#SOUTHAFRICA: Over 48 parties harness the public outrage over the rampant corruption in the ruling party to advance their agenda.
This may be one of the most hotly contested elections in the history of South Africa with just three powers in the lead. The ruling African National Congress, opposition party, Democratic Alliance and the Economic Freedom Front are set to take centre stage in the May 8 elections.
The ANC still cling on to the memory of Madiba while using the diplomatic charm of President Cyril Ramaphosa in hopes of a majority this time.
The Democratic Alliance’s Mmusi Maimaine has been suckling fervently on the nipple of the ANC corruption wave while balancing white-privilege within his party.
The Economic Freedom Front (EFF) who might be seen as a troublemaking, rowdy mob in Parly – while navigating their murky corruption swamp – are also aiding the demise of the ANC’s power in the country at an alarming rate.
The Indian voter may dismiss the EFF as an option but this fledgling party has been pivotal in taking away millions of votes, affirming that the youth of SA are turning their backs on Madiba’s ANC.
The ANC who have been battered ‘stukkend’ with a slew of shocking revelations ranging from corruption, Guptagate, Bosasa and quite recently – their disgraced Secretary General Ace Magashule’s dodgy conduct – that has given the South African voter much to consider when making their mark this May 8 election.
The most likely contenders for the ‘Indian vote’
Over a million South African Indians – the largest contingent outside India – still experience inequality in a post-apartheid era. The younger generation of South Africans of Indian –origin are no longer looking at their historical background to determine their voting choices.
Dr Ben Roberts, of the Human Sciences Research Council, said 72% of Indian South African youth believed their votes would not make a difference. Of this, 40% indicated they would not vote.IOL
All three parties -ANC, EFF & DA – in their own stride believe they are the rightful heirs to the ‘iron throne.’
In their blind madness they’ve managed to threaten the very democratic principles that we all committed to under the watch of Nelson Mandela in 1994.
In South Africa’s history, the May 8 election will be one that South African Indians are poised to shift their blind loyalty looking beyond the grandiosity of the African National Congress.
The million text messages plus automated calls that go – ‘Hi, this is Mmusi Maimane of the Democratic Alliance’ are also being considered as a joke more than a serious message. The Minority Front has lost their sparkle and now a distant memory with the demise of Amichand Rajbansi.
With recent snap-surveys conducted with our readers, 4 parties emerge as top choices to be considered in this election.
The African National Congress (ANC) have sealed their fate by losing face with their recent spate of corrupt activities that have come to the fore. The Economic Freedom Front (EFF) has no chance of securing an Indian vote with politicking against Indian South Africans.
The Indian vote swings in favor of the Democratic Alliance (DA) seems to be an approach of – better the devil you know – scenario.
Indian South Africans in KwaZulu Natal have also found a home with the Inkatha Freedom Party who concern themselves with the dynamic of both Black and Indian supporters without prejudice. They’ve also managed to calm tensions that occasionally swell up between the two ethnic groups.
BUT there’s a wildcard entry that’s captured the Indian South African attention and that is the Capitalist Party of South Africa (ZACP) founded by Kanthan Pillay & 9 others.
They’re not looking at a majority nor are they contesting local elections, they’re simply bringing their vision of wanting to represent the South African at national level. The ZACP intend is to disrupt Parliament by being present and able to keep the majority in check.
An Indian face matters in politics and a vote is driven by the race card in the name of nation building and Pillay’s ZACP has the potential to garner the confidence of the Indian South African.
You will not find posters or apps like the ANC during this period of electioneering; they’ve kept their model simple and clear in their maiden election campaign.
The Indian vote matters to all of these parties that ranked in the top 5 here but you’re in charge if you use your common sense and practical reasoning.
Could a coalition government be the answer?
Multiparty governance just may be the turnaround that the world & South Africans are hoping for in order to restore investor confidence and drive development that benefits the people.
The people WILL need to place their faith and trust in potentially a coalition government, yes its unchartered territory for South Africans but this could be the answer to preventing scenarios like Bosasa, Guptagate, Zuma and Ace Magashule’s corrupt activities.
A coalition government may stall reforms but it will also prevent bad ideas from being shoved down by an executive like Luthuli House that has kept the company of the Gupta family, Gavin Watson, Magashule and others.
The concept of a single party emerging as the majority has failed us to a large degree. Recent political history in SA has shown us that there has never been an optimal functioning Parliament and government with this model.
We all know that a single-party government reduces the need to make political deals with coalition partners, and the legislative agenda of the government can be passed without any holdout.
What an interesting journey that has been with the ANC!
Former South African President Jacob Zuma’s corruption has been talking point around most dinner tables, the influence of the Guptas who literally were the kingmakers.
Although both Zuma and the Guptas deny wrongdoing, Zuma was forced from office by the ANC, and the Gupta brothers fled. We are yet to see the traitorous Gupta trio being brought to justice and in my honest opinion we will never see that happen under the reign of Luthuli House.
Now with the pending general election, it is time for Indian South Africans to re-evaluate the long held ‘truth’ – that the ANC majority is the answer. We have to consider that the coalition option in order to prevent executive overreach like we’ve experienced.
You will not find a Gandhi or a Tiger in our midst but that doesn’t mean all is lost; the beauty of South Africa’s democracy has allowed Indian South Africans to look beyond the minority approach and challenge the concept of ‘Vote for an Indian party’ or ‘remember the African National Congress.’
You may be a dyed-in-the-wool socialist and believe capitalism to be the enemy of all time. “Better Red than Dead” is a tattoo you wear. Frankly speaking, we all know that capitalism and even democracy are only the best of a whole lot of failed systems. Capitalism has unleashed many positive forces in alleviating poverty, banishing curable diseases and improving living standards across the globe.
This system still has to be improved, so lets be in a good position to have that fight.
Voter apathy among the youth is strange in that it’s an admixture of naive hopelessness but also a mature cynicism. We can understand their feeling around it; the culture that we see is one of complaints and handouts rather than trying to do something about it.
Where you can and when you can, influence the youth to become actors in their own lives. Voting is a step in that direction.
Indian South Africans are changing their mindset; they’re searching for a new voice not necessarily a political one.
Like other ethnic groups in South Africa they too want the tide of corruption to end and ring in equality for the masses. The question remains – which political party is taking the needs of citizens of Indian-origin forward?
Of the four parties that stand out for Indian South Africans who has your support.
If not you with your vote then who else?
#ZACP: Kanthan Pillay wants to shape a new path for South Africans. They’re a new political party, with a purple cow as their logo and they’re hoping to secure your vote to place them in Parliament. click here
#PODCAST: Bold targets set by Capitalist Party of South Africa #ZACP ahead of May 8 elections. Listen to Kanthan Pillay outline their vision. click here
Naufal Khan is the editor and publisher of Indian Spice