Democracy means citizens have a right to a better future – Trollip

The DA's Athol Trollip. Photo: Gallo Images

The DA's Athol Trollip. Photo: Gallo Images

Democracy means South Africans have a right to want a better future, Democratic Alliance Port Elizabeth mayoral candidate Athol Trollip said on Saturday.

“As time ticks by, it is becoming ever more apparent that the foundation which we are now laying for our children here in this city will doom them to a future which is worse than today,” he said at the launch of his mayoral campaign for next year’s local government elections.

“We cannot afford to allow any more time to tick by. And we cannot afford to keep voting for the same people who don’t keep their promises and don’t deliver.

“Change is needed. Change that sets Nelson Mandela Bay on the path to a better future for all,” he said.

This change was possible because the DA could win Nelson Mandela Bay. The ANC’s support was already under 50 percent in the metro.

Things were better today than they were under apartheid, but “democracy means that we all have the right to want more. We have the right to dream of a better future, and a better tomorrow”.

“But even the most loyal of ANC members – when they look at themselves in the mirror – will admit that the progress we have made in this city has been far too slow and that in fact, the quality of life for many is getting worse,” Trollip said.

“All of us have a duty to work as hard as we can to wipe out its disastrous legacy. And remove the barriers that still keep too many people trapped in a life of poverty.

“This is why I’m running to be mayor of Nelson Mandela Bay – to create a fair, inclusive city with opportunities for all.”

A better life was not possible in a city that had an unemployment rate of 36 percent and a youth unemployment rate of 47.3 percent – the highest of any metro in the country.

More than R2 billion of ratepayers’ money was wasted last year on irregular and wasteful spending – the highest in any metro.

“A better life is not possible in a city where so many still go without proper housing and toilets, where the current government builds houses without toilets and toilets without houses.

The current ANC government in Nelson Mandela Bay was the enemy of hope and opportunity to hundreds of thousands of people. A “broken government led by broken men built on empty promises that has been hijacked by a corrupt elite that works for themselves and not the people they were elected to serve”.

It was a government that did not believe in freedom, fairness and opportunity for all, and had forgotten about the people. It was a government that took the people’s money and instead of using it to deliver for all, used it to deliver for some.

“I don’t promise to fix all our problems overnight. I cannot promise that. But I can promise you that we will start working hard the day after we’re elected. We will spend public money on public service delivery, never on ourselves.

“We will wake up every day, knowing that you have entrusted us with delivering services to you, the people of Nelson Mandela Bay. And services will be delivered.

“I will always be honest with you about what we can and cannot do. If I give my word that something will happen, then you will be able to trust that it will happen. And if I do not keep my promise, you know what to do. Vote me out.”

A DA government would prioritise a growing economy that created jobs.

The DA would create a fair and transparent city that prioritised the needs of the most vulnerable residents to ensure that they could live their lives with dignity, in a clean and safe environment.

“Nelson Mandela Bay can become a well-run city that delivers services to all its residents on time and within budget. In a well-run city potholes will be fixed right away, streetlights will be repaired as they go out and our infrastructure will be maintained so that it doesn’t have to be repaired and replaced down the line.

“While Nelson Mandela Bay today has only plans, the DA has a record that delivers,” Trollip said.


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