A canvassing spat last week saw the Patriotic Alliance (PA) and Patricia de Lille’s recently launched party GOOD arguing over who came up with the phrase “Fix the Free State” first.
PA leader Gayton McKenzie announced last year that he would be focusing his personal efforts in the upcoming election on voters from the Free State, where he is standing as his party’s premier candidate. This will be his party’s second national election.
De Lille launched her party in December after a much-publicised spat with her former political home, the DA, that saw her relent to pressure to resign as Cape Town’s mayor.
In what appears to be pure coincidence, the two parties settled on a similar catchphrase, with GOOD trying to popularise the hashtag #FixSA and the slogan Let’s Fix SA.
The PA first used the hashtag #FixtheFreeState towards the end of November last year, a few days before GOOD was launched.
GOOD’s premier candidate in the Free State, Benjamin Mothibe II, a former DA councillor, began sending messages to the PA last week accusing them of stealing the phrase, as the party was also using Fix the Free State as part of its promotional work.
He appeared to later back down though.
The PA claimed they would take GOOD to the electoral court over the issue now that they knew about it.
The Citizen called GOOD’s Free State spokesperson for comment and will update this article once comment is received.
(Edited by Charles Cilliers)