Ramaphosa says past errors have cost the ANC the City of Cape Town and asks residents to give party a second chance
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Cape Town - President Cyril Ramaphosa has continued to insist that while the ANC has made mistakes, it is ready to turn a new leaf.
Addressing a community meeting at a Qandu-Qandu informal settlement in Khayelitsha’s Greenpoint, Ramaphosa used the election campaign to admit that errors had cost the party governance in the metro in the City of Cape Town.
“We have chosen councillors in the most unprecedented manner. We did not identify people and say, ’you communities, elect them’,” he said.
Ramaphosa added that the communities had chosen their preferred candidate councillors.
“We say that we, as the ANC, know that we made mistakes in the past. Out of those mistakes, we learnt our lessons.”
Videos: Phando Jikelo and Ayanda Ndamane/ African News Agency
Last week, the ANC made its more than 10 000 councillors sign a pledge that committed them to serve their communities.
The party has 25% youth and 46% women among its candidate councillors.
The president said they were pledging to ensure that municipalities were well-run and that no public money was stolen.
However, Ramaphosa took a swipe at the DA-led City of Cape Town metro saying it was not serving the communities and that it did nothing for them.
“Is it so?” he said to a big “Yes” from the crowd gathered in an open space. “You as our people want houses, there are no houses. You want water, it does not happen. You want sewage not to overflow everywhere. You don’t get electricity.”
He noted that many people continued to live in shacks because houses were not provided by the DA-led metro.
“We want you to come in large numbers to vote for the ANC so that the ANC can govern this municipality.”
Ramaphosa claimed that the ANC did its work to transform South Africa into what it is today.
He shared the successes of the ANC from the time former president Nelson Mandela came with measures to eradicate poverty and introduce equal pension grants for all elderly people, child grants, school nutrition and no-fee schools up to the now-free education at tertiary institutions.
Ramaphosa also noted the introduction of the R350 grant in the wake of Covid-19 and that some were awaiting approval of their applications.
“Don’t lose hope. What I try to demonstrate is that the ANC government cares for the people of South Africa,” he said.
“It is a caring government. It is a very compassionate government.
“It looks at the circumstances of people in order to respond so that challenges the people live under can be addressed in a way to give people a better life.”
In an address to another community meeting in Mfuleni, Ramaphosa said there was no hope in the country without the ANC.
“Without the ANC, there is no hope. There is no hope for South Africa whether they like it or not. That is a reality,” he said.
“That is why we say we are repositioning ourselves. We are committed to working for communities. That is when we started selecting candidates, the candidates were chosen by the communities,” Ramaphosa added.
He insisted that the party was renewing itself to become better.
Ramaphosa also acknowledged some of the challenges such as unemployment, saying they were working day and night to find solutions.
“If you come in numbers to vote ANC, many things will be easy if we win many wards. If you look, the DA says the ANC won’t win the City of Cape Town. We are to prove them wrong this time around. We want to show, yes, the ANC will win the City of Cape Town,” he said.