The DA’s Rescue Plan for South Africa

Note to Editors: The following speech was delivered by the Leader of the Democratic Alliance, John Steenhuisen, during the launch of the DA’s National Manifesto 2024, at the Union Buildings in the City of Tshwane, Gauteng. 

Fellow Democrats, fellow South Africans,

I’m speaking to you today from an auspicious location.

Directly behind me, you will see the Union Buildings.

The seat of government, at the heart of our capital city.

These buildings should be the pride of every South African.

But, over the past decades, these buildings have come to mean something very different.

It is inside these buildings that the ANC executed the plans that created the world’s highest unemployment rate, unleashed violent criminals on innocent people, and captured the state.

It is inside these buildings, that the dreams of Tintswalo, and millions of other hopeful young people, were betrayed.

The same buildings that once served as a symbol of hope when President Nelson Mandela assumed office here, have been turned into a crime scene.

So our meeting here today is no accident.

Our meeting here today is a signal of intent.

The Democratic Alliance is launching our 2024 election manifesto from the Union Buildings to send a clear message.

That in this election, we are in it to win it.

That in this election, we must rescue the Union Buildings from the clutches of a corrupt government, and restore them to their rightful place as a symbol of pride for all South Africans.

In every previous election since 1994, everyone knew that the ANC would win.

The only question was by how much.

As a result, in every previous election, the DA’s primary task was to consolidate the strongest possible opposition to the ANC.

To prevent the worst from happening to our beloved country.

But all of that changes, today.

Today, we embark down a new path, and towards a new objective.

In this election, the DA is not going to oppose the ANC.

In this election, the DA is going to defeat the ANC.

For the first time in our democratic history, support for the ANC is set to crash well below 50%.

It is a party in terminal decline, being ripped to shreds from all sides.

The ANC was already on its knees when Jacob Zuma’s MK Party entered the fray.

As we speak, MK is devouring millions of ANC votes.

And the ANC only has one man to blame for its demise: Cyril Ramaphosa, who, for decades, did everything in his power to enable and protect Zuma.

Ramaphosa even freed over 15 000 criminals just to keep Zuma out of prison.

The very same Zuma is now helping to evict Ramaphosa from the Union Buildings behind me.

The demise of the ANC has opened the door for the DA to achieve what was once considered unthinkable: to enter national government.

In this election, for the first time ever, the DA has a clear path to victory.

Many of you were at the DA’s Federal Congress in April last year, when I first announced the DA’s commitment to the formation of a Moonshot Pact to rescue South Africa.

By bringing an end to opposition infighting, and consolidating likeminded parties into a cohesive bloc, this formation – now known as the Multi-Party Charter for South Africa – offers voters the best prospect for political change since 1994.

The DA feels a profound sense of responsibility towards the Charter.

Given our size, our proud track record of clean and accountable government, and our success in delivering services and jobs where we govern, the DA is committed to becoming the strong, stable anchor party at the heart of a new multi-party government to rescue South Africa.

But, in the DA, we do not pursue power for its own sake.

For the DA, winning elections and entering government is a means to the ultimate end.

That ultimate end, is to serve all the people of South Africa by making their lives better.

That is why I am proud today to launch the DA’s Rescue Plan for South Africa, our manifesto for the historic 2024 election.

This manifesto is the outcome of the most comprehensive policymaking process in the history of our party, built upon a raft of updated policies we adopted since 2019.

In this election, a vote for the DA is a vote for a party with a clear plan to rescue South Africa.

As the anchor tenant in a new multi-party government, the DA’s key priorities during the 2024 to 2029 term will be to:

1. Create two million new jobs;
2. End loadshedding and water-shedding;
3. Halve the rate of violent crime, including murder, attempted murder and gender-based violence;
4. Crush corruption by abolishing cadre deployment in favour of merit-based appointments and a capable state that delivers for all;
5. Lift six million people out of poverty;
6. Triple the number of Grade Four learners who can read for meaning; and
7. Ensure quality healthcare for all, irrespective of economic status.

Unlike most other parties contesting this election, the DA’s Rescue Plan for South Africa is not pie in the sky.

Frankly, it is easy for parties that have no track record in government to get on a stage and read out a list of impossible promises that they know can never be delivered.

But South Africans are tired of empty promises.

They are tired of hearing about bullet trains when the trains they used to take no longer run.

They are tired of hearing about industrialisation plans when the factories where they used to work have closed due to loadshedding.

They are tired of hearing about smart cities when they don’t even feel safe walking the streets where they live.

What the DA offers you today, are not populist promises, but solemn pledges.

We will focus our time in government like a laser beam on implementing these seven key pledges, because we understand that if we do not fix these seven things, South Africa does not have a future.

Unlike Cyril Ramaphosa’s desperate efforts to whitewash his government’s failures, the DA’s manifesto is rooted in the reality of what South Africa is in 2024, not in the memory of what it promised to be in 1994.

In 1994, our South African dream was for a country where the lives of this generation would be better than the lives of their parents, and that their children’s lives would be better still.

But, in 2024, the nightmare that confronts us is that the lives of our children could be much worse than our own.

For the ANC has so utterly betrayed our nation, that we are now further from fulfilling the dream of 1994 than at any other point in our democratic history.

On Thursday, Ramaphosa used a handful of successful young people to try and defend his claim that South Africa under the ANC is some kind of heaven-on-earth for Tintswalo and her peers born after 1994.

Don’t get me wrong: I salute each and every one of those young people for helping to build South Africa.

But the cold, hard truth is that young people in this country do not succeed because of the ANC.

They succeed in spite of it.

If Ramaphosa wanted to honestly reflect the lives of young people in this country, then for every three employed people, he would show us the seven who have never had a job in their lives.

If Ramaphosa was not trying to deceive us, he would admit that for every five young people who finish matric, there are five others who failed or never even made it to matric.

If Ramaphosa was honest about the crime crisis in this country, he would acknowledge that the dead bodies of the people murdered while he was President would fill nearly two FNB stadiums.

After all the damage and destruction wrought during the fifteen wasted years under Zuma and Ramaphosa, the 2024 election is sadly not yet about truly fulfilling the dream of 1994.

Instead, this election is about survival – the survival of our South African dream.

It is also a shame that the ANC chose to focus only on Tintswalo.

No matter what your name is, no matter how old you are, no matter where you come from, I want to say to you: over the past thirty years, we have all grown up as democracy’s children.

But we should probably not be too surprised that Ramaphosa excluded from his speech Aunty Fatima from Eldorado Park, farmer Johan from Citrusdal, and Keshav, the entrepreneur from Chatsworth.

After all, this is the same man who deliberately excluded Dricus du Plessis from recognition as our country’s first-ever mixed martial arts world champion, purely because he refuses to keep quiet about ANC corruption.

Dricus, the DA salutes your courage, inside and outside the octagon – just like we salute Bafana Bafana, the Springboks, our under-19 cricketers, and every other sportsperson who keeps the hope alive that we can be a winning nation.

Wanneer ons binnekort in regering is, gaan ons vir jou en al ons sporthelde die erkenning gee wat jul toekom.

Want die ANC weet nie wat ons weet nie.

My fellow South Africans,

The only way to keep our South African dream alive, is by creating millions more jobs, including for our young people.

The only way to keep our dream alive, is by ending loadshedding and water-shedding, and by winning the war on crime.

The only way to keep our dream alive, is by abolishing the evil and corrupt system of cadre deployment, which locks qualified people out of jobs and destroys service delivery.

The only way to keep our dream alive, is by lifting millions of people out of the desperate poverty in which they still languish, to create schools that teach our children, and to build hospitals that heal the sick.

The DA is the only party with the proven ability to deliver on all of these pledges.

Where we govern in the Western Cape, eight out of ten people are employed, and we create more jobs than in any province.

Where we govern in places like Cape Town, we are already reducing loadshedding while providing the cleanest drinking water and the best sanitation services in the country.

Recently, DA-led Cape Town rolled out a ground-breaking new initiative that enables any household with solar panels and a bi-directional meter to become a “prosumer” by selling electricity back into the grid.

This same policy sits at the heart of our manifesto’s solution to loadshedding for the whole country.

Mark my words: the DA’s work in Cape Town is going to lead to an energy revolution, and it will all be thanks to the implementation of DA policies.

Where we govern, we have also enhanced local policing through the LEAP programme that has reduced violent crime by up to 40% in some of the most dangerous neighbourhoods in the country.

And even before we have entered national government, the DA is already abolishing cadre deployment – whether Cyril Ramaphosa and Gwede Mantashe like it or not.

I have some breaking news in this regard.

As you all know, the Constitutional Court has given the ANC until Monday to hand over complete records of its cadre deployment committee dating back to 1 January 2013, when Ramaphosa became its chairman.

