DA members set to tackle racial issues, social market economy ahead of conference
Johannesburg - The Democratic Alliance's (DA) first released discussion document focuses on how the party will address a variety of issues some dealing with diversity, re-dress, freedom and the social market economy.
The DA's head of policy Gwen Ngwenya released the party's discussion document dealing with values and principles. This document is one of three discussion documents that will be discussed at the party policy conference on April 4th and 5th.
The party will also host its conference in April and elect a new leader. John Steenhuisen has been acting as interim leader following Mmusi Maimane's resignation as leader in November.
The party has been facing a number challenges and has faced criticism for its handling of race tensions within its ranks.
Ngwenya said the values and principles of the party were important for the party and its relationships with citizens.
"It is the point of departure for the rest of our policy positions, and represents the basis which South Africans should expect all of our conduct to conform to, and which we measure ourselves against," Ngwena said.
"We have always said that we stand for freedom, fairness, opportunity, and diversity. This is not something we say and then forget about. This a chance to reaffirm these commitments, and others such as to a social market economy, evidence-based decision making, redress, and non-racialism, not only to ourselves but to the public."
Other hot topics such as the issue of race, the document said the party stands for non-racialism.
"People who identify with each other on this basis should not be squeezed into narrow racial boxes inherited from our segregated past. Non-racialism is, therefore, a commitment, not just to reject racialism and racism, but to fight for the deconstruction of race, and the reconstruction of a non-racial future," the document states.
The document also states that the party does oppose race, gender and other quotas.
"The DA, therefore, opposes race, gender or other quotas. When embraced, diversity acts as a potential bulwark against the uniformity of thought and closed thinking. The DA will strive to maximise the potential value of diversity. The DA unequivocally stands for non-racialism, not multiracialism."
The documents also tackle the party's approach to the economy.
"The DA will defend and advocate for a market economy, as well as the principles that underpin it: competition, innovation and initiative."
The document also deals with several other topics such as openness, fairness and the constitution. The document will be discussed by DA members and possibly adopted at the conference, Ngwenya said.