Gauteng Premier David Makhura was a guest on Eusebius McKaiser’s show on talk radio 702 on Monday morning, and the Twittersphere did not seem impressed with how he came across.
He was accused by many on the platform of various forms of obfuscation: being evasive, refusing to directly answer questions, “blaming others” instead of taking responsibility, and “filling time with padding words and phrases”.
His interviewer, meanwhile, did not give Makhura an easy time, according to the platform, with various users giving examples of McKaiser not “allowing him to breathe”, giving him the “grilling of his life”, and “going straight for the jugular” with a question on the Life Esidimeni tragedy.
Life Esidimeni, Makhura’s reaction to the recent shutdown of Alexandra township amid service delivery protests, and his claims regarding the unpopular e-toll system appear to be the three biggest issues social media users felt the premier had not responded to with coherent answers.
The Gauteng premier was not without support, although those in his corner appeared to be in the minority on Twitter, and a lot of this support came from users who appeared to be actively campaigning for the ANC.
A group of users tweeted claims made by Makhura regarding the progress he believed his ANC-led Gauteng government – which was replaced by a DA-led coalition with executive mayor Herman Mashaba at its helm – had made in the province.
These included the claim that employment in Gauteng increased from 2.6 million in 1996 to over five million in 2018, that the ANC-led government added R41 billion to the province’s economy, and that the number of clean audits in the province increased from 56% in 2014 to 65% in 2018.