Arrogance cost ANC election

African National Congress stalwart and former Rivonia trailist Denis Goldberg has accused the leadership of the party of running a “racist” campaign in conflict with its non-racial principles.

In an interview with John Matisonn on Cape Town TV’s show Between the Lines, Goldberg accused the ANC leadership of treating voters with arrogance, and said the political atmosphere in the country had been infected with fear during the pre-election period.

On the ANC’s loss of support from the last elections, Goldberg said, “the ANC held the high ground for very long time. In the last years, it has failed to hold on to that high ground, through innumerable scandals involving finance, corruption and cronyism”.

The youth vote was also a hot topic.

“The youth vote went to both the DA and the EFF,” Goldberg said. “The youth don’t know where we come from in education and they don’t care.” But, he noted, “This is our most educated group of young people ever.”

Goldberg and Matisonn also discussed the minority vote with specific reference to minority population groups in Cape Town. Noting that South Africa has come a long way in the 22 years since the inception of democracy but, “The ANC is losing the vote of minority groups. And I’m talking about Coloured and Indian as well as White.

“In the Western Cape where I live, the ANC is split between African and Coloured. And Coloured people don’t feel like they belong, that South Africa belongs to all who live in it. You can’t ignore people and then expect them to vote for you, the ANC is virtually wiped out in the Western Cape”.

Matisonn and Goldberg also discussed the way forward for the ANC and who possibly could take over the African National Congress in 2019.

Goldberg,83, is a South African social campaigner, who was active in the struggle against apartheid and was imprisoned along with other key members of the anti-apartheid movement.

He was sent to Pretoria Central Prison. While in prison he took degrees in Public Administration, History and Geography, and in Library Science. He was halfway through a law degree when, in 1985, after 22 years in prison, he was released.

Goldberg has criticised corruption in the ANC. Appearing on BBC Radio 5 Live in January, he said members of the ANC need to renew the leadership from top to bottom”.

Journalist John Mattisson interviews politicians, academics, journalists and others who have demonstrated an ability to communicate important developments.


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