ActionSA president Herman Mashaba has consistently ruled out the chances of getting into bed with the ANC, regardless of the offer they present, but he is willing to bend for other political parties.
Mashaba said he had been approached by a member of the ANC top six with a proposal for a coalition government, during one of their informal talks:
He said he had hardly been at the Electoral Commission of SA (IEC) results operation centre for half an hour when the person spoke to him, but Mashaba refused to elaborate on the proposal.
However, the ANC disputed his remarks, saying many people want to use the name of the organisation to get attention. ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte said the ANC has not approached any political party about coalitions. “But there have been informal talks on the ROC [results operation centre] floor and nothing official.”
Duarte said the ANC would make an announcement once the extended national working committee (NWC) meeting had made recommendations after their meeting over the weekend.
ANC head of campaigns Fikile Mbalula said ActionSA “has been walking up and down like K-Ci and JoJo”.
He also didn’t go into details about where the ANC top six members wanted them to go into coalitions together.
ActionSA contested in the local government elections in six metros, which include Johannesburg, Tshwane, Ekurhuleni, eThekwini, Newcastle and KwaDukuza.
“Initially, when we started the party last year, we wanted to only contest in three metros in Gauteng, but Makhosi Khoza put up a compelling business case for us to contest in KZN [KwaZulu-Natal]. Afterwards, Vytjie [Mentor] wanted us to contest in the Western Cape, but we said not this time,” he said.
Even though Mashaba refused to reveal the name of the person, City Press spotted him greeting and shaking hands with ANC treasurer-general Paul Mashatile on the political party floor. The other two members of the ANC top six who were at the results centre included Duarte and chairperson Gwede Mantashe.
He said they were open for coalition and their senate would look at proposals. The senate consists of 18 members, including Gauteng chairperson John Moodey, KwaZulu-Natal chairperson Khoza, Western Cape chairperson Mentor.
Even though his relationship with the DA is rocky at best, Mashaba said he was willing to talk to any party about a coalition. He spoke about his strained relationship with the DA, saying they wanted him to be in a coalition government with the EFF, but didn’t want him to be committed to it.
“They wanted me to double-cross the EFF and I refused because I wouldn’t want to be double-crossed.” He said the reason the DA hated his relationship with the EFF was that he hadn’t gone into politics to serve political party interests, but the country.
“Any party willing to have a coalition with ActionSA must accept social justice first. If they want to come and talk to us, it’s fine, as long as they can commit to serving all society. Our aim is to remove the ANC from municipalities,” he said.
He bemoaned the actions by the IEC in omitting their name and logo from ballot papers.
Mashatile said they were not going to sell out their legacy for the sake of a coalition. “We will deal with it case by case. We are waiting for the NWC to meet and we’ll make our intention clear to the public after that,” he said.