I have questions for Black DA voters.

2013-11-07 18:18

From its formation in 1912, the ANC fought for Human Rights; those rights included the right to vote in a free, non-sexist, non-racial democratic South Africa. They did not however fight for a right to vote for ANC; but they fought for a right to VOTE whoever one chose to vote for.

I say this to highlight the respect I have for all voters, those who vote for ANC, the DA even FFP. But like many South Africans, I find myself questioning why a previously disadvantaged person, blacks, colored and Indian would vote DA. This question is not too different from those who wonder why people vote the ANC.

It is a universal belief that people join and associate themselves with political parties that represents them. Most important, people join a political party and vote for it because they believe it will transform and better their lives.

I have been fortunate to be a student of political science which exposed me to public policies, international relations and other fields of studies related to policy making. I got exposed to different schools of thoughts, ideologies and beliefs.

I have studied ANC and DA policies and saw where they differ and where they crossroads. So my opposition to the DA is not based on race or love for the ANC but it’s grounded on its policies that represent a section of a society. Its policies fail to reflect the realities of South Africa and the desire to transform it into an equal society. Rather they reflect a desire to protect and maintain the status quo.

Almost 20 years after 1994, our economy remains firmly in white hands. Black South Africans directly own less than 10% of the JSE. Despite the fast growing black middle class boosted by the ANC government redress and transformation policies, whites today earn 6 times more than blacks. Whites are standing at more than 68% while blacks are less than 16% in management position in the private sector.

Despite the progress being made by government it’s the black majority in South Africa that continues to be confronted by poverty, unemployment and inequality.

The labour market and the private sector are still largely controlled by white South Africans. Analysts argue that it will take until 2061, that’s 48 years from now on until black and white families bring home the same salaries.

A recent research by University of KwaZulu Natal says it will take over 300 years for institutions such as UCT, WITS, STELLIES, UFS to transform and reflect South African demographics in both management and student enrolment.

The 2013 has been interesting for the DA; we have seen its overnight transformation. From a political party that opposed everything the ANC stood for to a political party that now says it will do everything the ANC does but better.

The now DA supports Affirmative Action, Black Economic Empowerment (BEE), Employment Equity and welfare grants; policies of the ANC government.

But then again, we all know why the DA’s sudden change of its policy stance comes from. It’s an elections stunt; this is just DA’s way of tricking black voters and winning their votes. What is sad, some blacks have fallen for these tricks.

The DA does not hide its tricks because it is hard for it to silence the old strong voices within the DA which are architects of its original policies with no transformation proxies. The DA does not support Affirmative Action or Employment Equity.

The DA made sure that it uses the few black faces within it to make these announcements.

Just a few months back Mnusi Maimane announced the DA supports BEE followed by Lindiwe who recently announced that the DA supports employment equity and will vote in its favour in parliament.  A clear attempt to attract black voters with its black bates.

Like blacks are stupid, it has also leaked or planted rumours in the media that Mmusi and Lindiwe are fighting for Helen Zille’s position which will be left vacant after next year. Another trick to attract black voters who will think one of these bates will be the party’s next leader.

Thanks to DA veterans who keep reminding us about the authentic DA policies.

Just after Maimane’s announcement, Wilmot James said the DA does not support  BEE and after 2014 elections they will replace it with “Diversity Employment Equity”.  This is the same DA that wants to do away with affirmative action in these untransformed universities.

Lindiwe’s recent announcement of DA’s support for Employment Equity divided the party after magwinya loving Lindiwe and her caucus voted in favour of it in parliament. Now we know through reports that DA North West, Gauteng and Free State have complained about the party’s apparent about-turn on employment equity, which it has historically opposed.

DA Free State caucus leader Roy Jankielsohn said some inquiries had been received and had been forwarded to the national caucus. Tony Leon wrote an oped in Business Day lambasting DA's recent move.

Soon after this, Helen Zille wrote a press release titled “A plane crash that should have been avoided" saying two things. The DA supports Employment Equity but they dont support the ANC's. They have their own version of the Employment Equity Bill which they will push for in parliament. Then Helen admitted to have known the DA parliament caucus was going to vote in favour of the EE ANC Bill, but now she has changed position saying when it comes to the National Assembly again, the DA will not give a positive vote to the bill.

Another stunt; here the DA has managed to confuse both whites and blacks. They support the policy, but they don’t support what the ANC proposes. They voted in favour of ANC's Bill now they promise not to vote for it when it comes back to the NA.

Such contradictions further prove that the DA will tweak the truth before elections and change its position after. Assuming that the black ANC majority voters can be tricked (an assumption that they are stupid) into believing that the DA wants to pursue such policies when in actual fact it does not.

In October 1991, former President Nelson Mandela made a speech which has been a guide in the application of the affirmative action measures:

"We are not . . . asking for handouts for anyone, nor are we saying that just as a white skin was a passport to privileged past, so a black skin should be the basis for privilege in future.

"Nor . . . is it our aim to do away with qualifications . . . The special measures that we envisage to overcome the legacy of past discrimination are not intended to ensure the advancement of unqualified persons, but to see to it that those who have been denied access to qualifications in the past can become qualified now, and those who have been qualified all along but overlooked because of past discrimination, are at last given their due . . . The first point to be made is that affirmative action must be rooted in principles of justice and equality."

It’s unfortunate that DA which has now kidnapped Nelson Mandela wants to do away with transformation policies in an unequal society like ours. And then come to the same black people Mandela advocated redress policies for and lie and say they are a party that represents his ideals.

One wonders then why would black South Africans vote a political party that is not true to them. Is their support to the DA based solely on their hate for the ANC government? Or do they believe that a black government could have done miracles and reversed a 300 year system of colonialism and apartheid in 19 years?

Is it possible that black DA voters no longer believe in a black government? Or is it also possible that they believe in DA policies that say we are all equal and we should be afforded equal opportunities in an unequal society like ours?

Do they really believe that when DA policies are implemented they will benefit everyone and really afford us the equal opportunities we were never afforded?

I ask these questions because the DA has nothing in its policies that recognises the scars left by the apartheid system on blacks. It does not recognise the need to heal these scars.

We are in an unequal society; what we need is a political party that recognises these inequalities and uses policies that have Affirmative Action proxies that Nelson Mandela and others envisioned to level the playing field and close the gap of inequalities.

I also wonder how DA black voters feel like when some white DA voters comment in blogs like these and insult all that is black.

follow on twitter @esethu_u

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