The DA in Johannesburg notes the stitching together of a new coalition government in the City of Johannesburg as a stark illustration of the decision that South Africans will have to make going forward: either a DA-led administration focused on principles, delivery, compassion, and stability, or an ANC-EFF-PA-led coalition of kleptocrats, corruption, henchmen, and chaos.
In the aftermath of the 2021 Local Government Elections, all parties elected to the Johannesburg City Council bore the democratic and moral responsibility to seek the formation of a stable government based on clear principles and a common objective of delivering services to all residents. The ensuing negotiations that the voters had mandated the DA to constructively engage in were complex, but delivered what seemed a workable outcome: a DA-led multi-party coalition government based on formal agreement that would put service delivery above politics.
However, it has become clear that many voters, in good faith entrusted several parties with responsibilities that these parties were simply unequal to. Multiparty coalition unfortunately gave way to the creeping erosion brought about by coalition capture.
Where voters wanted democratic collaboration amidst challenging political dynamics to effect resident-focused service delivery, a number of parties started singing from the ANC’s hymn sheet. Supposedly anti-ANC parties became ANC accomplices.
The EFF, perhaps in particular, has long sought to paint itself as an anti-ANC party. However, now that the EFF is part of the crookedly stitched-together Johannesburg City Executive, they have painted themselves into an uncomfortable and revealing corner.
The ANC-EFF-PA government taking office in Johannesburg will inevitably expose residents to avoidable and painful consequences of crooked coalitions of corruption. Future elections will offer South Africans an opportunity to reject the politics of crooks, cronies, cadres, and corruption. The DA in Johannesburg relishes each and every opportunity, whether from government or opposition, to earn the support of residents.
A Johannesburg where prosperity and growth become the norm rather than squabbles and decay is possible, and the DA will not let up in fighting to make this hope a reality.