/ 18 February 2014

Soapbox: DA-Agang SA fling proves parties are thirsty for votes

Even in difficult times
Even in difficult times

The collapse of the recently celebrated and much talked about DA-Aganga SA brief political fling lifts the lid of the recent elitist attempt to hoodwink voters into accepting a coalition masquerading as a political partnership, while it was just a political tryst between two friends.

We know now Mamphele Ramphele having her face next to the DA logo in the ballot paper was through the individualistic parachuting by Helen Zille and nothing democratic.

It is clear now that none of the very few members of Agang were consulted about this partnership and yet both Ramphele and Zille punted it as a merger to improve our democracy when in fact both had diametrically opposed ideas about it.

Ramphele though it was a political coalition, while Zille saw it as a merger, with Lindiwe Mazibuko boldly saying it will see the Democratic Alliance swallowing Agang SA the way it did Independent Democrats.

The DA hooked the politically wet behind the ears Ramphele to aid its ailing election campaign.

While trying to clean up her mess, Zille made some remarks about the ANC and our president, Comrade Jacob Zuma.

These clumsy remarks that their political fling with the Agang was an attempt to save our country from being a failed state under the ANC are misinformed lamentations of a jilted political loser the morning after being dumped by her vacillating kissing partner.

It is false that our country is likely to be a failed state under the ANC leadership because since 1994 we started transforming a fractured, divided society. We improved a dull economy, delivered impressive services to our people, and have moved beyond the challenges we experience in governance, created more jobs, delivered more professional graduates through giving bursaries to the youth, delivered more water, sanitation, schools, homes, roads and health care to our people.

South Africa will only become a failed state the day the DA rules this country.

Instead of attacking the ANC, Zille must deal with her failed brief political fling with Ramphele.

Western Cape people under the DA rule continue to experience shoddy and segregated delivery of programmes by Zille.

The DA and Agang SA's fling was induced by Zille's political lust to swallow opposing political parties and to recruit any person just to get power.

These opposition parties have nothing to offer the voters and the only thing they all have in common is to try and discredit the ANC in their bid to win votes.

Their "one night stand" had nothing to offer the electorate and we call on South Africans never to trust opposition parties and their narrow coalitions formed out of anger and political lust for votes.

We trust that this fling and how these parties did not consult members of these organisations before their political tryst proves to the voters that in these parties, decisions are not taken democratically but by a group of elite friends in boardrooms and at tea parties.

Only the ANC has transparent political processes including policy decisions, leadership nomination, and election to positions, which all start from rural, township, farm and urban communities.

Only the ANC is capable of continuing with the transformation of our country.

Under the ANC, South Africa has moved forward tremendously and we have put to the electorate an impressive, realistic, coherent and deliverable manifesto to continue with the work we are doing for our people.

Governing a country is a serious democratic responsibility guided by the constitution and inspired by the commitment to transform the lives of our people and society.

It is not about making deals with political paramours in desperate search for votes not for the good humanity but for personal glory.

The end of this political tryst also proves these parties are led by two incompetent, power-hungry people, who go around hunting votes to gain power at all costs, who have no abilities to transform and develop this country.

Just before Zille and Ramphele locked lips to smooch in the glare of the media, the Agang boss said her decision was inspired by Comrade Nelson Mandela's decision to engage the apartheid government to start negotiations for a democratic country.

On the other hand, a glowing Zille spoke highly of her newly found political paramour, her credentials and capabilities but within no time, she tells South Africans she can't be trusted.

The pair is clearly at sixes and sevens about how they want to contest the upcoming elections with no plan to offer. This is caused by the fact that Zille is looking for a black person to win black votes in the elections, while Ramphele is looking for a comfortable seat in Parliament.

Whatever comes out of this political break-up, few things are certain. The first is that in the DA there is no credible person to stand as a presidential candidate, to a point that Zille had to poach a leader of another party to stand for this position.

Secondly, both organisations have nothing cogent to offer to the electorate – to a point that they think of coming together but again realize they are not suitable for each other.

Thirdly, this was just a political stunt and nothing else because personal interests and lust for political power were pursued here and not advancing our democracy.

Dear reader, just before the 2009 general elections, another political formation akin to this brief political tryst came to the fore selling you something they could not deliver.

Remember Mbazima Shilowa and Terror Lekota, accompanied by their happy clapper, Mluleki George when they left the ANC promising voters heaven and earth?

Shortly after their were elected to Parliament, after you gave them your votes, real reasons for their break-away from the ANC started showing as jostling for positions, counter-accusations of misappropriation of funds, corruption, fraud and legality around conferences became the order of the day.

The question to you, dear reader is, do you really have an appetite for another political formation with no commitment to deliver services that will transform your life but only cares for putting friends into powerful positions, even if it means undermining the same democratic principles they project themselves as defending?

You see, albeit all our challenges, the ANC is the best and only credible organisation that will continue with the work of transforming this country.

The challenges we are experiencing are being dealt with and each of them have a solution through the institutions of democracy created by our Constitution.

This is the only credible party to vote for because it works with all of us.

Even in difficult times, the ANC works with its members and South Africans to find long-lasting solutions to challenges.

We warned South Africans about the dangers of voting for these Johnny-come-lately political parties, thirsty for votes and not committed to develop our country. The recent break-up is further proof to what we warned you about.

Do the right thing. Vote for the ANC and ignore these political upstarts. We have work to do. Let's get on with it.

*Mlibo Qoboshiyane is the ANC Eastern Cape head of elections, PEC and PWC member, and the Eastern Cape's local government and traditional affairs MEC.

In the interest of fairness, Soapbox is a regular feature on the M&G, which allows all political parties, regardless of standing and size, to express their views on policy and governance in the run-up to the 2014 elections on May 7. To have your views published, send an email to [email protected] with 'Soap Box' in the subject line."