SA's 'beautiful mosaic' of parties

2009-02-19 00:00

JOHANNESBURG - Jimmy Carter said: "We have become not a melting pot but a beautiful mosaic. Different people, different beliefs, different yearnings, different dreams."

South Africa is no exception. Aside from the usual suspects dominating our political landscape, there is a plethora of political parties mushrooming on various stoeps and in various suburbs whose views range from mainstream to the downright bizarre.

While most of these parties will never be placed before South Africans on the ballot paper, they nevertheless provide alternative ideas and insight into the personalities behind them.

The Abolition of Income Tax and Usury Party proposes a policy of radical monetary reform with the establishment of a state bank, said founder Steven Goodson.

This central bank would issue all South Africa's credit, free of interest, allow the abolition of personal income tax, a decrease in value added tax and an expansion of social upliftment programmes.

Ja right. The party will also outlaw secret societies.

The Freedom Power Party, newly formed and hoping to contest the election for the first time this year, provides a detailed comparison of the events leading up to Zimbabwe's fall, drawing parallels with events occurring in South Africa over the last 15 years.

Party leader Thembinkosi Masinga could not be reached to provide further insight. Attempts to reach him were met by an answering service, in German.

Eighty-six-year-old Solomon Schkolne, of the Merit Party, would love to share his views of a "merit-based" society with the South African people, but the "illustrious press" refuse to write about his 250-page, fine print novel in which he details his proposal.

The Right Party advocates the "complete separation of all ethnic groups".

"Take the blacks: they have Soweto. The Indians have Chatsworth, the coloureds have the Cape Flats - what do the whites have?" said party leader George Sinclair.

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