During the 2014 election campaign Max du Preez predicted that Agang SA under the leadership of Dr Mamphela Ramphele would get at least 6% of the vote. Liking someone doesn’t mean that she qualifies for high office.
Political popularity does not automatically translate into votes, nor does a following constitute a party political machine. Fallaciously he claimed that Ramphele would be a significant opposition leader, when soon after the election it imploded into an unholy mess. As a political analyst one wonders how he could get that prediction so wrong.
It is therefore not surprising that, in similar vein, Du Preez promotes Minister Lindiwe Sisulu for president. Granted, she might be a bit better than Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma, but as minister in all her various portfolios she has not covered herself in glory. Failure as a minister barely qualifies her for the presidency.
Her zigzag ministerial trajectory from home affairs, to intelligence, to human settlements, to defence, to public service, was not without controversy and it revealed her many failures across various portfolios.
As minister of human settlements she faced many challenges – the N2 Gateway housing project, for instance, was riddled with controversy.
Appointing controversial lawyer Paul Ngobeni as her adviser when she served as minister of defence showed a serious lack of judgment. The former UCT deputy registrar, who left UCT under a cloud, was also accused of having been disbarred from practising law in the US, where he allegedly faced “criminal charges of fraud, larceny and petty theft”, according to many news reports.
Sisulu was also accused of using military flights for private travel. At one point, Democratic Alliance spokesperson on defence David Maynier said: “Sisulu had become too powerful for her own good, and her demotion to the public service and administration department was welcome news.
“The minister was fired because, for the past two years, she turned the [defence] department into a state within a state and acted as if she was beyond scrutiny and oversight by parliament.”
More curiously, she appointed serial offender ANC NEC member Tony Yengeni to the defence review committee. Another of her advisers, Menzi Simelane, was condemned by Justice Zak Yacoob as lacking integrity, credibility and conscientiousness.
Imperious and known for defending President Jacob Zuma at a time when it was most inappropriate to do so, she dissed the opposition as racist for proposing a vote of no confidence in Zuma.
Her venomous darts directed at DA leader Mmusi Maimane were unbecoming of someone of her political pedigree. Of late, her serious disillusionment in her former intelligence ally, Zuma, has spurred her on to avail herself for the highest office in the land.
Many pundits believe the ANC is the only party that can govern South Africa despite its many failures and spectacular inability to govern. Sadly, not one person has been able to take the president to task for destroying the economy. Acquiescence has led to political canabalisation so that no one can be trusted to save the party.
Not even Sisulu. She nailed her colours to the mast and sadly those colours cannot be erased.