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Thami Ka Plaatjie and Mmusi Maimane debate the pros and cons of the merger of Gauteng's new super metro.
The DA cannot hide its true colours of superiority. It has annexed liberation credentials and wears them with no shame, says Thami Ka Plaatjie.
The recent decision by the Demarcation Board to incorporate Midvaal, Sedibeng and Emfuleni into one metro council has drawn a mixed reaction. The ANC has welcomed the decision, whereas the DA, as usual, has objected to the decision and vowed to go to court, its usual playground.
The DA’s Mmusi Maimane argued: “We feel that it has everything to do with undermining the DA’s excellent service and delivery record.”
Recently the DA made loud pronouncements that they would take over Gauteng from the ANC.
What I find strange and repugnant is: Why would the DA object to the incorporation if indeed it is confident about taking over Gauteng? Surely if it takes over the entire Gauteng, as it dreams of doing, it will also be controlling its small white enclave and fiefdom of Midvaal.
This would apply with the national and the provincial government elections.
What is evident is that the DA has mastered the art of misrepresentation, but its half-truths soon catch up with them and are exposed for their political nakedness.
The DA has represented itself on the South African political scene as a rational and modern party that embraces the values of fairness, justice and righteousness.
Standing in the pious heights of self-delusion it mouths a long and endless broadcast of its virtues and advertently omits its vices.
Of late, in its desperate quest to steal the truth, it has annexed liberation credentials and wears them without shame.
I saw one of their posters boldly emblazoned with the words: “We too fought against apartheid.”
Suddenly there is not even one white person who supported apartheid, including the crowd in the DA. What they forget is that such Struggle credentials sit awkwardly on their feeble shoulders.
This piece seeks to answer one fundamental question: Who is the real DA?
There is a simple and straightforward answer that can be proffered to this question. But such a simple answer will obscure the real internal digestive system of this beast that must be surgically dissected to expose its ailing internal organs.
Unlike other normal creatures, this one is without blood and its sinews and veins are fuelled by lies, half-truths and misrepresentations.
The DA is founded on the fundamental ideological praxis and premise of white supremacy. Period! Its very existence revolves around this orientation and pivot, hence its ability to recruit and retain white supremacists of all sorts and political fellowships, hues and shapes.
Whereas the National Party was founded on a simplistic purist neo-Nazi Afrikaner version of white supremacy that excluded other white clans, the DA has flung the white supremacists’ laager wide open to all whites.
It has created a common fellowship of all those who hold a strong resentment and antipathy for African majority rule. Their resentment of black people is not the rabid hatred of the Klux Klux Klan, but the subtle white liberal patronising one.
White racists, such as erstwhile members of the Herstigte National Party and later the Conservative Party, became proud members of the DA overnight, and so followed the Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging and God knows who else. The Nationalist Party had, over the years, nothing to do with the white Conservative Party and always steered away from them.
The DA, on the other hand, has fondly embraced them and allocated them strategic positions in their ranks.
White para-military and renegade gangsters who had terrorised Africans in Meyerton soon exchanged their Mussolini khaki uniforms for the colours of mischief. It became fashionable to be called DA.
The power of money and marketing can hide terror.
Today the town of Meyerton is the only town of Midvaal to fall under the municipality of Midvaal, held by the DA.
This town was virtually a no-go area for Africans when it was, for many years, under the suffocating spell of the Conservative Party.
Africans, in Meyerton, were sjambokked for being in the street by white racists called ducktails who were on motorbikes. White children spat on black people of all ages without provocation.
Black people lived under fear of white racist rule in Meyerton.
This is one town that forcibly removed Africans and placed them in Sebokeng and Sharpeville in the mid-1970s. This town now boasts as a DA stronghold. How imaginative? Scelo, a small African township, was established in 1994 and has since been muzzled, stopped from growing. Where are the white racists who manned this town? Maybe they too fought against apartheid.
Having consolidated these desperate and former Conservative Party areas, the DA proceeded to rent loud-mouth crowds of liberal professionals at white universities. These played the role of gatekeepers, stifling African academic excellence. These loud-mouth liberal academics held strong liberal right-wing views of white paternalism.
They frustrated and sabotaged the emergence of a generation of African scholars at universities for years. These screeching megaphones were enlisted in the grand design to give respectability to the DA’s nefarious designs.
