Use the right to vote: Zille

2011-03-21 10:33

People should use their right to vote to take a stand against the government’s failure to meet people’s basic rights, Democratic Alliance leader Helen Zille said today.

“If people don’t think that government is delivering these rights, they have a right to vote them out of power,” Zille said in a speech prepared for delivery at the Ga-phaahla Stadium in Siyabuswa, Mpumalanga.

“It does not help to re-elect the same party in May and then join a protest march in August... by then it will be too late.”

Zille said citizens should fight for their right to basic services like healthcare and education, as Sharpeville residents did during apartheid 51 years ago. Sixty-nine people were killed on March 21, 1960, when police opened fire on protesters.

“We pay tribute to these men, women and children. They paid the ultimate price in the struggle for liberty, equality and dignity. We shall never forget them,” Zille said.

“Our job... is to find ways to redress apartheid’s legacy.”

Zille said the only way to move forward from the legacy of apartheid was to ensure equal access to healthcare, education and employment and to basic services like clean water, sanitation and electricity.

“Your vote is your ticket to better service delivery. It is your weapon against corruption. If you use it wisely on May 18 you will be one step closer to the better life you were promised in 1994.”

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