Title: Critical evaluation of the three main political parties’ capability to steer successful land expropriation in post-2019 South Africa: Part 2-The DA in perspective (10)
Gabriel P Louw
Research Associate, Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa (Author and Researcher: Health, History and Politics).
Prof. Dr. GP Louw; MA (UNISA), PhD (PU for CHE), DPhil (PU for CHE), PhD (NWU)
Keywords: Badness, candidate, crookedness, delinquency, election, evaluation, expropriate, goodness, leadership, political party, responsibility, scenario, wrongdoings,
Ensovoort, volume 40 (2019), number 6: 4
This study is a continuation of the previous article (Article 9, entitled: “Critical evaluation of the three main political parties’ capability to steer successful land expropriation in post-2019 South Africa: Part 1-The EFF in perspective (9)”. This article (Article 10, entitled: “Critical evaluation of the three main political parties’ capability to steer successful land expropriation in post-2019 South Africa: Part 2-The DA in perspective (10)”], is, as previously mentioned, the second part in the sequence of three articles on the roles of the three main political parties at the moment in the country, namely the EFF, the DA and the ANC. It intends to analyse and further discuss the arguments, opinions and viewpoints on the integrity and the ability of the DA to be able to effect land expropriation successfully, as reflected by its CVs and attestations.
1.2. Aims of Articles 9 to 11 (Continued)
The primary aim of this article (Part Two: Article 10) in the sequence of three articles is thus to continue the reflection upon the profile of the DA on the same basis as was done with the previous article (Part One: Article 9). Prominent here is the ability of the DA to be able to take care of the land expropriation matter, should it have been elected on May 8, 2019 into government. At the same time, its ability and integrity is evaluated, in order to see how it is positioned, as an opposition party, to be able to successfully handle the land matter until 2024. This also includes the capability of the DA as a partner of the ruler, the ANC, should such an outcome manifest. Important here is the saying: the test of the pudding is in the eating thereof.
In the context of much manipulation and misleading around the South African land expropriation matter by political parties in terms of how they are going to execute it should they become the ruler, is it important to note that Chomsky1 points out that modern politics is often hampered by the parties’ leadership’s poor personal and political integrity. This unfortunate contaminated political setup of parties in the end blocks the pursuit of their previously agreed on mandate with the voters, who have given them permission to take decisions upon their behalves, as well as the development of the critical role of leaders of integrity and the independent creative actions of the party as a whole. This notion is applicable to the thinking, planning and action of South Africa’s land ownership matter. Central here is the intention of the researcher to unmask a political party as a failure.1
For Chomsky1 it goes much further and deeper: politically mandated people in terms of the Constitution, for instance those who are MPS and MPLs and chief executives at state enterprises, must at all times reflect integrity, goodwill and the intention of order in their thinking, planning and action. He postulates that it is not enough for these political and executive leaders to be able to think “cleanly” and critically, but that ethnic imagination and an immense sense of social responsibility and accountability are characteristics that are imperative for them. Undoubtably the main intention of many delinquent politicians is to exploit the South Africans who are fighting with regard to land ownership. The lack of knowledge and cognitive understanding of many of the ordinary Black and White South Africans on the land matter, is absolutely misused by these delinquent politicians in steering the country’s demanding land ownership issue in such a way that it exclusively benefits the interests of the top brass of their party.1
By the critical evaluation of the CVs and attestations of political parties and their leaders, the mass of political crooks and gangsters are shaken out, leaving the few political knights standing out clearly. Such a shake-out of possible masked crooks and gangsters amongst leaders in the DA is the primary intention of the undertaking of an evaluation and conclusion in this article. It will be in line with the intention of the evaluation and conclusion of the previous article (Article 9) on the EFF.
The single aim in this context of evaluation and conclusion is to accept or to reject the DA as a potential candidate (political party) to be able to successfully effect land reform as part of its political mandate in post-2019 South Africa.
2. Method (Continued)
The research was been done by means of a literature review. This method aims to construct a viewpoint from the available evidence as the research develops. This approach has been used in modern political-historical research where there is often not an established body of research, as is the case about the abilities of political parties to successfully effect land reform from 2019 onwards. The sources included articles from 2018, books for the period 1944 to 2018 and newspapers for the period 2017 to 2019. These sources were consulted in order to evaluate and to describe the facts that must guide us so as to steer successful land reform from 2019 in South Africa.
The research findings are presented in narrative format.
3. Results and Discussion (Continued)
The successful execution of the post-2019 land reform issue is undoubtedly dependent on the abilities, integrity and sound cognitive thinking, planning and action of a so-called “good” government. This means a regime that is not blindly on a “path of try and come to” to be able to reach an end result on the matter, notwithstanding whether it is a success or a failure. This requires a regime that honestly serves the interests of all its people by its use of a good road map on an orderly land reform initiative so as to steer it into reality.
The essential question here is thus whether the DA can theoretically be a candidate to be shortlisted due to its potential to assure the successful implementation and completion of the post-2019 plan on land expropriation.
3.1.1. Evaluation guidelines of political parties
The evaluation guidelines of political parties, as were already used in the previous Article 9, will be precisely replicated in order to evaluate the DA as national, provincial and municipal rulers. These guidelines for the DA are:
- Its general policies, as well as specific standpoints on aspects such as the respect of law and order, the fighting of corruption and state capture, the behavioural delinquency of its MPs, MPLs and its top brass leaders, as well as the party’s and its leaders’ views on land expropriation without compensation, etc., as put in perspective through its manifesto for the 2019-election.
- The public critics for the period 1994 to 2019 in newspapers, etc. These include evaluations and reflections by political analysts, strategists and commentators on the party as a political organisation, its members’ and leaders’ behaviour and action such as corruption, state capture, as well as the behavioural delinquency of MPs, MPLs and top brass leaders, and their views on land expropriation without compensation, etc., as well as the party’s internal organisational conflicts, and controversial political, economic and social views and opinions.
188.8.131.52. The Louw Appraisal Checklist to Assess the Leadership Qualities of South Africa’s Executive Political Leaders and Regimes: 1652 to 2018
For the quantitative classification and measurment of the political records of the DA, the Louw Appraisal Checklist to Assess the Leadership Qualities of South Africa’s Executive Political Leaders and Regimes: 1652 to 2018,2 was used again . The 82 selective items of the checklist on leaders and governments, quantified in terms of its bad-versus-good-classification, was again applied to all information collected in the literature review of the party’s’ manifesto and to the writings of investigative journalists, political commentators and political analysts and interpreted as the researcher sees it applicable. For guiding the gathering of the information on the DA, the approach used with the EFF, is again as follows reflected for better understanding, namely:
1) The Curriculum Vitae (CV) in order to obtain insight into the candidates’ qualifications, experiences, extraordinary skills, etc; and
2) The letters of the referees, the attestations, to offer firstly further insight into the qualifications, experiences, etc. of the candidate; and secondly, at the same time, to tell us confidentially about good versus bad habits, customs, characteristics, etc., of the candidate, that were well-masked in or absent from the CV. This referee data mostly informs us of the “goodness” and “badness” of a candidate, which in the end can make him a failure or a success in the execution of the responsibilities of the post.
In this research the manifesto and self-description offered by the DA and its leaders will be seen as their CVs. The public reporting by journalists and other sources will be seen as the letters of referees/reference or attestations.2
3.2. The manifestos, self-descriptions and public references of the three parties (Continued)
The manifesto, self-descriptions and public referees of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) were already reflected upon in the previous Article 9 (Part 1 of three articles) under the title: “Critical evaluation of the three main political parties’ capability to steer successful land expropriation in post-2019 South Africa”. This article (Article 10: Part 2) will reflected specifically on the Democratic Alliance (DA) under the title of “Critical evaluation of the three main political parties’ capability to steer successful land expropriation in post-2019 South Africa”. In the next article (Article 11: Part 3) reflection on the African National Congress (ANC) will take place.
3.2.1. The Democratic Alliance
In his post mortem of the DA’s so-called successes versus its so-called failures in the recent May election, and how the party must be rated in the post-2019 South African politics, the editor of Beeld, Barnard Beukman, on the 17th May 2019 offered an in-depth and critical analysis on the present day DA. This is far removed from those of some of the populist political commentators who ignore long term politics and suffer cognitive clear-sightedness away from the propaganda of the ANC. An in-depth and comprehensive understanding of the dynamic and important role that the DA can play in the mainstream politics of post-2019 is offered by Beukman3 when he writes3”11:
Met net vier LP’s minder – 85 pleks van 89 – en ‘n stemdaling van minder as 2 persentasiepunte, moet die DA beslis voel hy word onbillik behandel deur ontleders wat hom op die daad as die “groot verloorder” van die verkiesing brandmerk.
Hy kan tereg so voel as hy sy uitslag met byvoorbeeld die ANC s’n vergelyk word. Alles in ag geneem, is die DA se verkiesingsuitslag eindelik heel redelik en voel hy oorwegend sekerlik verligting. As sommige meningspeilings reg was – dat hy net ‘n maand voor die verkiesing minder as 20%-steun gehad het – het hy beslis in die pylvak steun teruggekry of onseker kiesers oorreed.
Die groot teleurstelling is eerder met sy vertoning in vergelyking met die wat hy wou en moontlik kon reggekry het en dat hy nie gewys het dat hy minstens die 30%-vlak aanval nie, want ‘n tweede party met meer as 30%-steun sou die eerste tasbare bewys van ‘n komende politieke herskikking gewees het.
184.108.40.206.1. The voter outcome at the ballot box on May 8, 2019 tells much
Beukman’s3 profile on the post-2019 DA firstly forces us to look critically at the facts pinpointing the May elections’ outcome in terms of voter participation. Of particular importance is his reference to a so-called necessary 30% vote count for the DA, to enable it to be a possibly dominant role-player in South Africa. This was seemingly the minimum requirement for it to successfully participate in the country’s ruling in the near future. This needs attention. It again brings us to the playing off of myths and lies versus facts and truths in South African politics and the absolute need of the Solomon wisdom approach to get myths and lies refuted. Thus, before any further evaluation of the DA as a political party with the assumed potential to be able to be the ruler in terms of its CV and attestations can proceed, is it necessary to look at the legitimacy of the May 2019 election in terms of a democratic voter mandate which truly represents the total contingent of legal voters.
Firstly, of paramount importance is the number of voters who gave the parties their support at the ballot box. This consideration is also fully applicable to the ANC, the EFF, as well as the eleven dwarf parties that arrived in Parliament at the end of May 2019 to take their seats.3
Secondly, also of importance is the total number of voters who participated in the election versus the total number of registered voters who stayed away from the ballot box.
Thirdly, and probably the most ignored fact by most of the so-called political wise men on the so-called “true politics” of present day South Africa, is the amount of citizens who qualified to be voters, but refused to register as such for specific reasons.
An analysis of the May voting shows the seats of the 14 parties which made it, as follows4:
- ANC: 230
- DA: 84
- EFF: 44
- IFP: 14
- FF+: 10
- ACDP: 4
- NFP: 2
- UDM: 2
- Cope: 2
- ATM: 2
- AIC: 2
- PAC: 1
- Aljama: 1
It is also reflected by statistics that there were 35.9 million South Africans who were eligible to register as voters for the May 2019 election, but that only 26 756 649 had formally registered. This means that only 74.5% of those who could register had registered (thus leaving ±9 million outside the voting system). From the 26.7 million formally registered voters, only 17 671 616 actually voted (again leaving ±9.3 million eligible voters further out of the system). This means that the 17.6 million voters active at the ballot box, only represent 49% of the total eligible voters in South Africa, while 51% of potential voters (±18.2 million) did not bring out a vote (consisting of ±9.1 million non-registered voters and ±9.1 million stay-away voters). Although it was the 18.2 million abstaining voters own choice not to vote, this comprehensive passivity places in the first place a question mark on the applicability of the legal status of 14 parties which were selected to Parliament by a “passive no-voting” (which is nothing else than a rejection choice by 51% of the voting population).4-7
What is worrying is that these 14 parties are going to be with South Africans as the so-called “chosen law-makers’, notwithstanding their rejection or at least being ignored by at least 51% of the voters-corp. Furthermore, seeing the overall decline since 2014 of trust in and support for political parties selected into Parliament, the chances are good that this decline is going to continue after 2019, leaving a far higher rejection than the present 51% by the voters. The outcome can with time become an immense resistance to the empowerment of the ruling party, the ANC, up to 2024. This will not only make its reign impossible, but in the process of the rejection of the ANC, the situation can activate immense unrest, anarchy and revolution as a final outcome.4-7
It is not without good reason that Mthombothi8, eleven days after the May election, put his finger directly on the sore of this voting passivity when he wrote8:19: “The outcome of the elections will be debated and analysed for some time to come, but what is clear is that many South Africans were not particularly impressed or satisfied with what was on offer. After 25 years of democracy, many voters are still scouring the wilderness for a political home with which they’re comfortable.” He continues further8:19: “The menu [parties] on the table is obviously not appetising for the voter. The prevailing conditions are therefore probably ripe for a realignment of political forces or a new political party altogether. We may have reached a typical Gramscian interregnum where “the old is dying and the new cannot be born”. We are at a standstill, and rot tends to set in if there is no movement.”
However, in second place, is the question of Beukman’s3 when he referred to the “ideal of the collection of 30% votes for the DA to make it a party to notice in the South African politics”. Here emerges the next question, namely on the presence of true democracy under which the ANC rules the country at the moment up until 2024.3
Once again on democracy and the constitutional rights of its citizens (and thus eligible voters), Mthombothi8 reflects a warning when he writes8:19: “We may still be cock-a-hoop about our democracy – best constitution in the world and all that! – But the enthusiasm is apparently no longer widely shared. Voter turnout has shown a calamitous decline in recent years, from 88% in 1999 to 65% this year – a drop of more than 20 percentage points in 20 years. Such figures should jolt us out of our complacency. Our democracy is not at all in rude health.”
But, when Mthombothi8 speaks of a “65% voter turnout for the 2019 election”, he failed to say how this percentage was reached. The answer is that it was the 17.6 million voters who had voted out of a possible 26.7 million voters on the voter role. This 65% is a political myth: the fact is that the turnout should be calculated in terms of the 17.6 million voters who had voted versus the 35.9 million South Africans who were eligible to vote. This gives a turnout of only 49% (which is 16% lower than the “official” voting account. This means that South Africans’ democratic interests are politically and statutorily managed by 386 law-makers in Parliament who were sent to it by the minority (49%) of eligible voters. This is not democracy! Mthombothi8 would be jolted himself if he knew that the 65% voter turnout is an complete myth. The hard truth is that it is only 49%. But this truth has another more sinister outcome for the ANC’s so-called democratic empowerment via the May election, and their ability to rule South Africa from 2019 to 2024: the ANC’s 10 026 475 votes at the ballot box (out of a possible 35.9-million) means that it only received approval from 28% of the eligible voters to be the government of the day. For the ANC and its leaders such as Cyril Ramaphosa and his cronies to claim that they have the peoples’ mandate to effect land expropriation without compensation, is a falsity. It is a myth and a great one!4-8
This is not democracy and it is an excellent example of a well-masked illegal reign of South Africa by the ANC.4-8
Taking into perspective the true voter support of the DA and the EFF, in terms of the total eligible voters of 35.9-million, their factorial support is only 10% and 5% respectively.4-8|
It must thus be clear that the ANC is faultily observed as a strong and untouchable political force, which seems to represent (but falsely) 57.5% of the population in terms of its more or less 60% formal voting count. In reality, the ANC is a minority and a hung regime (legally put into Parliament as the ruler by a 28% voters mandate out of a 100% voter population) when we are looking to the indirect suppression of the democratic right of the individual citizens’ passive votes. In this environment, South Africa’s present inauspicious political setup (and thus its political ruling-system based on democracy where the so-called “majority” became the ruler on a minority vote), is excellently described by Labuschagne when he posits9:6: “Suid-Afrika kan in wese, de jure en de facto, as ‘n eenpartystaat bestempel word”.
