OPINION: DA is a prisoner of its own history
DAILY MAVERICK / 27 FEBRUARY 2018 - 11.20 / DAVID KA-NDYALVAND
The electrifying mood that has engulfed the majority of South Africans across the length and breadth of the country, occasioned by the ascension of Matamela Cyril Ramaphosa to power as both the president of the ANC and the country, suggests there is a great amount of faith in the oldest liberation movement on the continent.
Due to the calibre of world renowned leaders produced over the years and utter resilience which brought the atrocious colonial-apartheid regime to its knees, people’s faith in the ANC is not misplaced, as the political chameleons in the Democratic Alliance would want the nation to believe.
David Ka-Ndyalvan is an ANC member at Akaso Branch
During the democratic dispensation the ANC gave to the country a leader with great personality and par excellence such as Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela and Pan Africanist of note and the intellectual Thabo Mvuyelwa Mbeki. Mandela presided over a unified South Africa while Mbeki grew the economy exponentially from the economic ruins of the apartheid regime.
During the leadership puncture ‘s by President Jacob Gedleyihlekisa Zuma’s administration, which saw ANC electoral decline in both national and local government elections from 69.69% in 2004 to 54% in August 2016 respectively, supporters of the ANC either abstained or voted for the opposition in protest.
Simply put, for the past nine years the DA’s growth has been informed by disgruntled supporters of the ANC, whom, at any given time, once its governance and moral lows and ebbs have been addressed, would come back and vote for the transformation policies. Nonetheless, this created false growth and emboldened the DA to believe that they can offer South Africans a better leadership than the ANC. They believe in their hallucination that the ANC is dead.
But it would appear that they have been rudely woken up from their delusion of grandeur by Ramaphosa’s election as president of the ANC and country. He has brought palpable leadership will and a commitment to good governance. He has the legacy of being an astute negotiator and a politician with untainted credibility.
The DA is now plunged into panic, scrambling to hatch a strategy to find a new niche in a desperate attempt to dampen/circumvent the Matamela moment, or “Ramaphoria” as it is widely referred to within DA circles.
They will find it tough. The Matamela moment is upon South Africa and no amount of obfuscation from the DA will steal the moment.
The majority of South Africans are well aware that the ANC is a resilient and transformative organisation with the sole purpose of improving the lives of the majority of the people – blacks in general and Africans in particular, unlike the DA which only exists for the preservation of white minority interests.
If one correctly understands the history of the party, he or she would agree with me that the very same apartheid benefactors and beneficiaries dominate the DA’s Federal Executive Committee, its highest decision-making structure.
Its leader Mmusi Maimane is ceremonial and a strategic mascot by virtue of the colour of his skin to remain attractive to blacks. Other than this cosmetic change, there is no evidence that this party has developed and propagated any pro-poor policy frameworks which by their nature are meant to redress material imbalances of the past and promote equal share of the country's wealth, which is largely in the hands of the white minority (DA).
Other than playing to the peanut gallery and selective reactions to the implementation of the ANC policies, the DA always sees transformation measures as an attack on their livelihoods and are regarded as reverse racism.
Thus, the Values Charter for the party is cemented on premature “Fairness and Opportunity for All” while it is opposed to the ANC’s pro-poor policies such as affirmative action and Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE). The DA’s selective fight for the poor just shows the extent to which their history could hold development hostage in this country under DA-led administration.
This could not be clearer than the DA’s opportunistic and desperate launch of an anti-VAT increase campaign in Soshanguve, Tshwane on 24 February 2018. Its lack of support is abundantly clear on the question of land expropriation without compensation. Or should I say its silence on the land question is conspicuous?
The land question is a serious transformation measure to improve socio-economic conditions of the poor majority, but Maimane and his bosses do not show any appetite for this to happen. Against this backdrop, the DA should not be taken seriously for the development of this country and its claims of fighting for the poor.
It is a conflicted and forked-tongue party because of the contradiction posed by its entrenched roots in the apartheid regime and the transformation demands of the democratic dispensation. It will always be caught between a rock and a hard place.
When the history books are correctly documented, Mmusi Maimane will go down as one of the pawns and house niggas who betrayed the cause of the National Democratic Revolution to please the master.
Disclaimer - The views expressed here are not necessarily those of the BEE CHAMBER