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The Fox 5366
 
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DA to surrender 'opposition' role

12 April 2014, 19:16
I'm not the first person here to note that the DA needs to surrender its opposition mentality, but let me add a bit of backbone to this contention.

Whether it's Jacob Zuma in the spotlight, Gauteng's e-Tolls, claimed failures of the ANC in creating jobs, or the lame horse of government corruption, all I see from the DA on a national stage is its opposition to the ANC.

I can only think that this low-brow electioneering campaign is a deliberate recognition from the DA that approaching white voters isn't going to work any longer, and the DA rather needs to force the ANC's black majority to concede that 'Nelson Mandela's party' has lost its shine.

The problem, however, is that the DA's current campaign is actually working for ALL opposition parties - once the DA convinces voters that they need to turn away from the ANC, I'd argue that they haven't done enough to convince them that they specifically need to turn towards the DA as an alternative. Undecided voters could swing any way.

You can see that in the news now: the EFF is mimicking the DA's anti-ANC tactics (e.g. with both parties filing charges simultaneously against Zuma following the Nkandla report). Is that really the sort of publicity the DA wants, to be seen to be acting in unison with the EFF?

What I *haven't* yet seen from the DA is easy-to-understand comparisons between DA-run municipalities and ANC-run municipalities, and the quality of life enjoyed by voters living in both. Things that count to people: number of water failures, number of traffic disruptions, waiting times in queues at council facilities, municipal budget efficiencies.

THAT is something the DA has in its favour which the EFF doesn't: real leadership experience. THAT is one way the DA can prove right now that life under them will be better than under the ANC, and will appeal to black voters desperate for a better life just as much as white voters.

Instead the DA's rallying around a promise of 'jobs for all', and yet when you look at the key page on their website (http://www.da.org.za/our_policies.htm?action=view-policy&policy=13255) all you find are the usual vague promises with no real details or statistics or case-studies. Even the 50-page .pdf document has no real explanations of WHY the proposed measures will lead to 8% growth of the economy, rather just acting as a shopping list summarised as 'we'll do everything better than the ANC'.
It makes you wonder: is the DA not telling these stories because it doesn't have them? Or is the DA telling these stories because it's easier to criticise and get free media publicity?

The DA is taking a political gamble, and it's a gamble that is increasing political tensions in the country and could drive voters into the arms of parties not afraid of making even more extravagant promises to disillusioned voters.
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