The abovementioned outcome is a situation that can and must only be accepted firstly as a temporary situation, which can change dramatically overnight when the ±18-million (51% unrepresented) passive voters take a stand at the ballot box or in an alternative way which may be unconstitutional. The DA and the other opposition parties know that this unreal setup provides the possibility that they can at the right time bite away the ANC’s Achilles heel.9
The decline in empowerment of the ANC and its possible phasing out of the mainstream of politics is a reality, even in the mindsets of the ANC’s top brass. It was already before the May election echoed by the Head of the ANC Election, Fikile Mbalula10 when he admitted10:4: “…the ANC is not going to regain all the lost ground overnight, with its image having suffered immensely in the previous decade.”
Mthombothi8 is with good reason worried about the outcome after 2019 of the Mandela-democracy of 1994. The reality is that South Africa is going to be governed from 2019 to 2024 by an illegal autocratic regime with mostly no respect for the voters, while there is also no respect for them by 51% of the voters who did not vote for them. The ANC’s politics are driven and practised exclusively for the ANCs top brass’ interests: it was so in the past and it will be so in the future. The abovementioned reality not only declares the arrogance and political recklessness of the ANC in its practice of delinquent politics since 1994, but also the arrogance and political recklessness of the EFF (See Article 9). The EFF knows very well that they will never, in a true democracy with only their 5% voter mandate, be of importance or receive the attention as a so-called third party in the top rank of parties. In a true democracy their political and personal antics, as well as their extreme irresponsibility and delinquency would not be endured: they would long ago have been put into permanent safe-care.4,6,7,10
Looking from another perspective at the very unstable South African politics – which intensely contaminated its democracy – it must it be clear that things can change – also sometimes very fast – in the post-2019 politics, to end for instance the ANC regime’s formation of new political groupings overnight. Marriam11 quotes the view of the CSIR on the profiles of the various parties’ vote receiving in the past elections and the unknown future around politics. She reports, from another perspective to that of the traditional political analysis11:4:
The CSIR does say things could change before 2021 [local elections]: “It should be kept in mind that the quantitative patterns cannot be counted on to capture all the sentiment behind the votes [2019 elections], it may just provide some warning signs for parties as to what could happen if nothing changes. Many things could change between 2019 and 2021 – there could be changes in the general economics and political climate, but a difference in voter turnout rates could also affect changes in the patterns.
Johnston12, on this fast-changing post-2019 political climate writes12:4-5: “Ten spyte van die oënskynlike stabiliteit van die ANC se oorheersing, vind groot verskuiwings plaaas. Die kieserskorps word baie meer vloeibaar en minder partyvas. Ons he gevind dat meer as 25% van al ons respondent óf van party verander het óf besluit hey om nie te stem nie. Die grootste vloei vloeibaarheid is onder swart kiesers gevind, waar 17.1% van party verander het.” Johnson12, in this context of change, also writes12:4-5: “Daarbenewens is die ANC-stem toenemend broos. Onder alle swart kiesers het slegs een derde gesê hulle sal ANC stem ongeag wie die leier was. 27,3% het gesê hulle sal nooit ANC stem nie terwyl 19,4% gesê het sal ANC stem omdat hulle vetroue in Ramaphosa het, alhoewel daar baie skelms op die ANC-lys is.”
The question, in light of the abovementioned information, is how has the DA in terms of its true voter mandate of only 10% handled its politics in the past, is handling it at present and can be expected to handle it in future in our much quoted “country of milk and honey”. The primary counter-question is: is it similarly irresponsible and arrogant, with the same signs of autocratic and delinquent actions, as the EFF? This question will be evaluated further in this article. [In the next article (Article 11) the same evaluation approach will be followed with regard to the ANC].
220.127.116.11. The DA manifesto of 2019
Reading the DA manifesto, it is clear that it differs from the previous one of the EFF, as it avoids ridiculous promises and “nonsense-speaking”. It is totally focused on concrete action during the pre-2019 years and undertakes in terms of this good record (strongly confirmed by its CV and attestations) to make a constructive input to post-2019 South Africa. Reality is taken into account and examples of good political management on provincial and local levels are offered. Looking at the DA’s track record, it stands head and shoulders above those of the EFF which was previously evaluated.
In terms of the DA manifesto, the leader of the DA, Mmusi Maimane13, in his writings to the public, reflects as follows13:18:
Election 2019 is our chance to effect real change. And when deciding on a new bus, the only thing that matters is a party’s track record.
Thirteen years in Cape Town, 10 years in the Western Cape and two years in Johannesburg, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay have given the DA a chance to demonstrate the DA difference, and not just to talk about it. The results – the ones that really matter when it comes to closing the gap between economic insiders and outsiders – speak for themselves. On all the objective indicators, the DA runs the best government in the country.
The DA-run Western Cape leads on every measure of good provincial governance. Over the past year, over half the jobs created in SA were in the Western Cape, thanks to an obsessive focus on attracting investment, growing tourism and supporting a farm sector hard hit by drought.
The Western Cape Government got 83% clean audits in the last Auditor-General Report. Our track record says that we don’t tolerate corruption and mismanagement of public funds.
The DA can deliver to the whole country what we have delivered in the Western Cape, which accounted for half of net job creation in the past year (95,000 out of 188,000 jobs, Q3 2017 – Q3 2018) and where broad unemployment (23%) is 14 percentage points lower than the national average (37%).
The DA strives to provide everyone with access to opportunities. For example, the Western Cape has the highest percentage of households living within 30 minutes of a health facility and we retain by far the most children in school between Grades 10 and Matric (64%), whereas no other province retains the abovementioned.
You will find solutions to getting the basics right, such as our action steps to provide schoolchildren with teachers who can actually teach them to read and do arithmetic. The SACMEQ 4 Report showed that the Western Cape achieved 72.7% in advanced reading, compared to 36.1% nationally.
We don’t tolerate corruption. The Western Cape achieved 83% clean audits in the last financial year, well ahead of second placed Gauteng at 52%. The DA-led Coalition in Nelson Mandela Bay Metro took it from the second least to second most trusted city in SA (after Cape Town). In the DA-run Johannesburg, the value of investigations into corrupt tenders under the former ANC administration is R23.6bn.
18.104.22.168. The pre-2019 road-mapping of the DA
22.214.171.124.1. The DA’s original birth-certificate in perspective
The answer to the question as to why the DA did not overtake the ANC in the last election and is still in a gradual process to win votes from the ANC and the other smaller parties, must be seen to be cemented in its many foundations. Professor Pieter Labuschagne9 guides us hereunder to understand why opposition against the ANC reflects a low voter outcome for all those opposing parties since 1994. This can be likened to the previous mighty NP’s only 20.4% in 1994 and the 22.3% and 20% of the DA respectively in 2014 and 2019.9
Firstly, the founding model of the ANC stands out here, namely its anti-Apartheid ideology, through which it initially became an inclusive “catch-up” party for all those pre-1994 suppressed persons and groups who opposed the wrongful politics of the NP (and the Afrikaners/Whites). All types gathered in this potpourri-ANC from before 1994. It varied from hard core communists, socialists, anti-capitalists, anti-White and anti-Afrikaner, pro-Black, pro-African, democrats and anti-democrats, as well as hard-core terrorists, etc. These were persons and groups mostly seeing the ANC as an entrance ticket for their personal gains and to satisfy their ambitions. Most of the ambition and opportunism have stayed on until 2019 in some way within some of these groupings, such as the communists and the unionists.12
In its start-up process, the DA was in the first place an exclusively White-orientated party with a political ideology based on a narrow liberal-democracy, but with roots still entrenched in White-supremacy. The immense hard-line stand of the maintainence of exclusive White capitalism was prominent, and the mass of poor and landless Blacks would never get entrance thereto. For the Blacks, their inequality and poverty (±30 million out of a population of ±60 million) is a direct result of the White supremacy of pre-1994. The DA as a cum Black-cum White political party became from day-one an easy target for the Black revolutionaries in the ANC, who labelled it as anti-Black with the intention to promote and uphold only White interests. This is a process that is ongoing and will only be eroded if the DA becomes overwhelmingly Black in members and in leadership.
126.96.36.199.2. The DA’s policy not to subsidise and enrich the poor
Entrenched in the ANC’s revolutionary ideology of uplifting the people and freeing them from oppression, is its policy of taking from the rich and giving to the poor, which the DA opposes. This characteristic of the ANC is well reflected by its actions such as state capture, the mismanagement of finance and the botched-up 1994 to 2019 land redistribution, the obtaining of “compensations, gratifications and bait” through the misuse of BEE and other instruments under the propaganda of “enriching” the people (Black). Here the ANC’s top brass and their cronies stand out as priority beneficiaries. The ANC’s actions, when compared to those of the DA, are a complete contradiction in terms of the “case of the constant and ongoing illegal compensation” of the so-called “freedom fighters” and those who “suffered under Apartheid”, directly and indirectly in every possible way from the state coffers.
Within this exclusive ideology of uplifting of the ANC, the immense group of poor and landless Black people were kept in embargo by the ANC, without progress or improvement of their circumstances. This setup of continuous, immense poverty and financial dependence of the mass of poor Blacks, fast became a handle for the ANC’s top brass to keep a large contingent of dependent voters, who were daily in need of the ANC’s help, on its list of supporters. This was firstly obtained by keeping these Black voters without training and work opportunities, so as to create not only further poverty and unemployment, but to enlarge this sector constantly, in order to ensure political empowerment via the “ANC’s helping hand of the poor Blacks”.12,13-22
Secondly, this “Black question” was in-depth and broadly propagated by the ANC as a sole White outcome from Apartheid: not only to establish sympathy for them in the minds of the poor, in that the ANC “knew” of their immense, constant needs and was doing as much as possible for them, but at the same time to create ongoing hostility against any White presence in the post-2019 politics. Prominent in this regard was Apartheid’s wrongdoings and the reflection by the ANC of a repeat of such suffering at the hands of Whites in future politics; a process wherein the “White” DA was pertinently positioned as the main culprit. With regard to the needs of the mass of poor Blacks, reflected as the so-called exclusive sufferers of Apartheid, the ANC effectively responded through the state coffers by paying mass contributions to them. These financial contributions are still growing. The ANC, as the ruler and the holder of the state’s purse, entrenched itself within the “greater and higher” tasks of doing good by the hand-out of free awards, grants and other subsidies from the tax-payers’ hard earned money.
This made these “dependent” voters work shy and absolutely dependent on the ANC’s so-called goodness, while the vicious circle of growing poverty and joblessness was aggressively upheld. At the same time a policy of fear was created in this mass of poor and jobless minds that any regime change, such as the coming to power of the DA, would lead to the recall of these comprehensive free awards, grants and subsidies paid from the taxpayers.
The DA’s vague policy on the doubtful existence in future of these awards, grants and subsidies, if they come into power, only strengthened the ANC’s political mesmerising of this mass of poor people with misleading falsehoods. This served as an excellent empowerment vehicle for the ANC to block votes away from the DA. Johnson‘s12 recent research confirms this well, as he found that 40% of the Black respondents indeed believe this rumour of the ANC of the DA as a “danger” to their subsidies.12
The DA and the ANC both know that this unlimited system of subsidising the poor without the simultaneous development of a mass of jobs and good training to replace it, cannot be upheld for much longer into the future. This has so far been ignored by the ANC’s top elite, notwithstanding that the continuation of the scheme will bankrupt the country’s funds and spells out a human disaster in waiting. The outright failure of the DA on the other hand to immediately put an alternative in place to this immense politically opportunistic subsidising scheme, besides saying that they will create jobs in time and offer training, has totally isolated them from the mass of poor people, who constantly and immediately need these subsidies. It does not matter for the poor if the system is wrong or unsustainable – for them it is about immediate survival and voting for the party that upholds and improves this subsidy system.10,12,23-25
188.8.131.52.3. BBBEE and its vehicles of land expropriation
As mentioned above, the ANC’s policy on BBBEE also forced the DA into reverse. This is due to the portrayal of the DA as White capitalists and the safe-guarding of their immediate interests. This obvious hostility to Black upliftment pushed the DA away from the mass of poor and landless Blacks.
It is evident that the DA’s dislike for BBBEE must be changed in some way with regard to its solid rejection policy thereof. What is urgently needed is the implementation of an acceptable change to the DA’s present model of outright rejection, in order to bring about balanced nation-building and to improve the already tense racial relations. It is necessary to create an environment to support a reasonable form of BBBEE. The DA’s clear policy of a racially free society must reflect Black upliftment as a primary principle. BBBEE is unavoidable and was implemented in many countries to benefit the unprivileged and the poor. It was not an extraordinary action in South Africa by the ANC, but so far the DA under its White right-wing blindly rejects it. There must be some confirmation of support of BBBEE as fast as possible by the DA. Maimane’s reference to the DA pushing for the tabling of a private members’ bill on intelligence-related matters and jobs may be the first constructive step, but it is doubtful whether this is enough, and it is far from the BBBEE offered by the ANC.21,26,27
BBBEE is seen by most Whites as extreme discrimination after 25 years of so-called “democracy”, as Bachtis26 writes with justification26:13: “BEE is a racist, exclusionary mechanism designed to destroy any vestiges of whiteness.” BBBEE, in contrast to its primary aims, was undoubtedly applied by the ANC with outmost dishonesty and corruption in order to benefit mostly the ANC top brass, bringing riches to them and their cronies between 1994 and 2019. Billions of rand were also stolen via state capture and other crooked schemes by politicians, government officials and private citizens under the ANC regime, which was in value far more than the total collected by BBBEE for the so-called upliftment of the so-called poor Blacks’ suffering under Apartheid. This confirms that there are many other acceptable ways (besides corruption and dishonesty) to uplift the mass of poor Blacks.
The misuse of BBBEE is furthermore seen by many Whites as pure revenge-taking on Whites for the past.
