Invoking Mandela to plead for the vote of the Afrikaner

At the time of the 2016 municipal elections, I wrote a contribution The ANC’s dismal attempt, filled with irony, at wooing Afrikaans speaking voters , on the then President Zuma’s futile attempt to attract White voters to vote for the ANC in an English radio advert flighted on the Afrikaans radio station, Radio Sonder Grense (RSG). In the article I pointed out seven ironies of the ANC’s attempt, including that in doing so they, as a supposedly non-racial party, blatantly played the race card. I remarked as follows at the time:

“….maybe the ANC don’t actually need the White votes because they are still generally expected to come out tops this year despite the growing electoral threat of the DA and the ANC’s own stepchild, the EFF. But maybe not in this year’s local government election, but highly possible in the next national election the ANC might just desperately need each and every White or Coloured Afrikaans speaking voter it can lay its hands on just to stay in power.”

Well, it’s clear that time has come that the ANC will need the vote of as many minority voters as is possible. It’s evident when one reads in an article White voters may rescue the ANC, the party’s barely contained excitement that White voters might just save their bacon in Gauteng. This when the expected % of White voters who will vote for the party in Gauteng is estimated to be a paltry 8% as if that is significant in itself, rather than that the said 8% might enable the ANC to just hold on to their majority in Gauteng.

“We have never had [such high support among white voters], even during the Mandela years,” David Makhura, the current Gauteng Premier is quoted as saying.

It is also clear that its desperate times for the ruling party when reading an article An opportunity for Afrikaners to have a Mandela moment by ANC Member of Parliament, Nick Koornhof, which article is based on a speech he recently delivered in Parliament. In his speech Koornhof pleads with Afrikaners to give at least one of their votes to the ANC in the upcoming election and that this will represents the magic “Mandela moment” for Afrikaners, in that it will strengthen Presidents Ramaphosa’s hand against the forces of populism. 

In an A counter appeal to Afrikaners, Hendrik Jansen van Rensburg highlights the following further ironies in this latest attempt by the ANC’s Nick Koornhof to woo Afrikaner voters in that:

  • The appeal is (again) made in English,  the language that the ANC insists on forcing upon all South Africans as lingua franca, regardless of any personal preference they might have.
  • A significant portion of the forces that oppose Ramaphosa in his attempts at positive change is coming from within the ANC itself and that the “forces of populism” that Koornhof believes Ramaphosa needs to resist are therefore largely present inside the ANC itself.
  • Both President Rampahosa and Nick Koornof sat by idly when at least six votes of no confidence in former President Zuma failed, so why should the Afrikaner voter now trust that under the Ramaphosa things will be different in the ANC? 

I wonder if Nick Koornhof realizes that when he says the Afrikaner must join the fight against the tide of populism, that a blind vote of faith for Ramaphosa’s ANC, will place the whole country just one heartbeat away from a possible populist David Mabuza Presidency with Ace Magashule as his Deputy. 

But even so, I’m personally willing to give due consideration to Nick Koornhof’s plea. He says that he speaks as a member of the minority Afrikaner community and as such my possible support, and I suspect that many other reasonable and patriotic Afrikaners, requires his unequivocal pledge and/or guarantees in respect of the following key considerations for the future of our constitutional democracy:

  1. That the ANC abandon its stated aim of achieving a National Democratic Revolution (NDR), which is nothing than a blueprint to move the country slowly down a failed path of more and more socialism (and stop their admiration for failed states like Venezuela).
  2. That the ANC respect all private property and abandon the notion of “expropriation without compensation” and rather accelerate land reform within the current legal framework aimed at addressing the wrongs of the past.
  3. That the ANC desist from nationalising the public Health Care sector through the National Health Insurance, and rather focus on fixing the ailing existing public health care system, thereby ensuring health care for all.
  4. That the ANC respect the independence of the Reserve Bank and not make any moves to nationalise it in any shape or form.
  5. That all legislation based on outdated racial classifications like the Employment Equity Act and many others be replaced with legislation that doesn’t use race a the proxy for disadvantage, but rather real measurable actual disadvantage that’s not based on the race of a person.
  6. That a sunset clause be placed on all Affirmative Action measures that will free all born free South Africans (those born after 1994) from the burden of having to pay for the sins of their fathers and enable them to compete on an equal opportunity basis, as opposed to an equality of outcome basis, with their fellow countrymen and women in all spheres of life.
  7. That the ANC pro-actively advance mother tongue education at primary education level and acknowledge the right of children to be taught in their mother tongue in line with international best practice.
  8. That the ANC in line with Mandela’s stated view acknowledge the need for at least one Afrikaans University in the Western Cape where the majority of citizens speaks Afrikaans as their first language.
  9. That the ANC do away with all those restrive labour laws that hinder rather than facilitate job creation and that place an undue administrative burden on mainly small businesses. 
  10. That the ANC fixes the mess at all the State Owned Enterprises and especially Eskom as a matter of urgency.

I think the aforementioned are all reasonable requests that require serious consideration. My gut feeling however says that any one of the above let alone all of them, even though clearly in the best interest of South Africa, will be a bridge too far for the ANC.

Please proof me wrong Nick Koornhof and you might just get my vote and that of many Afrikaners. The ball is in your and your party’s court.



The ANC’s dismal attempt, filled with irony, at wooing Afrikaans speaking voters

I was sitting in the drive through this afternoon, waiting for delivery of my well know branded chicken pieces, when on the Afrikaans RSG radio station an ANC local government advert bleated over my car’s stereo speakers after the compulsory warning that the political party and not the SABC paid for the advert. President Zuma urging Arikaans speaking voters, many who are White, to vote for his beloved “we will rule till Jesus descends from heaven” and “the party is my first love” political movement, the ANC.