After delaying for more than three years following the DA’s initial request for these records to be made public to expose Ramaphosa’s role in state capture, the ANC yesterday came crawling back to the DA, begging us to give them more time.

I’d like to take this opportunity to respond to Ramaphosa and the ANC directly.

No, you cannot get more time.

Not to hand over these records, and not in government.

You have wasted South Africa’s time for long enough.

You will comply with the Constitutional Court’s order by handing over these records by 5pm on Monday.

If you fail to do so, the DA will use the precedent set in the Zuma case to go back to court for a contempt order that includes prison time for each and every one of the ANC’s leaders.

The ANC is so desperate to hide Ramaphosa’s cadre secrets that they are now threatening to trigger a constitutional crisis to protect him – just like they did with Zuma.

The DA does not just talk about fighting corruption and building a capable state.

Despite not even being in government yet, the DA is already doing more to rescue the state from total collapse than any other party in this country.

Fellow South Africans,

Built upon our proven track record, the DA’s Rescue Plan for South Africa will shine a bright ray of light into the darkness that threatens to blind us all.

It will not solve all of our problems overnight.

But it will fundamentally restore our country back onto the path of promise, and give us all permission to believe in our great South African dream again.

Instead of a government that tells you it’s not the end of the world when loadshedding makes you unemployed or destroys your business, you can vote for a new government that ends loadshedding.

Instead of a government with a cowardly leader who is probably busy shredding the rule of law alongside his dirty cadre secrets as we speak, you can vote for a new government with zero-tolerance for corruption.

Instead of a government that normalises gender-based violence, gang violence and farm murders, you can vote for a new government that respects and values our women and children, fights gangsterism, and protects our farmers.

As I speak to you today from the seat of national government, I can say unequivocally: the DA is ready to take up our rightful place in the Union Buildings behind me.

Make no mistake about it: the ANC knows this too.

This past week in Parliament, they repeatedly told us that the Moonshot is their single biggest fear.

They are so obsessed by their fear of the DA that some of them even said: Dubulu inyanga.

Dubula inyanga – that is exactly what we are going to do in this election.

Because the DA has the size, we have the people, we have the experience, we have the track record, and we have the plan to rescue this beautiful country before it is too late.

These aren’t empty words.

The DA is present in every town, every village and every city across this country.

And we are led by the strongest leadership collective in our party’s history.

I’d now like to invite onto stage our federal leadership.

Our premier candidates.

Our provincial leaders.

Our provincial chairpersons.

And members of our federal executive.

To Tintswalo, to Fatima, to Johan and to Keshav, I say: help is on the way.

If you want the DA’s Rescue Plan for South Africa to sit at the heart of a new multi-party government, then you must vote for the DA to carry this manifesto into that government.

If you want to rescue South Africa from unemployment, from loadshedding and water-shedding, from crime, from corruption, from poverty and hunger, from failing schools and from broken hospitals, then you must vote for the DA.

If you want to rescue the Union Buildings behind me from the corrupt clutches of those who plunged our country into hardship, then you must vote for the DA.

So come on Mr President, stop cowering away, and call this election.

Because the Democratic Alliance is ready to fight, so that South Africa can win.

Thank you.

SONA DEBATE: Rescue Tintswalo’s South African Dream

Madam Speaker, my fellow South Africans, Mr President,

Thank you for sharing with us the story of Tintswalo, the child of democracy.

There is no doubt that the South Africa she grew up in after 1994, was a hopeful place.

It was a place built on the South African Dream: the promise that her life would be better than the life of her parents, and that her children’s lives would be better still.

What the President did during his address, was to tell us the story of Tintswalo’s start in life during the 1990s and the 2000s.

It was far from perfect, but it was a time of hope and possibility.

But Tintswalo’s life story does not end after childhood.

Today, she is a thirty-year-old woman.

She has entered the next phase of her life, as a wife, a mother and a provider.

Over the past decade, she has watched with growing horror as the dream of her childhood was betrayed.

Tintswalo’s social consciousness started to develop during High School, as she watched the ANC elevate a man accused of corruption and rape to the highest office in the land.

She grew steadily more disillusioned when she found out that R246 million in public money was used to build a fire pool and chicken coup for the President at Nkandla, even as many people around her sank deeper into poverty.

In 2015, she graduated from TVET college.

A year later, Tintswalo realised that she was not alone in her growing unease about the future.

In the 2016 local government election, she watched as voters in all major cities rebelled against the ANC.

And she too started to think about voting differently at the next election.

She simply could not stomach the idea of voting for the ANC after it unleashed Jacob Zuma, state capture and loadshedding on her country.

But, in 2018, her spirits lifted.

Tintswalo was delighted when the ANC ejected Zuma from the presidency in February of that year.

In fact, Mr President, in 2019, Tintswalo voted for you.

Like many others, she did so for one reason: because she believed that you would restore South Africa to the path it was on when she was a child.

That you would rescue the South African dream.

But tragically, her hopes were shattered again soon after.

In the same year that Mr Ramaphosa was elected, Tintswalo lost the first and only job she ever had, because the loadshedding crisis shut down the factory where she worked.

She was forced to move into a tin shack on the outskirts of the city, returning to the same life of poverty she thought she had left behind for good.

She has been unemployed ever since.

In 2021, Tintswalo joined the growing group of South Africans who refused to vote.

She was simply too angry, after the Ramaphosa administration broke all the lofty promises it had made of a New Dawn, including by protecting the President’s comrades implicated in state capture.

Things went from bad to worse.

In 2022, her father became one of the 75 people who are murdered in South Africa every day.

He was killed by a loan shark, from whom he was forced to borrow money after the collapse of Transnet shut down the export company where he had worked since Tintswalo was a baby.

It felt like her whole world had come crashing down.

She had lost her livelihood, her home, and her father.

Her South African dream lay in ruins.

Yet, amidst the darkest hour of her life, light entered when she gave birth to a daughter of her own.

Called Esona, Tintswalo’s greatest gift.

The miracle of new life gave her a newfound determination to fight to rescue her South African dream.

Tintswalo is done waiting for the ANC to change.

She has accepted that it never will.

She acknowledges the opportunities she got as a young person, which her parents never had.

But she now thinks about the future of her own family above all else.

You see, Mr President, like millions of other South Africans, Tintswalo cannot afford to live in the past.

She must survive in the reality of what South Africa is in 2024, not in the memory of what South Africa was in 1994.

When she is reminded of her hopeful childhood, it fills her with sadness for the childhood that awaits Esona.

When she remembers how her family moved from a shack into a formal house with running water and electricity when she was a young girl, it hurts and shames her that she ended up back in a shack with no running water and constant power cuts as a grown woman.

The memory of how excited she was at her graduation, quickly turns to anger when she realises that she has now been unemployed for twice as long as it took her to obtain her qualification.

When Tintswalo listened to her President on Thursday, it did not make her grateful, as he may have hoped.

For here is the hard truth, Mr President, whether you like it or not: you betrayed Tintswalo’s South African dream.

Hearing the President speak about her life without acknowledging that the same people who once gave her permission to dream went on to shatter those dreams, only made Tintswalo more resolute that the time for change has come.

She knows that the only reason she had a better start in life than her parents did, was because her parents stood up and fought for change when it was required.

The South African dream she tasted as a child did not come about by accident.

Dreams only come true when we fight to make them true.

She knows that it is now her turn to fight for change, by removing the ANC from power.

To rescue baby Esona from the nightmare she is set to grow up in.

And it’s not only Tintswalo.

In Eldorado Park, Aunty Fatima is ready to fight to rescue her South African dream, so that her children may be free from the tyranny of violent gangs.

In Citrusdal, farmer Johan is ready to fight to rescue his South African dream, so that he can spare his children from the agony of watching the fruits of their labour rot on the docksides of broken ports.

In London, Sipho the engineer is ready to fight to rescue his South African dream, so that his children can grow up in the country he had to leave to find opportunity, but which he still loves dearly.

Watching the President stand at this podium and sing the praises of a country that no longer exists, made all South Africans more resolute that this is the year we must remove the ANC to rescue our dreams.

When the ANC says that 2024 is the year we must defend our freedom, they are right.

We must defend our freedom – from the ANC.

The people of South Africa understand that, in 2024, the single greatest threat to our democracy, to our freedom, and to the South African dream, is the African National Congress.

A labour market where seven out of ten young people cannot find work, is an existential threat to our freedom.

Loadshedding and water-shedding are existential threats to our freedom.

Rampant crime is an existential threat to our freedom.

Corruption and state capture that steals food from the mouths of the poor, is an existential threat to our freedom.