Other, better ways must be found by the DA to get involved in BBBEE and to directly uplift the poor. Firstly, the present experience by Whites of BBBEE as a punishment to impoverish Whites, especially the White youth, must be counteracted by the DA with reasoned actions. Whites must be allowed to compete freely within the South African business and employment environment, without the direct and indirect “punishment”. As policy, the DA must firstly support an ongoing strictly managed BBBEE system for at most the duration of another term, after which it must be totally erased from the statute books. Secondly, the planned land redistribution scheme, wherein the transferring of state-owned land and buildings, etc., is central, must be a direct replacement for BBBEE inside the DA’s policy of a “helping hand to the Blacks in the post-2019 politics”. Included in this BBBEE scheme must be the free training of Black farmers and the free provision of equipment and produce such as cattle and grain for the mass of incoming Black farmers to make a living on the farms.
184.108.40.206.4. The DA’s policy of land expropriation without compensation
The policy standpoint of the DA was until now to reject the ANC’s land reform of expropriation without compensation. Prominent therein is the the DA’s perception of the ANC’s foundation of confused political radicalism, beset by neo-Marxism, specifically as part of the ANC’s opportunistic elite’s driving of the ANC’s land expropriation policy. In addition, the failed 1994 to 2019 land redistribution programme of the ANC is an indication for the DA of how unplanned, undemocratic and populist land reform can get. This has lead to the passivity of the DA to in any way, either on its own or with the ANC, get involved in constructive land redistribution. The fact that the DA is not shying away from even going to the highest court in South Africa to nullify any ANC legislation on land transformation if needed, does not sit well with the mass of landless Blacks.
The DA believes that there is not a need to tamper with the present Constitution, because the state’s land is available in large amounts, waiting for redistribution directly to the mass of poor and landless people. Indeed, for the DA, this state land is so massive in size and its redistribution potential so overwhelming, that any initiative with private land cannot be addressed successfully before 2025, if not later. The DA notes in this concern that the state at present has a property portfolio of more than 93 000 buildings and more than 1.9 million hectares of land. Just to create an orderly official institution to oversee the handing out and assurance of legal rights of the land and buildings to new private owners, would take up to three to five years to complete by a well managed government. Then there is a further timetable to stretch over another three to five years to establish the infrastructure and award the property to the applicants in waiting, to do training and to supply finance to the mass of incoming farmers. The so-called “White land expropriation”, even with compensation, can only take place after twenty or more years from 2019.10,16,20,28
But, from a critical statutory as well as political and socio-economic point, is it clear that the DA’s land redistribution policy is vague and clearly practised in terms of White interests. It is window dressing and empty rhetoric. It is unavoidable for the DA to get directly involved in the land ownership matter in the post-2019 politics. The DA’s leadership must stop allowing the right-wing of Whites in the DA, who are guided effectively with great political contamination by the so-called Afrikaners/Whites rescuers and saviours, to handle the matter in public and with the government. The DA did shed most of these white hardliners and their sympathisers successfully in the May election – possibly not only at the ballot box, but also on their list of membership. This is now allowing the true DA to come out of the closet with its Black members’ wishes, thinking, planning and action on balancing land redistribution for Blacks.
Firstly, the FF+ must openly be confronted with a public stand by the DA, demonstrating the falsity of the empowerment that the FF+ can help the Whites farmers to hang onto their land. The reality must be delivered to White farmers and the White community that if not enough land is peacefully redistributed fast to the mass of Blacks, land will physically be confiscated from them in a revolution which can happen very soon.29,30 The DA must find a declaration, matching fully and effectively the following declaration by the FF+-leader in Kwazulu-Natal, Duncan Du Bois, which reads30:7: “I think they [FF+] were beneficiaries of people dumping the DA because of the DA’s policy on affirmative action and BEE and also because the FF Plus is very clear on its land policy and the DA is not quite as sharp on that.”
The DA urgently needs a public reference, reading: “The DA is a beneficiary of votes because it is clear on its land policy, with the Freedom Charter declaration as its manifesto on land ownership that all South Africans have the right to own land and that land must be owned racially proportionally before 2024.” 29,30
For Maimane, such a change would be easy and a small step, especially in light of the pronouncement by Johnson12 of him “as a previous ANC supporter who still thinks in terms of the politics of the ANC.” The fact that Maimane, as alluded to by Johnson12, had already estranged the Brown and White Afrikaans speakers, as well as his failure to defend the Afrikaans language and culture rights, forced thousand of angry and dissatisfied Afrikaans and White people out of the DA, makes this step easy if true.12,29,30
220.127.116.11.5. The proof of the DA pudding is not always in the eating
The DA is mostly worried about present day South Africa. It developed, where in charge, styles and approaches, in an effort to fix most of the enormous failures created by the ANC reign. Where the DA was put in to govern, it did not panic and has addressed immense challenges with duty, pride and success.15
The actions of the DA were sometimes deliberately blown up by the press and their political opposition. The ANC propagandists used this to distract attention from their own serious and comprehensive delinquency. In some cases, however, alleged activities of the DA made them no better than the ANC and need the same condemnation.15-20
Seeing that political oversight by the broad public and media is a priority for all public figures and parties, and the fact that it is the criteria on which a mandate to rule has been issued, these accusations need to be highlightened and evaluated. It is important to see if there is proof in the DA pudding after eating it. This will be done hereunder.
18.104.22.168.5.1. The DA’s seemingly ongoing own internal strife
Prominent for instance, but indeed a small matter in the end, was the allegation that Helen Zille of the DA leadership had in 2014 contravened the Constitution and the Ethical Code for Members of the Executive due to an alleged tablet issued to her son who worked as a teacher for the Western Cape Education Department in Khayelitsha, Cape Town. This action against her, brought onto the books by the controversial Public Protector (PP) Busiswe Mkhwebane, in an attempt to prosecute her, failed. (This PP action was nullified by an interdict against the PP in the Johannesburg high court. The PP was also shown to be wrong by the courts in two other cases).15-20
Then there was Helen Zille’s so-called #taxrevolt-plan, which attracted critics from the ANC and some sectors of the public. But, in light of the failed prosecution for theft, corrupt ANC politicians and state officials, racketeers, crooks and tax-avoiders in the ANC, this actually attracted much strong support from law-abiding citizens as an instrument to punish the useless ANC regime.15-20
Furthermore, there was the so-called Patricia De Lille saga wherein the DA was initially accused of racism, etc., because De Lille was allegedly forced out of DA politics by its leadership. This criticism seems to have been contradicted by an independent investigation which alleged that De Lille deliberately misled the Cape Town City Council and triggered a further allegation against her, namely to have interfered with and manipulated city tenders, reports Malatsi31. In nullifying the DA’s and Maimane’s so-called “record of wrongdoing” against De Lille, Malatsi31 writes31:18: “De Lille and her chief lieutenant, Brett Herron, are facing criminal charges for their involvement in these instances of serious maladministration or worse.”
But the De Lille case’s handling by the DA cost them much honour in the eyes of the general voting public and was undoubtedly one of the reasons for the exodus of a strong contingent of votes from the DA to Good. Nyatsumba32 foregrounds the immense negative impact on the DA and the idea of a flawed leadership left by the De Lille case, when he writes that many inside the party in the Western Cape had their daggers drawn at her and wanted her out summarily, ignoring, in his opinion, the right firing process. After a vote of no confidence in the Cape Town City Council failed, the process of her ousting continues, writes Nyatsumba32. He further reflects32:25: “…they continued to manufacture lies about her and to throw mud at her in the hope that some of it would stick. To their chagrin, De Lille emerged victorious each time and they ended up with bloodied noses. And yet, still they continued to lie to the public, right until the elections, that they fired De Lille as a member when, in fact, she had resigned.”
Then there were two other controversial recent cases in the DA household before the May election. Both were fully described in the Sunday Times of the 17th March 2019. From the reports it seems that the DA was in the accused box. In the one a woman member was left off the party’s parliamentary list after accusing a colleague of sexual harassment, while in the other case a senior woman member accused of racism and xenophobia was kept on the list of the DA’s candidates for the sixth Parliament.33
In the first case a DA councillor in Ekurhuleni, a said Thina Bambeni, was alleged to be delisted on the recommendation of the party’s Gauteng leader, John Moodey, after she accused the council’s caucus chair, Shadow Shabangu, of sexual harassment. A provincial disciplinary committee cleared Shabangu due to a lack of evidence and advised the provincial executive to charge Bambeni instead, as reported by Mvumvu and Makinana33. (Note: It is the same said Shabangu who is alleged further on in this reflection to have contravened Section 4 of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act because it is alleged that he received a R1 220 000 kickback from the developers of the Springs Mall). In the end Bambeni was removed from the list of candidates, together with Siphesihle Dube (a spokesperson for the MEC of Transport in the Western Cape, due to posting pictures which he took with Patrica De Lille). Dube and Bambeni’s exclusions from the candidate list led to court actions against the DA.33
Regarding the second case within the DA’s inner circle, it was reported by Mvumvu and Makinana33 that Louw Nel, the DA’s parliamentary operations director, had taken legal action against Kohler Barnard after the party bosses allegedly failed to act against her. This is an outcome that follows after Barnard allegedly made racist remarks at a strategy meeting of the DA. It is also alleged that Barnard made offensive statements against Zimbabweans in South Africa (Note: Kohler Barnard was accused of racist behaviour in 2015 and her DA membership terminated in 2015 over a Facebook posting calling for the Apartheid president PW Botha’s “comeback”. Her expulsion was overturned and the DA retained her as an MP on condition that she was not found guilty of a similar offence, according to Mvumvu and Makinana33). It is further reported by Mvumvu and Makinana33 that Louw Nel had been suspended after taking the matter to the Equality Court (because he allegedly did not follow the party’s so-called “procedures” to call Barnard to book). He was however then reinstated.
It seems as though the DA is frequently characterised by unnecessary and doubtful senior level conflicts. Many seem to be unclear about the reasons and motives, while others contend that this is due to much self-empowerment and self-love by individuals inside the party’s structure. The racial factor seems to frequently also to be a culprit. For instance, the exit of the policy head, Gwen Ngwenya, of the DA from the leadership before the May election seems to reflect such a political struggle around the leadership. Professor Kotze22 claimed that the resignation of Ngwenya, who is alleged to have become disillusioned with the DA’s unsteady stance on a pro-Black policy, contributed further to existing uncertainty in the DA as a future political home for Blacks. This is seen as one of the various possible catalysts for Black voters moving from the DA in the past election. There were and are still also sagas around the persons of Helen Zille, Patricia de Lille and Lindiwe Mazibuko – wherein the “Black colour” factor seems not always so very innocent.16,17,19,22,24,31,34
For the DA to qualify as “good” in terms of the referees’ letters of reference, it must undoubtedly settle these kinds of internal leadership issues effectively, without negative roots of doubt. However, it would have been best if they were totally avoided from day-one by the appointment of the correct persons in its leadership. The De Lille saga for instance could have been avoided if sound selection principles were applied and she was never allowed into the DA as a member nor promoted to a leader’s position.16,17,19,22,24,31,34
The writings of the political analyst Muzi Kuzwayo35 in April 2019 on Patricia de Lille’s politics, including her present-day party named Good, and her appointment as an honourable minister in the Ramaphosa regime of post-2019, seems to be a good guideline to follow and to use before making an appointment. Kuzwayo writes35:2: “She first cashed in a few years after she started her party which became defunct and moved over to the DA and became Mayor of Cape Town in return – good deal. Who knows what loot Good will brings her.” Indeed, the loot is there! As a minister in the Ramphosa regime, facing the post-2019 politics, she is receiving a salary of R2.4-million yearly (besides many other allowances such as free flights, subsidised luxury cars, etc.)!35
22.214.171.124.5.2. The DA’s merry men and their alleged hands in the cookie jar
Although it seems that the DA prides itself to not hesitate to call political, economic and social delinquents in the party to book, notwithstanding their seniority or empowerment in the party, it seems that this is not always the true case, as alleged by critics. Looking critically at the DA’s attestations, it seems that although the amount, level and intensity of the delinquencies in the DA are far less than those characterising the ANC, it must be noted on the other hand that when it comes to any wrongdoing and the required appropriate handling thereof, the criteria of punishment must be on an equal level required in public from the ANC to act against its delinquents. The basis cannot and must not be the allowing of any kind of wrongdoing. A single case is as evil as one hundred delinquencies. This, it seems, the DA has missed out on sometimes.15-20
Prominent here are the allegations that the DA lacks fast and decisive actions on the expulsion of delinquents in its executive circle. The so-called Shadow Shabangu case, which echoes seemingly the same failing of the ANC to act against its culprits, is noteable. Shadow Shabangu, the DA’s caucus chair of the Ekurhuleni Council, was before the end of the fifth Parliament accused that he received a R1 220 000 kickback from the developers of the Springs Mall. Immense data was offered in the case.15-20
On the alleged wrongdoing by Shabangu, as specifically spelled out by a report of the Ekurhuleni Council, Mvumvu writes19:4: “The contract required him [Shabangu] to protect the interests of the developer instead of those of the municipality and those of his constituents, which is a direct conflict of interest. Furthermore, it was found that there might be an existence of a corrupt relationship between the developer and Shabangu, under the veil of the so-called facilitation agreement.”
The report alleged that Shabangu’s actions were in contravention of Section 4 of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act. It has also been alleged that Shabangu received a gift of a hotel payment worth about R1 720 – R2 290 from a friend of the developers of the mall that he did not declare to the council. So far the accused is alleged to still be active in DA party politics, equalling the Ace Magashule and others’ “not guilty till sentenced” stand-off.15-20
The failure of the DA to act decisively and strictly on the allegations against Shabangu undoubtedly made them in the eyes of potential voters in the recent May elections not an acceptable and a good ruler, empowered to be able to take on rumours of corruption in its own circle and respond with criminal prosecution. It seems for the critical voter as though the DA follows the same kind of “stretched” policy as the ANC, notwithstanding their preaching of a so-called “clean character” of the party and its leaders.
