Archive for the ‘DA News’ Category

Meet the DA members of the Eastern Cape Legislature

May 22, 2019

Ten Democratic Alliance members were sworn in as members of the sixth sitting of the Eastern Cape Provincial Legislature, and as the official opposition in the province.

Front row (left to right): Jane Cowley, Nqaba Bhanga, Bobby Stevenson, Edmund van Vuuren. Second row: Retief Odendaal, Yusuf Cassim, Nomvano Zibonda. Back Row: Sanele Magaqa, Vicky Knoetze and Marshall von Buchenroder.

This follows the election held on 8 May 2019.

The members are:

  • Nqaba Bhanga
  • Bobby Stevenson
  • Yusuf Cassim
  • Marshall von Buchenroder
  • Vicky Knoetze
  • Retief Odendaal
  • Jane Cowley
  • Nomvano Zibonda
  • Edmund van Vuuren
  • Sanele Magaqa

These individuals bring with them a mix of skill, expertise and experience that puts them in good stead to serve the people of the Eastern Cape.

“I have also appointed Bobby Stevenson as chief whip of the party. Bobby brings with him a wealth of experience, as the longest serving member now in his fifth term, and has served the party well as the leader of the provincial legislature during the fifth sitting,” said DA Provincial leaderNqaba Bhanga..

The DA, as the official opposition in the legislature, will be guided by the following two principles:

  1. holding the provincial government accountable for the exercise of their powers, and
  2. putting forward fresh ideas and credible alternatives to government plans and policies.
Advertisements

SA needs a plan to build an inclusive and growing economy

May 15, 2019

The release of the StatsSA’s Quarterly Labour Force Survey has revealed that the South African official unemployment rate has increased to 27.6%, and the expanded unemployment rate increased to 38%, translating to 9.9 million unemployed people in South Africa.

While the increase is marginal, it is indicative of an economy which is stagnant and shedding jobs at an alarming rate. This is compounded by a National Government that is devoid of a credible, long-term plan for jobs and the economy.

This current trajectory is unsustainable. South Africa simply cannot afford to lose any more jobs.

This 0.5% increase represents millions South Africans who cannot put food on the table or provide their families with basic necessities.

In the brutal face of 15% VAT, an increase in electricity costs, looming winter blackouts and unchecked corruption, it is clear that the current National Government is working against all attempts to build an working economy.

Despite this, the DA-governed Western Cape has again bucked the unemployment trend and is the only province to decrease it’s expanded unemployment rate by 0.4 percentage points.

The DA maintains that a job in every home is possible. More than 90% of households on the DA-governed Western Cape have a job in every home.

Instead of the ANC’s one-size-fits-all approach to fixing the joblessness crisis in South Africa, the DA proposes a complete reform of the economy.

South Africa’s current economic conditions are not conducive for job creation. South Africa needs an inclusive and growing economy.

It is for this reason, the DA introduced its ‘Jobs Act’ last month. The Act advocates for the protection and support of SMMEs by ensuring greater flexibility in the labour market through minimum wage exemption for businesses that fall into certain classifications.

This will guarantee that doors of thousands of small businesses remain open and protect thousands of jobs.

The Act will also do away with all unnecessary red tape that small businesses still have to comply with, this will make it easier for entrepreneurs to set up shop.

In addition to this, the DA’s Jobs Act will ensure the creation of a special forum for dispute resolution specifically for SMMEs.

One of the biggest obstacles to economic growth in this country is the rampant corruption and poor governance record on the part of the ANC.

Only if we take a hard stance against corruption, as in the DA governed Western Cape, will the country be able to attract investment to spur growth which creates jobs.

DA wins majority of Provincial votes in Kouga

May 10, 2019

The majority of votes cast on the provincial ballot in Kouga were in favour of the Democratic Alliance.

48 % of voters (18 671) voted for the DA, who governs the Municipality in Kouga, after winning the 2016 Local Government Election.

The ANC, who are the only other party represented in the Kouga Council, gained 42 % of the vote (16 332).

None of the smaller parties managed to gain more than 4 % of the vote, indicating that Kouga remains an area dominated by the two big parties in South African politics.

While the IEC has not yet completed counting the votes, the ANC has won the Eastern Cape with around 68 % of the vote with the DA winning around 16 %.

The DA has retained the Western Cape province and will be the official opposition in the Free State, Gauteng and the Northern Cape.

The DA is also the biggest opposition party in South Africa with close to 23 % of the vote at time of publication.

DA calls for a vote audit

May 10, 2019

The DA has served on the IEC over 2000 procedural objections, and a demand for an audit of votes cast on 8 May, and special votes cast on Monday on Tuesday.

Our demand is that the IEC must audit the numbers of ballot cast, against the crossed off voters’ rolls, and VEC 4 forms, to determine that the number of ballots cast is legitimate, and no double-voting has taken place.