A President who protects his Deputy despite Zuma-level allegations of corruption and capture, is an existential threat to our freedom.

Every time the lights go out, every time the taps run dry, every time criminals attack us, every time a small business shuts down, it reminds us of the dream we have all lost.

But we are determined to take our dream back.

This year, the people will fight to rescue the South African dream using their most powerful weapon: their vote.

Mr President, you recently made the baseless and dangerous claim that mysterious foreign agents want to bring about “regime change” in South Africa.

Let me assure you: what is coming your way in this election, is not regime change by foreigners.

It is democratic change, by the people of South Africa.

Voting out a failed governing party is not a threat to democracy.

It is the ultimate vindication of democracy.

And it is the only way to rescue our South African dream.

In 1994, the dream we believed in was that the lives of this generation would be better than that of our parents.

But, in 2024, the nightmare that confronts us is that the lives of our children could be much worse than our own.

I don’t say this abstractly.

I, too, am a father to three young daughters.

I, too, have great dreams for them.

But, like Tintswalo and millions of other citizens, I too am fearful over the future of my children, of your children – of our children – in this country.

That is why the people of South Africa must rise to the call of history in this election.

No matter how old you are, over the past thirty years, we have all grown up as democracy’s children.

We have learnt, sometimes painfully, that democracy only works when we use our votes to hold those in power to account.

In 2024, the people of South Africa will vote to hold accountable those who have diverted South Africa from the promise of 1994 through their corruption, their greed, and their incompetence.

And they will vote for those who can practically restore South Africa to the path of promise, through a proven track record of delivery, of good governance, and an ability to fix what the ANC has broken.

Last week, I announced the DA’s blueprint to rescue South Africa.

Within the first 100 days in office as the anchor tenant for a new multi-party government, the DA will introduce the most comprehensive legislative reform agenda seen since 1994.

We will rescue South Africa through concrete reforms and legislation.

Not talk and empty promises.

Reform and legislation.

The reforms and legal changes the DA will introduce within the first 100 days in office, will be aimed at the five following priority areas:

  1. Fixing the institution of Parliament itself, in order to turn it into the engine room of reform;
  2. Ending loadshedding by embracing privatisation;
  3. Abolishing cadre deployment corruption in favour of merit-based appointments and a capable state;
  4. Halving the rate of violent crime, including murder, attempted murder and gender-based violence; and
  5. Growing the economy while protecting social grants.

If you had any doubt that the DA is the party to defeat the ANC and rescue South Africa, look no further than the Constitutional Court ruling issued yesterday, which compels the ANC to hand over complete records of its cadre deployment committee dating back to 1 January 2013, when Mr Ramaphosa became its chairman.

The DA expects the ANC to abide by this ruling to expose its dirty cadre secrets and how Mr Ramaphosa’s committee laid the foundation for state capture and the collapse of service delivery.

If the ANC tries to subvert the rule of law, we will not hesitate to send its leaders to prison for contempt of court, using the precedent created when Zuma was sent to prison for the same offence.

So mark your calendars: in just four days’ time, we will find the President’s fingerprints all over cadre deployment and state capture, the very things he spent six years telling us he is against.

My fellow South Africans,

Tintswalo, Fatima, Johan and Sipho all voted for different political parties over the years.

All of them, like all of us, have had different lived experiences over the past three decades.

But what we are all united on, here and now, is that things cannot go on as they are.

What we all agree on, is the urgent need to rescue the South African dream before it is too late.

That is why, in 2024 and for the very first time, Tintswalo, Fatima, Johan and Sipho will all vote for the same party – for the one party that has the proven ability to rescue South Africa and restore the dream they all shared in 1994.

That party is the DA.

They will not do so because they all agree about everything.

They will do so because they all agree about one thing:

That without more jobs, without electricity, without running water, without an end to cadre deployment, without an honest government, without functioning schools and without working hospitals, all of our children will be doomed to lives far worse than our own.

For, at the end of the day, we South Africans are all in this together.

So, let’s be honest with each other.

After all the damage and destruction wrought during the fifteen wasted years under Zuma and Ramaphosa, the 2024 election is sadly not yet about truly fulfilling the dream of 1994.

Instead, this election is about keeping the dream alive.

When you cut through all the noise, there is only one real choice we face in this election.

Either our great South African dream finally dies if the ANC comes back into power, especially in coalition with the EFF and other destructive populists.

Or we rescue our South African dream through a new multi-party government, with the DA at its heart.

The truth is that there is only way to keep Tintswalo’s dream alive – to keep all of our dreams alive.

That is by drawing our crosses next to the DA.

In this election, don’t vote out of fear.

In this election, if you want to rescue your South African dream, vote DA.

Thank you.

Let’s “make a plan” to rescue KwaZulu-Natal from spiralling water crisis

Note to Editors: The following speech was delivered by the Leader of the Democratic Alliance, John Steenhuisen, in Durban today.  

  • eThekwini is on stage 16 water-shedding.
  • DA Leader John Steenhuisen to lay South African Human Rights Commission complaint against eThekwini Municipality for violating the constitutional right of access to water.
  • Steenhuisen set to embark on a nationwide campaign against the spiralling water crisis created by the ANC.

South Africans have gotten used to living without things that are taken for granted in other democracies.

We have gotten used to living without a government that cares about us, and that values the taxes we pay.

We have gotten used to living without critical services, reliable public transport, or safe roads.

We have gotten used to living without a police service to keep us safe.

We have gotten used to living without job opportunities, without good schools, and without working hospitals.

Most recently, we have even been forced to get used to living without reliable electricity.

While the things we have lost under the ANC would cause riots and revolution in other countries, we instead adopted the most South African attitude of all: we made a plan.

For each of these things that the ANC destroyed, we made a plan.

Those who could afford it, made a plan to move to gated estates, and to pay for private security and medical aid.

Those who could afford it, installed solar electricity and sent their children to private schools.

Of course, the vast majority of South Africans cannot afford these private solutions.

But the poorest members of our communities also made a plan.

They made a plan to create stokvels that fund emergency medical expenses and school fees.

They made a plan to use minibus taxis after the trains stopped running.

They made a plan to create community policing forums and neighbourhood watches when the police stopped coming.

There is a uniquely South African resilience reflected in the phrase “make a plan.”

And we can be proud of it.

But it’s also time to face up to the other side of this coin: for decades, the ANC has cynically exploited the resilience of South Africans for political gain.

Among the many empty things that you will hear Cyril Ramaphosa say, is his claim that South Africans are “resilient.”

Let me tell you today: he does not mean it as a compliment.

When the ANC praises the “resilience” of South Africans, they are actually laughing at you.

They are laughing because they know that you will “make a plan” to simply work around their failures.

The ANC have convinced themselves that South Africans will never hold them accountable for everything that they have taken away from us.

But I am here today with an urgent warning.

There is one thing that the ANC is busy taking away from the people of eThekwini, of KwaZulu-Natal, and of the whole of South Africa.

This is something that we will not be able to live without.

It is something that we cannot just work around.

This latest thing that the ANC is busy taking away from you right now, is water.

We all know that water is life.

It is the one substance without which no living creature can survive.

Without clean water, we cannot grow food.

Without clean water, we cannot wash or stay healthy.

Without clean water to drink, every single person here will die.

Without reliable sewerage systems, illness spreads and life becomes unbearable.

It does not matter if you are rich or poor, black, white, Indian or coloured, whether you live in a township, on a farm or in a suburb.

Without clean water, you will die.

By taking away your access to water, the ANC is directly threatening your life and the lives of your family members.

This latest crisis created by the ANC could not be more urgent.

A human being can stay alive without many of the things the ANC has destroyed.

It may not be a life truly worth living, but it is technically possible for you to remain alive without most other basic services.

But it is not possible without clean water.

Here in eThekwini, the ANC water crisis is not theoretical.

Under the ANC, eThekwini is already on stage 16 water-shedding.

The community of Bester, in KwaMashu, has not had piped water for 14 years.

It has made life in Bester a living hell, where elderly people are forced to spend their meagre SASSA pensions for people to carry water to their homes.

Instead of fixing infrastructure, the eThekwini municipality has handed out tenders for water tankers that often don’t arrive, putting at risk the lives of infants, the elderly, and the sick.

The use of contaminated water tankers and containers to transport water into the community can cause serious illness or even death.

And it’s not only Bester.

The residents of Tongaat have not had water for 90 days.

In Phoenix, residents protest daily because there is no water, and only one or two water are allocated to wards with twenty thousand residents.

In Durban North, one hundred thousand people went without water for weeks on end last year, dealing another painful blow to the tourism sector.

It’s also not only about drinking water.

This past December, the beaches of Durban were empty.

I remember growing up in this city when it was the premier tourist destination in South Africa.

