Hanover Park Community Hall: 10 May 2011
Thank you for welcoming the IFP into the community
of Hanover Park.
This morning I visited the Day Hospital and Ihlaas
Mosque, and met many people as I walked though the streets.
Everywhere I went I heard the same message, that people are worried
about this dog fight between the DA and the ANC, because somewhere
along the line the real needs of the people of Hanover Park have
I have come to Hanover Park aware that some of you
may not know the IFP very well, although we have been part of the
politics of South Africa for 35 years and have made a difference to
governance both before and since 1994. The IFP is the voice of
reason in South African politics. You don't hear about violent
service delivery protests in IFP led municipalities. You don't hear
about the IFP calling politicians vulgar names. And you don't hear
about the IFP fighting over open toilets for more than two years.
We are the people that get the job done, because
we know that governance is all about you. The IFP has 18
representatives in Parliament and some 900 Councillors in
municipalities across South Africa. We led the administration of the
erstwhile KwaZulu Government for 18 years before democracy, and we
served in the Government of National Unity for the first five years
after 1994. Even after that, President Mbeki asked me to continue
serving in his Cabinet as the Minister of Home Affairs. I have been
appointed Acting President of the country more than 20 times.
I recount these facts to emphasise that the IFP is
not the new kid on the block, and neither are we a small voice. We
have helped shape the laws and policies of our country, but we have
also stood in strong opposition to the many missteps the ANC
government has taken, because our first priority is to the people.
For 35 years the IFP has served the poorest South Africans, as well
as the workers. We have struggled alongside the unemployed, the
parents, the caregivers and entrepreneurs. We have worked for you.
We have never let power corrupt us nor forgotten
that we serve because of the mandate you, the people, have given us.
We are your representatives. The IFP has therefore made this
election campaign all about you. We chose our slogan to send a clear
message to leaders who have put other interests first; like
politics, money and power. I think people need to be reminded that
it's about you, because local government can make a difference. Your
I have been travelling across KwaZulu Natal,
Mpumalanga and Gauteng for several weeks now, encouraging people to
vote next Wednesday in the local government elections. In many
democracies, including our own, citizens don't often come out in
numbers to vote at this level.
People somehow feel that they cannot make a
difference in local government, because everything has already been
decided at the national and provincial level.
The Western Cape is unique, because the ANCs
blanket rule ends on the provincial boundaries. For the ANC, taking
control of the Western Cape in the May 18 elections is a matter of
pride. In fact, they haven't put forward a mayoral candidate
anywhere else in South Africa other than Cape Town, because the ANC
knows that if it is going to take the Western Cape from the DA, it
is going to have to fight hard.
The fight for Cape Town is therefore very public
and people are expected to take sides with either the DA or the ANC.
That is quite disheartening for many people, because it's a choice
between the ANC's incompetence or the DA's arrogance. I am here to
point out that there is an alternative. There is another way. I have
come to Hanover Park to support the IFP's candidates, because they
are men and women who know you and are known to you. They are people
of integrity that are backed by the IFP's track record.
The IFP has an exceptional track record in
governance and service delivery. In KwaZulu Natal we still run more
municipalities than the ANC, because at local government level,
where services are actually delivered, people still want a party
that can get the job done. That party is the IFP. The electorate has
given us the mandate to lead 32 municipalities, and we have had the
opportunity to prove that we do it better than the ANC.
In many other municipalities across the country,
people have strengthened the voice of the IFP by giving us their
vote. This is what we would like to see in Hanover Park. We are
asking for your vote next Wednesday to strengthen a different voice
in your local council; a voice of reason and a voice of integrity.
You don't have to give your allegiance to people simply because they
govern. And you don't have to vote for their opponent as a way of
saying you don't like them. You can choose something entirely
different. You can vote for the IFP.
A vote for the IFP can make a difference for
Hanover Park, because the IFP candidates are backed by a strong
party; a party that is still a serious threat to the ANC. We are not
the kind of people who sling mud at others to make ourselves look
good, but there is a time and a place to take a hard look at the
people asking for your vote, and ask whether they are the right
people for the job.
The DA's mayoral candidate, Ms Patricia de Lille,
started in the Pan Africanist Congress before she went solo with the
Independent Democrats. Then, last August, she took the ID to the DA,
and now the DA is promoting her for mayor. She may have great
credentials and she may be good at her job, but there is a bad habit
in politics of giving positions as payback. The ANC has found itself
in bitter battles because of this habit. Cadres get their feathers
ruffled because there are just not enough top positions to satisfy
everyone who feels they are owed a position.
This is why the ANC is having problems with its
candidate lists, because candidates chosen by the people to
represent them have simply been removed from the lists and replaced
with people chosen by the ANC. This shows how little the ANC
actually cares about the will of the people. Their representatives
are not accountable to you; they are accountable to the ANC.
This is, unfortunately, true for Mr Tony
Ehrenreich as well. The ANC's mayoral candidate, who is also the
provincial secretary of COSATU here in the Western Cape, has a
reputation for being a man of the people.
But he has made no bones about the fact that he
intends to align the economic polices of the Western Cape with those
of the national government. Indeed, he has listed this as one of his
top three priorities as mayoral candidate.
Mr Ehrenreich lives near here, in Uitsig. But
don't think that a local lad can change the way things are done in
Hanover Park, just because he lives here.