Victims of higher education transformation and displaced and frustrated white professionals were enticed with all sorts of offerings, one being a nostalgic return to the old order.
The third strategic plan was to enlist the willing and abiding support of middle-class natives who have always fancied their existence under white tutelage.
These natives are those in colonial times who have acted as spies, scouts, police, guards, mercenaries, politically shallow elites, turncoats, former homeland sympathisers, nightwatchmen, lily-livered flunkies and useful appendages of white supremacy, inter alia.
Malcolm X calls them the house niggers. They have no faith in themselves and always wish to be next to the Baas or Missus. They resent their blackness and curse their birth since they wish to have been born white. To them anything white represents civility and supremacy of good virtues and Steve Biko’s enduring teachings and sacrifices have fallen on deaf ears with this lot.
Even those who have sworn by Biko’s name have crawled on their bellies in the advance of white supremacy, with coiled tongues mouthing apologetic epithets.
The fourth plan of the DA was to recruit en masse hordes of African youths with all the props of a blockbuster movie.
These hordes have no role save as entitled extras making noises in the political margins entertaining the Madam and her cortege of white political aristocrats. They provide the white Madam and the black junior Madam with a grand spectacle and serve as objects of amusement. Some just want the money the Madam occasionally dishes out. Some just like the idea of singing and performing toyi-toyi songs for the Madam. Like young children who crave attention, these hordes salivate to entertain the Mlungu and scramble to pose for a picture with her. How pathetic!
The fifth assault plan of the DA has been to contract various marriages of convenience with an assortment of so-called civil society organisations and research bodies that are in essence fronts for peddling the tenets of white hegemony.
At the time when the Struggle was raging and African lives were on the line, these professors and academics were hiding behind their mother and grandmother’s screen-walled fences in the northern suburbs occasionally extending sympathy to the oppressed natives.
The oppressed native was an object of pity to be sympathised with and consoled. The oppressed native was never seen as his own person, independent, innovative and fully capable of charting his own destiny.
Now these liberal research bodies and so-called civil society organisations have emerged from their dark caves of cowardly refuge under apartheid to preach righteousness to a people’s government.
They use the power of the pen, a privilege that the white education system bequeathed unto them, to wage an ideological war a gainst a people’s government through disparaging commentary, casting cynicism and outright vilification.
This is the real DA and its running poodles. This is the DA that I dare to come forward and show its true colours.
* Ka Plaatjie is adviser to Public Service Minister Lindiwe Sisulu, and head of ANC Research.
As our party steadily gains ground in Gauteng, the ANC is now using every means to stop our advance, writes Mmusi Maimane.
As the DA continues to grow stronger in Gauteng, the more our opponents will try to use every means at their disposal to stop our momentum. A clear example of this is the abuse of the Municipal Demarcations Board to force through a merger of the Midvaal and Emfuleni municipalities.
Emfuleni residents are getting a disservice from their municipality and the best way to change that is at the polls. There is no evidence that merging that ANC-governed municipality with Midvaal will improve delivery at all.
There's plenty of evidence, however, that this merger is because the ANC is threatened by the DA’s delivery record in Midvaal.
Guess where the quality of life is highest in Gauteng, based on the provincial government’s own surveys?
In DA-governed Midvaal, with an overall rating of 6.6 compared with the provincial average of 6.25.
Those facts don’t change, regardless of the DA’s prospects of winning Gauteng in 2014. It’s about principle, something which Thami Ka Plaatjie doesn’t seem to understand.
It seems his real intent is to launch a ridiculously fabricated racial attack on the DA, so that is the topic I will deal with here.
I am an independent black man running as the DA’s premier candidate in Gauteng. I was elected, not appointed, by my party.
And if anyone thinks otherwise they will find themselves on the wrong side of the facts and history as this campaign unfolds.
Unlike Ka Plaatjie, I haven’t floated from one party to the next, seeking a new political master each time.
I am from Dobsonville. I am a communicator by profession.
First, as a consultant on transforming private companies, then as a motivational speaker, and now as a premier candidate.
Growing up in Soweto it was the ANC who brought us the hope of a better life. President Nelson Mandela reconciled our divided nation. We began to believe in ourselves again.
When President Thabo Mbeki proclaimed that he was an African, born of the people of this continent, our spirits soared. We shared his pride.