Now, you are more likely to find human faecal matter on the beach than a tourist.

Our rivers have become conveyor belts for deadly pathogens, and it is only a matter of time before eThekwini and KwaZulu-Natal face a deadly outbreak.

In this city and in this province, the fight for access to clean water and sanitation has become a life-and-death battle.

The day the taps run dry across most of this city of over four million people, it will descend into chaos that will eclipse even the horror of the July 2021 looting.

There are not enough water tankers on earth to provide emergency access when the system finally collapses completely.

While the decline of this beautiful city is a cautionary tale, this horror story is not only playing out in eThekwini.

Across South Africa, including in the most densely-populated province of Gauteng, taps are running dry, water pumps have gone quiet, and people are thirsty.

The crisis has accelerated in recent years, as load shedding causes pumps and other infrastructure to fail faster than bankrupt ANC municipalities could ever fix it.

The lack of clean water will also exacerbate the hunger crisis in our country, as crops cannot grow without it.

The ANC government has set our country on a track to become a hungry and thirsty wasteland.

And let there be no doubt of the cause for this escalating water crisis.

The cause is three letters: A N C.

We have seen this movie before.

At Eskom, the ANC was so busy looting that they ignored warnings about load shedding.

For years, they were so preoccupied with eating that they never even looked up from the trough to see the lights go out.

Today, South Africans are forced to “make a plan” to deal with crippling load shedding that has destroyed our economy.

But now, the ANC is busy doing to the water system what they already did to Eskom.

They have deployed their corrupt cadres to loot from water boards across the length and breadth of this country.

Right here in eThekwini, they are blowing the city’s annual R60 billion budget on alcohol, parties and concerts.

There is always money for cadres to live in the lap of luxury, and then they tell us there is no money to fix waterpipes.

But what the ANC forgets is that South Africa is a constitutional democracy.

The Bill of Rights in our Constitution grants every South African the right of access to “sufficient food and water,” as well as the right to human dignity, health and a clean environment.

It commands the government to take actions to achieve the “progressive realisation” of these rights.

But what is happening in KZN, is the opposite.

Here, we have seen the “progressive un-realisation” of the right to water.

With every pipe that is destroyed, every pump that fails and every tap that runs dry, the ANC, EFF and the other members of the coalition of corruption are progressively “un-realising” your right of access to water.

The DA will not tolerate this intolerable situation.

We are not like Cyril Ramaphosa who just stands idly by as things fall apart.

The DA takes action. We get things done.

That is why I can today announce that the DA is filing a complaint with the South African Human Rights Commission against the eThekwini Municipality, for its flagrant violations of the Bill of Rights.

The right to water, to human dignity and to a liveable environment have been shredded in this city.

In addition to taking the fight to the eThekwini council, the DA is also preparing for a nationwide campaign on the urgent threat posed to every citizen by the ANC-engineered collapse of our water infrastructure.

The latest Blue Drop report indicates that the majority of our country’s water systems “fail to produce compliant final water quality.”

Over 40% of all the water in this country falls into the very worst category for microbiological compliance.

This is an issue we will take up nationwide.

And it starts right here in eThekwini, today.

For many years, the ANC believed that the South African spirit of resilience expressed through “making a plan” worked in their favour.

They simply accepted that the people would “make a plan” in response to everything they took away from us.

But I am here to say that it is time to turn the tables on them.

When it comes to the water crisis, we will indeed make a plan.

But that plan is not what the ANC expects.

The plan we will make to avert a water catastrophe, is to get rid of the ANC.

In as little as four months from now, we can make a plan to rescue KwaZulu-Natal!

That plan is simple: vote DA to rescue KZN and to rescue South Africa!

The upcoming weekend of 3 and 4 February will be your last chance to register so you can vote in the upcoming election.

If you’ve already made another plan for that weekend, simply go to today to get help registering.

Not a single one of us can live without water.

If you want a new government that will get your taps running again, that will clean up the filth from your sewerage systems, waterways and beaches, and that can recue you from thirst, you must vote DA.

And we really can do it.

Because in this election, for the first time ever, the DA can win in KwaZulu-Natal.

Working together with our partners in the IFP and the Multi-Party Charter, the DA is perfectly poised to take advantage of the ANC’s collapse in this province to form a new government to rescue KwaZulu-Natal.

The water crisis in eThekwini shows us the thirsty future that awaits all of us if we don’t remove the ANC right now.

So let it be right here in eThekwini that we today start the process to rescue KwaZulu-Natal before it is too late!

Thank you.

Be part of the mission to rescue South Africa, get help registering to vote at

While Ramaphosa protects Nzimande, the DA takes legal action to protect students

Note to Editors: The following speech was delivered by the DA Federal Leader, John Steenhuisen, during a Live Broadcast in Cape Town earlier today.

My fellow South Africans,

Our country has entered the New Year of 2024 with the warning lights flashing bright red.

Following a short downturn in economic activity over the festive period, load shedding has come roaring back to hurt us.

With the year just a week old, we have already seen a series of mass killings, farm attacks and GBV cases that continue to take the lives of innocent women and children.

Over ten million South Africans have no jobs to return to.

More than 30 million people are still living in poverty.

One in five children go to bed hungry because people can no longer afford to feed their families.

Behind each one of these crises, behind all of this daily suffering, there is one common factor.

Life in South Africa has gotten dramatically worse and more difficult over the past six years due to one reason.

Because a coward is occupying the Union Buildings.

It is time to tell it like it is.

President Cyril Ramaphosa is a coward.

Everything he has done since coming to power has been motivated by a cowardly desire to stay in power at all costs, to protect the corrupt, and to keep his shattered political party united.

His uncaring government does not bat an eyelid about the suffering of the people.

While the people suffer under load shedding, they use taxpayer money to live like rockstars in mansions with generators.

While the people suffer at the hands of criminals, they spend billions on VIP protection and luxury vehicles.

While the people cannot find work, they reserve jobs for their cronies through the corrupt system of cadre deployment.

This government does not care about you. They never cared about you.

All the ANC cares about is themselves, and protecting their ability to loot no matter the cost to the people of South Africa.

Today, you will see pictures of ANC leaders eating cake and popping champagne.

With every bite they take, with every sip they savour, the ANC celebrates the suffering of the people.

The tentacles of corruption that feed the ANC have now identified a new target: South African students.

While the youth of this country struggle against the odds to build a better future, the ANC is stealing their dreams.

Last week, a series of leaked recordings released by the Organisation Undoing Tax Abuse revealed the details of a criminal cartel operating inside the Department of Higher Education and the National Student Financial Aid Scheme, known as NSFAS.

The recordings reveal that service providers that were awarded multi-million Rand tenders to administer direct payments to students allegedly paid kickbacks to the chairman of NSFAS, Ernest Khosa, to the Minister of Higher Education, Blade Nzimande, and to his South African Communist Party.

According to OUTA, “This was done in return for tenders and protection for service providers.”

These revelations demonstrate that nothing is sacred to the ANC government.

Instead of supporting students who are working hard to rise above hardship in order to build a better future for themselves and our country, the ANC only sees another opportunity to loot.

And make no mistake about it: the ANC’s NSFAS corruption has not been a victimless crime.

The awarding last year by NSFAS of direct payment tenders to companies with no proven track record has resulted in students being charged exorbitant fees for every transaction.

In many cases, students also received their allowances late or not at all, leaving them unable to even buy food.

Thanks to the recently released recordings, we now know why these lucrative tenders were awarded to companies no one had ever heard of: in exchange for kickback payments to Nzimande, Khosa and the SACP.

Every time a student uses their NSFAS card, they are effectively forced to help fund Nzimande’s corrupt scheme.

But the scandal does not end there.

There are also serious question swirling around another set of tenders awarded by NSFAS, to manage student accommodation.

In addition to cutting the accommodation allowance by R15 000 per year last year, the scheme now also requires educational institutions and private accommodation providers to obtain accreditation as a cost of up to R200 per bed.

Once accredited, NSFAS then also deducts 5% from the rental amount for what it refers to as a “licence fee.”

Like the exorbitant bank charges introduced last year, this is clearly another lucrative way for cadres and their preferred service providers to milk students and accommodation providers.

Last year already saw scenes of students forced to sleep in libraries, hallways and bathrooms.

But things are about to get a whole lot worse.

By the end of last year, only 6.5% of the beds required for the 2024 academic year had been accredited under the new system.

The systemic corruption evident at NSFAS and the Department of Higher Education is likely to trigger a serious crisis when students return to campuses later this month, only to find that they cannot access accommodation and are being charged to fund corruption every time they try to buy food.

ANC corruption and mismanaging has created a funding shortfall of over R1.1 billion, which means that funding will be withdrawn from over 87 000 students, in addition to the 20 000 students who were already deprived last year.

