Mixed reaction over role of ANC in transition to democracy

President Cyril Ramaphosa during the ANC manifesto launch at the Moses Mabhida Stadium. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya / Independent Newspapers

President Cyril Ramaphosa during the ANC manifesto launch at the Moses Mabhida Stadium. Picture: Khaya Ngwenya / Independent Newspapers

Published Feb 26, 2024


Durban — South African citizens had a mixed reaction on the role played by the ANC that has been in power since the transition to democracy in April 1994.

Some ordinary members rooted in the ANC believe the party can still fulfil its promises made for the last three decades; others eagerly wait for the commitment to be fulfilled by the party.

On Saturday, during the ANC’s Mayihlome Manifesto Launch held at the Moses Mabhida Stadium in Durban, President Cyril Ramaphosa once more promised to improve the lives of disadvantaged people.

Ramaphosa highlighted the achievements of the ANC and also outlined the issues of poverty, unemployment, crime and the electricity crisis which he said the party plans to tackle.

The general elections are due to be held on May 29 to elect a new National Assembly, as well as the provincial legislature in each province.

This is how people reacted outside the Moses Mabhida Stadium:

Mduduzi Xolo. l MBALI KHANYILE

Mduduzi Xolo, 26, from Inanda, said he is an ANC member and that he is dissatisfied with the corrupt and poor governance by the ANC.

“A lot has happened since Ramaphosa took over as president of the party and that demoralises me. I am beginning to lose hope in the ANC.

“Food and petrol prices have gone up while the governing party is fully aware that we are unemployed and struggling to survive,” said Xolo.

MAKHOSI THABETHE. Picture: Mbali Khanyile

Makhosi Thabethe, 63, from Clermont, said staying in an informal settlement, power outages and the unavailability of jobs frustrate her.

“I live with my sister’s children who should be working by now but they are unable to find jobs. “The R350 grant for unemployed citizens is just not enough and the government really needs to do something,” said Thabethe.

Sphiwe Nxumalo. Picture: Mbali Khanyile

Sphiwe Nxumalo, 27, from Inanda, said he is not planning to vote on May 29 because the governing party has disappointed him.

“After finishing high school I could not further my studies. I have been sitting at home for years with no job. The R350 grant – supposed to support us as the unemployed – is not enough. Job opportunities are also not availed to people like us,” he said.

Slindile Dlamini. Picture: Mbali Khanyile

Slindile Dlamini, 33, from Inanda, said politicians are good at delivering speeches but fail to fulfil their promises. “I have been a rooted member of the ANC who has been voting for the ANC during the past elections, but I do not really think I will vote for the ANC this year.

“And I know I am not the only one who has been disappointed by the ANC. We have waited too long for the change they keep promising,” said Slindile.

Nombali Mdluli.

Nombali Mdluli, 33, from Umlazi, said nepotism was one of the demoralising facets which destroys the party.

“The ANC is led by corrupt, dishonest, incompetent leaders who are failing to deliver basic services. They call every citizen during their manifesto events but they are very picky when it comes to servicing all citizens.”

Joe Ndlovu.

Joe Ndlovu from Folweni said he decided to leave the ANC, after realising that the party was now being led by power-hungry leaders who had no intention of serving the public.

“The governing party’s vision should be promoting unity and uplifting the quality of life, not to oppress disadvantaged people.

“I then opted to join the newly-formed Umkhonto weSizwe (MK) party because I want to see change. I believe that the vision of the MK party will surely bring the change we need in the country,” said Ndlovu.

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