It is old news of the DA’s co-operation at three metros with the controversial EFF. It has been alleged that this “DA-EFF-brotherhood” has led thereto that the EFF’s practice of politics has become part of the DA’s thinking, planning and action. This “DA-EFF-brotherhood” is alleged to be driven inside an alleged opportunistic way of functioning and surviving for the DA. It is alleged in a report that the recent support for Moeketsi Mosolo of the EFF, to be an ongoing member of the Tshwane Council, notwithstanding serious allegations, was the outcome of this contaminated DA-EFF-brotherhood. The allegation is that alleged misconduct by Mosolo was ignored by the DA, primarily to bolster and to assure the DA’s empowerment in the council. The perception by the broad public of the good ethics of the DA and their strong showing up of the alleged corruption of the ANC elite, was thereby nullified. On the Mosolo case it is evident that the DA indeed recently wanted him ousted from the council, due to his alleged part in the awarding of a contract valued at R12 billion by the Tshwane Metro Council to the construction group GladAfrica, to manage all the Metro Council’s infrastructure projects. Hereafter, it is alleged, the DA suddenly made a fast turnaround on Mosolo to keep him on the council. The basis for this, it is alluded, was not to offend the EFF because the DA needed the EFF’s support in the council against the ANC at a time when the DA’s empowerment may have been erased. On Mosolo’s alleged wrongdoing, the Auditor-General’s Report alleged that Mosola took unauthorised control as a council member of the appointment of GladAfrica as a service provider, which was is in the first place in conflict with municipal legislation. Secondly, there was the allegation of the presence of corruption via the contract of the City of Tshwane with GladAfrica. As recently as 25 January 2019 the then DA Executive Mayor of Tshwane, Solly Msimanga, alleged that a payment of R317 million to GladAfrica was “irregular” under the management of Mosolo. The existence of a damaging formal report on Mosolo by the firm Bowmans, seemingly reflecting extremely negatively on the R12 billion contract, is alleged to have been ignored by the DA in their continued support of Mosolo in the council.9,36-38
In this context of an allegedly contaminated “DA-EFF-brotherhood”, it has also been alleged that Solly Msimanga, representing the DA as Executive Mayor in Tshwane, was pushed out of the mayoral post by his own DA party, because his efforts to oust Mosolo had angered the EFF and endangered the empowerment environment in the council for the DA with the EFF.9,36-38
The investigative journalist Marrian39 also took the GladAfrica scandal to the door of Solly Msimanga, the DA’s previous mayor, by recently alleging that he is now facing investigation with Moeketsi Mosolo over the multi-billion rand contract which the Auditor General found was awarded irregularly. She further alleged that he had jumped ship at Tshwane City and failed to see through his first mayoral term after he was seemingly “selected” by the DA to be its premier candidate and the face of its campaign to win Gauteng (which did not help the DA much). Marriam39 also alleged that Msimanga faced allegations of nepotism and that his brother had allegedly stolen 100 computers from the City of Tshwane.39
Marrian,39, as well as the political commentator Peter Bruce,40 focused on the actions of the DA’s Johannesburg Mayor, Herman Mashaba. Marrian39 alleged that shortly after he was elected and had formed a government, allegations emerged that a member of his mayoral committee, a said Sharon Peetz, had taken her mother along on an official trip to Spain. Marrian39 reports that this alleged wrongdoing was met with profuse denials by Mashaba and the city council, and that Mashaba even provided evidence that the trip was legal. But he then suddenly fired Peetz some months later after alleged irrefutable evidence of wrongdoing in the case surfaced. Marrian39 also showed the presence of failed service delivery under the mayoral oversight of Mashaba. She alludes that this happened after the city failed to renew a contract with Avis SA for vehicles to collect street rubbish. According to a report by the investigative journalism unit amaBhungane, Marrian reports that the Avis contract was cancelled and the fleet management deal was handed to Afrirent which allegedly in return paid kickbacks to an account belonging to the EFF. Bruce40 further reports that many of Mashaba’s DA causus members insist that he is closer to the EFF than he is to the DA. These members alleged that he allowed the EFF to influence contracts and appointments. This allegation, reading Marrian’s earlier allegations on the Afrirent contract, seem to can make some sense somewhere.39-40
126.96.36.199.5.3. The Marrian test case of the DA as an effective ruler in metros
There are other prominent critics that the DA’s political planning and action on the metro-level reflect widespread lack of constructive and dynamic action and that it does not offer its voters and the inhabitants of the metros where it is in charge, any better services than its opponents, the ANC or the EFF. It seems thus to be a prerequisite to see if the DA pudding has taste.16,17,20
An article by Marrian39 on the 17th May 2019 about the DA reflects it as a party that is unsuccessfully executing its municipal mandate. This requires a frame of reference. A short analysis and description to measure the article’s value in political standing is offered to get some insight as to whether the allegations hold water. The article’s introduction title reads39:32: “The Democratic Alliance’s unsatisfactory performance in the 2019 general elections reflects its poor governance record in the metros it took control of in the 2016 local government election.”
Looking firstly at her reference to the DA’s so-called “unsatisfactory performance in the 2019 elections”, Marrian39 is clearly missing out on all of the primary reasons for the decline of 2% in votes for the DA. Political analysts posit that the 2% decline was clearly a normal and long overdue shedding of the White ultra-conservatives. These drop-outs are now starting to run away because land expropriation is going to be a reality that the DA has to face from 2019 and must constructively handle in reality politics (other than these DA drop-outs’ seemingly new political home, the FF+, which blindly refuses to recognise this reality and promises them false land security). Nullifying Marrian’s 39 postulation is the well-defined and -reasoned opinion of the editor of the Beeld3 offered earlier, which put it clearly that the DA indeed did well in the election with its 20% voter outcome.3,39
Regarding her reference to the DA’s so-called “poor governance record in the metros it took control of in the 2016 local government election”, it is a postulation without roots: the only way to make an analysis of poor performance, is to compare it with the ruling ANC’s outputs in the various municipalities since 2016 (and the EFF which is basically missing in this context). In this context of governance it must be noted that not a single municipality under the DA management failed to obtain a clean audit, while most of the municipalities run by the ANC are contaminated by the lack of clean audits and the presence of constant corruption, fraud and theft, etc.9,16,17,20,39
The chaos in some of these ANC run metros is echoed by the recent arrest of the ANC Durban Mayor Zandile Gumede, chair of the powerful eThekwini region. Together with her, 62 ANC councillors of the eThekwini region stand accused of R208 million tender fraud. (For the record: she has already appeared in court and is out on R50 000 bail).41,42
For Marrian39 to speak vaguely as follows39:32: “…the DA did not live up to its own promise of better and clean governance in the metros it won in 2016. There are ample examples in Tshwane, Nelson Mandela Bay and Johannesburg of a party out of its depth in governing complex cities”, is plain mischief-making. Marrian39 failed to offer facts besides generalisations, meaning that her evidence is missing to put the DA in the dog box. As it has been offered it is fake news! Firstly, it needs to be noted that the DA only took over these entities three years ago and they had been messed up before by the ANC. The DA’s first tasks were to put remedial actions in place to get them working once again. This was mostly achieved in the three years, as the overall successes in these municipalities confirm.9,16,17,20,39
Marrian39 remarks that the DA had taken over the crown jewels of South Africa’s city scape, namely the big budget Johannesburg, the administrative capital of Pretoria in Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay in coalition deals and informal agreements with the EFF. She simplified the outcomes of these three metro’s complex management, which is prominently reflected by her unconvincing focus on Nelson Mandela Bay, with a specific outcome which she describes in political jargon as39:23: “Three years later, two of the three DA mayors have been removed and the party lost control of Nelson Mandela Bay”. Her “focus” clearly reflects a lack of understanding of the pre-2016 contaminations in all three of the metros which the DA has been trying to rectify since 2016 with the EFF. Secondly, which she knows well, but failed to pinpoint, is the political instability of the EFF as a co-partner and the party’s extreme customs and habits of mischief-making. This mischief-making intention and inclination by the EFF is evident where there is the opportunity for it, where it can scurrilously deviate from normal and orderly politics, even with the other mischief-maker, the ANC, in order to obstruct good governance. The constant change of DA mayors in PE was such an outcome and was not a public rejection of the DA’s mayor.39
To associate the DA’s Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba’s so-called popularity with the decline in DA votes there in the May elections, does not hold water: Marrian39 herself states that the DA’s decline was all over the country, and not only located in Johannesburg; so where does Mashaba really come into the picture, besides his random and subjective selection as a so-called “culprit”? Her postulations39:32: “…that last year bins in Johannesburg’s streets overflowed with rubbish”, and that: “Johannesburg entities, from City Power to Pikitup, degenerated under Mashaba’s watch…”, do not hold any specific evidence of outright and continuous political failure or misdoing by the DA or Mashaba. Marrian, as a salted political analyst, must know this. Her remarks are primarily nothing more than generalised political allegations, failing to bring the DA or Mashaba to book with specific and confirmatory evidence on the specific story of rubbish bins. Furthermore, these claims, if they should be true, are seemingly the extraordinary to the ordinary of every day. Strikes, which are a general phenomenon in all the metros and lead unavoidably to streets overflowing with rubbish, are mostly run by Cosatu and its affiliates, which are alliance members to the ANC regime. Furthermore, the country-wide daily road blocks of burning tyres and unrest, etc., are basically due to the municipalities under the ANC’s management’s constant and ongoing failures for the delivery of services. In the failed service delivery at ANC-run municipalities, the presence of rubbish which overflows the streets is only one problem of many more serious failures to the inhabitants, of which Marrian seems oblivious or prefers not to mention.39
Marrian’s39 overview of the DA’s so-called fight with the then Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille, seemingly lacks an understanding of the background to the alleged matter, which forced the DA to react with serious steps against her. It seems to be a matter that the DA is still investigating although she has left the party. Her remark39:23: “The electorate clearly turned up their noses at the DA’s antics in the metros over the past three years…”, is an effort by Marrian39 to pinpoint the story behind the so-called “noses-up” of the electorate.. However, it lacks any evidence or political commentator’s depth. In perspective, it seems to be a reflection of a kind of political mischief against the DA. Again, on the “antics” of the DA – as done in all her other reflections on the DA’s so-called many failures in her article – she failed to offer a comparison of the DA’s “bad” antics with the ANC’s “good” antics in all the metros where it is active, knowing that the DA would come first as the best ruler.39
In conclusion, many critics are inclined to say “where there is smoke there is fire”. 39 Viewpoints must be lent an ear. The evidence of poor management and corruption in municipalities all over the country is plentiful: from the smallest village to the biggest metro. What really is needed is that the Cape Town, Johannesburg, eThekwini, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay municipalities must be scrutinised for corruption, theft and nepotism, etc., by commissions such as those of Zondo and Mpati. This will show not only possible wrongdoings by the ANC’s cronies, but also possibly those of the DA’s cronies. Such an outcome may put flesh to Marrian’s39 present vague and unconvincing allegations on the failures of the DA. It will also test the DA’s manifesto for truth and see whether its promises are going to hold water. South Africa needs to see which of the three dominant political parties and their leaders are sufficiently capable and skilled to solve the demanding land redistribution issue. Most of all, we must ascertain which of the three parties’ politics are characterised by poor governance and serious delinquencies.
188.8.131.52.6. The DA’s horse-trading with extreme oppositions as partners
A prominent critic, which could have also played a role in the loss of voters in the 2019 elections, is the opposition of conservative voters (mostly Whites) of the DA’s association with the EFF. Indeed any association with a radical opposition, even the ANC, seems unacceptable for this sector.39,40,43
No-one can escape the hard fact that the DA’s coalition and informal co-operation with the EFF has cost them support. The fiasco in their loss of control of Nelson Mandela Bay and the removal of the DA’s mayors there, has become more than a black mark on the DA’s record of integrity and good governance.39,40,43
This kind of DA-EFF cooperation is seen as nothing more than horse-trading, to use the excellent coining of a phrase by Bruce. It seems for some critics to be extreme opportunism by the DA’s leadership to stay in power and to reap benefits, instead of truly putting the country and its voters’ interests as a priority.39,40,43
At the moment there are a lot of rumours of a repeated coalition with the EFF in the metro councils of Tshwane and Johannesburg. The EFF alleged that such consultations and discussions with the DA are ongoing. But on this outcome, as with the DA’s pre-2019 politics, Maimane43 has thrown cold water by stating43:1-2:
…the DA would co-operate only with parties that shared its values of non-racialism, a capable state, eradication of corruption and a market-based economy that was inclusive of those who were left out.
This discussion on co-operation with the EFF must be based on those principles, and if ultimately parties do not agree on the principles we will not sell those out. We will stand firm and move on from there.
The DA’s pre-2019 association with the EFF and its leaders has, as mentioned, with good reason placed a question mark on the DA’s integrity.34,39,43 Further contamination of the DA’s character by the EFF can make Marrian’s39 remark that39:32: “…the DA did not live up to its own promise of better and clean governance in the metros it won in 2016”, suddenly and irrevocably meaningful. In addition here is Marrian’s request that the DA must do some introspection. It seems to be necessary, not only with regard to its association with the EFF, but also on many of the other so-called “delinquencies” of the DA, of which Marrian39 has spoken many times with a tongue in her cheek.