He has a mandate to line up local governance here with the
way governance is done by the ANC everywhere else. So wherever
national policies have failed, you can expect the same failure to
dog the Western Cape if the ANC wins this election.
His other two top priorities are to improve public
transport and provide water and sanitation to informal settlements.
But his party's track record in both these cases is not inspiring.
In fact, they overspent by millions of Rand to get the Gautrain up
and running. But a ticket from Pretoria to OR Tambo Airport still
costs R125. That is not affordable for most of us. Interestingly,
China constructed a rapid rail system at about the same time as we
embarked on the Gautrain project; but it was twice the speed, twice
the length, and cost them half as much. Surely we could be doing
In terms of providing water and sanitation to
informal settlements, one cannot help remembering Andries Tatane,
who was beaten to death by the Police during a service delivery
protest in the ANC-led settlement near Ficksburg. Then there is the
community of Zandspruit, who had to resort to violent protest
against their ANC councillor for non-delivery, because the
would not listen to the people she had promised to represent.
Service delivery protests are par for the course
in ANC-led municipalities. So when an ANC candidate says they can do
better in Hanover Park by doing things the ANC way, we must ask
ourselves if that is the truth, or just another ANC promise.
The ANC has not made any friends in the Western
Cape by allowing the government spokesperson, Mr Jimmy Manyi, to
vent his racist spleen against the coloured community. Mr Ehrenreich
would have us believe that Mr Manyi isn't the spokesperson on these
issues. But he speaks for the national ANC government, and Mr
Ehrenreich wants to align policies here with the national ANC
government policies. So it would be foolish not to ask whether the
ANC's determined pursuit of affirmative action and the setting of
employment equity targets is really going to be based on provincial
demographics, or whether this community is about the get the raw end
of the deal.
These are issues being discussed in the public
arena every day. The fight between the ANC and the DA is really
heating up. But where does it leave the people? I am determined to
see local governance become what it is meant to be; all about you.
It is not about dog fights. It is about your municipality, your
schools, your roads, your houses, your jobs, your struggle and your
safety. The IFP's candidates know that it is about you.
I am pleased to be here to introduce our
candidates and support them as they ask for your vote. I thank Mr
Ricardo Sedres, our programme director, for standing as a candidate
in these elections, because I know that serving the community as a
local councillor is not about the glory, and it is definitely not
about the money. The IFP does not tolerate slackers; no one who
works on an IFP ticket gets a free ride.
We expect our councillors to work hard, and we hold
them accountable for their performance.
The IFP is not afraid to fire councillors who are
not delivering on the mandate of the IFP. We don't believe in giving
jobs as favours or as payback for allegiance. We believe in choosing
the right people for the job, to ensure that the job gets done. Our
candidates have all taken a pledge of integrity and responsiveness
to the community. I intend to hold them accountable for fulfilling
In terms of their pledge, you can expect your IFP
councillor to be a person of integrity, to be open with you, to be
fair and include you in decision-making, to be accountable to you
and available at all times. Our councillors take your concerns
seriously. We will treat you with dignity and respect, because we
are working for you and with you.
We believe in bringing municipal governance closer
to you. We will empower you to participate in decisions that are
made, by closely linking your councillors to you in their daily work.
We will never dictate to you. We live and work alongside you,
tackling the real problems together.
The IFP believes you have the right to receive any
information you require about your municipality and your council.
IFP led municipalities promote openness in all they do. We believe
that tenders should be public so that you know precisely who gets
how much for what service. The IFP believes that every Rand must be
spent in a way that improves your community and your municipality.
We are intent on stopping waste, mismanagement and corruption, while
prioritising spending on infrastructure and basic services, like
water and electricity.
These are the priorities of the IFP. We believe
that local governance matters because it is here that services are
delivered and it is here that you interact with your government as
the first point of contact. Governance should be done from the ground up. In
this way, communities can partner with their representatives to move
the hand of government.
Although our country faces many social and
economic problems, every community is unique and should be empowered
to tailor make its own solutions to the problems at hand. Just as
Mzingazi has different problems to Chatsworth, Hanover Park has
different problems to Parow.
Our candidates are Capetonians who live in this
community, work here, go to church here and educate their children
here. They understand your struggle, because it is their struggle
too. Our candidates have some good ideas of how to assist you,
including extending the municipal rates relief programme to you, to
help rearrange your municipal debt. They are at the forefront of the
fight against drug abuse, particularly Tik, and the fight against
crime and gangsterism.
The IFP believes Hanover Park needs more visible
policing and a quicker response time from police and emergency
services. This means equipping your local police stations with the
resources they need to help you. I know that there are brave
policemen and -women in this community who are trying to protect and
serve under very challenging circumstances. I applaud you, and I
thank you for caring for our people.
Indeed there are many people in Hanover Park that
are trying to make a difference every day, by keeping children off
the streets, by reporting drug dealers, by supporting rehabilitation
programmes, by housing family in need, by using a paycheque to
provide for neighbours, and by praying constantly for protection and
upliftment in Hanover Park.
The IFP wants to partner with these people. We
want to partner with you in a revolution of goodwill that can change
this community. But we need your support to do it. We need your vote
on the 18th of May. We need you to strengthen the voice of the IFP
in your local council. The IFP is the alternative to the political
dogfight that is seeing your needs left behind. So next Wednesday I
ask you to vote IFP.
I thank you.
Contact: Liezl van der Merwe, Press Liaison
Officer to Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi, on 082 729 2510.