There is a though battle for the life of Western Cape.
The ANC in the Western Cape said it was not vying for a coalition with any party but has instead bolstered its campaign on the ground towards reclaiming the provincial government from the DA.
Addressing the media on Sunday together with the ANC’s deputy secretary general, Jessie Duarte, the party’s provincial elections co-ordinator, Ebrahim Rasool, said they were “hungry” to up their votes in the province and ascend to its helm.
Rasool was the last ANC premier of the Western Cape before the party was unseated by the DA in the 2009 national elections.
“The last 10 days before election day is going to be a massive super human attempt to move us towards that magical 51%. I think it’s asking for a literally super-human effort but we have full support from national leadership and we have provincial leaders out on the ground camping in certain key areas to make it happen,” he said.
Rasool took a swipe at the DA, which has been garnering votes by telling people to vote their party and keep the ANC and EFF out of the Western Cape. The DA’s Western Cape Premier candidate, Alan Winde, has also been asking voters to vote for his party so that they can prevent a government of coalition by the ANC and the EFF. This was dismissed as a “scare tactic” and a “message of hypocrisy” by Rasool.
“If you’re alleging on a poster or radio advertisements about an ANC-EFF coalition, that’s dangerous for the Western Cape. First break your coalition with the EFF in Johannesburg, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay (municipalities)… you cannot say, beware of the ANC-EFF alliance and maintain your alliance in Tshwane, Johannesburg and Nelson Mandela Bay,” he said.
The DA was accused by Rasool of “overlooking its provincial leaders” when naming its premier candidates in what was beneficial for the ANC saying “the impact is that we’re receiving the benefits of walk-overs from the DA in their base areas”.
In defence of recent calls by the DA for the ANC to make known their Premier candidates before May 8 general elections, Rasool said that was something that ended “way back in 1999”. He said the party was now saying, “do well in the elections…we then look at the outcome and decide who is best for the circumstances that will implement the manifesto of the ANC”.
Meanwhile, Duarte said she has interacted with some DA members who said to her that they “feel undermined by the leadership of the DA” and want to return to the ANC.
“They feel that they’re not given opportunities to speak their minds in meetings… they believe the DA leadership is using black South Africans. When DA have dinner parties you will only find white people but when they have a march then all DA black members are called to participate and they feel they can’t be used like that any longer… they left, they want to move and come back to the ANC,” she said.
Duarte reiterated the ANC’s promise to create jobs saying “although we aren’t able to create as many jobs as we would like to yet, we will work on it very fast”.
She also touched on the issue of social wage saying it was a “very important issue in our country and decrying social wage is not something we feel we can allow anybody to do”.
“It’s very often in areas where people live in urban areas and smart suburbs (where) it is very hard for them to understand that a poor person does not have breakfast in the morning and did not have dinner last night and we argue the fact that they must have clean water,” Duarte said.
“There are those issues as well as our commitment to continuing with NSFAS and making sure students are able to reach higher education as well as National Health Insurance that we believe must be implemented this year.”