A fact which cannot be ignored: as a result of its initial construction as a party, the DA has many times been characterised by outright opportunism which has nurtured the party’s unfortunate “EFF-love”. It must be phased out, together with the EFF contamination.27,39,43,44
The DA cannot honestly call itself a unique party: a party free from racism, corruption, state capture, revolutionary politics, etc., as long the EFF is part of its inner circle. The past EFF association has cost the DA as many Black right-wing votes as it did to drive its White right-wing’s departure. Selisho34 quoted the political commentator Leeto Nthoba who said that the DA’s initial loss of voters to the FF+ in the May elections was strongly driven by the DA’s previous association with the EFF. The loss of more Whites from the DA will further be speeded up by a new alliance with the EFF. There is not a single good principle to support the DA to again be involved with the EFF in a future co-operation.34
In this context is it clear that Maimane has started (seemingly for the moment) to cold shoulder the EFF and confirms that the DA’s intention is only that of a positive co-operation with “equal-value” parties to the DA in the post-2019 politics. Maimane reflects further that the DA wants to establish a “caucus of the opposition” with parties that share their values and are identified with the centre of politics. In this context the DA already has a kind of “alliance” with the FF+, the ACDP, the IFP and the UDM, while the EFF is not a member, but is seemingly supported sometimes.27,44-46
However, for the DA to come clean in the post-2019 politics from their previous serious EFF-contamination, remains to be seen. The first prerequisite to be clean is integrity; something that no-one can cheer about in the DA if the EFF is its bed-partner. If the stream goes against Maimane’s cold shouldering of the EFF, the DA is sleeping at the same time with the right-wing FF+ and underwriting the dominant voice of the aggrieved, conservative White and Coloured minorities, while at the same time sleeping with the left-wing EFF and underwriting the voice of the discontented, impatient and even angry Black majority. This is not what is called middle-ground politics: it is political schizophrenia and political psychopathy, two serious psychoses, intertwined in one single party. The end result will be the DA’s ongoing Black-versus-White conflict, but in extreme form. This would also confirm the views of many critics that it lacks a sound political policy in any area of politics. As a party it will fit in nowhere, because it is not positively repositioned. Most of all, it will be without supporters and its rich funders.32,47
For the DA to argue that the previous backing of the DA by the EFF and vice versa has not been without benefit, for instance in Johannesburg, holds no water. There is no fact to contradict the statement that all the inhabitants of Johannesburg would benefit if the ANC alone was the boss, possibly more than the DA-EFF alliance. One thing is clear (and a great concern for a corruption free DA) and that is the enormous benefit for the DA-EFF councillors in pay and their political empowerment. When John Mendelsohn46, a DA councillor, postulates that the DA alliance with the EFF was a “precariously positioned one wich required skilful management by Mashaba” it seems as though both Bruce40 and Marrion,39 seemingly with good reason, frowned on it. The DA would benefit from a little introspection, as Marrian advises.39,40,46
The public have the right to be sceptical on any DA-EFF brotherhood. Mendelsohn’s46 reflection on Bruce’s40 critique on the DA’s actions in the Johannesburg City Council, with specifically the EFF as a prominent empowered partner, read46:18: “The message to Bruce is that the arrangement with the EFF was not entered into simply as a “greedy decision”. It was done for the best of reasons, namely to rid the city of corruption and get some growth going in the local economy.”This has just too much reference to the words “greedy, corruption, best of reasons”, as if coming directly from the Zuma period. It is not convincing. 39,40,46
Postscript: On the 29th May 2019 the Citizen reports that the DA had given the ANC the Chair-position of the Standing Committee on Public Accounts (Scopa)4 in the Western Cape Provincial Legislature. As motivation for this offering the DA said it was done in the interests of transparency, accountability, cooperative governance and good democratic practice (characteristics the DA constantly accuses the ANC of lacking!). Notwithstanding the DA’s argument that the chair is given traditionally to a member of the strongest opposition party in the government (which the ANC is in the stern Cape), it is in conflict with Maimane’s earlier promises that the DA would stay away from any future cooperation with doubtful partners.49
The advent of post-2019 Malema cooperation with the DA in metros can steer the DA back to its practice of dishonourable horse trading. This does not seem impossible. On the 28th May the Star48 reported that it looks set that the DA is going to do a power-sharing deal again with the EFF in Tshwane and Johannesburg.48
184.108.40.206.8. The DA’s use of the Malloch-Brown model for provincial and municipal political empowerment
There are some serious critics of the opinion that to speak of the DA as a national regime, to in any way be able to govern South Africa after the May election 2019, must be handled with care. The DA, it was felt, just could not brag of doing so, because this experience is totally missing from their CV. There are even critics that believe that on provincial and local level the DA seems to falter. The emergence of various small political groupings and so-called community parties in the Western Cape, the DA’s stronghold, is offered as dissatisfaction with the DA by communities and the inhabitants of regions where the DA is strongly active. Given that these groupings did not make much inroad into the DA’s domain in the Western Cape or Cape Town in the past elections, this contradicts a general indication of poor DA ruling or unpopularity with the broad society of the DA on specific municipal level.22,25,36,50
This outcome erases the critique that the DA does not have the ability or will to be the national ruler in the post-2019 politics. The results of the May election contradict thus firstly the lack of interest of the DA in national politics, and secondly that the DA has neglected the national issue. What most of the critics have missed is that the DA, with very good reason, is focusing its political intentions and role-playing on provincial level to tackle local issues, instead of over-addressing the national issues of South Africa.22,25,36,50
Looking to the arguments and modus operandi of the DA’s leadership since 2014, it becomes clear that there exists cognition inside the party that the first step to be able to move into national government successfully requires the pre-step of a well established provincial level involvement and empowerment by the DA all over the country. Included here is the local level of governmental occupation by the DA in an effort to firstly repair the integrity of municipalities and to again obtain clean audits, and secondly to serve the inhabitants’ needs and demands through this improved system. This will allow them to obtain and establish a foundation to move into provincial and then on into national levels of government. Only after this double stage has successfully been mastered, based on a sound governance foundation, experience and empowerment, can the DA move aggressively into the national sphere from 2024 onward .22,25,36,50
This double stage intention and approach on provincial and local levels of government establishment was evident from the words of Makashule Gana50 of the DA national campaign team for the recent May 2019 election, when he pinpointed that the party was primarily and specifically campaigning on community issues that were close to the ordinary peoples’ daily lives50:15: “We stand more chance of being in government if we pour our hearts into the provinces and grow our votes there.” Prominent here are the constructive efforts of the DA to explain on local level major national issues in such terms that help voters to understand how bad or good decisions taken in the top echelons of government affect their day-to-day lives, write Matiwane and Deklerk25.
How much the quality of the DA’s political structure and know-how are on the standard of international politics, and how intensively they apply the principles of good governance on all levels of their strategy and planning, is especially reflected and confirmed by their insight to go as an opposition in the first place for local and domestic politics. Their aim is mostly, other than some of the ANC top brass like Nelson Mandela, Thabo Mbeki, Jacob Zuma and Cyril Ramaphosa, to find an international solution for local problems. No-one can reject the important role of international politics, but if a local policy of management is absent and the basic grievances of the local people on village level are ignored and fail to be addressed – as the ANC mostly did for over 25 years with their minds occupied by national government – international politics not only fails to have an impact, but, where it is applied randomly, brings in most cases only further chaos to an existing local problem. Their exclusive local focus with the use of local approaches, is working positively where the DA is strongly involved in the local level of government. This is not only to repair the local mess at municipalities previously run by the ANC, but at the same time to start to bring about the much needed basic facilities and contacts that are prominently lacking on local level and whereto international solutions mostly are not applicable.
In this context, wherein the DA’s local orientation to politics is correctly focusing on the single aim to altruistically serve the individuals’ needs above personal gains and self-empowerment, an inclination that is at the moment negatively overwhelming the country’s politics on national level, is the supportive narrative of Mark Malloch-Brown51 with regard to the DA’s initiative on local level politics. For the record, Malloch-Brown51 is undoubtedly one of the most qualified internationally recognised persons to understand and evaluate the actions and qualities of political parties and governments worldwide. The insight of Malloch-Brown51, an experienced political correspondent for the Economist, the Vice-President of External Affairs of the World Bank, Head of the United Nations Development Programme, the UN Deputy Secretary-General under Koffi Annan, and later Minister of State at the UK Foreign and Commonwealth Office, who worked closely within the Middle East and African political turmoil, is fully echoing the DA’s practise of politics. He can speak of successes and failures and hard lessons to learn from local to national governance, especially on the British environment.51
Malloch-Brown51, writes about Gordon Brown’s hard lesson to learn on the importance of local politics when he became the UK Prime-Minister51:221:
Hit in his early months in office by credit, food and energy crises that were clearly international in origin, he publicly sought international solutions, only to be confronted…with complaints that he was not sensitive enough to people and their problems. Why, the British people asked, was he talking about all these irrelevant international matters?
The dilemma of the modern politician is that the answers are abroad but the votes at home. And so Brown, like Blair before him, had to find a language and narrative of politics that is deeply rooted in the at-home. Among political leaders, neither the natural globalisers nor the nationalists are able to cut themselves free from the strings of domestic politics. That is the forum to which they all remain beholden.
Malloch-Brown51 also writes in this context of the importance of local government about his own experience (and another hard lesson to learn) as a UK minister. He reports51:221: “And local is a tough taskmaster. Coming back to the U.K. as a minister to help Brown drive his internationalist agenda, I was brought down to earth by the weekend’s newspaper headlines that blamed the government for uncollected garbage in London’s streets. It does not get much more local than that.”
How sensitive the DA is in its encircling of good politics and its following every letter of the principles to obtain the best empowerment through addressing the local issue, is clear in their aim to take over city metros as a first step to a later national takeover. Noteworthy here is the DA’s insight to put forward strong leaders of quality in order to lead excellent cities and by doing so, to win the hearts of the local people. Malloch-Brown51, on the empowerment of local government through the installation of persons of integrity in care of these municipalities, writes51:221: “… mayors solve problems that are close to home: violent crime, drugs, public infrastructure. They have to care about schools, social services, police and public investment.”
On the immense empowerment of the local entities and their empowering energy-streaming, not only into the provincial and national levels of a country, but also into the international sphere, because their excellence and know-how can be exported, Malloch-Brown51 writes further51:222: “The world looks good for mayors and other local leaders. The fortunes of cities like Moscow, Cape Town, and Chicago have often been countercyclical to those of their region or country, often due to the leadership of strong mayors.”
The DA’s successful pre-2019 occupation and management of Cape Town (as well as the Western Cape region in which it is anchored) reflects such counter action to erase poor governance and leadership, standing out from the ANC’s failed South African state and its municipalities where they reign.51
In addition, the DA’s political successes, again at the provincial level, especially in the Western Cape in the May election, are a confirmation of their ongoing political manifesto of an orderly taking of power in South Africa, even if it must wait until the 2024 election.22
220.127.116.11.9. The DA as a party of everything for everyone, pre-and post-2019
18.104.22.168.9.1. The DA’s White dilemma
Post-election critics bring various reasons to the door of the DA as to why it did not make a dramatic inroad on the voters. Prominent here is its seeming inability to properly handle the various forces, both positive and negative, active in the DA’s own dynamics. It is often suggested that it tries to be a party of everything for everybody. This is an approach which is seemingly not working anymore. The party’s open kind of politics in which they try to satisfy both the Black interests as well as the White interests seem not to work in 2019 and are not going to work in future. This is damaging to both sides. The basis here is a policy ambiguity, mostly activated by the conservative NP remnants of the White sector of the DA. This opposition, and fear by the doves in the DA of losing White support if they took them on, led to not only a vague but many times an absolute lack of a clearly declared policy on Black empowerment and affirmative action, driving away the middle class and even the lower economic classes of Blacks. On the other hand, there is the suspicion by White DA members of Maimane to have sympathy for dramatic land reform, which echos in many aspects that of the ANC doves. This is a direct reason for a DA internal power struggle. This was also well-reflected by critics as the so-called driving out of Whites as members and supporters in the May elections. This in-house power struggle is immense, although well hidden. It frequently equals the present in-fighting in the ANC on the self-empowerment of individuals. The Black racism within a certain sector of the ANC is in reverse echoed by White racism in the DA.28,32 Nyatsumba writes25:25: “The harder Mmusi Maimane tried to position the DA as a social democratic party that would appeal to black voters, the more conservatives “fought back” against him and his ideals.
Naki, in quoting Professor Dirk Kotze22 of Unisa on this conflicting context and the fight for the soul of the DA, reports22:4: “Blacks wanted reform, but conservative whites opposed liberal policies, which put the DA in a dilemma. Both the constituencies abandoned the party at the polls in favour of the ANC and the FF+.”
This indication is undoubtedly true: as many as 470 396 voters left their DA home and contributed undoubtedly to the FF+ gaining 249 093 votes since the 2014 election. These DA voters who absconded to the ANC also helped the ANC to limit its’ loss to only 1 410 446 votes in the May election.5-8
The post-2019 politics make it clear that the DA has reached its peak of White voters and supporters, but the loss of more or less 249 093 White DA voters to the FF+ was an unavoidable outcome. It was part of the ultra-conservative Whites’ build-up against Black empowerment that could never be solved reasonably inside the DA of the future. Most of these ultra-conservative Whites, a political mix between NPs, ABs and Herstigte-NPs, have opportunistically hung on to the DA for years after losing their own political homes, doing more harm than good to the DA’s political soul.28,52 Mokone, Deklerk and Hunter52, quoting a DA insider on these seemingly politically confused and estranged Whites in the DA, write52:22: “Yes, we have lost support to the Freedom Front Plus, but perhaps it’s about time we lost the right-wing conservatives in the party because we are trying to build a party that represents the interests of all South Africans. Perhaps that will also help us to continue increasing support in black areas, which is what we did in this election.”
22.214.171.124.9.2. A Black ex-ANC as the present leader of the DA
How much these right-wing conservatives have penetrated the soul of the DA with their White racial contamination, was clearly reflected by their efforts to sack Maimane for what they see as his “Black liberation” inside the DA. Other DA right-wingers allude that he is an ex-ANC walking around with the ANC manifesto under his right arm. The intention to oust him at present is very clear. Indeed, it seems that they tried to do this at the DA’s Federal Executive (Fedex) on the 13th May, without success. It seems that they are also gearing up to try to oust him later in June at the DA’s Federal Council’s meeting. (The FC is the DA’s highest decision-making structure between conferences). There are also rumours of a call for an early national congress next year, instead of the scheduled congress of 2021, to muster enough votes to be able to topple Maimane12,52
Mokone, Deklerk and Hunter52 describe these detractors of Maimane to include current and former MPs and MPLs from the DA’s neo-conservative grouping, known in the DA’s circles as the “old guard”, which does not agree with the DA’s “blacking” politics and a more responsible view on true democracy, as opposed to the one catering exclusively to White privilege. A spokesperson on the inside of the DA says52:6: “They are gloating. Even before the results started coming in, there were so many of them that were waiting for Mmusi to fail.”
How focused and poisonous these attacks are on Maimane, especially from the Afrikaner right-wing, is well reflected by Pelser53 when he, without a factual base, writes53:6:
Danksy Maimane se oorhaastige kantkiesery in rassetwiste wat gewissel het van Ashwin Willemse tot Schweizer-Reneke, kry die DA 472 000 stemme minder op 8 Mei, want hoewel sy party se prestasie in regering gerespekteer word, verstaan veral wit kiesers ook wat Maimane wil doen, naamlik om klokslag op sosiale media sy eie onberispelike bona fides wat betref ant-swart rassisme ten toon te stel nog voordat hy al die feite het.”
The double standards of these White right-wingers applied to the correctness and indeed the prescribed duty of Maimane to punish deviant behaviour of party members, especially of the top brass of the DA, knowing it is inappropriate and delinquent – is again reflected by Pelser’s53 public down-playing (seemingly because their political antics fit him) of the seriousness of the deviances of three DA seniors who Maimane (after consultation with his top brass) recently called to book for contravening the party’s media rules and for getting involved in racial politics. Pelser writes53:6:
Die DA-LP Ghaleb Cachalia, seun van die struggle-ikone Amina en Yusuf Cachalia, is weer onder ‘n tipe sensuur geplaas as ‘n ongedissiplineerde kader omdat hy dit gedurf waag het het om die uitgesproke Radio 702–aanbieder Eusebius McKaiser te belg.
Ook Helen Zille, wat as premier die doeltreffendste regering gebou het wat Suid-Afrika in 25 jaar gesien het, en wat nou ‘n gewone DA-lid is, sal na die DA se federale uitvoerende raad verwys word nadat sy op Twitter geskryf het dat daar ook deesdae iets soos “black privileges” is (sy stel dit onder meer gelyk aan grootskeepse geplunder sonder gevolge).
These growing and well-planned attacks on the “Black priest” Maimane as DA leader, are not done alone by single persons or a small group of White right-wing-went-off-DAs, but are also as mentioned done from inside by the mostly White “old guard” of the DA top brass where these attacks are less expected. These attacks are spreading to all the intimate members of Maimane’s team. Important to note is the focus on the DA’s head of elections Jonathan Moakes, and the chief executive Paul Boughey, seemingly also with the intention to oust them for the “alleged” poor performance of the DA in the 2019 elections12,39,53
Moakes did indeed resign recently and referred to the internal fights in the DA, wherein seemingly the detractors of Maimane are central, as: “…’toksiese, abnormal omgewing’ waar ‘interne gevegte, vertrouensbreuk, (en) onenigheid …die norm geword het’,” reports Boonzaaier.54:1
Bringing the fight closer to Maimane and his intimate cronies, Marrian writes39:4: “Knives are said to be out for the young leader, despite him getting ‘a round of applause; as he entered the Fedex meeting on Monday.”
