SA’s Week of Political Hypocrisy

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Pinky Khoabane

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Mogale City Council Chambers – only ANC members attended

There’s no point in advancing values if those values are advanced only to score points. There’s no point in political parties projecting themselves as principled only to abandon the principle as soon as it doesn’t suit the agenda they seek to put forward.

In a week which saw nothing but political point-scoring and the backlash thereof, the Democratic Alliance (DA), African National Congress (ANC) and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) made this point abundantly clear.

I don’t have to tell you the number of times the DA has called for a secret ballot on a motion of no confidence against President Jacob Zuma. The DA currently supports the UDM’s ConCourt challenge to have the next motion of no confidence in Zuma conducted in secret. The DA even marched to the ConCourt in support of the secret ballot. But the same party opposed a call for a motion of no confidence against their own, Mogale City executive mayor,  Michael Holenstein, to be conducted through a secret ballot. And when the DA lost the bid to conduct the motion by show of hands and its mayor was defeated, it resorted to subjecting its councillors to a lie detector test to establish which councillors had voted with the ANC.

The ANC lost Mogale City in the last municipal elections to a coalition of the DA, EFF, Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP). There are 39 seats to the coalition and 38 to the ANC. Holstein was defeated 39 in favour of ousting him and 38 against. This means one person in the coalition voted with the ANC. The last two days it is reported, were set aside for exposing the traitor. The D in DA is Democratic. They never cease to project themselves as the ultimate proponents of liberalism and protectors of our democracy.

Not to miss out on a point-scoring opportunity, the ANC weighed in with a press statement. “The African National Congress has noted reports that the DA has subjected their councillors in Mogale City Local Municipality, Gauteng to a lie detector test ahead of the vote to elect a new Mayor in the Council today. This cowardly move by the DA follows the outcome of a secret ballot in the Municipality last week where councillors voted with their conscience to remove DA Mayor Michael Holenstein. Coming from the hypocritical DA this action is not a surprise and serves only to demonstrate the party’s moral bankruptcy and expose its unprincipled, untrustworthy leadership. In the process the party makes a mockery of the democracy they claim to uphold by not accepting defeat in a democratic process and subjects their councillors to public humiliation as a result”.

But things in Mogale City got a little out of hand – democratically that is – when the DA and the other political parties decided to boycott a council meeting today. Basically, the DA and coalition partners refused to accept defeat. And one of its members, Makashule Gana, crowed about it on Twitter.

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Then there was the EFF which had promised to withdraw its support for the DA if Helen Zille wasn’t removed from the premiership of the Western Cape following her tweet on colonialism way back in March. I enjoy the response from Lebogang hence I included it here.

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Over the past months since the tweet, South Africans have been calling on the sacking of Zille if she didn’t voluntarily leave. Of course, the EFF had to also pretend it is really in power of the coalition it has with the DA.

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The EFF made the threats on 8 June 2017 but of course yesterday, DA Leader Mmusi Maimane and Zille kissed and made-up to avoid what they said could have been lengthy disciplinary process. Yes, she has agreed to vacate all her “decision-making” positions within the DA but retain her premiership of the Western Cape. It’s a joke, right? The premiership is NOT a decision-making position or is it not a DA position? Nonetheless, Malema had to now make good of his promise to “take our vote”. Not much has happened in that respect. The party and leader weren’t responding to any of the questions levelled at them on Twitter.

In the meantime, ANC spokesperson Zizi Kodwa was scathing of the DA’s handling of the Zille tweet and the “forgiveness”, prompting many to question if anybody in the ANC could speak of “integrity” and call for the removal of a party leader.

But as they say: A day not a week is long in politics. Somebody deceived the coalition in Mogale City already.  Trevor Manuel doesn’t know white monopoly capitalists. Bonang Mohale, Chairman of Shell SA and deputy chairman of Business Leadership SA is calling on business to put money together for “an integrity fund that would support activities to put the country on a different path” – in other words, a fund for regime change activities. Who knows what might happen when CIC is done with his Gupta/Zuma Propaganda Conferences? The DA will no doubt remember there is a man called Zuma aka President who, unlike Zille, can and should be removed from his democratically elected position. And the ANC will attempt to wage another fight against the SAVESA regime-change lot in between tearing itself apart.

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