‘ANC must choose educated councillors’ – Tlokwe street vendor

2016-07-14 19:45
(Wim Pretorius, News24)

(Wim Pretorius, News24)

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Potchefstroom - The ANC must choose educated councillors with the relevant qualifications to help them deliver to their communities.

This is the opinion of street vendor Samuel Selebogo. Most of the work done on local governance level needs someone with solid decision-making skills.

“Why I say that is because local government is the roots of all government, without local governance there is no government,” Selebogo tells News24 while standing at his makeshift kitchen in a tent on the side of a not-so-busy industrial road.

The father of two is originally from Stilfontein, a mining town between Potchefstroom and Klerksdorp. He travels about 60km to Potchefstroom every morning to sell meals to people working in the industrial part of the town.

He has been running the business for the past five months and is having difficulty finding a place closer to Potchefstroom, in order to be closer to home and reduce travelling costs.

He is not interested in voting for the ANC in the upcoming local government elections because of the calibre of councillors the ruling party has picked in the past.

“There is no use in picking a person who is talkative and has no matric certificate, and you put that guy as a councillor. What impact will a guy like that make on the community?”

The ruling party needs to pick councillors with the requisite skills, he says.

“It’s their responsibility to check are you educated. Do you have a matric certificate? Maybe a short course in project management or financial management, because a councillor is a mediator between the community and the government.”

Instead the ANC has appointed people who appear to be well-spoken and/or have connections within the party.

‘They just talk because they know how to talk’

He will rather give his vote to the Democratic Alliance because he feels the opposition party appoints educated and qualified people.

“If you are not educated there is no way you can get in. That’s why they put Mmusi Maimane there. In Parliament when that guy talks, he doesn’t just talk, he quotes from the Constitution, which is a brilliant thing. But the people from the ANC they just talk because they know how to talk.”

The ruling party should not have appointed its chairperson Baleka Mbete as National Assembly Speaker. It should rather have picked an unaffiliated individual who is a qualified lawyer.

“They are now fighting in Parliament, which is wrong.”

He says the ANC has failed because when its leaders go from local, to provincial, to national government they forget about the people they are meant to serve.

People are no longer happy with the ANC and do not trust it anymore, he says.

“That’s why there are many parties being generated. The ANC must go back to the drawing board.”

The ANC’s support in the area has been steadily declining. It won 51.8% of the votes during the elections in 2014, 60.2% in the 2009 elections, and 71.8% in 2004.

The second largest party in the area is the DA. It won 31.1% of the votes in 2014, 24% in 2009.

During News24's visit to the town, ANC-branded vehicles with President Jacob Zuma's face pasted on them were seen regularly. The ruling party appeared to be the only party in the region making an effort to market itself with more than just the street pole posters the DA, Economic Freedom Fighters, Freedom Front Plus and independent councillors were relying on.

On one of the billboards placed across a bridge across a main road, the ANC claims Tlokwe is the party's "best run municipality". A picture of a smiling Zuma appears next to the words.

- Find everything you need to know about the 2016 Local Government Elections at our News24 Elections site, including the latest news and detailed, interactive maps for how South Africa has voted over the past 3 elections, or download the app for iOS and Android.

Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  johanneburg  |  local elections 2016

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