Private Sector/Poverty
Business Day, 21 October 2002, Govt, business set to tackle poverty

Minister of Social Development Zola Skweyiya, leading empowerment businessman Cyril Ramaphosa and Pick 'n Pay chairman Raymond Ackerman have called for a summit to discuss ways of tackling the socio-economic challenges facing the poorest of the poor in South Africa.

"This is the first summit of its kind," said Skweyiya refering to the special summit that would be held on October 24-25 at the Gallagher Estate, Midrand in Johannesburg.

"A summit for action rather than words. The summit seeks concrete practical outcomes that will ensure that we not only make a serious dent on poverty, but ensure that government, the private sector and communities use available resources optimally in a truly coordinated manner so that our common goal of a better life for all is realised," he said.

About 200 business representatives will also attend. The theme of the summit is "Poverty Alleviation and Eradication for Integrated business and Government Approach".

Some of the critical areas of engagement will be the following: partnership in poverty alleviation; promoting children's access to social grants and other rights; partnership in the fight against HIV-Aids, particularly support for home and community-based care; and promoting rights and access to services for the aged and disabled.

Among other participants at the summit will be government representatives form the provinces and local government, parastatals, community-based organisations and faith-based organisations, as well as international donors.

The summit was preceded by a round table in April 2002, where 32 business leaders resolved to hold the summit and discuss social development challenges and how best to tackle them in an integrated and sustainable manner.I-Net Bridge