Decades after his grand-father’s reign as a central figure during the apartheid government, a grandson of the “architect of apartheid”, Dr HF Verwoerd, is reportedly making his way to Parliament on a Freedom Front Plus (FF Plus) ticket.
According to Netwerk24 Dr Wynand Boshoff, son of Orania founder Prof. Carel Boshoff and FF Plus leader in the Northern Cape, has scored a seat in the National Assembly owing to the party’s phenomenal growth in last week’s general elections.
In 2014, the FF Plus received 165 715 national votes.
This time around, 414 864 people voted for the party. This is the party’s best performance in a general election.
It has grown its national support base from 0.90% in 2014 to 2.38%.
Boshoff’s mother, Anna, was the daughter of Verwoerd who served as prime minister of South Africa from 1958 to 1966.
His brother, also Carel, is the “president” of Orania, a whites-only town in the Northern Cape.
According to Netwerk24, Boshoff said he wanted to be judged on his own merits and not on those of his granddad.
In the past years Orania, where he has lived since 1993, was his “weekend home” as he served as a councillor in the Sol Plaatje Municipality in Kimberley.
Boshoff reportedly said he would be representing minority groups in Parliament, not only those of Afrikaners, but also those of coloured communities.
The FF Plus is now the fifth biggest in Parliament. It gained six more seats, bringing its number of MPs to 10.
Though tiny compared with the three leading parties – the ANC, the DA and the EFF – the gains of the FF Plus nevertheless came as something of a surprise.
Former DA supporters who voted for the FF Plus in this year’s election felt alienated by the party, vulnerable in a country where race dominates national discourse and concerned about a future where they believe their culture and identity is being threatened.
But beyond that, it was the DA’s handling of the matter around the Afrikaans teacher in the town of Schweizer-Reneke and a speech by Mmusi Maimane about “white privilege and black poverty” that pushed DA voters into the arms of the FF Plus, said Philip van Staden, a member of the party’s national executive.