DA cannot win 2019 elections on their own - Zille

2016-10-10 17:09
(Alexander Joe, AFP)

(Alexander Joe, AFP)

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Cape Town – The Democratic Alliance cannot win the 2019 national elections on its own, says former party leader Helen Zille.

One must never project the outcome of a local government election onto a national election, she said when asked if the party would win the 2019 elections.

"Not on our own. We did well in local government elections because the ANC voters stayed away in droves. But how can we make sure the people who stayed away come to the polls and vote for us?" she said speaking in Cape Town.

The Western Cape premier launched her book, Not without a Fight, at the Cape Town Press Club on Monday where she delved into her personal life as well as political challenges and triumphs.

She detailed why she did not join the ANC once she left journalism, her transition into politics and bemoaned the state of journalism in the country.

The former DA leader, who was succeeded by Mmusi Maimane, also discussed party dynamics and the realignment of SA politics in the face of "ANC disintegration". 

Blue, yellow, red policies 

There would come a time in the country when the struggle would not be one between black and white, she believes, but a struggle between blue, yellow and red economic policies.

Following the local government elections the DA had to form minority governments that depend on the support of the Economic Freedom Fighters, and they could fall at any point, should the EFF decide against voting with the DA.

"If we want to stay in power, we have to rely on the support of the EFF, which is very dangerous. Currently the EFF are determined not to have the ANC in power, but that might change at any point."

It was sad, she said, that the EFF did not win during the local government elections as that would have given voters a better idea of the governing policies of all three parties.

"I wanted them to win somewhere, so we can show the blue government in action, yellow government in action and the red government in action, so that we can give people a choice," she said.

Economic Freedom

While the DA currently has to rely on the EFF's "unreliable support" in their minority governments, in future, the political battle will be between the blue (DA) and the red (EFF) as economic freedom was the real issue facing the country, she said.

"Our model is one of the best, and the EFF's will lead to destruction."

The yellow block in SA politics was disintegrating, she said, and the critical question was how would the cracks fall. 

"Will they fall on the red or blue side?" she mused.

The DA's biggest competitive advantage in SA politics was its structures, systems and processes, she said.

She also briefly touched on the process of trying, and twice failing, to diversify the party, which was a risk that had to be taken, she believed. 

Lindiwe Mazibuko

In her book, Zille admitted that she was wrong to back Lindiwe Mazibuko in the race for parliamentary leader against Athol Trollip, basically summing up Mazibuko's tenure at the helm as a "plane crash". 

But, she said on Monday, there was still space for Mazibuko.

"She is one of the most talented, able, articulate political brains in SA and she needs to be given all the opportunities to make a go of it," she said.

Read more on:    da  |  helen zille  |  lindiwe mazibuko  |  elections 2019  |  politics

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