SA Electioneering Diary - 6 May
- Simon Williamson
- 06 May 2011 (South Africa)
The ANC blasts Zille for her “salaries” while the DA laments, again, the lack of a metro police in PE. TimesLIVE investigates ANC-led infrastructure in Soweto and Mail and Guardian interviews Smuts Ngonyama, Cope’s candidate for PE. Oh, and everyone had their say about the Hendrik Verwoerd statue in Midvaal. By SIMON WILLIAMSON.
In the biggest pot-calling-the-kettle-black hating case this election, Gauteng local government MEC for housing, Humphrey Mmemezi has accused the DA-run council in Midvaal of practising apartheid by not providing services to the poor. Mmemezi is the same government official called in to try to quell repeated service delivery protests in Zandpsruit (forming part of the ANC-led City of Joburg) last week.
Read more: EWN
ANC mayoral candidate for Cape Town, Tony Ehrenreich, has accused the leader of the DA, Helen Zille, of drawing two salaries: One as Western Cape Premier and the other as head of the DA, saying “she has not cut her own salaries as Premier of a R 1.000,000 and the R 1.500,000 she gets from the DA.” Ehrenreich called this morally corrupt, reprehensible and indefensible. Priya Reddy, spokesman for Zille, dismissed the claims and said “She receives a small stipend from the DA, nowhere near the amount Cosatu suggests. Her salary as Premier is determined by the Deputy Chief Justice, and is exactly the same as every other Premier in South Africa. Unlike many of them, she is worth every cent."
Read Ehrenreich’s full statement: Politicsweb
Sipho Masondo, writing for TimesLIVE, spoke to Parks Tau (the as-yet-unnamed ANC mayoral candidate for City of Joburg) about what the ANC had done for infrastructure development in Soweto. Tau spoke about roads and public transport, mentioning the R4 billion bus rapid transit system linking Soweto and the Joburg CBD), the parks which have been built, Orlando Stadium, Arthur Ashe Tennis Centre (which hosts the Soweto Open), and the Maponya and Jabulani malls, which mean Sowetans no longer need to schlep to the CBD to do shopping. Mmusi Maimane, a Sowetan himself and the DA’s mayoral candidate for City of Joburg, responded in the same publication (different article). He acknowledged developments, but criticised the temperamental electricity supply, collapsing infrastructure, congestion and a lack of housing.
The ANC has called on the department of cooperative governance and traditional affairs to investigate claims that the DA-run Stellenbosch municipality is illegally constituted. This technical detail regards an alleged forged signature by a DA councillor in a document setting up a meeting. In this meeting decisions were taken and a DA-led coalition displaced the ANC governing the municipality. Control of the municipality has been contentious since the local government elections of 2006 in which the ANC won 16 seats and the DA won 15. DA provincial leader, Theuns Botha said the matter had been referred back to the DA’s federal council which had yet to make a decision to investigate.
Read more: IOL
ANC party spokesman in Eastern Cape, Mlibo Qoboshiyane, has called on voters to ignore “political upstarts” like Cope and the DA, and claimed the ANC worked “around the clock” for voters in the Nelson Mandela Bay metro. In a statement which we have heard a hundred times since Friday, Qoboshiyane said the DA believed black people deserved open toilets while it builds bicycle lanes. Qoboshiyane also laid into Smuts Ngonyama, Cope mayoral candidate for Nelson Mandela Bay (more on Ngonyama later).
Unlike other municipalities which are boycotting rates and taxes due to lack of service delivery, PE residents are taking errant councillors to court. The NM Ratepayers Association succeeded earlier this year in quashing a decision that the municipality to fund a R10 million voter education programme. Kobus Gerber, speaking on behalf of the organisation, said 22,000 people in the metro are still forced to use the bucket system to go to the toilet, but there is a jazz festival funded by the city to the tune of R9 million. The Ratepayers Association will also be contesting 25.6% and 15% hikes in electricity and water prices respectively. Nelson Mandela Bay is expected to be one of the most hotly contested municipalities in the country.
The ANC’s head of elections, Ngoako Ramathlodi, said the party was making inroads into DA strongholds. After the Makhaza toilets affair, Ramathlodi mentioned the allegations of nepotism against Patricia de Lille and called for her to respond to them (which she did as we reported yesterday) and the Midvaal municipality’s “reluctance” to remove a statue of Hendrik Verwoerd (more on that later).
The ANC has a busy weekend of campaigning ahead of them. Jacob Zuma will be in George today at the Thembalethu sports field at 15:30. Tomorrow, NEC member Nathi Mthetwa will be addressing a rally in Mahikeng, Gwede Mantashe will be doing the same in East London City Hall while Julius Malema will be in Galeshewe outside Kimberley.
Buti Manamela, national secretary of the Young Communists League has agreed with SACP chief Blade Nzimande that the leadership of the DA is “A Madam and Two Eves”. Manamela accused the DA of only having black faces in its campaign to push a white agenda, saying, “all the DA is interested in, is how many black votes can we get so that we can get as many whites as possible to be appointed in[sic] positions?” The statement ended with “That's the Bottomline, cos the YCLSA said so!” which, as far as we know, is a reference to that great communist thinker, Stone Cold Steve Austin, from WWE Wrestling.