126.96.36.199.9.3. The DA present-day leadership saturation by right-wing Old Guards
The knives of the “old guard” are out for the wrong “emperor” and these detractors of Maimane, similar to those who stabbed Julius Ceasar, learned later that a hefty price needs to be paid in the end.
From a political analysis point of view, it seems more and more that the DA’s drop in share in the national votes from the 22.23% under Helen Zille to 20.77% in 2019, bringing a decrease from 89 to 84 MPs in the National Assembly, was to a great extent directly as a result of the negative impact of these “old guard’” “white-politics” inside the DA, specifically about Maimane’s “Black” presence as its leader. One prominent root of these DA neo-conservatives’ ultra-politics, is their association with the so-called antagonists against land expropriation in any form – and the fighting off of any form of upliftment for the mass of the poor and landless. They are clearly aligned to the so-called and mostly self-styled “Afrikaners/White rescuers and saviours”, such as the FF+, AfriForum, AgriSA, Solidarity and other obstructionists of the unavoidable and much needed land reform plan. The future planning and political model of this “old guard” for the DA does not include the intention to build a party that represents the interests of all South Africans. Prominent here is their exclusive safe-guarding of an imbalanced White land ownership and exclusive White capital at the cost of ±30 million poor and landless Blacks. 21,28,47,52
Critically considered, is it clear that they do not represent the view of most of the ±5 million White South Africans. Moreover, they do not have the majority support of these Whites for their racial politics inside or outside the DA. They can cost the DA a split, but, as said, this split needs to occur as fast as possible under the leadership of Maimane, in order to make the DA a party of the people of South Africa.21,28,47,52
But political analyst Ralph Mathekgo55, quoted by Naki55, contends that the flight of White voters from the DA must also be interpreted from another angle and not outright because they are all against the DA’s so-called activation of a process of “blacking” itself. They were forced out by fear of the EFF’s extreme anti-White and land grabbing policy (and their own selfishness to be rich, empowered and to have unlimited White privilege), and thus ran to the FF+ as their only rescuer in this unfortunate setup. This opinion is confirmed by various other political analysts.21,28,32,47,52,55
Mathekgo55, in line with the above findings, writes55:5: “The EFF helped the Freedom Front Plus to consolidate the white voters. It positioned itself as an opponent of the EFF policies, including the expropriation of land without compensation.”
The exit of the White antagonists (who, as mentioned, did not really belong from day one to the DA’s Black orientated political culture), has undoubtedly on the other hand opened the door in reverse for the influx of the middle and lower classes of Black supporters. This positive and growing process will start to erase the White shortfall in members and the White funding of the party (which also seems to have become a leverage of how these right-wing Whites, especially the White capitalists, have manipulated and captured the DA’s soul for a long time). 21,28,32,47,52,55
To be a party of the future, the DA will need to increase their drive for the collection into the DA of Blacks to make it an overwhelmingly moderate Black party. This is a dramatic move away from the contaminated presence of the (mostly departed) right-wing Whites which have so far blocked any “black-liberalism”. This was done in-house by them, at the cost of the status of Maimane’s leadership, by their internal propaganda to profile him as a poor leader. In this process the media was thoroughly used, especially the Afrikaans media.21,28,32,47,52,55
188.8.131.52.9.4. Good management for change politics
The abovementioned change in politics of the DA from White to Black can bring about enormous winnings for the DA in the next local urban elections of 2021. This political acceptance could be extended to the rural areas wherein the DA so far has been under-performing against the ANC and the EFF. (In the 2019 elections, of the 3.6 million votes which the DA received, 2.9 million came from urban areas, with 152 000 from rural areas, 500 000 from farm areas and 9 000 from mixed areas). This means that the DA has to be progressive in order to improve its position locally.22,56 Marrian56 is correct when she says that the DA’s results in the metros in 2019 show that it will have to work hard to retain control of them in 2021, particularly in the Tshwane and Johannesburg metros which it now governs through unstable coalitions. This includes their sole governing in Cape Town, where their support has dropped from 67% to 56%. However, on the other side, the decrease in votes for the ANC is much more significant, confirming the presence of various negative determinants and not a sole one such as leadership per se.56
With regard to the future politics of the FF+ in the post-2019 politics (which has enlarged its presence in Parliament from 4 to 10 MPs) – it is the party to which the DA shed an assumend ±250 000 voters – there is, besides obstruction together with the various White/Afrikaner rescuers and savers such as Solidarity, AfriForum, the IRR, etc., very little hope. The FF+ is an artificial political setup, still saturated in racism, and as the election outcome reflects, it is not popular with the majority of South Africans who stand strongly against racism. Also for the 250 000 DA members, fleeing the ship to the FF+, the future looks doomed there and they knew very well that the DA is the only party that can bring about ordered and balanced land reform. The failed Pieter Mulder escapade as deputy minister of the FF+ in the Zuma cabinet was an expensive lesson to learn for Whites who tried to channel their politics and interests exclusively through the FF+.5-8
The chance is good that many of these disloyal (and many times displaced) DA supporters, who turned to the FF+ as voters, are going to return to the DA. Kotze22 reflects22:4: “The FF+ support is artificial, caused by DA supporters upset with the way the party was managed at the top.” The question must be asked as to whether the DA wants them back? To argue that the DA is stripped of its White voters/supporters with the departure of the 250 000 right-wing jumpers to the EFF+, is a myth. It must be noted that most of the DA members/supporters are still White and are undoubtedly satisfied. Moreover: the fact is that the Whites (including Afrikaners), especially the youth, have very little sympathy for right-wing Whites and their opportunistic Afrikaner/White saviours and rescuers. The same passivity against the right-wing is present within the 5 million Whites with regard to the political trouble-making of the ±35 000 White farmers and their farms. Although it is impossible to calculate precisely the number of White supporters of the DA, the voting totals of the 2019 statics of the eligible voters (±36 miilion) as well as the total voters (±18 million) at the ballot box out of a total population of ±58 million, can be brought into calculation with the White population of ±5 million. If the eligible White voters are calculated, as many as 3 miilion Whites can support the DA. If the passive vote, as reflected in the 2019 voting, is brought into calculation, as many as 1.5 million Whites can still be supporters of the DA. (The total vote for the DA in 2019 was 3.6 million). This calculation means that the loss of ±250 000 White votes reflects basically a loss of between ±8% and 17% Whites by the DA, which can easily be replaced with Black votes.5-8
It can be expected that many of the Black and Brown voters who jumped ship will return as soon as the ANC restarts its tricks. The politics of the ANC, the SACP and Cosatu, are still bordering on radicalism with regard to race, economics and land reform, etc. This politically radical thinking just does not fit into the mindset of established DAs. 22,63
For South African politics in general, which includes the DA’s future planning, thinking and action, there lurk serious consequences as a result of the right-wing FF+ successes in the May election (a warning also applicable to the EFF’s danger). This holds political dangers, which somewhere in the future, the government of the day may be forced to curb, even by dramatic intervention. On this racial polarisation and risky outcome, Mondi Makhanya,64 the editor of City Press, writes a clear warning64:11: “Pieter Groenewald, VF Plus-leier, het ná die verkiesing in ‘n onderhoud hieroor gekraai. “Mense begin nou besef dat jy toegelaat word om wit te wees, ‘n minderheidsgroep, ‘n Afrikaner, sonder om ‘n rassis te wees.”
On the above response of Groenewald, Makhanya64:11continues:
Deur dit te sê, het hy die terugtrek van ‘n aansienlike deel van die wit bevolking – meestal Afrikaanssprekendes – in ‘n rasse-laer van waar hulle hulself as afsonderlik van hul medeburgers beskou, as lofwaardig beskou.
Die ongelukkige aspek van demokrasie is dat dit elke nou en dan uitslae soos dié bewerkstellig. As demokrasie moet ons dit respekteer.
Suid-Afrikaners moet egter nou reeds die realiteit konfronteer dat ‘n giftige nasionalisme aan die regterkant van ons politieke spektrum herrys. Die goeie ding is dat dit binne die grense van ons grondwetlike bedeling geskied.
Dit kan steeds op demokraties wyse ontman word – mits diegene wat ons republiek lei dit herken en dit met breinkrag eerder as spierkrag beveg.
It is now the duty of the DA to rid itself of the Groenewalds, the racial AfriForums and its associated organisations. There is no place to fire up White resistance and poisonous ultra-White nationalism in the DA. The opportunity is now there for the DA to rid itself of racial domination and contamination. This can be done fast and successfully. For that the DA needs a tough, but balanced Black leader.64
It is clear that Maimane and his intimate cronies are very sure of themselves in the post-2019 DA with their future “blacking”. He is not hesitating to take on the White ultra-conservatives in the party’s top brass. It seems Maimane successfully bottled them together with persons such as Helen Zille and “her regrets of promoted Black leaders in the DA”.43,53,65,66
Maimane43, on this future path of DA politics, said43:1-2: “We have set the direction of the organisation and that is the route we will go”.
His growing success was seen with the recent appointment of his preferred candidate Jacques Julius as deputy chief whip in the place of Mike Waters, who is regarded by Maimane and his cronies as part of the conservatives who obstruct the change of the DA. It shows strong support for Maimane from senior DA MPs. This direct vote within the party’s caucus was undoubtedly the victory Maimane needed to continue fast with his diversity of the racial composition of the DA’s higher echelons. It is also clear that the DA MP Phumzile van Damme is successfully leading a progressive group to dislodge many of Maimane’s detractors.65
Mokone and Deklerk65, quoting DA inside sources, say that Julius not only strengthened Maimane’s empowerment on the DA’s Fedex, but that the support of the senior DA MPs show65:4: “… that there are people in the party who support the vision he’s laid out, who want to continue with the vision of our SA for all.”
This clear and decisive policy finality arriving at last, the previous lack of which cost the DA votes in the recent elections, was concretely demonstrated on the 21st May 2019 when Maimane took on Helen Zille in public (an action long overdue). This clearly reflects his assertion of power in the post-2019 DA politics. He has at last obtained his grip on the party. His undermentioned public speaking shows this clearly.43
Firstly, he recommitted the DA to being the South African party of the centre, with the sole intention to serve every citizen43:1-2: “We will not pander to the right or pander to the left. That is not the space we want to occupy. We are in the centre of politics and we must lay out that stall. Populism and nationalism are on the rise. It doesn’t change the fact that our historical mission to get all South Africans working together is an ideal worth fighting for.”
Secondly, in fighting off the attacks on him as leader, as driven by the ill-disciplined comments of some high profile DA members on Twitter, he initiated disciplinary actions against three prominent DA members, namely Helen Zille and the two DA MPs Galeb Cachalia and Michael Cardo.43,67
Maimane43,67 taking a clear position on the DA”s centre politics and how this will be driven, as well as how he is going to erase the right-wing Whites, has responded as follows43:9 and 67:1-2:
I do not agree with the views that have been put forward by the former premier of the Western Cape.
The discussion about privilege in this country is a function not only of our history which advantaged a particular race over another, but it’s also that in the last number of years in government here, we have failed to create access to opportunities for South Africans and ensure that more can be included in our economy .
White South Africans needed to be “cognisant of the fact that the majority of people who are left out are black South Africans.”
On the conflicting racial matter, also prominent in the DA and which was clearly put into the foreground by the Zille tweets, Maimane67 comments as follows67:9: “Any view that seeks to polarise South Africans on the basis of race is not a view I will support. Our focus must be working together as South Africans, black and white, to recognise those injustices and work to address them.”
184.108.40.206.9.5. The DA is finally at the centre of politics and is laying out its stall
To be honest, the DA was before and still is after the election (as shown by the arrogance of Zille’s tweets), undoubtedly saturated in the belief capture of some right-wing Whites seeing themselves as the sole rescuers of the party (undoubtedly true in terms of funding) when it seems to be in trouble. The pertinent use of Helen Zille and Tony Leon to collect votes, but surely only White votes, was an excellent example of this mistaken perception of these right-wing Whites of their future importance in the DA. The presence of people such as Zille and Leon activated immense Black anger. It was planned belittlement. It was for White empowerment.64,66,68 A DA member of the party’s campaign team reflects68:7: “Why in the dying days were the fossils rolled out? Because they wanted to focus on the white vote. That vote was already gone, it was clear even in by-elections.”
There is a false belief that a Black DA is doomed, which may be true if it is solely entrusted to a future of White voters and putting them first. But the intention is clear to keep only those Whites who are committed to an open society, free from the present DA racial undertones. For Johnson12 to write as follows on this White remedy of the post-2019 DA is pie in the sky12:4-5: “Daar is eise dat die koppe van al die topleiers moet rol en vrese dat, tensy die skip vinnig omgedraai word, verdere verliese in 2021 se munisipale verkiesing die party in die gesig staar.” Firstly, it is doubtful whether people such as Johnston are welcome on the post-2019 DA ship. Secondly, if the Black top leaders of the party are now fired, the White racial DA will in 2019 already face losses and be diminished to the FF+’s status (into which its White right-wing fits very well with their extreme racial ideology).
The immense presence of doubt on the so-called “expert leadership” of Whites in the DA’s top echelons and with good reason the growing rejection of persons (who Malema called the pensioner-politicians) such as Helen Zille, who totally overstayed her welcome in formal DA politics, and her present actions of enormous damage to the DA and to Maimane, is confirmed by her growing anti-DA writings and recent utterances. Specific in this respect were her recent admissions of her seemingly “own fault” as the previous DA leader to “blacken” the DA. Even the DA’s top brass intended to crash her “political profile” to get rid of its White image before the May election (which she named “vernietige Zille-stategie). Zille66, on the 26th May 2019 in the Rapport on these “facts and others”, reflecting back to her so-called ousting in 2017 about her “colonialism-tweets”, writes as follows66:7:
Diegene verantwoordelik vir die DA se verkiesingstrategie (ironies genoeg, die meeste van hulle wit) het tot die gevolgtrekking gekom dat as hulle my in die openbaar sou verpletter, die DA uitendelik sy beeld as ‘n “wit party” sou verloor. Dit is nie ‘n samesweringsteorie nie. Ek het ‘n dokument wat na die party se federale uitvoerende raad gestuur is, wat dit verduidelik.
Ek is tydelik geskors, en toe dit nog nie werk nie, het hulle my prober aanmoedig om Suid-Afrika te verlaat. Die DA het selfs ‘n skenker gevind om hul strategie te financier. As ek verdwyn, so het hul gereken, sal die party uiteindelik as “getransformeer” beskou word.Toe ek beleef weier om as premier van die Wes-Kaap te bedank en die land te verlaat, is ek verbied uit alle party-aktiwiteite.
