Posts Tagged ‘Mmusi Maimane’

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.

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Dissolve Parliament says the opposition

February 12, 2018

Following a meeting with opposition leaders in Parliament, we have as a collective, decided that Section 50 of the Constitution must be invoked to dissolve Parliament so that early National and Provincial elections are held.

Anyone from the ANC that wants to lead this country, must get their mandate from the people of South Africa, at the ballot box.

South Africa must choose the next President, not a handful of cronies at Luthuli House.

We have also called on the Speaker of Parliament to convene Parliament as a matter of urgency so that the Motion of No Confidence in President Zuma is heard this week.

When that motion is heard, the people of this beautiful country must head to the streets to make their voice heard. Zuma must go!

Regards

Mmusi

Tomorrow doesn’t have to look like this

October 28, 2017

They say numbers speak louder than words. This is certainly true of Finance Minister Malusi Gigaba’s mid-term budget speech this week.

The numbers were practically screaming, telling us we’re fast running out of money. And our rand responded accordingly, dropping about 3% against the dollar.

Our national financial situation is bleak and the outlook bleaker still – unless we make some bold, brave changes.

Debt service costs have been our fastest growing item of spending, and will be 15% of our budget within three years, meaning for every R1 we have to spend, the first 15c will go to paying off debt.

As confidence in our economy continues to fall, it will cost more and more to service debt, leaving less and less to spend on digging ourselves out of an ever-deepening hole.

Almost half of all spending by government is on wages and interest. This is extremely unproductive and unsustainable.

It’s one thing to borrow to invest in things which could create growth and jobs for the future, such as a top quality education system or enabling infrastructure. Quite another to borrow money to fund a bloated, inept, patronage-driven state.

We have to stabilize and sell off non-strategic, loss-making SOEs such as SAA and improve efficiency at the rest, by employing fit for purpose managers and directors and holding them to account.

We need to reject outright any further investment in nuclear, split Eskom into separate power production and distribution entities, and promote independent, decentralized power production from a diversity of sources.

We need to invest in quality education and training, and we have to build a system and culture of on-the-job skilling through apprenticeships, internships and national service.

We need to relentlessly promote small businesses and make it easier for entrepreneurs to access credit and support. They need a more flexible labour market that enables rather than deters job creation.

We must bring data costs down.

We need land reform that gives real ownership in the form of title deeds, rather than uncertain tenancy.

We need stable, coherent mining policies that are rooted in real-world considerations such as the need to be globally competitive.

Once the economy is growing and investment is coming back in, we can reduce the tax burden on the middle class that has been so overburdened recently, and who are really struggling to make ends meet. This will improve revenue collection and further boost growth.

We need all these things and more. But if there is one silver bullet, it is to eject the moribund ANC and give South Africa a new beginning.

There is simply no other way to restore hope for our children’s future.

Regards

Mmusi Maimane

DA’s Bell Pottinger victory highlights SA’s glaring accountability deficit

September 10, 2017

Accountability prevailed this week, when the DA achieved a successful prosecution on an issue we are passionate about.

Following the complaint we laid with the Public Relations and Communications Association, UK-based Bell Pottinger has been thoroughly held to account for its central role in the Zupta state capture project.

The Guptas and Duduzane Zuma contracted Bell Pottinger, one of the largest and best known PR firms in Europe, to sow racial hatred and division in South Africa in order to deflect attention from their own looting, by creating a fictitious enemy known as “white minority capital” and by winning popular support for a programme of “radical economic transformation”, a fig leaf for policies designed to facilitate further looting of the state.

Through this campaign, Bell Pottinger has done tremendous damage to South Africa, not only by facilitating the ongoing theft of billions of rands of public money that should be spent on SA’s poor, but by damaging SA’s fragile race relations and unsettling our democracy.

In justifying Bell Pottinger’s expulsion from the industry body, UK head of the PRCA, Francis Ingham claimed that Bell Pottinger’s work for the Guptas and Duduzane Zuma “was the worst piece of unethical PR work” he’d seen in his ten year tenure.

