Uhuru-Spirit News


August 10, 2017 | Uhuruspirit

Opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) party leader Mmusi Maimane speaks during the motion of no confidence against South African president Jacob Zuma in parliament in Cape Town, South Africa, August 8, 2017. Photo: Reuters

Despite suffering a crushing defeat at the hands of ANC MPs last Tuesday when it led a parliamentary battle that included other opposition parties and some renegade ANC members in an attempt to pass a vote of no confidence in President Jacob Zuma - a move that would have collapsed the government had it succeeded - South Africa’s opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) seems not to be giving up.

The DA is now rolling out a new plan in its continuing struggle to unseat the ANC government. The DA leader Mmusi Maimane said on Wednesday that the party would table a motion for Parliament to be dissolved and for an early general election. He believes that is now their only available option to save the country from Zuma.

“South Africa cannot wait for December – that is a pipe dream. The change we need, and the new beginning we all want, will not come from an ANC elective conference in December. We need a new government, and a new beginning, now! That’s why we need fresh elections and a fresh mandate,” he argued.

“It is the DA’s view that this is the most appropriate way to ensure a legitimate government is in place, one which the people of South Africa have full confidence in. Moreover, we call on those within the ANC – who are against corruption, looting and state capture, to vote in support of our motion to dissolve Parliament,” he said.

Anti-Zuma or anti-democracy?

While the DA’s seeming stance against corruption and looting is quite commendable, the question is whether the DA is really against corruption or democracy.

No allegation of looting has been proven and both President Zuma and the Gupta family have consistently denied allegations of the so-called state capture. Many detractors of the DA believe that the party is hiding behind those allegations to build up itself as the best alternative to the ANC government ahead of 2019.

Most black voters still perceive the DA as a party that protects white minority interests in South Africa. The DA is also seen as a juggernaut that is standing in opposition to efforts by the ANC government to reverse the negative effects of apartheid colonialism. But the DA is trying to change that narrative by trying to convince the majority of South African voters that corruption and mismanagement inside the ANC government is to blame for the country’s economic problems.

“The last municipal elections during which the DA won the cities of Johannesburg and Thswane, with the help of some opposition parties, has led it to believe that it can win power from the ANC in 2019,” said Uhuruspirit’s editor-at-large Johnbul Osagie.

Osagie also observed that the DA is now seeking to exploit factionalism within the ANC ahead of the party’s elective congress in December to promote its objective to unseat the ANC government.

“What the DA is doing now after losing the crucial battle on Tuesday is to maintain momentum and try to win more supporters ahead of 2019,” added Osagie.

Meanwhile, the ANC has described DA’s latest stance as the vindication of its position that the motion of no confidence in President Zuma was “not about the President but an attempt at regime change through parliament.”

The ANC said that the planned motion by the DA for the dissolution of the parliament “shows that the DA does not respect our democracy and the electorate of South Africa. They have no regard for the will of the people as expressed through the outcomes of the 2014 general elections where 62% of the electorate gave the ANC a mandate to govern this country until the next general elections. We will defeat this planned motion as we have defeated all other attempts by the opposition to overthrow our popularly elected government.”

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