/ 18 April 2013

DA’s Mandela, Suzman pamphlet raises ANC’s ire

Da's Mandela, Suzman Pamphlet Raises Anc's Ire

The ANC's Western Cape leader, Marius Fransman, told the Cape Times that the pamphlet, which was part of the "Know your DA" campaign, was a "cynical and opportunistic exercise in propaganda", the newspaper reported on Thursday.

He said the party should not have used either of the leaders.

"It is debatable whether or not her [Suzman's] role can be claimed as revolutionary. More importantly, of having any bearing on the values of the [Democratic Alliance] as a party today," he said.

Suzman, an anti-apartheid activist who died in 2009, was a member of the Progressive Party which became the Progressive Federal Party and later merged with other parties to become the DA.

On Wednesday the DA released a pamphlet on Twitter showing the pair embracing, with the wording: "We played our part in opposing apartheid".

The DA's communications director Gavin Davis told the newspaper it had every right to use the image and to take ownership of Suzman's role in ending apartheid.

"The values she stood for are defended and promoted by the DA today … Nelson Mandela is a global icon and national hero. He is not the property of any political party."

Another DA pamphlet surfaced on Twitter on Thursday referring to Suzman as a "DA founder".

Gavin Davis, executive director of communications at the DA, on Thursday confirmed the second pamphlet was legitimate.

"Yes, this is the cover of the pamphlet we are distributing as part of our 'Know your DA ' campaign. Helen Suzman was a founder member of the anti-apartheid Progressive Party – a predecessor party of the DA. We continue to defend and promote her values today," he said. – Sapa