ANC smells blue blood in Western Cape 'poster war'

2019-01-25 21:02
ANC provincial elections head Ebrahim Rasool. (Courtney Africa, Netwerk24, file)

ANC provincial elections head Ebrahim Rasool. (Courtney Africa, Netwerk24, file)

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The ANC in the Western Cape is smelling desperation in the DA, and the party's first step to make it count in their favour in the upcoming elections is getting potential voters to register this weekend.

On Friday, ANC provincial elections head Ebrahim Rasool said the party aimed to get 100 000 new voters to register in the province, and 11 641 volunteers will help them to achieve this by doing the groundwork. They want to attract people of all races to the party and are confident that this will be the case.

Rasool said they find confidence in the "absolute desperation" of the DA, as illustrated by their "poster war". The posters the DA unveiled on Monday read: "Register to keep the ANC and EFF out of the Western Cape."

"They take the voters of the Western Cape for idiots by saying keep the EFF out, but governing with them in Johannesburg," Rasool said.

He also said Western Cape Premier Helen Zille's tweet earlier this week, seemingly encouraging a tax boycott in the wake of the Bosasa revelations - reeked of desperation.

'DA in trouble'

The ANC has the "comfort of the underdog and the confidence of a DA in trouble".

"The DA is there for the taking."

He doesn't see the revelations at the Zondo commission of inquiry into state capture as a problem for the ANC, as it was their creation.

ANC MPL Cameron Dugmore previously said the DA had a lot of "soldiers on the ground" at election time, but this time around he detected a lack of enthusiasm for the party and he didn't see a lot of "T-shirted DA members on the ground".

Therefore, they are reverting to their "most prime instincts", as indicated by the poster, which is "essentially racism", he said.

He described it was a negative campaign.

"The best response to racism is work on the ground," he said. 

He said the ANC was committed to non-racialism in the province, and that they found that President Cyril Ramaphosa was a "huge selling point" in the province across all communities.

When News24 on Monday asked the DA Western Cape premier candidate, Alan Winde, if the poster was negative campaigning, Winde said it was a "wake-up call".

"This province is under threat and we must make sure people register to vote," Winde said at the time.

Recent by-elections in the province indicated that the DA's support was declining.

Johan Boot, an ANC analyst, said it was clear that there was a 10% swing away from the DA. 

"The ANC needs to target traditional DA voters who are now disillusioned," he said.

He said the DA could also not take Afrikaners' votes for granted in the province, which might bode well for the FF Plus and the ACDP, but also for the ANC.

Rasool said they were confident that there as a positive movement of white voters to the ANC, thanks to Ramaphosa.

Asked what he made of colourful Peter Marais' return to Western Cape politics as the FF Plus' premier candidate, Rasool said he was glad Marais was alive and well in his 70s.

"It's nice to have Peter Marais in the campaign. He can only subtract from the DA."

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Read more on:    da  |  anc  |  ebrahim rasool  |  cape town  |  politics
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