Lindiwe Mazibuko eyes SA presidency in 2024

2014-01-22 08:51

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DA parliamentary leader Lindiwe Mazibuko hopes to be South Africa’s president in 10 years’ time.

Mazibuko, speaking last night at the Johannesburg launch of Owning the Future, an unauthorised biography about her by journalist Donwald Pressly, said she wanted to work for her party first and would be 39 in 2019 (the year the DA estimates the ANC will start losing large amounts of support).

But she reckoned she would be old enough to take up the presidency in 2024 – when the DA hopes to take over government from the ANC.

Mazibuko also admitted to having a “volatile” relationship with party leader Helen Zille. “We have a very volatile relationship. I argue with her constantly.”

But she added anything else would be unhealthy.

“I challenge a lot of things she says the party must do and she challenges a lot of things I say it must do. It is a very healthy relationship,” she said.

Mazibuko said the ANC under former president Thabo Mbeki was not allowed to challenge him – this had created an unhealthy situation.

She said she understood why Zille had wanted a black leader for the party, but thinks “Helen underestimates her value to the party”. She said Zille was the party’s biggest asset and should not be talking of stepping down yet.

Mazibuko said the insults flung at her in Parliament by the ANC do “hurt, offend and rankle” her, but she said she knows insults are a feature of international politics.

She said demeaning remarks are made against female politicians the world over.

“Macho culture exists in politics internationally and it needs to be dealt with,” Mazibuko said.

The remarks about her accent and her appearance “say more about the ANC than it does about me or the DA”. Pressly said Mazibuko had risen above the insults. He described her as “a rising star” and said this was the reason he wrote the “early biography” about her. He said to laughter that he had wanted to title the book Not the Tea Girl but the publishers had advised against it.

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