Durban – IFP President Velenkosini Hlabisa says that his party has targeted a combination of local and district municipalities from which it wants to wrestle power from the ANC at the November 1, 2021 Local Government Elections.
Hlabisa kicked off his visit to voting districts in townships north of Durban, including Ntuzuma and KwaMashu, to monitor the voter registration process.
Hlabisa arrived at the Ndabomuhle Junior Primary School in Ntuzuma, ward 38, where so far only 29 registered voters had arrived to check their voting status out of a total of 103 registered voters in what is a small voting district.
The IFP had ruled ward 38 between 1994 and 2011 and has set its sights on regaining governance of the ward from the ANC.
Hlabisa is also expected to criss-cross areas such as the overcrowded KwaMashu Hostel, which is a well known IFP stronghold, Lindelani, Phoenix and Inanda in the north of Durban in what is the one and only voter registration weekend before the elections.
Hlabisa says that although these are the first elections in which the party will not be led by Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, they had an added advantage of having Buthelezi still campaigning vigorously.
He said that their call earlier this year for the postponement of the elections was based on the devastating impact of the Coronavirus on society, but added that they were ready to contest and win in specifically targeted wards, local municipalities and district municipalities.
"We explained that we are ready for the elections should the Constitutional Court give a go ahead, and on the day when the court made the decision we got on the road running and we are on the road until November 1. We were prepared in the first by-elections in November 2020, the second in April and the third one in May 2021 where we participated and did very well to an extent that we were able take the ward of the ANC in Nkandla in November, we were able to take the ward of the ANC at Phongolo in May 2021.
"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.
He added that the ground work that they had done had also left them confident of sustaining the upward trajectory that the party was on since their 2012 strategic plan to bounce back, following the effects of the breakaway of the NFP.
"That yielded into our results in 2016, we regained the ground and we knew in 2019 we will do very well as we are now official opposition. We are confident and we know we are going to do very well in 2021 as a building block for 2024 as we want to reclaim KwaZulu-Natal National and Provincial elections," Hlabisa said.