ROAD TO 2024 ELECTIONS
ANC’s coalition framework paints a bleak picture for DA and EFF in next year’s polls
While the ANC believes that its two biggest opponents are likely to remain stagnant, it says community-based organisations, independent candidates and new parties are the biggest threats it will face in the 2024 general election.
The ANC’s coalition framework states that it is likely that the rise of new forums within the political space will contribute to the “cannibalising” of existing parties.
The party’s research paints a bleak picture for the DA and the EFF, finding they will not grow beyond their current support.
“New parties and community-based organisations are cannibalising existing parties and are gaining seats in municipalities, provincial legislature and national Parliament and there is increased fragmentation of the party system.
“The advent of independent candidates in the 2024 elections may increase cannibalisation and fragmentation of provincial and national government. Whether these political developments will improve the quality of democracy and development outcomes is still open for debate,” the plan reads.
The framework was first presented by the ANC’s head of political education, David Makhura, at the party’s most recent National Executive Committee (NEC) meeting.
The paper is the first of its kind for the governing party, which has been dealing with coalitions informally over the years. The decision to look into viable coalition models was taken at the ANC’s 55th national conference at Nasrec last year.
The framework states that while it is clear that the ANC is on the decline, it will remain the largest party. The governing party garnered 57.5% of the votes cast at the previous national elections in 2019.
“The EFF is growing dramatically but is now levelling off and reaching a ceiling. The IFP declined drastically between the 2009 and 2014 elections but is now showing signs of resurrection in KwaZulu-Natal, at the expense of the ANC.
“The Freedom Front Plus is showing resilience and growing among Afrikaners, at the expense of the DA. Good and Patriotic Alliance and community-based parties have been gaining ground in the coloured communities across the country at the expense of both the ANC and DA,” according to the framework document.
The party set out a 12-point plan of strategies and observations which explain the rules of engagement for dealing with coalitions:
- Coalitions must be based on a common minimum programme.
- Coalition partners must commit to shared values which include stability, accountability, ethics and integrity.
- The party that has won the most votes should lead the coalition in the municipalities, and executive positions should be allocated in proportion to the votes obtained by coalition partners.
- A threshold should be introduced for representation in councils and executive committees so that there is a degree of legitimacy with regard to what amount of electoral support qualifies a party or candidate to be part of councils and coalition governments.
- The law should be amended to make sure that public administration is insulated from coalition deal-making and bargaining and motions of no confidence.
- Coalitions should be more transparent and accountable to people in their jurisdiction by giving quarterly reports and accounting to citizens on service delivery and milestones.
- Where no party has a clear majority, the executive system should be introduced using Section 12 notices.
- The ANC will prioritise working with parties, community-based organisations, service delivery forums, and independent candidates committed to stability, social justice and ending apartheid colonialism in all forms.
- The ANC will not form a coalition in any municipality for the sake of ganging up against other parties.
- The ANC will not preclude the possibility of working with any party in a coalition so long as it is in the public interest.
- There should be an independent dispute resolution mechanism established to deal with any disputes among coalition partners.
- The formula for allocating PR seats in councils should be amended to reflect the will of the people.
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The third principle has already caused friction in the ranks of the governing party. On Tuesday, the ANC’s Johannesburg caucus refused to toe the party line and vote in Al Jama-ah member Kabelo Gwandanda as executive mayor over its regional chair Dada Morero, leading to the adjournment of the council sitting until Friday.
Al Jama-ah has three seats in Johannesburg while the ANC has 91 councillors. DM