Back on his trip from Ukraine, Democratic Alliance leader John Steenhuisen slammed the ANC-led government’s failure to directly condemn its “Brics ally” Russia for its invasion of Ukraine.
According to Steenhuisen, the conflict in Ukraine was a fight between good and evil and no country should “sit on the fence”.
Steenhuisen said during his visit, when asked about the ANC’s decision to sit on the fence regarding the war, he told Ukrainians the ANC most certainly did not speak for South Africa on Ukraine.
We have a lot of work ahead to do in preventing deepening poverty as a result of the war in Ukraine.On Monday I will give detailed feedback on my visit, this will be broadcast live from 11h15.Let's continue to take a stand against human rights violations. ???????? pic.twitter.com/mDoUgPReYW— John Steenhuisen MP (@jsteenhuisen) May 7, 2022
We have a lot of work ahead to do in preventing deepening poverty as a result of the war in Ukraine.On Monday I will give detailed feedback on my visit, this will be broadcast live from 11h15.Let's continue to take a stand against human rights violations. ???????? pic.twitter.com/mDoUgPReYW
“I told them all the same thing, our ANC government speaks only for its own narrow financial interests. It does not represent the citizens of South Africa in its immoral support for Russia,” he said.
Political analyst André Duvenhage said Steenhuisen touched on the “moral low ground” of the ANC for its failure to not condemn Russia.
According to Duvenhage, with Russia being the “great” allies of the ANC, the ruling party did not come out against Russia and knew there were huge human transgressions.
“Steenhuisen is only pointing this out. I do think he is right but he is also scoring points for his own party.”
Duvenhage said the negative aspects of this war would contribute to high crude oil prices and even higher interests rate.
“This could ultimately drive Steenhuisen and the Europeans to take a stand against President Cyril Ramaphosa and his government.”
Duvenhage added that Steenhuisen’s visit would have an impact on the perspective and dynamics of South African politics, which would reflect the challenges within the ANC.
Political analyst Levy Ndou said it was government’s role to deal with matters in regard to international affairs or relations.
DA Leader, John Steenhuisen, visits the site where more than 80 civilians were buried following Russia's attack. ????????"Pursuing a 'see no evil, hear no evil’ approach in the face of Putin’s criminal behaviour is reckless and a betrayal of our obligation to safeguard human rights." pic.twitter.com/8XDzm5memO— Democratic Alliance (@Our_DA) May 6, 2022
Ndou said Steenhuisen appealed to government in having a clear sense and condemning what Russia was doing.
It was important to also look at the impact that South Africa could have only with the condemnation of Russia.
“It is good that he is making his appeal on the fact that he has his own position on what Russia is doing is wrong,” he said.
????The cost of the Ukraine war on Africa!"In my recent visits to KZN and the Eastern Cape I’ve seen and heard for myself how the rising food prices have taken a profound toll on vulnerable households." – John SteenhuisenThe war will have a long-lasting impact on global prices. pic.twitter.com/2ggFT0a1lc— Democratic Alliance (@Our_DA) May 5, 2022
The action should not simply end with press briefings but bilateral links with Ramaphosa should take place.
He said there was nothing wrong with Steenhuisen asking the president for a discussion.
“That way, they could develop an understanding of the government’s position on the war.”
Ndou said Steenhuisen’s act reflected his will to participate in decision-making in SA.
“He has probably come back with emotional wounds about what he has witnessed and that is why he wants to be a participant in the decisions on issues related to Ukraine.”