DA’s captured leadership is an obfuscation to a real change in SA
- David Ka-Ndyalvan
- 10 Aug 2017 10:25 (South Africa)
More often than not, the leader of the Democratic Alliance, Mmusi Maimane, touts his political party as the only thing good that has ever occurred in South Africa’s post-colonial apartheid era other than the late Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela.
By virtue of his position as the president of the African National Congress, Tata Mandela became the first democratically elected president of South Africa in April 1994. In pursuance of the ANC vision of a non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and prosperous South Africa within the confines of the ANC principles and values, he became a world renowned iconic figure. This is not new; an astute historian would tell Maimane that Mandela’s predecessors and all members of the congress movement who pursued the course of the National Democratic Revolution (NDR) within the principles and values of the ANC are world renowned heroes and heroines. Our heroes and heroines are countless.
It is therefore not only politically amateurish but smacks of an insult to the forebears and the living ANC stalwarts and veterans for Zille’s anointed to the throne (Mmusi Maimane) to reduce the ANC vision which has now been interpreted and well known as a “Rainbow Nation” to Mandela’s vision. It is no wonder Mama Winnie Madikizela-Mandela unleashed a very strongly worded statement regarding Maimane and the DA’s unabated and pompous exploitation of the ANC’s sacrosanct heritage. In part, Mama Mandela had this to say “… DA’s abuse of the ANC’s revered Struggle history and its highly respected leaders like Nelson Mandela shows an unbelievable insensitivity and disrespect. The late Nelson Mandela never wanted to have his name prostituted. Now, he cannot defend himself to correct the abusive plagiarism of his name. In fact, Nelson Mandela defined DA as a party of white bosses and black stooges.” In conclusion, she referred to the DA as a morally, ethically and intellectual bankrupt party.
Due to his magnanimity, wittingly or unwittingly, people around the world always had a temptation to idolise Mandela away from the ANC, but the altruistic Tata always reminded them he was part of the leadership collective of the ANC. And even during the current trying times facing the movement, the former statesman would not have deserted the ANC and joined the DA. For him, the glorious movement was the only tried and tested instrument to relieve blacks in general and Africans in particular from the ravages of economic servitude such as the long-standing problems of Imizamo Yethu informal settlement dwellers which is as old as Zille’s leadership in the Western Cape as a Mayor of the Cape Metro and the premier respectively.
The problem of land, which is at the centre of the challenges in this area, would have long been sorted if there was any leadership will and the DA had plans to change the material conditions of the previously disadvantaged groups in this country. Year in and year out the residents of Imizamo Yethu are burnt to death due to their poor living conditions. This begs the question, what has Maimane and his party done to bring change to poor living conditions of the blacks in Imizamo Yethu other than his loud mouth to lure black people to vote DA? There is no change that the DA prioritises to improve material conditions for blacks even under the leadership of black stooges, if I were to borrow from the late Tata Mandela.
The self-styled champion of Mandela’s vision and a mimicked version of former US president Barack Obama needs to be reminded, the party he is leading pursues the white interests first while leaving black interests to chance. This reminds me of the May 2011 scandalous decision of Helen Zille, who preferred the services of white males in her cabinet over women in general and blacks in particular.
If one does not believe the DA is devoid of the plans to reverse apartheid injustices of white domination s/he would do well to examine the DA’s representation in the corridors of power of the National Assembly, Western Cape Provincial legislature and the composition of the chairpersons of portfolio committees in metros where the DA is in charge. The frank and honest assessment devoid of baas mentality would depict a very disturbing picture of white domination which is regularly exchanged to blacks during election campaigns. All this two-faced political machination thrives under the leadership of the captured Maimane who is hell-bent on dislodging the ANC from power, the only hope for improvement of black people’s lives.
All this and his lethargy to deal with hardcore racists within his own work environment beg the question, as a self-proclaimed Messiah, which plans does his party have to put the interests of the previously disadvantaged groups first? I know this debate or discussion is taboo in the DA circles but the truth is, there is no other way to reverse the injustices of 350 and 60 years of colonialism and apartheid respectively.
For now the election campaign slogan to “Vote DA for change” is not only empty but smacks of a lullaby for blacks, fellow compatriots. But the majority of South Africans are alive to their tricks, thus the stooge and his bosses are now pushing for regime change through Parliament after their failed motion of no confidence. This is desperation at best and disrespect of the hard-earned democracy at its worst form. This is what it is. DM