And yet, despite this existential crisis that threatens to derail our education sector, President Cyril Ramaphosa remains absent as usual.

Like he does every time that evidence emerges showing that corruption and capture has reached new heights under his administration, Ramaphosa takes the coward’s way out.

Instead of firing Nzimande and Khosa, he has remained silent, while the ANC has meekly suggested that Nzimande may appear before its so-called integrity committee.

The Constitution spells out that only the President has the responsibility to act against corrupt Cabinet ministers.

When a Minister commits corruption or undermines the Cabinet, it is the job of a real leader to deal with that person decisively.

Ramaphosa cannot outsource that responsibility to some toothless committee populated by ANC cadres, many of whom are just as tainted as the person they are supposed to investigate.

The President’s innate cowardice is about to do great damage to the higher education sector, just like his failure to lead has worsened load shedding, unemployment and crime.

Since Ramaphosa cannot do so, the DA will step in to lead:

The DA will immediately submit a request under the Promotion of Access to Information Act to obtain a copy of the Werksmans report into the awarding of the direct payment tenders.

We will write to Ramaphosa and the Special Investigating Unit to demand that the scope of the SIU’s investigation be broadened to include the alleged kickbacks to Nzimande and the SACP.

The DA, including through our student organisation, will initiate mass mobilisation campaigns at campuses across the country to force Ramaphosa to fire Nzimande.

Finally, we are preparing criminal charges against Nzimande and briefing our legal team to declare the NSFAS board delinquent over the corrupt and irrational direct payment and accommodation tenders. This legal action is in keeping with the findings of the State Capture Commission, which recommended that it should become standard practice to declare board members involved in capture and corruption as delinquent.

The DA is taking these steps because, unlike the ANC, we care.

We care about disadvantaged students who are fighting to rise above challenges to obtain education.

We care about creating millions more jobs, which can only happen through investment in education.

And we care about ending ANC corruption, which has stolen so much from our country.

Even as the DA defends students from the corruption of the Ramaphosa administration, we must recognise that none of these corruption scandals are isolated.

Corruption has become systemic and endemic over the past few years because of the cowardice of the President.

Ramaphosa himself admitted this even before he became President, when he said that – and I quote – he “would rather be seen as a weak President than dividing the ANC.”

So brazen is the cowardice of Ramaphosa’s ANC that yesterday, ANC Secretary-General Fikile Mbalula even admitted in public that the ANC lied to Parliament, to the courts, and to the people of South Africa to protect Zuma.

But this appeasement strategy has spectacularly failed, and Ramaphosa is now reaping the whirlwind.

No individual benefitted more from Ramaphosa’s innate cowardice than former President Jacob Zuma.

Ramaphosa is so scared to death of Zuma that he even let over 10 000 out of prison as an excuse to release the former President from jail.

Under Ramaphosa, not a single person – not one – has been imprisoned for state capture.

By running scared from the likes of Zuma, Nzimande and the endless list of cadres accused of corruption, Ramaphosa has sowed the seeds of his own demise.

It is time for South Africa to break out of this vicious cycle, where corruption goes unpunished and our country is held hostage by the ANC’s escalating internal war.

The only way to do that, is by voting the ANC out of power, because the ANC is the root cause of corruption.

If you have not done so already, I encourage every South African – including the tens of thousands of students who are suffering at the hands of Blade Nzimande’s corruption and Cyril Ramaphosa’s cowardice – to visit today to ensure that you are registered to vote.

Unlike our current President, the people of South Africa are courageous beyond all measure.

In just a few short months from now, we must all harness that courage to vote for the DA to rescue South Africa.

Thank you.

Speech: Re-elected DA Gauteng Provincial Leader Solly Msimanga

Note to editors: The following speech was delivered today by the re-elected DA Gauteng Provincial Leader, Solly Msimanga, at the Gauteng Provincial Congress in Boksburg. See photo here


The battle is never internally, but externally focused. We will lose a great opportunity if we remain internally focused and allow for divisions to creep in, in the Democratic Alliance. Our job is carved for us. The people of Gauteng are demanding a change in leadership.

They are demanding for an economy that will work for them. They are demanding for cities that are able to provide services to them. Police that will face criminals head on. Hospitals that will provide world class health services. Education that don’t produce illiterate learners, but produces those that can compete with the best in the world.

They are demanding an end to infrastructure collapse, they are demanding for fairness in jobs. They are demanding that we open opportunities for all.

We cannot do this, if our focus is inward looking instead of externally. This is what the people of Gauteng demands of us.

My job is to continue uniting the DA, strengthening and supporting structures, encouraging creativity in vote winning political work. We have people that needs to be registered, and those who are registered but are not voting, all of them needs to get involved if we are to turn around the fortunes of South Africa and Gauteng in particular.

I am calling all of you to join me as we stabilise, revitalise and deliver services for all in Gauteng.

Leading the Gauteng government will require political acumen, management skills, communication skills, analytical skills and foresight to ensure success. It will also require partnerships. These partnerships include the DA, the DA Gauteng Caucus, our local government caucuses, Party structures, the civil service, civil society, potential coalition partners, the national government and its departments and other provincial governments.

Fellow Democrats, we are well on our way to winning Gauteng in 2024. Let’s stand together and stay focused on our goals!

The crucial challenge that lies ahead is to now implement our workable blueprint for government well in advance of the 2024 election, that will undo the ANC’s legacy in our province.

It should incorporate the key steps to be taken to immediately stabilise and revitalise the administration. The blueprint must be a project and implementation plan. As leader, I will implement the blueprint together with a transitional task team to express the DA’s manifesto in the Gauteng Government.

Let’s finish what we started. Let’s get the DA to save Gauteng in 2024. Let’s inject life back into South Africa, by making Gauteng prosper.

Let’s win Gauteng!
Touch Let’s go!

Stand by the DA to rescue Gauteng

Note to editors: The following speech was delivered today by the DA Federal Leader, John Steenhuisen, at the Gauteng Provincial Congress in Boksburg.

Fellow Democrats

What an honour to speak with you today at this magnificent Congress!

Congratulations to the DA in Gauteng for pulling off yet another free and fair internal election, where democracy comes out as the real winner.

You have demonstrated, once again, that leaders in our party are not anointed, but elected.

In the DA, we don’t have leaders who are too scared to hold internal elections.

We don’t have dictators who chase away anyone who dares to disagree.

What we have in the DA, is a commitment to democracy and the rule of law.

To the newly-elected Gauteng leadership, I send my warmest congratulations.

You have an enormous responsibility on your shoulders, but I have complete faith that this team has what it takes to meet our date with destiny next year.

Because, in 2024, the DA is going to govern in the province of Gauteng!

I want to send a direct message to the ANC’s Panyaza Lesufi today.

Take a look at this group of people, Lesufi.

These people are going to be your leaders next year, when the ANC is relegated to the opposition benches.

You better start getting used to it!


The end of the ANC in Gauteng cannot come a moment too soon.

This province was once the beating heart of the mighty South African economy.

She was once the industrial powerhouse of Africa.

Following the arrival of democracy in 1994, Gauteng was the place where South Africans reached for the stars.

Where people from all backgrounds and all parts of the country came together to build a better future for their families.

Where business empires were built.

Where workers built cars and miners brought back treasures from the bowels of the earth.

Where factories hummed through the night and where cities never slept.

Where the heartbeats of millions of students and young people made us all optimistic about the future.

Where the hustle and energy was addictive, and where a better tomorrow beckoned for all those who dared to reach for it.

But today, the Gauteng we once knew is on life-support.

The heartbeat of her economy has become feint and irregular.

The bright lights of her cities have dimmed as load shedding turned once-vibrant streets into no-go zones.

Where gold and other minerals once financed a great industrial economy, today those same minerals fund the criminal zama zamas who terrorise our communities.

Where great railways and highways once served as arteries carrying opportunities to all corners of the province, roads now explode in the middle of Johannesburg and trains no longer run.

Potholes the size of craters claim lives every day.

Traffic lights are sawn off in broad daylight, and cables are stolen on an industrial scale under cover of darkness.

In many areas, the only water people receive for weeks on end is in the form of rivers of sewerage running down the road.

City streets, restaurants and businesses that once pumped with nightlife and energy, now sit abandoned as people cower from criminals behind high walls.

Where generations of South Africans once flocked to Gauteng in search of a better future, they are now running away from it.

More than anywhere else in our country, the province of Gauteng symbolises how the ANC has betrayed the great potential of the people of South Africa.

Thirty years into democracy, this province should have been one of the great city-regions of the world.

Gauteng was once the home of the South African dream.

