Desperate politicking, DA

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Mmusi Maimane with party leaders at the unveiling of its memorial billboard Picture: Felix Dlangamandla
Mmusi Maimane with party leaders at the unveiling of its memorial billboard Picture: Felix Dlangamandla

The DA’s desperate campaigning to ascend to power, regardless of its leaders’ and members’ lack of morals and integrity, must be condemned in the strongest terms.This time they have gone way too far.

We all agree that Life Esidimeni and Marikana are major blots in our democracy, which is why the government made a collective apology and took responsibility by making a commitment that such events would not happen again in our country.

We all agreed that as we transform our country to be a fully fledged democracy, characterised by human rights, freedom of association and freedom of expression among others, we must continue to be vigilant and ensure that legislature oversight is strengthened to guard against such shameful events. This we can do by playing our part to build and entrench our democratic institutions.

Read: DA billboard is to commemorate the victims of ANC's ineptitude

But the DA stooped – in its campaign to win the coming elections – to putting the names of the dead on a billboard. This desperate stance by the DA – done without consulting and getting the full consent from the families of the deceased – is distasteful and shows a lack of moral rectitude.

As part of ubuntu and as a long-standing African tradition, we have always respected and don’t talk ill of the dead, let alone use their good names for cheap politicking.

We call on the DA to engage in fair politics and clean campaigning instead of using the fateful events in our country as a tool in their quest to ascend to power. They should focus on their fragile, tattered coalitions in the municipalities. We call on the party to apologise to the families concerned and remove that billboard as a matter of urgency. In the game of politics you engage with the electorate on what you stand for and what you offer. Clearly the DA does not have a plan, hence they are engaging in mischievous election campaigning.

Mafika Siphiwe Mgcina is a member of the ANC caucus in the Gauteng legislature

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