Durban — Political pundits have cast doubt on the newly signed DA and IFP service delivery agreement, stressing that the two political parties have tried to combine forces before in some municipalities, but have failed.
This was after the DA and the IFP signed a service delivery pact in Durban on Tuesday, aimed at ensuring that where each party holds seats in a hung municipality, they work together to improve service delivery and better the lives of residents.
Independent political analyst Thabani Khumalo said he believed that instead of combining forces with the DA, the IFP should have considered working with the ANC, because their constituencies are the same, and they also share the same history.
“The DA and the IFP are two separate groups, therefore I don’t see them succeeding in working together to improve on service delivery. I don’t see any light in their attempt. They have tried to work together in municipalities in the past, and their attempts have failed.
“Their problem is they are both driven by their hate for the ANC, instead of focusing on the suffering masses.”
University of the Western Cape political science Professor Bheki Mngomezulu said this agreement was nothing but two political parties trying to unseat the ANC.
“They will have to put the interests of the poor ahead of their politics, otherwise their agreement will not survive the test of time. The IFP is serving the interests of the suffering masses, whereas the DA still has to put more focus on servicing the black areas where they govern.”
The two political parties said the pact had been six months in the making, adding that it was also motivated by the successful cooperation between them to win and take over municipal wards from the ANC during the by-elections in KwaZulu-Natal. The agreement was signed by the provincial chairpersons, the DA’s Dean Macpherson and the IFP’s Thami Ntuli.
The two parties stressed the fact that this was only a working relationship and did not mean that they were becoming one.
They said their common goal was to remove the ANC from power, and they would be looking to create more working relationships before the 2024 national elections.
Macpherson said both parties shared a strong commitment to constitutionalism, the rule of law and service delivery improvement.
Ntuli said the ANC had wrecked local government across KZN, and it was up to the IFP and the DA to restore faith and trust in the political process.
Some of the key objectives of the agreement include:
• Ensuring that communities have access to basic service delivery.
• Relieving residents and businesses of crippling load shedding by access to affordable and sustainable electricity supply.
• Bringing in investment and jobs to the local economy and making it easier for businesses to trade.
• Supporting devolution of power within the constitutional and legislative framework.
• Eliminating corruption and patronage networks.
Macpherson said that in the interests of transparency and to gain the trust of voters in these municipalities, they would also be publishing these agreements so that voters could hold them accountable.
ANC provincial spokesperson Mafika Mndebele said that the agreement was “nothing but an old wine, just packaged in a different packaging”.
“They have tried doing this in many municipalities, and they have dismally failed. We only have to wait and see, but surely nothing of value will come of it.”
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