But because of the ANC, Gauteng has now become the South African nightmare.

And, fellow Democrats, I’m afraid that things can still get worse.

Make no mistake about it: the ANC knows that its days of running governments on its own, are numbered.

That is why they even held a whole dialogue on coalition governments last weekend.

That dialogue was nothing but an admission of impending defeat by the ANC.

They never needed such a dialogue before, because they were always guaranteed to win outright majorities.

We should take it as a sign of profound weakness that the ANC has admitted defeat even before the election campaign has started.

But we also know that a wounded buffalo is the most dangerous animal in the bush.

And we have already seen how the ANC plans to cling to power in Gauteng.

They have already shown us their plan for 2024 by forming Doomsday Coalitions with the PA and EFF in some municipalities in this province.

Panyaza Lesufi is on the record that he wants to bring this same Doomsday Coalition to the provincial government next year, where the ANC and EFF plan to work together with the support of traitors like the PA.

In 2024, a vote for the ANC in Gauteng will be a vote for the EFF.

Equally, a vote for parties like the PA, Al Jamah, Good and Cope will be a vote for traitors who have sided with the ANC and EFF against the people.

Ganging up with the EFF and sell-outs in certain small parties is the only way that the ANC can cling to power in Gauteng.

The ANC is prepared to do so knowing very well that giving power to the likes of Julius Malema will unleash violence, anarchy and economic panic – as the EFF reminded us at their rally just two weeks ago week.

Democrats, we must recognise that the Doomsday Coalition between the ANC, EFF and PA is determined to take over Gauteng next year.

We must do everything in our power to stop it.

This is where the Moonshot Pact comes into the picture.

While the Doomsday Coalition presents a clear and present danger to this province, the 2024 election will also be the first time that the DA has a very real chance of winning power in Gauteng.

You will recall that, at our Federal Congress in April, I announced that we would seek to form a Moonshot Pact aimed at ending opposition infighting so that we could work together with likeminded parties to defeat the ANC and keep the EFF out of power.

I am happy to report that, next week, the Moonshot Pact will hold a historic National Convention right here in Gauteng.

We hope to emerge from that Convention with an agreement that the group of parties represented in the Pact will focus on defeating ANC-EFF Doomsday in the upcoming election campaign, and work together after the election to form a new Pact government, nationally and here in Gauteng.

The latest data indicates that the Moonshot Pact is already polling as high as 48% in Gauteng – just 2 percentage points short of forming a new government.

I am absolutely convinced that if all of us go out from this Congress to register more voters to vote DA, we will get over 50% next year to win Gauteng and keep the ANC and EFF out!

And make no mistake about it: a big and strong DA is essential for the Moonshot Pact to succeed.

In 2019, the DA got 27% in Gauteng.

We can and must grow beyond that in next year’s election.

Why? Because in the last election, there were 14 million people who were not registered and another 13 million people were registered but did not vote.

That is 27 million people.

If we can get even 10% of them to register and vote DA next year, we will sweep the ANC out of power forever.

That is why I am calling on every person in attendance here today, and on every DA supporter in Gauteng and beyond, to go out and register to vote DA.

Get your family, friends and neighbours to register to vote DA.

To start the process, simply visit

Say it with me:!

A bigger and stronger DA not only holds the key to get the Moonshot Pact to 50% plus one in Gauteng.

A strong DA will also be essential to ensure that the Pact is stable and able to govern effectively.

The people of Gauteng know exactly how unstable coalitions can become when there are too many small parties who are willing to sell out to the ANC.

The only way to bring stability and governance expertise to the coalition that will govern Gauteng next year, it to make the DA as big as possible.

For coalitions to succeed, we need to vote for parties with the demonstrated ability to govern.

We need to ask: which party has the experience, the depth and the track record of good governance required to anchor a coalition in Gauteng next year?

The answer to that question is the DA, and it was on full display against this past week.

Just look at how our mayors in Tshwane and Cape Town are standing up for the rule of law.

Next door in Tshwane, the DA’s Cilliers Brink is leading with courage and determination to save our capital city from financial ruin.

Instead of giving in to an illegal strike, Mayor Brink is firing officials engaged in violence.

In Cape Town, Geordin Hill-Lewis is showing South Africa that only the DA has the courage to stand up to the mafias that are holding our country ransom.

While the ANC’s Bheki Cele and Sindisiwe Chikunga are so terrified of the taxi bosses that they want to exempt taxis from the same traffic laws you and I must obey, Mayor Hill-Lewis refuses to bow down to thugs.

Let me repeat what Mayor Hill-Lewis told Bheki Cele to his face: The ANC and other parties may negotiate with criminals, but the DA won’t!

It is a simple fact that the DA is the only party in South Africa with leaders of this calibre running governments.

And these are exactly the kind of people we will need in government next year if we want to rescue Gauteng.

That is why we must all vote for the DA to ensure that competent leaders with a proven record of delivery can fill the critical positions in Gauteng’s provincial government next year.

My fellow South Africans,

There can be no doubt that Gauteng finds itself in one of the darkest moments of its history.

And if we don’t unite behind the DA, there is a real chance that this nightmare could become darker still.

But I’d like to remind you of the lyrics of the famous song by Ben E. King:

When the night has come
And the land is dark
And the moon is the only light we’ll see
No, I won’t be afraid
Oh, I won’t be afraid
Just as long
As you stand
Stand by me

It is 2023, and our beautiful land is dark.

But the one beacon of light, is the DA’s Moonshot.

So, stand with the DA!

Go out and register to vote DA.

And in 2024, the DA will lead a new government in Gauteng that will stand by you.

We will restore the shine back to this province of gold!

Together, we will rescue Gauteng!

Thank you.

Let’s follow the lead of the women of ‘56; fight the failing ANC government at the polls

Note to Editors: The following speech was delivered by the Chief Whip of the Official Opposition Siviwe Gwarube during the DA’s National Women’s Day rally in Johannesburg.

Please download pictures here, here and here.

Good morning, Democrats!

It is so good to be here with you this Women’s Day.

It is always such an incredible moment to celebrate the work of the women of 1956 and commemorate their mark in history.

I am always so inspired by their fighting spirit;

But I am more encouraged by their unity in their diversity.

They understood then – 67 years ago – that there are issues which face women which often transcend their race, their socio-economic background or even their sexual orientation.

The fight against the Apartheid government was one such unifying battle.

The fight for the protection of women in 2023 is also an important and unifying battle.

Women are under attack in our society and government does little to afford us the protections needed after 7 decades from that historic day.

We do not want pink balloons and pretty pictures of women in heels – we want equal pay;

We do not want to be called imbokodo – we want to be protected from sexual predators;

We do not want to be labelled the ‘mothers of the nation’ – we want access to the criminal justice system so that men can pay to raise their children.

We are tired of these platitudes; while sibulaleka under an uncaring government.

Let me paint a picture for you;

Every single social-ill in this country disproportionately affects women the most;

The crime statistics show that it is women who are the victims of violent crimes;

Women in this country are raped and killed every single day;

From the crisis of Zama- Zamas here in Gauteng to the taxi violence raging through the streets of Cape Town; it is women who have to face the brunt of it.

To this end, we are calling on SANTACO and its affiliates to stop the violence on the streets of Cape Town.

We are calling on Minister Chikunga and Minister Cele to stop picking sides in this deadlock and to stop playing politics with the lives of people.

It is the women who are domestic workers, healthcare workers and teachers who fear for their lives as they make their way to work every day.

The violence must stop and a solution must be found!

The joblessness we see haunting our communities affects women the most as many are the breadwinners and heads of households;

They are the ones ekufuneke becukuceze a small child grant or the R350 every month to put food on the table;

ooMakhulu bethu are the ones who spend their old age grant besondla ii-family zabo nabantwana abangaphangeliyo.

Young women desperate for work are preyed upon by councilors who are demanding sex in exchange for temporary work;

The corruption we see in government departments means there is less money to be spent on services;

There are government employees abatya imali yesibonelelo sabantu abangathathi ntweni;

Money meant for housing, water, roads, clinics ityiwa ngoohlohlesabo abahleli kula Union Buildings.

The inequality of pay means that women who do the same work as men in many work places are paid less – only because they are women.

We saw the outcry when Banyana Banyana demanded equal pay before the FIFA Women’s World Cup.

Despite the fact that they do the same work and perform better than their male counterparts!

We congratulate Banyana Banyana for flying the South African flag high and never giving up despite the many challenges they face.

Every single thing that goes wrong in the country will always affect women the most.

This is why we need change and we need it now!


Women have been fighting a silent struggle against the government system that continues to ignore their plight.

Many women who are mothers or guardians are often faced with raising children on their own without the rightful help of fathers.

