'Ramaphosa has abandoned Durban' - Maimane's last push to woo KZN

2019-05-07 17:17
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(Gallo Images)

In a vigorous attempt to woo KwaZulu-Natal voters, DA leader Mmusi Maimane told Durban residents that President Cyril Ramaphosa had failed them and he urged them to vote for the DA.

He was quick to criticise the country's number one citizen on Tuesday during a rally in KwaMashu's  C Section, where he addressed a group of supporters.

Referring to recent violent protests in the city, Maimane said Ramaphosa had visited the area "but he didn't bother to intervene in this situation".

"He was quick to step in when Alexandra in Gauteng was burning, because that was part of his ANC's campaign. But here in Durban, he clearly has no intention of restoring order and ensuring that services continue for the people of this city. As far as he is concerned, you are on your own here."

The DA leader went for the jugular, saying that the protests were a direct result of ANC patronage and corruption.

"This is what happens when you have a mayor who makes deals to secure her own power, a mayor who offers jobs and positions to those in her party structures in return for their support."

He said this meant hiring "connected people" at pay grades higher than those already doing the job.

"Clearly this was going to cause much unhappiness. That is why this city has been brought to its knees by strikes. That is why this city's water infrastructure has been repeatedly sabotaged, with pipes cut and reservoirs damaged.

"That is why Durban is filthy, with Durban Solid Waste Unit workers on strike."

He said that patronage and corruption led to factions and internal wars.

"When this happens, it is the people of the city who suffer. This is why we need change – here in KwaMashu, in Durban, in KZN and in our country. The ANC, as a government, is dead."

He said that the DA was open to coalitions, provided that partnering parties were not in conflict with DA principles.

"Coalitions built around these agreed-upon conditions will bring change. And that's all this election should be about: Working together for change. Don't listen to those who tell you your vote should be an expression of your race or your language or your religion. Those are not people on a mission to build one South Africa for all. Those are not people interested in change."

He said he was calm on the eve of the elections.

"I am feeling quite confident. We have done a lot of work on the ground. We are here to offer jobs and a better country."

In South Africa, 41% of households don't have any income, he said.

"They depend on grants and other forms of income. In the Western Cape, that number is 29%. Already you can see there is a gap. We are going to do that across the country. We are going to help our people."

He said that the DA had provided 110 000 jobs between Johannesburg and Tshwane in two years.

"We will do the same here," he said, adding that he was not worried about his position as leader of the DA.

"Don't worry about the positions. I don't worry about those issues. I want to have something to fight for. What we are fighting for is one SA for all. We are the only party that will bring all races together."

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