With regard to the above – which sounds like pages from the chronicles of the FBI and the KGB! – the DA top brass offers some contradictory facts, such as that they never offered her a job overseas, but that the job offer was made independently by two British universities, and that she was indeed asked to leave the premiership due to the damage done by her view on colonialism and race (as she is doing again). To make her an eminent exile to St Helena, similar to Napoleon, seems to be in her dreams. What is clear is that Zille has her own agenda to do the DA as much harm as possible. She has become her own destroyer in the DA’s politics, as well as the county’s politics. Thankfully for her there is a place and sympathy for a pensioned joker in politics, even world-wide.54
For Maimane the above, namely the possible presence still today of a small but strong empowered group of right-wing mischief-makers in the DA who not only can oust him, but can also send him overseas in the near future or to St Helena! Be aware!
What is clear, Maimane and also the DA’s other leaders learned well from the recent elections, is that a party cannot be unlimited everything for everyone: you can be a party for everyone, but one based on clear moral principles, free from racism and free from the sheltering of politically contaminated opportunists whose foundations rest in pre-1994 racial and self-centred South Africa. A centre party or a social democratic party requires clear borders to the left as well as to the right, far away from the vague bordering on political policy of the present DA. Furthermore, there are signs of stagnation in the DA, as its election results in the May elections reflect. This is due, again as abovementioned, to a certain extent because of the DA’s circling around its middle ground position in politics wherein its’ fine, clear value proposition to voters, after their years of exposure to the ANC’s rude politics, did not always come through correctly or was appreciated.32,45,67
To be a winner in the post-2019 politics, the DA’s ideal composition of members must be proportionally 10 Blacks to 1 White. This ideal is also appropriate for its leadership. In its Constitution the Freedom Charter must be central.
220.127.116.11.9. Pastor Mmusi Maimane: a perspective
18.104.22.168.9.1. The “Poor” leader
There are some very strong critics of the leadership of Mmusi Maimane of the DA. Pivotal here is the allegation of his lack of a so-called “Zille-driving motivation-politics”. Many see him as another failed so-called “Tony Leon with his fight-back-strategy”, without bringing constructive politics to the table, other than constantly showing up Jacob Zuma’s and Cyril Ramaphosa’s failures and their empty promises.36
Descriptions of Maimane as a kind of sub-standard leader, a directionless leader, a powerless leader, a poor leader, etc., became prominent references since 2018 by some journalistic sectors. Included in this “Maimane-bashing”, frequently ignoring the modus operandi of Maimane and the present 2019 politics of the DA, is it important to note that the DA underwent a dramatic metamorphosis since 2014, writes Tabane.77 Maimane undoubtedly inherited a sometimes confused party, one leg in Black politics as well as one leg in White politics. It is still undergoing change today. It is a process wherein White empowerment was shifted to Black empowerment to a certain, but limited, extent. This was a shift that angered many of the White-NP-remnants in the DA, who has moved over to it when the NP passed away. This ongoing change in the DA’s identity brought the much needed activation into its foundation (as well as conflict) of more Black rights. Prominent here was also the erosion of exclusive White capitalism and the activation of inclusive capital, the fighting in some ways of Black inequality, poverty and landlessness of the mass of Blacks, the effort to phase out White supremacy in the party’s structure and policy, etc. This has so far not really been successfully done in terms of a clear one-White-citizen versus one-Black-citizen plan. This outcome is not a result of Maimane’s failure, but of White DA obstructionists and underminers trying to torpedo the party’s unity, potential and growth, and to make Maimane the scapegoat for everything that is wrong in the DA.12,22,36
Maimane, to make the DA a viable and sustainable party, undoubtedly tried in the past and is trying presently to challenge the upholding of White privilege and empowerment inside the DA’s structure, although not always openly and with the aggression so characteristic of persons such as Julius Malema, Ace Magashule and Jacob Zuma. He is starting to eye the shortcomings of the 1994 Dispensation, which was forced down on all Black South Africans. This intention is aimed at resettling the stagnant situation of the DA, coming from 1994. This gradual, but dramatic activation, Maimane handled and is still handling with grace. But it seems that there is not only outside the DA, but also inside the DA much dislike for his so-called “mild” approach to politics. Inside the DA both its left wing (Blacks) and its right wing (Whites) reflect hostility: the Blacks feel that his efforts to reform the DA are political diminutives while the Whites see his reforms as a threat to their “citizens’ rights” and this is in line with the so-called “discrimination” they have experienced since 1994 under the ANC. This “confused and projected anger” by the DA’s opposing groups seemingly activated their decision not to vote for the DA in the May 2019 election (470 396), but instead voted either for the FF+ (mostly Whites) and the ANC (mostly Blacks).12,24
The fact that the DA was doing to a certain extent better on the provincial level than on the national level has nothing to do with the leadership of Maimane, as some journalists tried to reflect. In declaring this tendency they must first look at the intention of the DA to go firstly for the provincial and municipality levels, before they aim for the national level. The differentiation in votes on national and provincial levels — wherein the DA did less well on the national level than on the provincial level and where the poor national outcome is blamed on Maimane as leader, is far fetched. The truth lies in the fact that two different kind of leaders were standing for the DA and two different political setups present for the DA in the recent elections. Kotze24 puts this misleading by mischief of political commentators to “label” Maimane a poor leader in terms of the post 2019 elections results in perspective when he writes24:11: “DA supporters might have voted for the party at provincial level and for someone else at national level.”
What most of the critics of Maimane ignore in their constant attacks on his “poor” leadership, is their own faulty mindsets, which became contaminated by the ANC top brass’ character and leadership and what is meant by a “poor” and “good” leader. Prominent here is some of the ANC leaders’ alleged involvement with stealing, bribery, corruption, state capture, mismanagement, nepotism, crookery, self-enrichment, hostile and aggressive behaviour against anyone opposing their actions and murder, etc., which have it seems become “accepted” and “correct” characteristics of the present-day leadership politics (the so-called “good” leaders) of South Africa. These are delinquent leaders, many of which would be locked up in other so-called “democracies” and indeed would end their lives before a firing squad in China or North Korea if they committed the same crimes there. The intense moral and political degeneration of the executive leadership of South Africa since 1994 wherein the “bad” instead of the “good” became the criteria, is confirmed by the election as parliamentarians and top brass leaders of the ANC with serious allegations against them to the sixth Parliament. Maimane, in this environment, stands out for his integrity, but at the same time, his extraordinary difference makes him a clear target for vicious attacks.24
22.214.171.124.9.2. The who is who of Mmusi Maimane
Maimane comes from a totally different culture of moral cleanliness, leaving the impression indeed of Maimane as the reluctant politician in the present South African politics. This may be true to a certain extent, but this contaminated political setup undoubtedly also already caused other would-be-politicians of his moral quality and character to shy away, unwilling to get involved in such a political mess which seems incurable. But Pastor Maimane undoubtedly sees a call to provide an example of better quality than the political leadership examples of the ANC which the country’s citizens have been forced to endure since 1994. Undoubtedly, South Africans need him, as they needed the late Sir De Villiers Graaff as leader of the opposition to counter the political evils and actions of the leaders of the NP and the AB from 1948 to 1994. Maimane’s political maturity, vision, leadership, focused strategy and balanced planning for the country’s future, are not only found in his good upbringing and cultural lifestyle, his career as a reverend and years on the pulpit, but are also evident in his advanced studies and training in theology and psychology (he holds masters degrees in both disciplines). Furthermore, his mindset is free from the murderous contamination of the revolutionary setup and the disorder of grabbing and plundering which seems to have become a permanent fixture in many of the ANC’s top brass, especially those coming from pre-1994.12,24
Maimane’s leadership is undoubtedly not characterised by the so-called weakness and shortcomings, as Jason Lloyd24 has tried to reflect in his undermentioned writing on Maimane before the May 2019 election. It seems as though Lloyd has a limited understanding of quality executive leadership (outside that of the EFF and the BLF). He wrote in February 2019 without fact as follows24:35: “The Democratic Alliance (DA) has had a very incompetent and weak leader in Mmusi Maimane.”
In this context Lloyd continues24:35:
The DA is currently rudderless and without any useable ideas or policy to provide answers to the complex post-apartheid political, social and economic challenges.
The latest Ipsos opinion survey indicates that the DA will receive only 14% of votes in the upcoming elections – compared with 22.23% in 2014 – which is possible proof of Maimane’s inadequate leadership.
Maimane has also failed to command authority and respect from mainstream black political parties such as the ANC and the EFF. Worse, he has failed to maintain authority in the DA itself. Against this background, it is probably not difficult or unfair to conclude that this must be at least partly because Maimane is black.
It is very important to look in depth at Lloyd’s myth writing. When studying Lloyds’s article24:35: “The rise and fall of Mmusi Maimane,” it seems to be saturated with political subjectivity wherein White supremacy seems to have a strong founding and driving force. On what the characteristics are of the ideal executive political leader (here seemingly a Black one), there is a total lack of description to use to make comparisons. The only leadership guideline offered by Lloyd seems to be an indirect comparison of Maimane with Ramaphosa and Zuma, who both failed the test of the ideal executive political leader. To contradict Lloyd’s postulation that the DA would only receive 14% of the votes in the May election due to Maimane’s presence as leader, the DA received 20% with Maimane as leader! On the indirect assumtion that Ramaphosa as number one would save the ANC and would bring it a 70% vote outcome in the election, only an ANC outcome of 57.7% arrived! (This outcome that was far worse than that under Jacob Zuma in 2014!) To hint that the DA lost 2% or 470 396 votes in the election under Maimane, he missed that the ANC under their “wonder boy” and messianic leader Ramaphosa, shed three times more votes, namely 1 410 446 votes! So from whence did Lloyd’s condemning classification of Maimane as a poor leader come?1-8,21,56-62
With regard to the reference to the “command of the ANC’s leadership” by Lloyd24 — undoubtedly a hint by Lloyd24 of the presence of a “respected ANC leadership from 1994 to 2019”– which disrespects Maimane, is it important in the first place to point out that such a characteristic of goodness, activating respect to the outside world by the ANC top brass, was absolutely absent from 1994 to 2019. (Forget that he further speaks of a “respected” EFF leadership, as a comparison with that of Maimane. Such respect has not for one day been present in the EFF since its foundation, as was well reflected by the only 10% of voters who supported the EFF at the ballot box). With reference to the so-called absence of “ideas” of Maimane (and the DA) versus the assumed ideas of the ANC and the EFF on ruling, these ideas of the ANC are saturated in political opportunism, anarchy and revolution, while the present-day ideas of the ANC were already present in its terrorist days. Thus: when Lloyd remarked on a lack of credible leaders in the DA, the question is: who is credible in the ANC or the EFF? What are his criteria of credibility? Since 1994 the ruling party’s leaders had only one, including the credibility of Nelson Mandela, as a credible leader, and that was Motlanthe. Ramaphosa is now trying his best, but it seems that since 2017 that success is missing out on him. Where did the chaos in the ANC as a ruler start?: In 1994 with Mandela and the introduction of corruption by a sector of the ANC top brass that forced the late Nelson Mandela to pinpoint it when he was president. Just listen to the witnesses at the Zondo- and Mpati- (and the other) commissions now underway, to see that there are very few of the ANC top brass that are “clean” and who’s respect Maimane longs for. The complex post-1994 political, social and economic problems were created and are today still further created exclusively by the ANC elite, not the DA or Maimane. To measure or compare Maimane’s leadership in terms of the ANC’s or EFF’s sick leaderships is extreme foolishness.16,17,20,24,70,71
The accusation that Maimane “is not respected by the black parties such as the ANC and the EFF” is incorrect or better yet, it is political confusion as to what respect, leadership and politics, per se mean. Firstly, neither the ANC’s or the EFF’s leadership are a criteria of status for Maimane against which to evaluate his leadership, or for the public to evaluate Maimane. Maimane, in absolute contrast to many of the ANC top brass, is free from extra-marital affairs, stealing, state capture, murder or terrorism, etc. The article by Lloyd24 is, as is much of the critique against him, seemingly intended and designed to personally take on Maimane, specifically before the May election. Studying it critically, it seems to be driven and orchestrated by the intention of character assasination, instead of an honest personal and leadership evaluation. Undoubtedly before the election there was a well orchestrated intention to curb the power of Maimane and the DA, for fear of their positive impact on the then upcoming election by way of demoralising possible DA supporters. These kinds of “attacks” are well reflected before the election by the execution of reports such as “Cyril’s appeal prompts DA to lower its poll ambitions”, “ DA poll a setback to coalition ambitions”, “The rise and fall of Mmusi Maimane”, and “Cyril more popular than ANC – poll”. Another political cliché in the Afrikaanspress reads: “Mmusi Maimane is nie juis baie gewild onder DA-lede in Gauteng nie. Tog pryk sy foto op die meeste DA-straatplakkate in die provinsie.” Another one reads “’n netto syfer van [net] 19% [IRR-poll] van DA -lede het boonop aangedui Maimane kom die mas op as opposieleier.” 16,1720,24,69-71,73-75
It seems as though the intention of some of these critical anti-Maimane journalists (especially Whites), with specific advice that Whites must vote for the ANC and Ramaphosa instead of the DA and Maimane, is centred in White self-interest. Some of them are seemingly deeply politically confused (and highly frightened) by their own position in post-2019 South Africa. 16,17,20,24,69-71,73-74
With the criticism of Maimane as leader of the DA, it is clear that most of the fight is specifically because Maimane is Black and that the DA’s continuation must be stopped at all costs. The White Zilles and White Leons must come back to be the boss of the DA. These White supremacists seem to believe that there are still going to be 5 million Whites (more: even 30 million!!) living in South Africa in a century’s time and thus that Whites still have “to be catered for as extraordinary” at present (together with their White capital and traditional rights to drive and steer the DA) at their will. The reality is that the Whites, by their lack of breeding and natural dying out, will be between 10 000 and 30 000 left in a century’s time. Maimane knows this well and is in the process not only of bringing the mass of poor and landless Blacks a better life, but also to assure the Whites a part in the country’s future by his transformation of the ultra-White politics inside the DA to equality politics.16,17,20,24,69-71,73-76
It is true that in the South African voting context the personality of the leader counts sometimes more than his party’s policy and popularity. The intention with the “popular giant Ramaphosa” was to take the “dying” ANC in the election away from the brink of death. But Ramaphosa’s magic did not work, as evidenced by the ANC’s 57.7% in the May election. It must be remembered that Nelson Mandela, far more popular even than the so-called popularity of Ramaphosa, and his ANC party of 1994 could not get beyond 63% of the votes. Ramaphosa failed to make it higher than 57.7%. It is important to note that Ramaphosa’s popularity declined in three month’s time from 73% to only 58% in April 2019, losing 15% in weight. This 58% popularity of Ramaphosa seems to be in line with the 57.7% of votes which the ANC received in the election, making the Ramaphosa factor as an exclusive “election-power” basically zero. It also confirms and emphasises Motlanthe’s view that Ramaphosa is not a political or messianic leader, nor that he can improve an ailing ANC. The blind hero-position constantly awarded to Ramaphosa above Maimane in most of the anti-Maimane rhetoric, as well as the comparison of bad (Maimane) versus good (Ramaphosa), with the view that Ramaphosa is the messianic leader of South Africa, is the evidence that firstly, Ramaphosa is not such a gifted messianic leader, and secondly that his name will be remembered as outstanding in the South African political history. Maimane’s chances are excellent to become a formidable leader in the near future. The phrase: “In South Africa’s voting setup the personality of the leader counts sometimes more than his party’s policy and popularity”, can await Maimane in post-2019.70,77