This audit is necessitated by an overwhelming number of procedural errors committed by the IEC over Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday, from ink washing off, to VEC4 forms being overlooked, to multiple voting.

We anticipate that the IEC will complete this audit, and present the outcome, before declaring the Election results on Saturday. We reserve our rights to formally challenge the results if the audit reveals serious issues.

Additionally, we have learned tonight that numerous very small parties have filed a formal objection to the Election process, with the IEC. This has the potential, depending on the IEC response, to delay the finalization of the Election results, which we are closely monitoring.

For absolute clarity, the DA is not at this stage part of the formal objection, but we are independently seeking a Vote Audit and thereafter we may enter into a formal objection.

Let me again thank all DA structures who worked with passion, commitment, dedication and tirelessness throughout this campaign. We are well on track to build One South Africa for All, in a project that must continue toward Election 2021.

Ke nako: Be brave, give change a chance

May 8, 2019

This election is undoubtedly our most important election since 1994, with South Africa balancing dangerously on a knife-point with issues of crime, corruption, state capture, unemployment and immeasurable poverty.

When we cast our ballots today, we need to remind ourselves of the heartfelt suffering of millions of our fellow citizens, whose lives have not improved, and have in fact worsened, under the rule of the failing ANC.

This will no doubt be a watershed election. The governing party has had 25 years to better the quality of the lives of our people, but they have instead chosen to prioritize the looting of the people’s money for their own selfish enrichment.

It is with this in mind that the DA would like to implore people to be brave at the ballot box, and give change a chance.

The ANC has brought our beautiful country to its knees through 25 years of failures and broken promises. And when they notice that we are no longer satisfied with their theft and deceit, they choose to divide us along racial lines – much like the apartheid government did.

Only the DA can bring true, tangible change South Africans so desperately need and deserve – with an honest and professional police service, a job in every home, faster service delivery, secure borders and a 15-year jail sentence for anyone found guilty of corruption.

The DA is the only party that can build One South Africa for All – with 10 years of good governance experience we have proven this.

We are asking for more voters to be brave and give change a chance.

We wish all voters clarity, confidence and bravery, as they make a mark next to the DA, a political party they know they can trust to bring real change.

12 great reasons to vote DA on 8 May

May 7, 2019

South Africans are heading for the polls on 8 May 2019. Our country is at a cross roads and corruption has ensured that many South Africans have yet to enjoy the benefits of democracy.

Where the DA governs, we govern well and in Kouga, service delivery has vastly improved since 2016 and the financial position of Kouga Municipality is stable.

Housing projects have been unlocked in Humansdorp and Jeffreys Bay while land has even been bought by the DA led Kouga Municipality to facilitate future housing developments.

Here are more reasons to vote DA on 8 May and bring change to the rest of South Africa.

1. One-party dominance is failing SA. Our democracy urgently needs a strong alternative. We must build this at the centre of our politics and society. This is where the DA is located.

2. The DA is the only sizable party that stands for the rule of law and a market-driven economy.

3. DA is the only party with a solid track record in government. No other party on the national list has demonstrated its ability to run a national or provincial government efficiently and honestly.

4. 15 out of the 20 best-run municipalities in SA are DA-led. (Source Good Governance Africa’s Governance Performance Index 2019.)

5. DA-led Western Cape is SA’s top-performing province for financial stability and governance. (Source: Ratings Afrika’s Municipal Financial Stability Index 2019)

6. DA-led Western Cape has the lowest broad unemployment: 23% compared with SA average of 37%. (Source: StatsSA QLFS)

7. DA-led Western Cape achieves the best basic education outcomes – highest retention of children in school until end of matric. Retained 63% of kids in 2018. All other provinces retained under 50%. Highest real matric pass rate.

8. DA-led Western Cape achieves the best health outcomes. Life expectancy is the highest in the country, has increased by a projected 7 years since DA took over in 2009. And 90% of people live within 30 minutes of a clinic.

9. DA-led Western Cape success rate of land reform farms is 72%, compared to 10% success rate for SA as a whole.

10. DA-led Midvaal municipality is the only municipality in Gauteng to come in the top-20 best-run municipalities in SA. (Source Good Governance Africa’s Governance Performance Index 2019.) Has achieved 5 consecutive years of clean audits. (Source: Auditor General)

11. DA-led Western Cape has by far the best track record in spending public money on the public. Achieved 83% clean audits with Gauteng coming a distant second at 52% (Source: Auditor General’s report for 2017/18.)

12. Cape Town is SA’s best-run metro. (Source: Ratings Afrika’s Municipal Financial Stability Index 2019)

The DA is the only party that can save South Africa

May 6, 2019

Hankey was blue yesterday as the Democratic Alliance held a rally in the town which included a march through the suburbs and ended with a mass town hall meeting.

