Drama, protests, service delivery promises and more on first day of the voter registration weekend

By Kailene Pillay, Sihle Mavuso, Tarryn-Leigh Solomons Time of article published Sep 18, 2021

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It has been a day of drama as the first day of voter registration got into full election swing for political parties, with President Cyril Ramaphosa descending on Soweto.

However, his visit to Naledi was not smooth sailing as some of the people tried to disrupt him. Angry residents were not happy with the poor service delivery in their areas.

EFF leader Julius Malema was in the coastal city of Durban where he spoke peace in the Phoenix area, which was recently affected by the violence where 36 people lost their lives.

In the Western Cape, Police Minister Bheki Cele was drumming up support of another kind where he was urging communities on the Cape Flats to fight gender-based violence.

DA leader John Steenhuisen was also in the vicinity where he called for people of Langa to back his party in this election.

However, it was Ramaphosa’s campaign in Soweto that got off to a rough start with some of the people in Naledi trying to disrupt him.

But in Chiawelo, he told residents that they will fix their electricity challenges.

“Eskom says some people don’t want prepaid electricity. An official said it’s not that they don't want prepaid but rather a flat rate.

“In turn, I asked how this would work and that the only thing that would work is that each one of us must be able to regulate how we use electricity,” he said.

Speaking in Phoenix, Malema called for peace after the area was affected by violence in July.

More than 50 people have been arrested for the alleged killing of 36 people.

Malema said this was not the time to stoke racial tensions to build bridges between racial groups.

“Innocent people lost life here in Phoenix but that must not be attributed to every Indian you come across because to do that amounts to self-hate, there are a lot of Indians who are against that, who were against that,” Malema said.

A few kilometres away in Lindelani, IFP President Velenkosini Hlabisa said they wanted to wrestle some municipalities from the ANC.

“So we are ready, we know the municipalities which we have identified as our targets, the people have protested enough and it is time now that they use the chance on November 1 to vote for the IFP, and vote out the political party they have been protesting against, because it does not make any logic to protest and then vote in that person and continue protesting the following day, yet you have a right to take out the political party that is unable to deliver and put in the party that has a track record.

“The IFP has a track record and when we say ’trust us’ it’s because we're able to deliver and we live to our promise,” Hlabisa said

Steenhuisen said they wanted to retain the municipalities they control in the Western Cape and other provinces.

Political Bureau

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