EFF bid to oust mayor racist – Maimane

DA leader Mmusi Maimane chats to Thelma Damane in KwaDwesi yesterday
Picture: Fredlin Adriaan

The EFF is targeting Athol Trollip because he is white.

This was said by DA leader Mmusi Maimane outside the City Hall yesterday, in response to the planned motion of no confidence on April 6 which seeks to remove Trollip as mayor.

Maimane was in the Bay visiting voting stations, including Zanokhanyo Educare Centre in KwaDwesi, the City Hall and the Chatty Community Hall.

He sang Trollip’s praises and said the mayor was doing an incredible job for this city, and his government stood to ensure that it delivered, especially for the most vulnerable in society.

“[The fact] that a political party would choose to renege on an agreement on the basis of the colour of his skin is racist.

“It’s not just an assault on him as an individual, it’s an assault on the very essence of our constitution,” Maimane said.

EFF leader Julius Malema had said the significance of the motion was in honour of the anniversary of the formation of the PAC and the hanging of Umkhonto we Sizwe operative Solomon Mahlangu, and to mark the day Jan van Riebeeck had arrived in the Cape.

The EFF wants the expropriation of land without compensation and the state to own all land, while Maimane said the DA was opposed to the idea as the party did not want South Africans to be tenants of the state forever.

“Section 25 of the constitution allows for South Africans to own land in their own right. We stand for that principle.

“We don’t want black South Africans to remain tenants of the state for eternity,” he said.

Maimane said the DA would continue speaking to other parties to remind them why they got into the coalition in the first place.

He said he would not allow the party to be manipulated into surrendering policy positions that were aimed at delivering services to the people.

“I’ve spoken to leaders of other parties [and] I’ve reminded them again of that important principle that our unity was never about simply removing the ANC [but] to eradicate corruption, deliver services and create more work for people,” he said.

Asked if the DA had approached the UDM, Maimane noted that the UDM was the DA’s coalition partner everywhere else in the country and it would be important here in the metro to remember the reason why it had rejected the ANC.

Maimane warned that even though Jacob Zuma was no longer the president of the ANC, the problem was never him alone, but the party as a whole.

He said people should not forget that even though the ruling party might have a new bus driver, the bus still had the same passengers in it.

“They are the same party that has said to poor people, ‘we don’t care about you, we’ll increase tax against you, we are going to put VAT to 15% and make sure you’re even poorer and we’re not going to help you because we can’t create jobs for you’,” he said.

While in the metro, Maimane assisted first-time voters to register at the City Hall and Chatty Community Hall.

First-time voter Surunel Burgens, 28, from Chatty, said she believed that her one vote could make a difference and contribute towards positive change.

“I didn’t vote [previously] because the corruption we read about in the media made me apprehensive about voting, but now I’m going to vote for an upright political party and this is the time to do that,” Burgens said.

Tammeryn Jantjies, 18, from Sanctor High School, said she would like to see her vote change her community for the better and hopefully the winning party would create jobs for the youth.

Thami George, from KwaDwesi, said registering and voting was important for her because it allowed her to have a say in who would govern the country.

George said in casting her vote, she hoped the party would build more schools and create jobs.

“We vote because we want what these politicians promise us during elections. We vote to change our lives for the better. We vote because we hope the government will give us jobs so we can stop living off our parents’ social grants.”

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