Close to 1000 people gathered near the Spar in Hankey to march with Member of Parliament Malcolm Figg, Kouga Mayor Horatio Hendricks as well as other Kouga Councillors.

The march ended up in Stofwolk after being joined by hundreds more people and being escorted by the local Police and Traffic Department.

At the town hall meeting, Mayor Horatio Hendricks said that the DA is the only party for all South Africans and the only party with a proven track record in governance that ensured better service delivery to all South Africans.

“The DA led Kouga Municipality is rolling out wheelie bins to all residents of Hankey so that the collection of waste and rubbish can be done more effectively,” said Hendricks.

“We are installing bulk infrastructure to be able to build more houses for the poor and have even bought land in Humansdorp and Thornhill to facilitate future housing developments,” added Hendricks.

The DA will make sure a national government prioritizes an honest, professional Police Force that protects the residents of South Africa said Member of Parliament Malcolm Figg who also addressed the crowd at the Vasumzi Landu Hall in Hankey.

“We cannot continue with a national government under the ANC that just steals the money and doesnt deliver services to all South Africans,” said Figg.

The National and Provincial election takes place on 8 May 2019.

To check if you are registered to vote, send an sms to 32810 or visit Check DA

DA offers R 50 000 reward for info on poster interference

May 6, 2019

Due to constant assaults on their posters, the Democratic Alliance has announced a cash reward of R 50 000 for information on poster defacement, removal or interference, when such information leads to successful prosecution of the offender.

2019 DA election manifesto

“Many of our posters, across the province, are being removed by criminal elements,” said DA Provincial chairperson Andrew Whitfield.

“Last month we were informed of an EFF activist allegedly removing our posters and burning them.

He was later arrested and appeared in court. It is a criminal offence to interfere with a party’s election posters in any way.

The Independent Electoral Commission has made it clear that, according to the electoral code of conduct, defacing political posters is one of the most serious offences,” said Whitfield.

If any person is found guilty of committing such crimes the perpetrators can face a fine or imprisonment of up to 10 years.

“Tips and evidence of poster interference can be sent to report@da.org.za – these may be sent anonymously and are best prosecutable when photos or videos are sent too,” concluded Whitfield.

The 2019 National and Provincial election takes place on 8 May and the DA is campaigning on an offering to the electorate by by fighting corruption, establishing an honest and professional police service, creating fair access to jobs, securing our borders and speeding up basic service delivery.

Interview with DA Leader Mmusi Maimane

May 5, 2019

To say that DA Leader Mmusi Maimane is hardworking and devoted to our beautiful country, would be an understatement. Read the exclusive interview with Mmusi below.

ChangeMaker (CM): You have said before that you are not a career politician but that you were called into politics by God. How does your faith influence your approach to leading the DA?

Mmusi Maimane (MM): My faith brought me to this point in my life and sustains me personally in my daily work leading an organisation like the DA. My faith is my daily bread and butter.

CM: Are your two small children used to seeing their dad on TV?

MM: During election time it is not just the TV – it’s radio, it’s billboards, and it’s placards on lampposts. But yes, it’s not something I ever imagined having to navigate through as a family. I must say the toughest part about my job is spending so much time apart from my children.

“My faith is my daily bread and butter.”

 

CM: You speak seven languages. What would you say is your mother tongue?

MM: My mother is from Cofimvaba in the Eastern Cape and speaks isiXhosa, and my father is from the old Bophuthatswana in the North West and speaks Setswana. And so, growing up I spoke both Setswana and isiXhosa at home, while being taught in English at both primary and high school. Therefore, I wouldn’t say I have a mother tongue – I have three!

CM: Do you think South Africans should be taught in the language of their choice, wherever possible?

MM: We support the constitutional principle that every person has the right to be taught in the official language of their choice, where reasonably practicable. In line with this, we believe that more, and not less, official languages should be used as mediums of instruction and that all official languages should be developed for use as academic languages of instruction.

CM: Voters seem to have a lot of questions about the DA’s stance on ‘land expropriation without compensation’. Does the DA support expropriation without compensation?

MM: Land is a justice issue and there is a false dichotomy out there that suggests if you oppose expropriation without compensation you are opposed to righting the wrongs of the past. Section 25 of the Constitution protects private property rights as well as making provision for the restitution and reform of land. We support this constitutional provision and are fighting on that front. We envision a South Africa in which every person can own property, and that the circumstances of their birth is no impediment to them acquiring and accumulating wealth-creating assets. But the current government and fringe political parties must not use the Constitution as a scapegoat for their failure to secure effective land reform.

“Voting for smaller parties right now is tantamount to rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic.”

DA Leader Mmusi Maimane

CM: Many look to the governments in Jozi and Tshwane and say that the DA and the EFF “are in bed together”. Is the DA in coalition with the EFF?

