Since its first democratic elections, South Africa has never produced a plausible alternative to the ANC. With a one-party-always-wins mantra, South Africans will never experience a true democracy. Our country needs at least two parties (preferably three) that could possibly win an election. Our people need a choice and we need to be able to hold political parties to account when they fail (as they inevitably do).
Therefore, I am truly excited by the official launch of Agang South Africa. Dr Mamphela Ramphele* seems a true visionary with the people of South Africa at heart. A reminder of the vision that our great leader, Mr Nelson Mandela had in mind for this extraordinary country of ours.
At this stage, I don’t know all she has in store for us. I also don’t want to bring the ANC down (in this post at least), or deny the role the Democratic Alliance has to play in South African politics. However, launching a new alternative, with a leader of this calibre, can only enhance the political landscape.
Dr Mamphela Ramphele said: “This is a momentous week for Agang SA as we prepare for the launch of our party on Saturday. Agang offers the prospect of restoring the promise of freedom and a hope for the future that is striking a chord with people across the country.”
Earlier this week, Ramphele told the Cape Town Press Club that the Independent Electoral Commission (IEC) had eroded as an independent electoral commission and that she is in talks with other parties to check certain IEC processes.
“Voters don’t actually know that they have a choice. Many are being told that if you go into that ballot box, we can see who you vote for and, therefore, we will punish you and take away your grants or your RDP houses,” she said.
Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu commented in the Mail & Guardian ” I have known Dr Ramphele for more than 30 years as a brave and principled leader who has been ready to take costly stands for social justice. If Dr Ramphele formally enters the election race next year, and goes on to attract sufficient votes to become a parliamentarian, there is no doubt that South Africans will benefit from her experience and her knowledge, and from hearing her voice.”
*Dr Mamphela Ramphele has been a student activist, a medical doctor, a community development activist, a researcher, a university executive, a global public servant and is now an active citizen in both the public and private sectors.