The expulsion is a massive blow, from which Bell Pottinger it is unlikely ever to recover. This sends a loud and clear message to other firms, that unethical dealings with corrupt individuals and firms will not be tolerated.

Holding anti-social behaviour to account is what functional societies do in order to maintain the social contract and promote the public good. This is why adherence to the rule of law is a key determinant of why nations thrive or fail.

So it is a huge indictment on South Africa that not a single state capture related arrest has been made, despite thousands of incriminating emails providing incontrovertible evidence of the Gupta and Zuma families’ coordinated programme to loot the state.

On the contrary, the ANC is actively pursuing those within its own ranks who have had the courage to speak out against state capture.

The DA has laid formal charges against all the key known perpetrators of state capture. But the Hawks and National Prosecuting Authority have done nothing at all, because they themselves are captured, being led by Zuma cronies.

Unfortunately, the NPA is vulnerable to political interference, a grave oversight by the writers of our Constitution.

The head of the NPA, the National Director of Public Prosecutions (NDPP), is appointed directly by the President.

So the NPA is unlikely ever to play its central role in preventing Big Man politics from taking hold in SA. Parliament has no part whatsoever in the appointment.

To protect our democracy, we need to build more independence for the NDPP and for the NPA as a whole. The DA supports a constitutional amendment that would make Parliament responsible for the NDPP appointment, in the same way it is responsible for the appointment of the heads of the Chapter 9 institutions.

As per section 179 (4) of the Constitution, the NPA must be able to function without fear, favour or prejudice. SA’s recent history makes it clear that the NPA needs to be independent from the executive.

And our entire history makes it clear that South Africa as a whole will never prosper under a nationalist, race-based political order.

Bell Pottinger and the Zuptas are not the only ones sowing racial division and attempting to polarize society here in South Africa.

There are plenty others too, and we need to reject them in the same way we have rejected Bell Pottinger.

Both Afrikaner nationalism and African nationalism have failed South Africa.

The DA’s project is to move beyond group-based politics, to achieve a society in which we are united by shared values rather than shared identities, and are thus more resilient to the likes of Bell Pottinger, who pursue a “divide to conquer” strategy.

South Africans are better together, and non-racialism is another value, together with institutional independence, accountability and the rule of law, that will underpin our success as a nation.

That’s why the real victory in the Bell Pottinger matter is that going forward, South Africans will be more sensitive to being crassly manipulated by all hate and division mongers, whether here or abroad.

SA needs to reject extractive, racist politics in favour of inclusive politics based on the equal rights of individual citizens. The DA is leading that move.

Regards
Mmusi Maimane

Our pledge to voters and our values are not negotiable in coalitions

September 3, 2017

In the build-up to the 2016 Local Government Elections, we made the same promises to people wherever we campaigned.

And those promises were that, if we were to be voted into government, we would improve service delivery to poor residents, we would root out corruption and we would bring growth and jobs to these communities.

We promised people a clean break from the corruption, the waste and the unaccountability of their incumbent ANC local governments.

And we told them that we wanted to be held to our election pledge. Wherever I campaigned I said: If the DA fails to live up to its promises, then people must use their votes to fire us. And I meant these words.

Fast-forward to immediately after the elections, when the results in several metros put the possibility of coalition governments on the table.

In our negotiations with other parties – and ultimately in our coalition agreement with them – we reiterated our election pledge to the people, and we made it very clear that honouring these promises would be our non-negotiable condition for co-governance.

We were (and still are) prepared to work with all parties, as long as they shared our core commitments to end corruption, deliver services and create jobs.

We would not tolerate a corrupt coalition partner or one that put our ability to deliver services at risk.

The behaviour of Councillor and Deputy Mayor Mongameli Bobani of the UDM, over almost the entire period our coalition government has been in office in Nelson Mandela Bay, was aimed at disrupting the council on which he served and preventing it from doing its work.

This started from the get-go, when he refused to give up the VIP blue lights in his vehicle. This made him the only person in all DA-run cities or DA-led coalitions to break the agreement on blue light vehicles.

From the start Councillor Bobani’s intention was to sabotage the operation of the Nelson Mandela Bay government. There is no other explanation for repeatedly voting with the ANC and against the coalition government.

