledged his support for a youth-led movement to take South Africa in a completely different direction, saying that it was time to bring together young South Africans who had the brightest ideas to implement such a programme through a process of political power.
“It is time that South Africans take control of their own destiny because if we fail to do that, then we have no future,” Survé said in an interview that has now made waves across social media.
Doley said Survé’s words reminded him of US president John F Kennedy’s inaugural speech in 1961, in which Kennedy famously said: “Ask not what your country can do for you – ask what you can do for your country.”
Doley admired Survé’s powerful approach and mindset, especially regarding housing and jobs.
“Housing is the critical element in growth,” said Doley.
“The call for 10 million houses over a 10-year period is quite doable, and this will provide not only housing but jobs and training too for longer-term economic growth.”
Doley made reference to the Bible which mentions that the poor will always be a reality, but he emphasised that this is not meant to be at the level of poverty we see in South Africa and the world today.
Doley, who served as US representative to the African Development Bank, spoke about Africa’s potential.
He called on young people to commit to their future in Africa.
“Africa’s role in the world has always been understated and this needs to change.
“The real assets of a country or continent are not the mineral resources, but the people,” Doley said.
“The future belongs to the young.”
Doley shared his views on what would be the critical ingredients to ensure the success of a working social democratic movement.
He pointed out that there was a natural change that would occur whereby the old move on and the young take over and that this should be recognised and appreciated.
He advised that the youth should realise that tearing down and rebuilding is not the solution.
Doley also emphasised the need for further investments into South Africa in support of this movement and change.
Doley suggested that the focus should be on the indigenous, as there has been too much focus on corruption.
“A free and open country will encourage investment.”
In expressing his support for the call for a social democratic movement, Doley commended Survé’s role in South Africa, from his time as a student leader, then as a doctor, and as an investor, and more recently through his role in Independent Media and African News Agency.
“Dr Survé has been a part of a great deal of change, now calling for continued change by young people to work with and work for what makes their country, families, and communities stronger, and that would give South Africa its true role in the world today.
“Dr Survé has been maligned and investigated yet he copes somehow.
“Being on the side of the right is what prevails.
“Sometimes people do not want to get behind a label, but it is important to get behind the goals for a peaceful and growing South Africa,” said Doley.
“Let South Africa assume its role in the world.”
When making the call for the launch of the social democratic movement Survé pointed out China was able to eradicate 800 million people out of poverty in 40 years saying that South Africa should, therefore, set itself a goal of making sure that none of its citizens is poor by 2050.
“So the social democratic movement must focus on a plan to … create jobs, at least, a certain number of jobs every year, to attract investment, and essentially to build a new leadership, mainly young people, that can lead the country into a completely different dimension, and trajectory,” Survé said.
He said the task of leading the revolution against poverty lies with young people who have the brightest mindset.
One SA Movement’s Mmusi Maimane in a separate interview shared a similar view on youth leadership.
When reached, he said: “At this point in time Parliament has become a place for pensioners.”
However, Maimane said he did not support the idea of new political parties.
Maimane said while most young people hardly participate in democratic elections, they allowed themselves to fight political battles. | Additional reporting by Falcons Staff | https://falcons.org.za/