More than 60% of fathers are absent in their children’s lives and it is the mothers who have to pick up the load.

The DA Women’s Network ihlaba ikhwelo namhlanje.

Sithi violence against women and children is not only a fist to the face.

It is also the fact that men are neglecting their duties as fathers and the government is allowing this to happen.

Child malnutrition in South Africa is on the rise;

Over 80% of children cannot read for meaning;

And women often end up losing their jobs while trying to fight for child maintenance in court.

The process is long; it is daunting and often favours the men and not the woman or the child!

This can be fixed.

Instead of paying lip-service to the plight of women – government can change the system:

• They can introduce mobile maintenance courts to bring these closer to the communities they are meant to serve;
• Government can bring specialized maintenance courts that deal with these cases for quicker resolution and lessen the backlog;
• Court officials must be better trained to assist women who bring these cases to the court system

Our judiciary is often the last line of defense for many people;

That is why we are calling on Minister Ronald Lamola and his colleagues to go back to the drawing board and assist not only women but the children caught in the middle of these court battles.


If this court system is not fixed, we will be raising a generation of children who are trapped in poverty for life;

Inequality will worsen for years to come because we are not investing and protecting the most vulnerable in our society.


That is why I am pleading with you today to follow the example of the women of 56!

They did not let the apartheid government divide them – they saw their fight bigger than anything!

They united across communities and paved the way for you and I today.

However, we have a new battle on our hands,

A battle against poor leadership!

We must unite again, register to vote next year and vote out this ANC government!

There is nothing they can do to rescue our country, it is now in our hands.

We must be registered so we can fire this government at polls, and bring on a government that cares!

A government that will ensure we are safe in the streets and in our homes;
A government that will make sure we have work;
A government that will make sure our children are well-looked after and fathers contribute to their wellbeing as much as their mothers;
A government that will make sure we get equal pay for equal work;
A government that will embrace women at the leadership table and not lock them out!

That government can only be led by the DA!

We have the ideas!

We have the political will!

We have the energy!

We understand the needs of the people of our country!

We are ready to change the story of South African women;

It is starts with you and the ‘X’ next year!

Viva DA Viva!

Be part of the mission to rescue South Africa, get help registering to vote at

It is time to unite to Stop Malema

Note to Editors: The following speech was delivered by the DA Federal Leader John Steenhuisen during a Live Address to the nation today. Pictures are attached here and here

My fellow South Africans,

In the winter of 1993, our country was on the verge of anarchy and civil war.

Following the assassination of Chris Hani, many South Africans feared that we were about to descend into ethnic and racial violence that would plunge us all into permanent darkness.

And yet, with the world predicting the end of South Africa, we collectively pulled back from the edge of the abyss.

Just a year later, we held our first democratic elections.

It was one of the proudest moments in our history.

But this past weekend, we saw the return of a demon we thought we had buried in 1994.

Standing on a stage in front of 100 000 people in Soweto, Julius Malema resurrected the demon of hatred, division and ethnic violence in South Africa.

This is a man who is determined to ignite the civil war we averted in 1994.

From that stage in Soweto, Malema told thousands of followers that they must “shoot to kill.”

He instructed them to “kill the Boer, kill the farmer.”

Then he mimicked the sound of machine gun fire to members of his political cult, who answered with thunderous approval.

Julius Malema told us exactly who he is. It is time that we believe him.

For far too long, people in government, the media, civil society and constitutional institutions refused to acknowledge Malema for the bloodthirsty tyrant and demagogue he really is.

These people helped to normalise Malema’s hatred and racism.

But a political leader who incites mass murder, is not normal.

A Member of Parliament who calls for the killing of an entire section of society, is not normal.

And cowardly politicians who turn a blind eye to the incitement of civil war, is not normal.

The DA will not look away.

We will confront Julius Malema’s fascism head on.

Many of you will recall that, during the speech I delivered at the DA’s Congress in April, I identified the EFF as political enemy number one.

And I pledged to you that the DA would do everything in our power to prevent Malema from gaining power through a Doomsday Coalition between the ANC, PA and EFF.

I did so for a very good reason.

As I said at the time:

“EFF Doomsday will make the collapse of Zimbabwe look like a dress-rehearsal, and will leave all South Africans destitute – black, coloured, white and Indian…EFF Doomsday will plunge this country into ethnic and racial conflict the likes of which it has never witnessed before.”

With his incitement to commit mass murder on Saturday, Malema has confirmed the urgency of this warning.

He is intent on igniting the civil war that so many South Africans worked and sacrificed to avert in 1994.

The DA will not let him succeed.

That is why I can today announce that we are filing charges against both Julius Malema and the ANC government at the United Nations Human Rights Council.

The first element of our UN case will focus on Malema’s repeated incitement of ethnic violence.

The second element will charge the ANC national government before the UN over its years-long failure to take action against their one time protégé even as brutal farm murders continue to escalate in the wake of Malema’s demagoguery.

The charge will be laid in terms of Malema’s violation of, at least, three key UN charters.

The first is the Convention on the Prevention and Punishment of the Crime of Genocide.

Article 3 of the Convention makes it a punishable offence to direct and publicly incite people to commit mass murder on the basis of their identity.

The second is the Declaration on the Rights of Persons Belonging to National or Ethnic, Religious and Linguistic Minorities.

This declaration compels the South African government to ensure that persons belonging to minority groups may exercise their rights – including, in this case, the right to life and to practice the profession of farming – without any discrimination.

The third is article 27 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

The DA recently forced the South African government to live up to its international responsibility to comply with warrants issued by the International Criminal Court.

We will now do the same to force it to act against Malema.

In addition to turning to the international community, we will also file a complaint with Parliament’s ethics committee against Malema, in his capacity as a Member of Parliament.

We are further obtaining legal advice on approaching the Public Protector and the courts.

But it is also important that we are honest about one thing.

For more than a decade, the South African state has utterly failed to use appropriate internal remedies to stop Malema.

Time after time institution after institution has turned a blind eye to his incitement.

We saw this again just last week.

Instead of dealing with Malema, senior law enforcement officials drank expensive champagne with him at a fundraiser.

This is exactly why the time has come to turn to the global community.

Ek wil graag ook direk praat met ons boere.


Alhoewel Julius Malema se geweld ons hele land in swaarkry sal dompel, koester hy ‘n besondere haat vir ons boere.


Ek wil u daarom aanmoedig om Malema ernstig op te neem, en binne die raamwerk van die wet, gepaste stappe te neem om u plaas en familie te beskerm.


Waar u enige vrae het, of hulp kort, kontak asseblief u plaaslike DA verteenwoordiger en ons sal help.


In teenstelling met Malema se haat, koester die DA respek en bewondering vir die brawe boere wat ons almal voed.


Daarom sal ons alles in ons vermoë doen om vir Malema te stop.

My fellow citizens,

The time has come to stop Malema.

Even as the DA takes bold new action to prevent anarchy, we need your help.

While Malema’s singular goal is to divide South Africa, the DA is hard at work with our partners to bring people together through the Moonshot Pact.

While it is the responsibility of political leaders to lead the way towards unity and a new government, we cannot succeed without the support of South African voters.

That is why I am asking that you go to to ensure that you are registered to vote DA.

Uniting behind the DA at this dangerous time is not only the best way to ensure that the Pact has the stability and governance experience it needs to succeed in government.

Voting DA is also the single best way to build a big, strong and united political force that can stop Malema in his tracks.

The events of this past weekend have revealed a painful truth that we must now confront head-on.

That truth is that the demon of the 1990s, which very nearly plunged this country into violence from which it would never have recovered, is not dead and buried.

Julius Malema has resurrected it.

The hopeful news is that history shows that when South Africans unite for peace, we can defeat this demon.

But, just like in the 90s, it’s going to take commitment, leadership and hard work.

That is why I am today calling on every political and civil society leader to break the silence and publicly denounce Malema.

I specifically call on President Cyril Ramaphosa to break his silence and publicly condemn Malema.

To the media, I ask that you put pressure on Ramaphosa to come out of hiding for once.

If Ramaphosa fails to denounce Malema, it can only mean that he is too cowardly to honour the oath he took to uphold the Constitution and defend all the people of South Africa.

My fellow South Africans,

What we need in this country a is not hatred and political cowardice.

What we need is not demagogues who resurrect the demons we sought to bury in 1994.

What we need is not destruction that only knows how to break down.

What we need is to build this country.

What we need is unity and cooperation.

What we need is to stop shouting at each other, and to start listening to each other.

What we need is love and compassion, so that we may unclench our fists, lay down the weapons, and take hands to build a country that we can all be proud of.

Thank you.