Vote for us he said in imperfect English (not that mine is any better!) on an Afrikaans public radio station, because we will rid you from the pain of years of discrimination caused by the White Apartheid regime. Agreed, Apartheid was a gross injustice and a system that discriminated against many fellow South Africans purely based on their race.

But herein irony number one, the race card being played by a so called non-racial party – ‘White Apartheid’, the Presidents words aimed at uniting the nation behind the ANC, as opposed to just ‘Apartheid’. And that when trying to convince White voters to vote for it! What a sure way to convince those same White voters, the majority of whom voted in the 1980’s and early 1990’s to eventually rid South Africa from Apartheid or are born frees that only knows the new South Africa, not to vote for you.

But maybe the ANC don’t actual need the White votes because they are still generally expected to come out tops this year despite the growing electoral threat of the DA and the ANC’s own stepchild, the EFF. But maybe not in this years local government election, but highly possible in the next national election the ANC might just desperately need each and every White or Coloured Afrikaans speaking voter it can lay its hands on just to stay in power.

Irony number two namely the President advertising his party of freedom that gave us our wonderful Constitution with its guarantees of media freedom on the RSG radio station, belonging to the public broadcaster the SABC, and urging Afrikaans voters to vote for his party, when the same SABC as a government entity is busy eroding freedom of speech and free and fair reporting of news that’s in the public interest through the implementation of censorship. All of this right under the nose of the same ANC who until recently staunchly defended the SABC, its Board and controversial COO, Hlaudi Motsoeneng and who only changed their tune very late because the party feared loosing even more votes in an election year.

Irony number three, that it was mainly journalist from the Afrikaans radio station, RSG, that had the guts to eventually stand up against the SABC dictatorship, thereby pushing the matter firmly into the national spotlight. Soldiers for media freedom, White and Coloured Afrikaans speaking South Africans together with their Black colleagues standing up and saying #notinmyname and paying the price by being summarily dismissed by the SABC without due process. Not bad Mr. President for a few descendants of Jan van Riebeeck, who you so quickly blame for all South Africa’s social ills, and Harry the Strandloper. But vote for you party, I would think not because when we expected your party to lead in front as the guardians of our Constitution you dismally failed leaving the fight for media freedom to mainly a few Afrikaans speaking SABC radio journalists.

Irony number four, the President being quoted in the media (and not out of context this time) saying that he does not understand how Black people could ever vote for the DA. Forgive me but on the ANC posters I thought I read that the party will fight racism? How then can President Zuma so blatantly claim all Black voters as the ANC’s personal property as if these voters don’t have the ability, free will and personal agency to decide for themselves who to vote for! And so only Black voters care for the ANC Mr. President? This would be funny if it was not so sad and tragic.

Coming back to the issue of calling out Apartheid as being a White construct it goes without saying that yes, White voters introduced Apartheid and sustained it for a number of decades to their benefit (and yes Apartheid was inherently unjust and discriminatory as previously stated). However in the last 15 years or so of Apartheid it was however hardly a pure White construct anymore. Hundred of thousands of Black, Coloured and Indian politicians and government functionaries served freely during these years in, and benefited from, state organs like the tri-cameral parliament, homeland governments and administrations, the TBVC state governments and administrations (former Transkei, Bophuthatswana, Venda and Ciskei governments), racially based local government structures in the Black townships and Indian and Coloured towns, racially mixed regional services councils and racially mixed provincial executives.

And herein lies irony number five, our past is seen by the ANC only in either good or bad, black or white terms. As if nothing good ever ever happened during the Apartheid years – South Africa did not develop to become Africa’s leading economy with an advanced banking and finance system and modern road and rail infrastructure, an industrialized nation that offered employment for most of its citizens, we did not advance technologically (no heart transplants, no Sasol etc.), there were no happy families or good memories for those living during those years etc. etc., no no all was bad and evil with only racist White people supporting the system and with all Black people, with the exception of a few collaborators, vehemently opposing the system.

And so to the last irony, whereas the ANC is quick to blame all White people for their association with Apartheid, they are even quicker to name as their own some of those Black people who served in the apartheid state or those White people who despite Apartheid are useful to their purpose. One example of the former being the late Tom Boya, the Mayor of the racially based and therefore despised by the ANC, Daveyton Black Local Authority who the ANC hailed as a hero at his funeral. This despite the fact that Tom Boya was not just an ordinary Mayor under Apartheid, but chairperson for many years in the 1980’s of the Black Urban Council Association of South Africa (UCASA), a position similar to that of the chairperson of the South African Local Government Association (SALGA) today. He was however not branded a sell-out by the ANC as Mr. Buthelezi were often for having served in the KwaZulu-Natal homeland government.

An example of the latter – a White Deputy Minister who will remain nameless serving in the ANC government today despite being anti-ANC as a student at the Rand Afrikaans University. Every time I see him on television, I cringe when I think about how he spoke out against the ANC in the early 1980’s.

I’m sorry Mr. President, because of the aforementioned its going to take much more than a few words in a badly thought out English radio add aired on an Afrikaans radio station RSG to convince Afrikaans speaking voters of all backgrounds to vote for the ANC. And no its got nothing to do with racism or being anti-Black or anti-ANC but everything to do with the ANC’s dismal record in promoting and demonstrating their own commitment to real non-racialism, in upholding and fighting for all the values set out in our Constitution (cowardly leaving these fights to opposition parties, the Public Protector and ordinary citizens like the ‘SABC 8’) and in ensuring good governance in so many government institutions of which the SABC is but one of the ANC’s many failures.