Yet another political party will be added to the ballot

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Maimane will be launching a new political party this weekend. Photo: Tebogo Letsie/City Press
Maimane will be launching a new political party this weekend. Photo: Tebogo Letsie/City Press


Another party will be added to the ballot.

The 2024 national and provincial elections are a year and a couple of months away. And the ruling ANC is still sorting itself out ahead of its elective congress in December.  

READ: Mkhize kick-starts epic battle against Ramaphosa 

With the results of the 2021 local government elections, parties are starting to smell blood. Getting below the 50% mark is looking increasingly possible for the ANC, that is, if other parties get their act together. 

A recent study by the Social Research Foundation suggests that the current opposition is not giving what it is supposed to give. The study found that “while the ANC continues to make grave mistakes that might cost it votes, the DA is poorly positioned to exploit the governing party’s failures, while the EFF is seen to be too radical, violent, anarchic and disrespectful”. 

READ: Polls: ANC may well get 50% in election win

Perhaps that leaves space for new players to come into the fold. 

Former DA leader Mmusi Maimane certainly thinks so. Maimane will launch a new political party this weekend in Naledi, Soweto.  

After leaving the DA, Maimane launched One Movement SA (OSA). The organisation played some role in the local government elections – helping independent candidates with their electioneering, even though it was not a political party.  

When you visit OSA’s website, you read the following:  

The political system in South Africa is broken! 

“For too long, South Africans have been forced to vote for political parties that select compromised, corrupt, and self-serving individuals, and force them upon the people of South Africa. 

"As a result, corruption is rampant, our economy is failing, South Africa’s children are receiving substandard education, joblessness has hit an all-time high, public healthcare is non-existent, and South Africans are being left behind.” 

Further confusion... 

So, why is a man who started a ‘movement’ that says the current system is broken joining in on the chaos? 

Speaking to eNCA on Thursday, ntate moruti, as he is known on the Twitter streets, emulated the what kids do on Twitter and explained using a sports analogy. 

He said:

When people decide they are going to play, typically going to play 15-men rugby, you can’t say you want to play sevens-men rugby.

Maimane said the country was in crisis.  

“You have got to be able to put a political party that will continue to fight the electoral reform ... but, we cannot, in any way, while Parliament blocks efforts for reform, sit back. I am standing up and saying to South Africans, yes, let us empower communities. Yes, let us invite people to fall under one body but I have a commitment to say let us bring about change in South Africa and that is what I am working on,” he said. 

Political analyst Levy Ndou says that this move is not surprising.  

“Maimane rose within the ranks of politics in South Africa through the DA. His understanding is based on inclusivity, on giving all South Africans equal chances to participate in political activity.” 

Ndou adds there’s nothing wrong with Maimane forming a party after advocating for electoral reform and championing independent candidates. 

He is aware that to get access to a political position, the better route is through a political party.

The vision 

Maimane said details of the change he envisioned for the country would be revealed at the launch.  

“I think South Africa looks at its economy only from one lens. We have got to look at it broadly and ask ourselves some questions: Where are the economic activities? How do we support them? How do we put venture capital in communities to make sure more people can participate in the business community and up the employment levels? How do we ensure that police have better leadership so that people are much safer and, furthermore, how do we ensure that political leadership is accountable to the communities it comes from?" 

Ndou says it’s now a matter of waiting and seeing what ntate moruti’s political party has to offer.  

A record number of 48 political parties contested the 2019 elections. The more the merrier, they say. 

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