THE DA’s KwaZulu-Natal leader, Zwakele Mncwango, said that if the DA were to assume power, it would place infrastructure development at the top of its agenda. Samkelo Mtshali
Durban - The DA’s KwaZulu-Natal leader and Premier candidate, Zwakele Mncwango, yesterday received the blessing of his home town’s traditional leaders as the DA looked to become the new provincial government after next year’s national general elections.

Mncwango was in Nongoma to celebrate his nomination to be the DA’s premier candidate as the party slaughtered two cows and gifted traditional leaders from the Usuthu and Mandlakazi royal households in Nongoma four sheep, in what he referred to as the most important day of his life in the DA.

“KwaZulu-Natal is very important because by looking at the national average, if the DA was to unseat the ANC at national level, you would never be able to do that without KwaZulu-Natal,” Mncwango said. “If the DA were to increase its support and maintain its position as the official opposition in South Africa, you need support from KwaZulu-Natal.”

He said that one of the key dy- namics of the province was that it was winnable as it has been governed by two parties already since the dawn of democracy - with the IFP running the province from 1994 to 1999 before being unseated by the ANC.

“This tells you that although the people of KZN often get undermined, they know their rights in terms of democracy because they were able to vote one party into power, and the same communities in KwaZulu- Natal were able to vote the same party out,” Mncwango said.

He said that although some might think the DA was taking chances in wanting to be a governing party in the province, people on the ground wanted change because they wanted jobs, they wanted a government that would stop corruption and grow the country’s economy.

Mncwango said that if the DA were to assume power, it would place infrastructure development at the top of its agenda to ensure economic development of rural communities to alleviate poverty and joblessness.

Hlanganani Gumbi, a member of the provincial legislature and the DA KwaZulu-Natal premier campaign manager, said that KZN was a strategic province.

“It’s important that we put forward a strong candidate and Mncwango has proven himself both at eThekwini and in the province as a strong and reliable politician who stands against corruption,” Gumbi said.

He said that presenting Mncwango to the traditional leadership of his home town was a sign of respect for the role that traditional leaders played in communities.

The Mercury