Mbeki introduced policies that attempted to get our economy on track.
We believed that the party that liberated us from apartheid would liberate us from unemployment and poverty.
I’m older now and time has moved on.
Today, instead of opportunities for all, we only see opportunities for some. We see a nation of insiders and outsiders. People with political connections get rich, and everyone else is left to struggle on their own.
Ka Plaatjie seems to be so stuck in the past that he has forgotten about the right now.
We are standing here at the front door of history.
We are a young nation with 16 million young people under the age of 40 who are eligible to vote.
Why, then, does this young nation have such old leaders? Why is a 78-year-old man president?
We need to put young people in charge. Young people must be at the centre of power in this country.
With this one, single election in Gauteng we can make history. We can change not just Gauteng, but South Africa.
Let Gauteng show South Africa what we can do. Let’s show South Africa what change looks like.
We did not fight for a one-party state, we fought for a democracy.
The thing that scares politicians the most is losing power. That’s why we need a competitive democracy where people are not scared to change their government.
That is the best and only way to hold politicians accountable to the will of the people.
And we don’t have to knock on this door of history we are standing in front of.
We can beat down this door and make history in this election. We can win and we will win through a partnership of everyone who is crying out for change in this great province of Gauteng.
If every young person who wants change goes out and votes in 2014 we will make history.
In fact, every old person, every black, white, coloured and Indian person who wants change can go out in this election and be a part of history.
We know the ANC is losing support in Gauteng. And never before has the possibility for a new government built on the hopes and dreams of the people been so real.
And every time people in this partnership for change take this message of hope to our friends, neighbours and colleagues, the more real this vision for a better Gauteng becomes.
Let’s show those people in power that we know things don’t have to be this way. We can put young people at the centre of change.
We can make our vision of a clean, caring government a reality. And we can create jobs and opportunity for the people of this province. We can make Gauteng great through this partnership for change.
You see, Ka Plaatjie has recently joined Jacob Zuma’s ANC and the climate of change in Gauteng threatens him immensely. Big losses at the polls could mean he loses his job.
So I understand now why he needs to present a twisted version of history.
The facts about the DA couldn’t be more different from the slanderous drivel Ka Plaatjie is peddling.
The struggle history of prominent DA leaders is well-documented. Helen Zille exposed the apartheid government’s brutal murder of Steve Biko. Helen Suzman fought apartheid as the sole liberal voice in Parliament for years. Patricia de Lille organised workers, factory floor by factory floor, against the oppressive apartheid regime.
But enough about the past: let’s talk about the now.
The DA recently launched a plan to improve BEE and make it more broad-based. People who say that they would abolish BEE are irresponsible; they are throwing out the baby with the bathwater. We need BEE that works.
It is true that we need to stop the same people benefiting from BEE over and over again. BEE for the few perpetuates the same insider-outsider divide that we are trying to move away from.
The DA would improve the scorecard to create jobs and broaden empowerment in a number of ways. The DA would increase recognition for business initiatives that enhance socio-economic development and create jobs.
Importantly, we also want greater recognition for economic benefits held by black South Africans through employee share-ownership schemes (no income tax on gains).
I believe that through these changes we can broaden the empowerment of black South Africans and drive job creation and growth at the same time.
The DA supports land reform that gives people access to the land who were previously denied it.
Land reform needs to be done sustainably so that all may benefit from the richness of our soil.
The DA supports social grants that help lift people out of poverty. We will never take away anyone’s social grant.
We are fighting the legacy of apartheid today for the same reason we opposed apartheid in the past: we believe that all South Africans – whatever their skin colour, language, ethnic group or political connections – should have equal rights and access to open opportunities.
So where are all these ghosts of the past Ka Plaatjie is desperate to raise?
The National Party merged with the ANC and the Freedom Front Plus is in a coalition with the ANC at a national level. As for the Conservative Party and AWB, who knows where they are?
So the public can decide what they want to believe.
They can believe in misguided historians like Ka Plaatjie, desperate to push the agenda of his new political masters.
Or we can believe in change, believe in hope and go to the polls in numbers in 2014 to advance the cause of a Gauteng that is truly great.
*Maimane is DA premier candidate for Gauteng
** The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Newspapers.
The Sunday Independent