Cape communities scared, insecure - ANC
Johannesburg - The battle to build a non-racial society "will be won and lost in the Western Cape", the ANC in the province said on Tuesday.
"Apartheid social engineering is far more expressed in our province with heightened fears within the white community, the insecurity amongst coloured compatriots and the frustrated aspirations of the African community," ANC Western Cape secretary Songezo Mjongile said in a statement.
He was speaking after a three-day provincial executive committee (PEC) strategic meeting in George to analyse the results of the 2011 local elections.
Mjongile said the PEC observed that the ANC's performance in the local polls had improved since 2006, which showed an "arrest in the decline" of the party's performance in the province.
It noted that the ANC had advanced because of the "implosion" of the Congress of the People and the rejection of the "marriage" between the Democratic Alliance and the Independent Democrats.
"Under the guise of good governance and a better service delivery record, a coded vocabulary of racism and sexism is rearing its ugly head in the political landscape of the Western Cape, undermining the gains we have made towards a non-sexist and non-racial society," said Mjongile.
"It has become undeniable that social fragmentation and a high level of inequality continue to define our society, where race and class are the most distinguishing features."
Mjongile said the PEC also noted that "no racial group is inherently racist, but the apartheid economy created an unsustainable exclusion of the majority".
He said the ANC would "lead the ideological battle" to contest the "philosophy" of the DA: that Cape Town and the Western Cape were "European outpost[s], surrounded by natives who want to take it back to the Stone Age, who are incompetent, corrupt and morally bankrupt".
"We therefore resolve that amongst the most urgent tasks, is to fight for economic freedom in order to change material conditions that led to the exclusion of the majority on the basis of race, class and gender."
Transformation would be central to the party's work in the province going forward.
The ANC would convene a conference on race and racism. Economic development was among its key programmes in the upcoming term.