Big battle for the centre

2014-03-09 10:00

This week we report that the governing ANC is in a panic as early polls show that its support in Gauteng is in free fall.

The party does not need polls. President Jacob Zuma has been booed twice in three months in Soweto and when he does appear in the province, it is in carefully choreographed ways.

The president is not popular in a province of the opinionated?–?corruption gets short shrift here and the scandal about the spending on the sprawling presidential estate of Nkandla has harmed the ANC.

The ANC’s fortunes have not been helped by the e-tolling system either. Gauteng is a driver’s province as can be seen from the regular traffic gridlocks.

But while the surveys have alarmed the Gauteng ANC, they are a cause for excitement and help to create a fresh energy to compete rather than a reason for despair and panic.

For the first time, the heartland province will have a genuine competition for its votes?–?there will be increased contestation among the political parties contesting this year’s elections, including the ANC. This is good for democracy.

The polls show that the party could receive less than 50% of the vote, resulting in it either losing the province or being forced into an uncomfortable coalition with one or more of the opposition parties.

The ANC does not want to lose the heartland that is the economic engine of the country. Gauteng, with the highest concentration of the country’s black middle class and its richest citizens, has proved a headache for the governing party in the past few years.

Figures show a substantial number of Gautengers will not vote at all. We hope they don’t do that?–?exercising our vote is precious.

It will be a real pity if such a huge chunk of the population decides not to vote. We hope that Gautengers are “mobilised” to go and exercise this hard-earned right.

A vote is a precious commodity that every party should sweat to gain.

Voters should use the vote to reward efficient service delivery and punish poor governance.

Rather than despair and sulk, we hope every South African gets excited about the power they have to decide who stays in power or who replaces them. It’s time to get interested.

Whatever you do and wherever you live, go and exercise your right to vote.

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.