There is no other explanation for laying baseless charges against the City Manager and the Executive Director of Corporate Services. There is no other explanation for holding his own parallel State of the City event.

And then there is the prima facie evidence, contained in two separate independent forensic reports, of maladministration, fraud and tender irregularities that occurred within departments under Councillor Bobani’s authority.

These reports state that the instructions for the actions in question came from the Deputy Mayor’s office. They also recommend that the Metro attempt to recover the missing funds and take criminal action against those involved.

Any one of these incidents would be grounds for removal from his post. Together, his position becomes truly indefensible.

Yet the UDM’s national leadership under Bantu Holomisa refused to budge, threatening first to pull out of the coalition – a threat they have since back-tracked on – and later to take the DA to court in order to have Councillor Bobani reinstated.

Sadly, the communication from the UDM has become racially divisive, which contradicts the core values of our co-government project.

But this is where it is important to remember the DA’s position on coalition governments: We’re only in it for the people.

The only reason we hold office in the metros is to speed up delivery, eradicate corruption and open opportunities for people.

We’re not there to govern at all cost. If any of our coalition partners insist on making these metros ungovernable, we must draw a line in the sand.

And it is important that our partners realise this too. Because if they think you’re prepared to govern at all cost, they can and will put you in an impossible position.

It is deeply regrettable that Councillor Bobani has been given free reign by his party to wreak havoc in the Nelson Mandela Bay Council.

We have tried over the past eight months to resolve the issue, and we will continue to do so.

But this does not alter our position: We will not allow our own values, our own integrity and our promise to voters to be sacrificed.

Mmusi Maimane
DA Leader

Mmusi Maimane: message to the residents of Kouga

August 6, 2017

Our country is standing on the brink of the biggest change it has seen since the 1994 elections. People have run out of patience with the ANC government.

They realise they are not going to get what they were promised by them and so, across the country, people are mobilising for change.

In many places, this change has already started. A year ago, the DA won several new metros and municipalities from the ANC.

We made promises to the people of these towns and cities that we would make a difference in their communities. And if we didn’t, we said they should vote us out of government again.

And so these new DA governments wasted no time. We knew the clock was ticking, and we knew what people expected from us. We immediately started cleaning out the rot and reversing the damage caused by years of neglect.

It’s not surprising at all that the people of Kouga turned their back on the ANC.

This municipality came to a standstill over the past decade. Nothing happened – hardly any maintenance of older infrastructure took place and no new projects were launched.

Did you know that in the past eleven years, no new RDP houses were built in the entire Kouga? Not one. But Mayor van Lingen’s government has already turned that around.

Right here in Pellsrus, they’re about to start casting foundations for 220 new houses. Not far away, in Kruisfontein, they have also launched a new housing project where the foundations have been cast for 391 new houses.

Mayor van Lingen’s team has also launched an extensive clean-up programme across many of Kouga’s communities, and various new refuse trucks, grass-cutting equipment and skip bins have been bought for the municipality. This clean-up operation has also meant hundreds of fixed-period jobs for the people here.

Then here are the wastewater treatment plants at Kruisfontein and Hankey that have been completed, as well as an upgrade that has been planned for the plant at St Francis Bay.

The informal settlement at Donkerhoek had its main access road upgraded, and electricity has already been switched on at 247 of the sites. The budget to electrify the remaining 116 sites there, as well as at the Ocean View settlement, has now also been approved for next year.

We are aware of the challenges when it comes to schooling in the area, and Mayor van Lingen’s government has successfully sorted out the delays in new school construction projects.

The site of the Andrieskraal Primary School has been handed over to the contractors. This build will include a new hostel. And a new school building at Sea Vista primary was completed and handed over this past year.

My fellow South Africans, this is what real progress looks like. And the Mayor assures me there is a lot more to come.

I know that there is still much to be done here. I have visited houses here in Pellsrus this morning and I have spoken to residents. I know how hard it can be when there are no jobs. I know what the high crime rate does to a community like yours. I know about sewage leaks and dirty streets.

And I assure you, all those things are on the Mayor’s list. You will not be forgotten here like you were under the ANC government.

