Columns 22.8.2018 08:15 am

Wanted: a political party free from graft, infighting

Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille, centre, in the Western Cape High Court with her legal team Johan de Waal, front left, and Dali Mpofu, front right, 5 June 2018. Picture: ANA

Cape Town mayor Patricia de Lille, centre, in the Western Cape High Court with her legal team Johan de Waal, front left, and Dali Mpofu, front right, 5 June 2018. Picture: ANA

The two major parties are experiencing internal problems, and the time left before the election is being taken up fighting fires they can’t put out.

A number of current letters to the editor have passionately expressed the desire for the establishment of a new political party – one reader adding the rider there should be none of the incumbents involved (“they’ve had their chance and made a mess of it”).

When considering the state of the country, one can easily agree with the sentiment calling for radical change in governance. Ever since the end of the Mandela era, the ANC has been infiltrated by alleged criminals, headed by Jacob Zuma, and who have deliberately and unashamedly plundered all departments in their care.

Okay, so Zuma has been replaced with a much better prospect in the form of Cyril Ramaphosa, who has promised a new dawn, without corruption.

So why does pessimism persist? Surely, the new president brings hope and a better future for all? And with a “new” ANC, why call for another party?

The questions are easily answered: the two major parties are experiencing internal problems. So much so that all the precious time left before the election next year is being taken up fighting fires they’re unable to put out.

Let’s start with the ANC’s top body, the national executive committee (NEC). It is an open secret that certain members have been flagged for corruption and ineptness. This presupposes they can’t be in agreement with their leader, who is promising clean governance. The next question: why is the president tolerating these people? From day one, he should have got shot of them. He is now having to watch his back lest they gather their crook-minded buddies (probably adherents of Zuma) and gang up on him.

Then there’s the serious split in KZN (with political murders almost a daily occurrence) to add to the woes.

The president is being hampered in doing the right thing to get the country back on track. So the ANC can’t be trusted.

And what of the main opposition? It has been torn asunder with the De Lille saga. She has managed to keep the DA from concentrating on a plan to oust the ANC. How pitiful that a party which managed to wrest a province from the once-powerful ANC, is itself now a weak, spent force.

No wonder the desperate call for a new party.

Cliff Buchler.

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