MM: The voters in Johannesburg and Tshwane rejected the ANC in 2016, as they failed to get a majority of votes. Therefore, the DA took over with the voting support of the EFF. We are not in coalition with the EFF, as we differ fundamentally on several core principles. The EFF remains in opposition in both Johannesburg and Tshwane. We are working hard to turn those cities around following two decades of looting and under-delivery of services.

CM: The build-up to this election has, increasingly, been characterised by identity politics. Why is the DA’s project of bringing South Africans together – across racial, religious and cultural lines – so important for the future of South Africa?

MM: Our country has a history of identity politics – from British Nationalism to Afrikaner Nationalism to African Nationalism. It’s all we’ve ever known. We are forging a new vision for South Africa by building a broad centre that can be a political home for all South Africans, no matter their age, income, gender, sexual orientation, religion or racial identity. In this South Africa, we are brought together by shared values, and this us at the core of our message of One South Africa for All. It is the only option for our country.

CM: Why is a vote for a smaller party a waste?

MM: The true test for any democracy is whether power can change peacefully at the ballot box. The challenge for South Africa is to fast arrive at this point, where the governing party is kept on their toes by the ever-present threat of losing power.

We cannot allow our country to fall prey to the entrenched single-party hegemony that continues to plague the African continent. The very founding values of our democracy are at stake. If we cannot hold rank failure and corruption to account, then can we really call ourselves a democracy at all? So, we urgently need to build a strong counterweight to the ANC, to show that another way is possible.

Voting for smaller parties right now is tantamount to rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic. Smaller parties will not stop our demise under the ANC and blur our focus on the biggest threat to our democracy: one-party dominance.

Under normal circumstances, the plethora of parties – 48 on the national ballot paper alone – should be welcomed as a sign of a vibrant democracy replete with plentiful options for voters to express their individual preferences.

But this is not a business-as-usual election; this is a fight for our survival.

So 8 May must be about building a credible alternative government, not about creating a wide-sprinkling of opposition parties on the fringe of our politics.

What to expect on Election day

May 5, 2019

On Election Day – Wednesday 8 May – voting stations will open from 7am until 9pm to allow the 26.7 million registered voters to cast their ballots for the national and provincial elections.

Voting stations will be staffed by approximately 189 000 election officials who have volunteered and been trained over the past two months to conduct the elections.

How voting will happen at the voting station

On average there will be 8 election officials per voting station which includes the Presiding Officer, Deputy Presiding Officer and officials to perform the various aspects of the voting process including:

  • Assisting voter’s in the queue including checking that they have the right identification documents (only green barcoded ID book, a smartcard ID or a valid temporary ID certificate is accepted)
  • Scanning the voters’ ID document and checking the voter’s name against the voters’ roll
  • Inking the voter’s left thumb with indelible ink
  • Stamping and issuing the voter with a national and provincial ballot paper

Officials are also available to capture addresses for voters, whose addresses do not appear on the voters’ roll.

Each political party is also permitted to deploy two party agents at every voting station to oversee and monitor voting and counting.

Domestic and international observers will also be deployed to voting stations around the country. Sixty six observer organizations have been accredited by the IEC.

Voting stations will close at 9 pm on Election Day – but all voters who are in the queue to vote at 9 pm will be allowed to vote.

Ballot paper improved for 2019 General Elections

The IEC has improved the ballot with the following innovations:

1)   The 2019 ballot papers have been redesigned to enable easy identification of the party of choice by the voter, to facilitate the selection of that party with confidence and to minimise risks of miscast ballots.

2)   For visually impaired and special needs voters the Commission has produced TEN customised voting aids called Universal Ballot Templates (UBTs) to fit the newly designed 2019 national and provincial ballots. Each voting station will have a UBT to accommodate the national ballot and one for the provincial ballot.

3)   For all voters, the Commission has developed large posters showing the national ballot and the provincial ballot.  These will be displayed in each voting station to help the voters easily distinguish the different parties on the ballot list.

Once the voting station closes, the counting of votes begins immediately at the voting station. The counting is conducted by election officials and is witnessed by party agents and observers.

The results slip for each voting station is completed by the Presiding Officer and is signed by party agents who are also encouraged to take a photograph of the results slip to allow them to compare it to the final result captured on the results system.

One copy of the results slip is posted on the door of the voting station while the second copy is taken back to the local IEC office where is it scanned into the results system and the results data captured through a double-capture process to reduce any human error.

She said that the captured results are compared against the scan of the results slip and audited by independent auditors before being transmitted to the national and provincial results operations centres where they immediately and simultaneously become available to the Electoral Commission, political parties, observers and the media.

Voters can check their voting station location by SMSing their ID number to 32810 (R1) and can reach the Contact Centre on 0800 11 8000 for all enquiries regarding the elections.