If we have achieved so much here in Kouga in just one year, imagine what a difference we can make in five or ten years. We can bring back investment into this municipality. We can make it an attractive place for businesses and tourists alike. And with them will come the precious jobs that this community so desperately needs.

But to really be effective, we are going to need your help. Because there is only so much we can do in local government. The real change – the forward-looking plans to create job-creating growth in our country – have to come at national level.

Your vote in 2019 can make that happen. Each of you has the power to say: I don’t want a government that steals my money. I don’t want a government that only cares about itself. I don’t want a government that can’t keep one single promise. I want a fresh beginning under a new government.

Give the DA chance in 2019 to run this province and the country. I give you my word, we will work as hard as we possibly can to improve every aspect of your lives here. And if we don’t, then you must fire us again with your vote. Because that’s how our democracy works. But first give us that one chance.

Regards

Mmusi

Mmusi to visit Jeffreys Bay tomorrow

August 4, 2017

The leader of the Democratic Alliance, Mmusi Maimane, will be visiting Jeffreys Bay tomorrow.

Mmusi will be meeting the DA Councillors, conducting door to door visits, hold a street meeting as well as a public meeting in the Pellsrus Community Hall.

The street meeting will take place at 11:45 am on the corner of Galjoen and Robbie Dennis Streets, Pellsrus, while the public meeting will happen at 13:00 at the Pellsrus Community Hall.

The meetings are open to everyone.

The visit forms part of Mmusi’s #Change19 tour and the need for change at national level in the 2019 election.

“Over the past twenty years, cadre deployment and state capture have bred a strong culture of loyalty to party rather than to the people of South Africa, a culture which will in all likelihood be on full display come 8 August when ANC MPs vote in the motion of no confidence,” said Mmusi.

“That’s why only the people of South Africa can free our country.

Only by voting the ANC out of government in 2019 can we restore the democratic and constitutional order, and re-establish the accountability that must be at the heart of our social compact,” added Maimane.

South Africa is on the cusp of a new beginning

July 31, 2017

Over the past two days, the Federal Executive (FedEx) of the Democratic Alliance (DA) convened in Cape Town to attend to a number of pressing matters concerning the country and the Party.

This statement serves to communicate the outcomes of this weekend’s meeting.

Motion of No Confidence

The Motion of No Confidence in President Jacob Zuma, which I tabled in March this year, is set to be debated and voted in 10 days’ time – on 8 August.

This motion comes at a critical juncture in our country’s young democracy.

The political tide in South Africa is beginning to turn; the ANC has never been weaker and we are on the cusp of change and renewal.

Since this motion was tabled, South Africans from all walks of life, political parties, NGOs, religious bodies, and civil society at large have united behind the call to remove Jacob Zuma and his continued corrupt, irresponsible and reckless leadership.

Removing Jacob Zuma is the first step in turn our country’s fortunes around and reigniting the dream of 1994 – a united, prosperous and non-racial society for all.

Moreover, FedEx resolved that if Jacob Zuma is removed as President through our Motion of No Confidence, we must go to the polls and hold an early general election.

Parliament ought to be dissolved and the choice must to be put to the people as to who their next president and national government should be.

Indeed, the sooner the electorate can elect a new government the better.

Bell Pottinger

FedEx considered the ongoing scandal involving the Guptas and London based PR Firm, Bell Pottinger.

It is greatly encouraging that our call for the Public Relations and Communications Association (PRCA) to launch a disciplinary inquiry into Bell Pottinger’s racially fuelled propaganda campaign was heeded, and the inquiry will start on 18 August 2017.

We have insisted that this inquiry be open to the public. This will ensure that Bell Pottinger faces legal consequences for their actions, and that justice will be served for their promotion of division and racial hatred for cheap political gain in a still deeply divided society.

Moreover, I have also personally written to a list of companies who procure the services of Bell Pottinger, urging them to terminate their relationship with the firm.

Though legal action is effective, corporations respond to their bottom line faster than they do to judges.

Conclusion

The fight for an alternative, post-ANC South Africa is in full swing. We are forging ahead in creating a shared future for all South Africans.

