May 8th – Will South Africans say 'no, more?'

- | a month ago

South African elections (national and provincial), we’re probably going to get a big surprise. The EFF might be supplanted as king-makers by one in the plethora of smaller parties, having moved centre stage into a coalition with the ANC.

The DA, with a more tried and tested record than the red berets, could benefit from the global swing towards negative voting – i. people voting against something, rather than for it.

There’s a lot to say no to. Voters are ‘gatvol’ with corruption and patronage, loadshedding, old-guard blind loyalty, e-tolls in Gauteng, ongoing SOE bailouts shoring up discredited centrist policies, and, that Achilles Heel of SA politics, the proportional representation system. Here, Chuck Stephens, Executive Director of the Desmond Tutu Centre for Leadership, says there’s no reason South Africans will be any different to Brits or North Americans; whether it’s Brexit or the Great Wall of Mexico, there are some meaty targets to tilt at.

The ruling party is nervous about losing its traditional voter share. A full six percent of voters will be first-timers, “Born Frees” with minimal baggage and new paradigms. The party of liberation has strayed way off course; renewal is afoot.

– Chris Bateman.

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