‘DA Governance is Our Last Hope at a Safe and Prosperous South Africa’
Honourable Premier and Cabinet Colleagues,
Honourable Leader of the Opposition,
Honourable Members of the WCPP,
Special Guests, NGO and community leaders,
Citizens of the Western Cape,
In the frenetic and incredibly exciting period immediately after the 1994 elections, a lot of effort went into building what is referred to as ‘the post-Apartheid state’. The ruling party advocated for the replacement of what they referred to as the Apartheid bureaucracy with a new ‘so-called’ revolutionary group of cadre deployees. What seemed to be a bold move towards building an inclusive state resulted in a disastrous outcome.
The skills base of the state was systematically gutted at all three levels. We see the impact of this today, particularly in local government. The deployment policy of the ANC was not based on merit. Rather, it was predicated on loyalty to the ruling party. What followed, at all three levels of government, was the systematic looting and destruction of the state by these very deployed cadres. Every day, we receive greater detail of this through Zondo Commission. However, I fear this is simply the tip of the ice berg.
In Claire Bisseker’s article entitled “a fiscal unravelling”, she notes that “South Africa has arrived at a point where politics and debt collide”. Here, she highlights how a weak attachment to the principles of constitutionalism, non-racialism, a market-based economy and the rule of law are unravelling South Africa.
Speaker, we need to ask ourselves - how long can we afford to be held hostage by the ANC’s factional battles, including the likes of CR17. The interests of a political party are being put before the interests of the country. This is demonstrated by the spiralling unemployment and crimes rates.
This further has a spill over consequence on our township economies whose local shebeens are extorted by the likes of the infamous Boko Haram gang for ‘security money’. Similarly, legitimate businesses in Long Street are forced to hire security officials to prevent such extortion. This indicates the collapse of the rule of law.
Speaker, where the rule of law collapses, so too does our criminal justice system as it becomes more vulnerable to exploitation by the very criminals it seeks to apprehend. Clearly, criminals, gangs and syndicates are taking advantage of the collapsing state of the rule of law as it allows them to walk freely amongst the innocent and vulnerable.
I realise that the opposition hate being reminded of this, but while the DA is in government and continues to fight for the people of this province and country, there is hope for South Africa.
The reality is that while the rest of South Africa’s story is one of decline and disaster, the DA-led Western Cape’s story is one of growth and prosperity. This is why we have the highest school retention rate, the lowest unemployment rate and the best service delivery of all provinces. In fact, Gauteng Premier David Makhura has come out saying that he believes the Western Cape to be the best run province!
Speaker, the Western Cape Government has consistently called for the increased and more equitable allocation of police personnel to crime ravaged communities in the Western Cape. We will continue to fight this battle on behalf of our citizens and put maximum pressure on National Government to improve the poor police to population ratio here in the Cape.
Rather than waiting for SAPS and National Government to fulfil their mandate and safeguard citizens; the Department of Community Safety has implemented K9 units, has rebranded Neighbourhood Watches and is prioritising the uptake of young people from gang-afflicted communities into the Chrysalis Youth Academy.
We have further established a collaborative approach in Strand to quell unrest on the N2 and in effected communities. Two weeks ago, there was a land invasion along the N2 resulting in protests and road blockades over the long weekend. My Department responded by bringing together Neighbourhood Watches, CPFs, private security, rate payers associations, ASLA, SANRAL and community members to mediate the violence. Unrest has since stopped.
The ANC-led National Government ought to take a leaf from our book. The DA-led Western Cape and City of Cape Town’s joint commitment to safeguarding residents is further demonstrated by the deployment of a hundred law enforcement to Bonteheuwel. Since this deployment there is been a sharp decrease in the number of murders committed. This is phenomenal given that between the beginning of January and 30 June 2019, 44 murders were committed.
Clearly, our country is at an impasse. If our economy continues to be undermined by the ANC, important state functions such as our criminal justice system will be obliterated. I do, however, believe that there is hope. She is blue, inclusive, resilient and beautiful. She believes in an Open Opportunity Society for All. She is the Democratic Alliance.