Dan Plato
DURBAN - DA leader in the Western Cape Bonginkosi Madikizela has defended City of Cape Town mayor Dan Plato’s comment on immigrants sponging off taxpayers in the province. Plato caused a stir when a video surfaced in which he could be heard saying the Western Cape government was spending 99% of its budget on people who came into the province.

He is chatting to another man in the short video clip.

You must see how we must trim the budget. We pay, currently as we speak, 99 percent for those coming into the Western Cape. The two of us pay for them.

“They can’t fend for themselves. Lots and lots of our budgets go into them, unfortunately, and that is a challenge, a major challenge and one has to bear that in mind,” he said.

Yesterday, Madikizela said the people who came to the Western Cape could not help themselves, and that they needed assistance from the government.

“There’s nothing wrong with what Mayor Plato said, many people come to the Western Cape looking for greener pastures because they have a prospect of finding a job here. That’s why we have the lowest unemployment rate,” he said.

“I always emphasise the importance of respecting the principle of first come, first served. We must always ensure for instance that those who registered for houses first, are first to receive them.”

Madikizela insisted that it was important to help everyone who needed the help of the Western Cape government irrespective of where they came from.

Political analyst Sipho Seepe said Plato’s comment reflected the attitude the DA-led government had towards African people and artificial hierarchy created by apartheid and colonialism.

“This is based on white supremacy with whites on top followed by Indians, coloureds and Africans.

“We have not done enough to dismantle that.”

Seepe said Plato appeared to subscribe to the apartheid hierarchy of racism.

“Plato is subscribing to white supremacy that was sponsored by apartheid and colonialism.”

He also said while there was every reason to be outraged by his comments, the question to ask was the extent to which blacks believed in white supremacy.

Seepe added that the ANC-led government had not done enough to do away with institutionalised racism.

“We need to ask what we have done to dismantle that. That is a societal issue.”

- THE MERCURY