Between now and 2019, we will use every opportunity in government, every single day, to win the trust of voters, and to show South Africans that there is another choice; a better choice, and that choice is the Democratic Alliance.

Regards

Mmusi Maimane

Jacob Zuma killed the ANC – We will not let him kill South Africa too

June 6, 2017

We should be building a post-ANC South Africa together.

In this post-ANC South Africa, we will put the education of our children first by supporting poor schools to become centres of excellence. No child will be left behind.

We will work hard to create a range of education, training and work opportunities for all young people leaving school.

In this post-ANC South Africa we will recognise the important role investors and entrepreneurs play in creating jobs and fighting poverty.

We will modernise our economy and we will invest in industries that make us globally competitive.

In this post-ANC South Africa we will double the Police Force and we will secure our borders, but we will also look at ways to attract skills and talent from across the continent.

We will choose our global friends well, and then stand by them in their time of need.

Friends such as my Zambian counterpart, Hakainde Hichilema, who was thrown in jail by a corrupt government. He will know he can count on the support of the South African government.

In this post-ANC South Africa we will do all we can to create opportunities for people to stand on their own two feet and escape the dependency on social grants. But, for those who need them, we will double the grant income.

In this post-ANC South Africa we will elect a president who will use the Presidency budget to serve the people, and not to stay out of jail.

This is our plan to bring our country back on track. And parts of this plan are already underway.

Our new coalition governments in Johannesburg, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay are already making inroads into reversing the damage left behind in these cities.

In these metros we have tarred new roads, launched new metro police, narcotics and K9 units, handed over thousands of title deeds, launched new housing projects and slashed perks for politicians.

Coalition governments are never easy, but we are making them work for the people of these cities. And we can make them work in national government too.

But it will require a big shift in the way we all think of our roles in building South Africa.

It will require many of you to accept that the ANC you once knew no longer exists.

Jacob Zuma killed that ANC. We will not let him kill South Africa too.

Mmusi Maimane

A new fight for Freedom starts now

April 28, 2017

We come from different political parties, trade unions, churches and civil society groups and we are all South Africans.

We stand united by nothing other than our love for our country.

In 1994 South Africans came together to vote for a new future.

It was an incredible day.

We showed the world that the spirit of the South African people cannot be crushed.

We showed that we can unite in the pursuit of a better life.

We showed that we are a people who love freedom, and we are prepared to fight for it.

Today, 23 years later, we are once again brought together by our common goal: Freedom for all who live here.

We represent political parties.

We represent labour movements.

We represent civil society groups – churches, non-governmental organisations, universities and business.

We have come together to save our democracy from a corrupt government.

We have come together because we believe that freedom must be fought for in every generation.

We have come together because we believe unity is strength.

Unity doesn’t mean you’re the same. It means you’re together.

Today we stand together. United in our diversity.

Under the banner of the Freedom Movement, we will channel the hope and the passion of millions of South Africans who believe in the future of this great nation.

All of us have seen what happens when you give one man too much power.

We have seen what happens when one party is in power for too long.

Together, we are building a new movement to realign politics as we know it.

And, together, we extend a hand of friendship to other parties and individuals who want to join us.

Fellow South Africans

When I look to the future of this country, I see beyond the divisions of the past.

When I look to the future, I see past the narrow party politics of the present.

When I look to the future, I see people who aren’t defined by their political choices. People who no longer have to say “I am ANC” or “I am COSATU” or “I am DA”.

We still are the Rainbow Nation

When I look to the future, I see a new political formation in power.

A new political formation of leaders from across the political spectrum.

A new political formation free of corruption and free of corrupting influences.

A new political formation that defends our Constitution.

A new political formation of, and for, the people.

A new political formation united in the pursuit of prosperity for all.

Because the old order is dying and a new struggle is born.

The old order gave us corruption, looting and the abuse of power.

It gave us an oppressive government that abuses state institutions to fight its fights and settle its scores.

It saw millions of people trapped in poverty and unemployment.

But we’re witnessing the dying kicks of the old order, and the rise of a new struggle.

A new fight against oppression begins today.

A new fight for opportunities begins today.

A new fight for freedom starts now.

Mmusi Maimane