Read more: Politicsweb
At 22:00 two nights ago, a bust of Hendrik Verwoerd was removed by the DA-run Midvaal municipality, most probably due to the sheer weight of contrivers surrounding it. Lindiwe Mazibuko, DA national spokeswoman, said the attention placed on the statue by the ANC was “transparently an attempt to shift attention off the issues that really matter in this election: Delivering services to the people of South Africa, especially the poor.”
Read her full statement at Politicsweb
Then everyone else had a say too:
- Timothy Nast, Midvaal mayor referred Sapa queries to Freddie Peters, a DA member and former chairman of the Kultuurraad van Klipriviervallei (the owners of the statue). Peters said the bust had been removed for fear it would be vandalised by ANC members.
- The ANC, through Ngoako Ramathlodi, said, “While we welcome the DA succumbing to pressure to remove the statue of Verwoerd, the ANC remains convinced, because this was not a voluntary action, that the DA is a party committed to reinforcing racial segregation.”
- The Freedom Front Plus went all out on the offensive, lambasting the removal of a statue as confirmation that “the DA is no friend of the Afrikaner”.
- The Christian Democratic Party (who must be eternally grateful that they finally have a platform on which to speak) wondered to what extent the DA would go to win black votes, saying the party had not expressed reservations about farm murders at national level and had no opinion on the Julius Malema hate-speech trial.
- Wilmot James, DA federal chairman, has accused the ANC of falling back on negative campaigning. James claims that not one ANC statement since 28 April has dealt with policy while 70% of the DA’s 37 statements have. Click the link below to see summaries of the statements and the full statement.
Read more: Politicsweb
Six DA-run municipalities have won awards for good governance from departments run by the ANC, says the DA. This is in contrast to comments made Jacob Zuma recently that things have gone backwards where the DA governed.
Read more: Business Day
Helen Zille has again told residents in PE that their crime problem is due to the lack of a metro police force. Speaking in Helenvale yesterday, Zille said, “You don't even have a metro police force in Port Elizabeth. It is one of the reasons that crime is getting worse. One of the first things the DA will do if we win the election here is to establish a metro police force in PE. We don't see why you should be the only city in South Africa without its own police force. The good news is that, for the first time, the DA stands a very good chance of governing Port Elizabeth.” During the speech, Zille was taunted by an ANC member of the Eastern Cape legislature, Christian Martin, who said, “When was the last time you saw a white person in Helenvale? Why on the day of the local government election on May 18 must we be white for one day?”
Read Zille’s speech: Politicsweb
The DA has laid a charge against an ANC councillor candidate, Keith Peacock, over a Facebook post he left under the alias “Councillor Keith”. This, says Gauteng DA leader Jack Bloom, is unethical and against the provisions of the Municipal Electoral Act as Peacock knowingly made a false statement claiming to be a councillor.
In an interview with the Mail and Guardian, Cope mayoral candidate for the Nelson Mandela Bay municipality, Smuts Ngonyama expects Cope and the DA to make a dent in the ANC’s approximate 50% of the vote. Mandy Rossouw, who wrote the article, says that together, the parties could displace the ruling ANC and Ngonyama agrees, “I see Cope as part of a coalition that will rule the metro.” Ngonyama, who was once Thabo Mbeki’s right-hand man, said he defected to Cope from the ANC because, “The ANC is not the same; the values I knew were crumbling.” That’s hard to swallow from a man who famously said “I didn’t join the struggle to be poor”.
Read more: M&G
The IFP’s election campaign is moving down into Western Cape. You can see the party leader Mangosuthu Buthelezi on Monday at the Seven Eleven Hall, Avondale Road, Atlantis and on Tuesday at the Hanover Park Community Centre at 19:00.
The IFP will oppose the IEC’s attempt to stop it filing late candidate lists in Uzumbe, KZN. Last month, the electoral court decreed that the IFP had permission to do so after the IEC had disqualified them. The matter is expected to go to the Constitutional Court.
Party leader Kenneth Meshoe believes his party will do well in the upcoming local elections despite a lack of resources, visibility and having no record of governance as it runs no municipalities. He also didn’t mention how many wards the party would be contesting.
Read more: M&G
The National Freedom Party president Zanele Mgwaza-Msibi, at a well-supported rally in the staunchly IFP region of Wembezi, Estcourt, yesterday said she aims to take over the five wards making up the uThukela District Municipality. In her address, Mgwaza-Msibi denied that her party was made up of “angry people”, saying, “We were forced to provide a political home for like-minded people who did not want to join other existing parties, but who had been flushed out by the IFP”.
Read more: The Mercury
Photo: South African President Jacob Zuma (L) greets supporters as he campaigns in KwaMashu, north of Durban, May 3, 2011. South Africans will vote in municipal elections on May 18, 2011. REUTERS/Rogan Ward.
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