To describe Maimane as24:35: “…inexperienced in politics, a reluctant political participant who has never really had a well-seasoned political strategy and vision, operating (like most clergymen) from a theological reference frame that has little or no space for other social influences” against the “credible modern technocrat Ramaphosa who is getting rid of the Zuma baggage and building a new ANC”, is nonsense. It reflects not only political “short-sightedness”, but the inability to read future politics. For a political commentator, this is a serious defect in his or her political dynamics. 24,76
In line with the above clichés or allegations of “poor leadership” around Maimane, is it not a surprise when RW Johnson12 also rates him low. But what is a surprise, is his personal attack, perhaps not so extreme as the one reflected by Lloyd. But what needs to be reported, is the religious foundation of the attack. It needs to be reflected, specifically because it can border on the introduction of religious intolerance in South Africa.12,24 Johnston writes12:4-5: “Die feit dat die 38-jarige Maimane jonk en onervare is, ‘n voormalige ANC-ondersteuner wat steeds in ANC-terme dink en ‘n prediker in ‘n fundamentalistiese kerk wat evolusie verwerp, het ook nie gehelp onder die DA se tradisionele liberale Engelse basis nie.” What on earth Maimane’s Christian religious preferences and church-affiliation in a Christian society, as well as a secular state, have to do which his leadership, without reflecting on it with the seeming intention of mischief, is totally unclear. Also the unasked “English contamination” in Maimane’s leadership is neither fish nor flesh. It seems to reflect back to Johnston’s long stay in Britain and the internalising of unfit cognition there which he now applies here. It only brings us back to one clear fact and that is how intensely the “Christian Black” Maimane is under attack, because he accepted the leadership of the till now exclusively pro-White DA.12,24
126.96.36.199.9.3. The good “Graaff characteristics” of Maimane
Maimane has the “Graaff characteristics” to pull the DA and the social democrats into the government of the day. Not so much immediately post-May 2019, but before the 2021 local elections. Maimane, similar to Sir de Villiers Graaff, is also one of the few top politician-gentlemen ever to sit in Parliament. Moreover, other than Graaff who could not bring down the despotic NP in his life, Maimane and his political grouping can be successful in bringing down the ANC.24,78-82
To bring the (poor) leadership of Maimane in line with the DA’s (poor) performance in the past election, as done by many political analysts in the postmortem of the May elections, is absolutely unscientific and nothing but mischief-making speculation. The chair of the DA’s Fedex, Athol Trollip, explains that the reason that the ANC won the election over the DA with 57.5% versus 20%, is the fact that the South Africans will vote ANC come hell or high water. It is seated in the revolutionary background of the ANC. The DA is still a White party for them, hostile to Black interests. The fault is not with the DA, requiring them to soul-search with regard to their performance under Maimane and their future in post-2019 politics, but with these South Africans who support the ANC and who blindly vote for such a corrupt bunch and who are prepared to accept mediocrity and maladministration over and over. Closely aligned herewith is the outdated Apartheid ticket which is still used by the hypocratic ANC who swims together with radicals such as the EFF in a tide of racial nationalism and populism. With regard to the critique that the DA under Maimane did not made inroads for instance in the Eastern Cape with only a 15% voter outcome, it is clear that none of the other parties made an inroad there either. Indeed, the DA increased its votes in Soweto from 5% to 13%. The DA under Maimane is still the second largest party, twice the size of the EFF.28,83
On the foolish efforts and suggestions of the removal of Maimane, various political commentators and analysts, such as Sefara86, Nyuatsamba32, Beukman3,84 and Essop85 are much more direct when guiding us than most political commentators, who are used to sit on two chairs. Their statements are uniform: he must stay on.3,84-86
Firstly, Sefara86 reflects on the loss in votes for the DA in the recent election, by showing that, as many other commentators have already indicated, it was to a great extent indeed a direct outcome after Mainane started to draw the line on greater Black empowerment in the DA that some right-wingers fled to the FF+. There is indeed an incomplete spelling out of strong affirmative action and the land ownership matter in the DA. But Maimane’s activation of a clear policy on land ownership and speaking out as a Black on the DA’s critical affairs was limited by the right-wing in the DA. Their internal mischief in the DA’s racial politics led to the flow of right-wing Whites to the FF+ (±150 000 votes) and not Maimane’s inability as leader. The public missed that the right-wingers assured that Maimane was not fully in charge of the DA’s leadership and the party’s politics, to be able to take much needed significant and sometimes dramatic decisions on Black interests. This was an identity crisis which the DA, as well as Maimane, innocently as the new appointed head, ran into before the May election, costing the DA both Black and White voters.
Secondly, pinpointing this present crisis wherein the DA is still functioning two months after the election, Sefara writes86:26: “And therein lies the DA’s existential question: will the removal of Maimane and his replacement by a white leader help the DA grow beyond 22% in the next polls? Is the loss of conservative white voters to the FF+ a necessary catharsis for the DA to start positioning itself as a genuine alternative – not a party of right-wingers with a black leader at the top?
Sefara86 and Beukman3,84 are fully correct in their opinion that to remove Maimane, without firstly addressing the DA’s policy incoherence, will hurt the DA and can spell its end. It will be a statement of impatience with its first Black leader, as well as the reflection of an unchangeable White party and a party which lacks internal dynamics, either as an opposition or as a ruler, to be able to constructively change South Africa. Maimane, for Sefara86 as for Beukman3,84 and Essop85, must be retained as the party’s top leader with the full power to reposition the party further and where necessary, dramatically. He must be allowed to unrestrictedly sell his vision to the broad public.3,84-86
On Maimane in future politics, Beukman3,84 contends that he is not long in the post and was forced to address the immense growing pains of the last five years. He is not a light-weight and learned a lot and is clearly focused not only on making the DA a better party, but also contributing to a better post-2019 South Africa. Beukman concludes84:11: “Baie meer ervare leiers wêreldwyd het al slegter as hy daarvan afgekom.”
Thombothi87 puts his finger possibly best on Pastor Mmusi Maimane’s leadership dilemma in South African society, where since 1994, bad became gradually intertwined with good to overwhelm it fully in the end, making bad ultimately good. Secondly, bad became the norm. The phasing out of the traditional bi-polar division of good versus bad lead to the evaluation of all behaviour in terms of the grading of bad, worse and worst, with bad the most reflected and acceptable behaviour. On Maimane’s leadership dilemma, he was caught up in this normalised bad culture of the South African politics wherein corruption, theft, murder and specifically land expropriation without compensation, are central and have became the rule of the day. Thombothi writes87:11: “Maybe Mmusi Maimane, in his opposition to expropriation, was judged not to have been sufficiently gung-ho. But Maimane is a pastor. He can’t preach compassion on Sunday and hatred every other day. He also doesn’t seem to have a nasty bone in his body, which appears to be a prerequisite in politics these days. Slaan terug would not sit well in his studio.”
But, it must be emphasised, this dilemma is not unique to Maimane as leader of the DA. It is also part of the dilemma of the DA as a centrist party, which cannot reflect hatred to one of its factions while at the same time bathing another faction in compassion. Not the best and most god-begging prayer can really help Maimane or his DA in this dilemma. Thankfully we have still the Solomon wisdom approach to cognitively handle our immediate crises in the New Dawn South Africa, until goodness is reborn somewhere in the future.
188.8.131.52.10. Louw Appraisal Checklist to Assess the Leadership Qualities of South Africa’s Executive Political Leaders and Regimes: 1652 to 2018
The count awarded to the DA and its leadership in terms of the bad-versus-good-classification on the Louw Appraisal Checklist to Assess the Leadership Qualities of South Africa’s Executive Political Leaders and Regimes: 1652 to 2018, is 59 (72%) out of a possible maximum of 82. 3,79
Our initial decision to allow the application of the DA onto the list to be considered as a possible candidate to be able to rule South Africa after the 8th May 2019 was correct and appropriate. Its application qualifies to be allowed onto the shortlist of candidates.
Looking in retrospect at the DA’s political history, it is clear that millions of South Africans have seen their communities improved under the DA’s good governance. They have also watched the DA take up the fight in Parliament and hold the ANC government to account for every community which has had their rights denied by the ANC government. The people have appreciated the DA’s fight for justice.
The DA and its leaders’ overall evaluation shows that they are still short of 23 (28%) points out of a possible 82 to be the ideal candidate for appointment as the capable ruler to execute land redistribution. Although their CV shows that their qualifications are excellent and comprehensively obtained from top accredited institutions, and their attestations show that they are trustworthy, with immense integrity and that their leader, Mmusi Maimane, has the character and overall potential to run as president of the land, are there shortcomings in their experience due to their youth in politics. Important here is their lack of experience on land reform – and specifically on land expropriation without compensation. Where the issue of the land matter emerges in the DA’s politics, it seems to be determined and driven by White interests, rather than the interests of the poor and landless Blacks. There seems here to be strong signs of a White-stan mentality, very much like the dreadful Bantustans which were run from the Cape Parliament by the National Party and its Afrikaner nationalists.21,57-62,79-91
The critics’ mention of the country having been poorly served on the land ownership matter by the DA and that the party over the past two to three years has frequently stumbled is true. This allowed the ANC a free pass again in the May elections to without obstruction redeliver its past mischief up to 2024. The critics’ view is that the DA’s inclination to oppose the government by any means in some instances stopped progress in the country. The issue of land expropriation, with or without compensation, is an inappropriate fight by the DA. The failure by the DA to write a mandate to serve the citizens of South Africa on just and balanced land ownership within a democratic plan for instance with the ANC as a partner, has lead to the present conflict around land ownership and the possibility of immediate land expropriation that can spell land grabbing and revolution.
The DA must take some advice and criticism to heart: South Africans are looking for a change in a social, economic and political direction, not just public relations branding or window-dressing. In this hopefully new direction, the DA must not mind about its right flank streaming to the confused FF+, which since 1994 has been travelling in circles in the desert, or that its left flank is running to a temporary revitalized ANC, which is trying hard to climb back from its deathbed. There are enough good people at the centre — people who can go nowhere else and who do not want to go anywhere else — to change and to build up the DA.
It is time for the DA to accept that the landownership matter has been exaggerated for a long time by the ±35 000 White farmers (of which only between 5 000 and 7 000 really contribute to the country’s essential daily food supply). The opportunistic group of the rest of the ±30 000 White farmers, with their self-appointed White rescuers and saviours, represent less than 0.1% of the total South African population and less than 1% of the White population. If the mesmerised White sympathisers with the White rescuers and saviours movement are taken into account, the number is far lower than 300 000 of the White population of 5 million, representing at most 6%. It is time for the DA to purify itself from this 300 000 White individuals’ contamination. They must be repositioned to where they belong: outside the DA. The other nearly 5-million Whites also have citizen-interests but are sidelined and ignored outside the 35 000 White farmers’ priority-interests. This priority granted to 35 000 White farmers and there land led also to the ignoring of the interests of nearly 30-million poor and landless Blacks in the post-1994 Democracy. It just can go on this way.4-8
Although the DA was allowed onto the shortlist of candidates, it needs still 28% (a lack of nearly 30%) to reach the maximum points of 100% for the final evaluation of the next national election in 2024. It is up to the DA to improve its experience and know-how, and to reposition its attestations to reach the 100% mark. A clear policy on land redistribution must be formulated. The ability to effect land redistribution with justice and balance needs to be improved by the DA.
In this context the DA must take note of three important facts. First the words of Mthombothi’s8 when he said many South Africans are not particularly impressed or satisfied with the present political parties and that they, after 25 years of democracy, are still scouring the wilderness for a political home with which they’re comfortable. The second is the fact that 18.2-million potential voters (51% of the total voters’ population) stayed away from the ballot box in the 8th May 2019 elections.4-8 They are waiting and hungry to support and to vote for the correct party. The third, enclosing to the second fact, is that most South Africans are looking sincere for that extraordinary party of goodness, as Mthombothi said8:19: “regardless of race, want the same thing – a peaceful, secure and prosperous future for themselves and their families. They’ll support a party with a unifying message that will make a genuine stab at it. Time may have come for a new party that will inspire fresh hope in a disillusioned electorate.” Why can this party not be the reformed DA?
Maimane can be just too optimistic about the future soul of the DA when he said92:4: “We must occupy the centre. We cannot pursue the left or the right. This election has confirmed more than ever that the centre is where we need to be. We just need to be clearer about who we are and what we are about.” But to be the future ruler it goes far beyond the centre of politics in present-day South Africa. It requires an understanding of existential politics to can make sense of centric politics. It goes thus far beyond left or right politics versus central politics. It is about the life-long permanent fused-in of Black and White conflict-politics, like the issue of land-grabbing and -terrorism coming from 1671. It means far more than just the practice of adapt or die politics to can survive for a party. It can mean the “killing” of a nation’s personality.
In its present form the DA does not exhibit the ability to be able immediately to affect successfully land reform on its own. It has the potential to do it with an experienced and seasoned political partner, within an orderly framework. Otherwise it must change itself immediately to a basically new party; one that can, as a dynamic party, brings at last the peace, security and prosperity for what South Africans are longing for so much
The journey to the 2024 elections for the DA may be easy, but it can also never be reached without an immediate and dramatic turnaround in its politics. Time will tell.
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Not commissioned; External peer-reviewed.
CONFLICT OF INTEREST
The author declares that he has no competing interest.
The research was funded by the Focus Area Social Transformation, Faculty of Humanities, Potchefstroom Campus, North-West University, South Africa.
UNSUITABLE TERMS AND INAPPROPRIATE WORDS
Please note that I, the author, am aware that the words Creole, Bantu, Kaffir, Native, Hottentots and Bushman are no longer suitable terms and are inappropriate (even criminal) for use in general speech and writing in South Africa. (Even the words non-White and White are becoming controversial in the South African context). The terms do appear in dated documents and are used or translated as such in this article for the sake of historical accuracy. Their use is unavoidable within this context. It is important to retain their use in this article to reflect the racist thought, speech and writings of as recently as sixty years ago. These names form part of a collection of degrading names commonly used in historical writings during the heyday of apartheid and the British imperial time. In reflecting on the leaders and regimes of the past, it is important to foreground the racism, dehumanisation and distancing involved by showing the language used to suppress and oppress. It also helps us to place leaders and their sentiments on a continuum of racism. These negative names do not represent my views and I distance myself from the use of such language for speaking and writing. In my other research on the South African populations and political history, I use Blacks, Whites, Xhosa, Zulu, Afrikaners, Coloureds, KhoiSan or Khois (Bushmen), KhoiKhoi (Hottentots) and Boers as applicable historically descriptive names.