Be part of the mission to rescue South Africa, get help registering to vote at

The best defiance campaign against ANC race quotas, is to register to vote DA

Note to Editors: The following speech was delivered today by the DA Federal Leader John Steenhuisen during a march against ANC race quotas. 

Goeiemôre, good morning, molweni,

It’s great to see so many democrats out on the streets of the Mother City today.

Dis te danke aan julle as DA ondersteuners en aktiviste, dat hierdie die bes-regeerde stad en provinsie in die hele Suid-Afrika is!

Ladies and gentleman, we know that South Africa is in the midst of the world’s biggest unemployment crisis.

Seven out of ten young people in this country – many of them graduates – cannot find work.

The national expanded unemployment rate is over 40 percent.

There are now more South Africans who are forced to survive on meager grants of R350 per month, than there are people who work and earn a decent salary.

On top of this jobs crisis, South Africans are facing the biggest cost of living crisis in a generation.

Let me ask you.

How many people here today are paying more to feed their families now than two years ago?

How many people here are paying more to get to work or school than two years ago?

How many people here feel poorer than they did two years ago?

And what is the ANC national government’s response to the unemployment and food crisis that threatens the survival of millions of South Africans?

They introduce a Race Quotas Act that could cost up to 600 000 jobs and kill any hopes of increased investment or economic growth.

They introduce race quotas for access to water that will destroy the farms and the livelihoods of the farmers and farm workers who feed all of us.

How many of you know Pick n Pay?

Well, allow me to read to you the warning issued last week from the chairman of Pick n Pay, Gareth Ackerman, about these race quotas.

Here is what he had to say.

The Race Quota Act, and I quote, “would have the effect of making large numbers of qualified people unemployed and substituting them with unqualified people. It is very probably unconstitutional, and could ruin many productive companies and foreign investments on which the economy depends.”

About the race quotas that will prevent farmers from obtaining water licenses to grow the food we all need to survive, Ackerman has this to say:

“The new provision for race-based water rights has huge potential to impact food security. This could ruin or close many of our farms and undermine the value of all existing farms, thus also creating a banking crisis.”


The Race Quota Act will completely ban the employment of coloured and Indian South Africans in certain provinces and sectors.

It says, in black and white, that the quota for the employment of coloured people in the agricultural sector in Limpopo and Mpumalanga is 0.0 percent.

What about here in the Western Cape?

According to research done by Solidarity, the ANC’s race quotas will force one out of every three coloured people working in skilled occupations in this province to lose their jobs.

One out of three.

Ons almal onthou hoe die ANC ‘n paar jaar gelede gesê het bruin mense is “over-represented” in die Wes-Kaap.

Hier sien ons nou die gevolge van die ANC se rassisme.

But let’s be clear: this law will hurt every single South African family, no matter their race and no matter where they live.

In Gauteng, approximately 85 000 coloured workers, 50 000 Indian workers and 220 000 white workers will have to be removed to meet the ANC’s quotas.

The number of coloured people employed in Gauteng will have to be reduced by an incredible 73 percent to meet the quotas.

Now, many of you know that I grew up in the beautiful province of KwaZulu-Natal.

Daar het ons nou wel nie ‘n Tafelberg nie, maar ons het darem die Drakensberge!

I was recently back in KZN, where I visited the vibrant market in Chatsworth in a part of the province that is home to nearly one million South Africans of Indian descent.

The market is filled with the most wonderful family-run shops, restaurants and stalls, owned and operated by the local Indian community.

The ANC’s race quotas will destroy that market and the community it sustains.

Even though more than 60 percent of the people who live in Chatsworth are Indian, the quotas say that less than 2 percent of people working in the retail sector in KZN are allowed to be of Indian background.

And before the ANC comes with the lie that these quotas will benefit black people, let’s look at some examples of how it will actually affect black people.

In the Northern Cape, the quota for black women in senior management in the real estate sector is 14.7 percent.

This means that a real estate company in Kimberley that is 100 percent black and female owned will be breaking the ANC’s Race Law.

Here in the Western Cape, only 18.6 percent of skilled health workers, like nurses, are allowed to be black women.

Just imagine, a clinic in Khayelitsha where 2 out of ten nurses are black will be breaking the law!

And make no mistake about it. The punishment for breaking the ANC’s race laws, are severe.

A company with more than 50 employees that fails to adhere to the race quotas, will be fined up to 10 percent of its annual turnover and will be cut off from doing any business with the state.


Black, white, Indian and coloured South Africans will all suffer enormously if we allow these race laws to stand.

But there is one group that will indeed benefit.

It is not the poor.

It is not skilled workers who are locked out of opportunities.

It is not our young people who spend a fortune to study, only to end up unemployed.

These laws are designed to benefit one group, and one group only: ANC cadres.

We already know that the ANC has used cadre deployment to loot, to collapse service delivery, and to reserve jobs in the public sector for their friends and family.

Now, the Race Quota Act will give the ANC enormous power over employment at private companies.

This Act is not about empowerment or equality.

It is about centralising the ultimate power in the ANC.

The power to decide who should be employed, and who should starve.

Hierdie wet se doel is om aan die ANC die mag te gee om vir besighede voor te sê wie ‘n werk mag hê, en wie moet honger ly.

We’ve already seen how organised Mafias have taken over economic sectors like the construction industry.

Mark my words: if these race quotas are implemented, you will soon see Mafias going to private businesses and telling them which cadres to employ, while honest and hard-working South Africans of all backgrounds are pushed even deeper into suffering.

My fellow South Africans,
success is zero’: D ANC’s bid to appeal cadre deployment ruling
We are here today to send a clear message.

That we reject these ANC race quotas with everything we have.

Today, I repeat my call that it is time for a new defiance campaign against these race laws.

The ANC is extending the same cadre deployment that has destroyed the state, and the same economic suffering, the same racist policies, the same job reservation, and the same group areas that we last saw before 1994.

That is why the DA has already gone to court to declare the Race Quotas Act unconstitutional.

But for guidance on what else we need to do, we should remind ourselves of a quote attributed to none other than Nelson Mandela.

In 1993, he said that if the ANC government ever does to you what the Apartheid government did, then you must do to the ANC what you did to the Apartheid government.

I say to you: with these race laws, the moment Mandela warned us about, has arrived!

It is time to defy the ANC’s race laws just like the defiance campaign undermined racist laws before.

Even more importantly, it is time to remove the ANC from government just like its predecessor was removed.

Now is the time for a new movement, like the old UDF, that includes political parties, civil society organisations, churches, sports clubs and businesses to rise up as one and sweep the ANC out of power.

The Moonshot Pact is this movement we have been waiting for.

The Moonshot Pact is the new UDF.

While the ANC divides us, the DA is working to form a Pact that unites us all as one.

Die doel van die Moonshot-Pakt is om opposisiepartye en die burgerlike samelewing te verenig teen die ANC en hul meelopers in partye soos die PA en GOOD, wat kiesers uitverkoop het aan die ANC.

Let’s be clear about one thing: next year, we must remove a rotten national government from power and elect a new DA national government.

And the DA’s Moonshot mission to remove the ANC from power starts right here in the Western Cape, where I call on you to go out in your numbers to register to vote DA.

In 2024, we need to send a clear message that we will not tolerate ANC discrimination and race quotas in this province!

The best way to send that message is to ensure that the DA wins its biggest ever majority here in the Western Cape.

Winning the Western Cape with an increased DA majority holds the key to launching our national Moonshot to rescue South Africa from the ANC’s destructive and racist policies.

I ask each and every one of you to join in this mission to rescue South Africa.

If every DA supporter helps their family and friends to visit, we can get millions more people registered.

And then, when Election Day arrives next year, we must go out in our masses to vote DA.

Daarmee sal ons eens en vir altyd ‘n baie duidelike boodskap stuur.

Raskwota’s se moer!

Ons is almal Suid-Afrikaners en ons almal verdien om gelyk behandel te word!

It is our moral duty to defy these unjust race laws.

The single most powerful thing each of us can do for this defiance campaign, is to go out and register to vote DA.

We are all South Africans, united in our diversity – and we will not allow the ANC to divide us.

Let us all go out and register today to defy ANC race laws and rescue South Africa.

Thank you.

DA National Assembly Plenary Debate Speeches: Youth Day

The following debate speeches will be delivered in the National Assembly today on Youth Day and are embargoed until delivery.


Nazley Sharif MP- Young people must choose – a failing government or an opportunity for a better future

DA Shadow Minister of Women, Youth and People with Disabilities

079 875 4930


Sello Seitlholo MPANC corruption continues to steal the future of young people 

DA Shadow Minister of Public Works and Infrastructure

066 079 3648


Jan de Villiers MPYouth must vote to break free from poverty and unemployment 

DA Shadow Minister of Small Business Development

083 489 8087