Elections May 2014: Vote for the Future, Not for the Past

A Personal View – April 2014

This affliction pervades all political parties contesting this crunch election, but the ANC more than most.

Firstly the ANC. What message is the ANC campaigning on? Its glorious past. By providing South Africa with an inclusive future not comprising disparate races, it has undoubtedly done South Africa a huge service. One can never detract from this momentous achievement but what does South Africa now have: crony capitalism, moral turpitude on a grand scale & ineffective government in most spheres?

Of course the ANC does not want to cast the spotlight on the ineptitude of the Zuma government, so what is its campaign position: focus on history of which it is undeniably proud.

On the other hand, we have the vitriol of the EFF. Like a scorned lover, the bile spews forth. It too, like COPE before it, is focused on the past. Both are based upon a personal vendetta, of vengeance with a passion. What we now have is all Julius Malema’s ill-considered remarks whilst president of the ANC Youth League, rebounding on him. The latest apology last week was a visit to Thabo Mbeki’s mother in the Transkei to beg for forgiveness for his rash comments about her son prior to the Polokwane Conference!

Being consumed by anger due to his rejection by the ANC, he is currently making a whole new bunch of ill-considered & rash comments which in a few years’ time he will be forced to recant.

In such a state, there is no real thought of building the future, rather it is one of retribution and not policy. With the prospect of the EFF becoming the official opposition in three provinces, I would hazard a guess that the tedium of policy discussion will not enrapture the foul-mouthed men of the EFF. It is easy to vilify but difficult to build policy, consensus & then execute. Debate & contestation is not their forte.

I will be watching their progress with eager anticipation.

Then we come to the DA. Again the focus is too much on attacking the ANC’s poor record of governance. Not that it should not be highlighting such breaches & lack of implementation, but again the focus should rather be on reasoned plans leavened with some substance & not merely platitudinous political promises so beloved of all political parties.

I fear that even if that had to adopt this position, given the ANC’s Liberation Credentials albeit now requiring burnishing, and the race based voting patterns prevalent in South Africa; this would only marginally improve their electoral chances.

Finally my election predictions:

Party 2009 actual 2014 prediction
ANC 65.9 65
DA 16.6 20
Cope 7.4 1
EFF DNC 4
Agang DNC 1
IFP 4.5 4

DNC = Did not contest

More’s the pity that the past glories are still dictating the future of South Africa


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