Legislation for forming a party needs a relook

The formation of new political parties by leaders like Ace Magashule raises questions about personal interests versus collective needs.


Now it is former ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule who has formed a new political party. I wonder who will be next? We as citizens must take our interests very seriously because all these parties are formed in our name. They claim to represent the interests of those who’ve been failed by the ruling party. Things they ostensibly failed to fix while in the very party that they condemn. While there, they actually defended what they claim to be against today. As I said before, if they are all concerned about our collective plight, why is it so difficult for them…

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Now it is former ANC secretary-general Ace Magashule who has formed a new political party. I wonder who will be next?

We as citizens must take our interests very seriously because all these parties are formed in our name. They claim to represent the interests of those who’ve been failed by the ruling party.

Things they ostensibly failed to fix while in the very party that they condemn. While there, they actually defended what they claim to be against today.

As I said before, if they are all concerned about our collective plight, why is it so difficult for them to join each other to achieve their objectives, which are so much the same?

Why do they think they have more power to defeat the ruling party while they are so divided? It’s all about self-interest.

Magashule this week spoke about corruption and the land question, so does the African Transformation Movement, so says the Economic Freedom Fighters

I can go on and on.

These are parties which claim to be leftist. You also find the same thing in parties that claim to be liberal in their outlook.

There are at least four that have either splintered from the Democratic Alliance (DA) or from those that splintered from the DA’s splinters.

It is very clear the interests here are much more personal than collective. Perhaps we need to relook at the constitutional requirements for forming a political party.

We should also tighten the accounting mechanisms for parties and their leaders. These people must really earn their money.

As things stand, politics to many leaders have become a way of earning a salary package with benefits for five years without really having to do much.

Politics have become commercialised, devoid of all principles of serving the people – and we allow that.

The bar for becoming a public representative has to be reset and raised much higher.

Political parties must declare very clearly what they are going to do for their constituencies, how they are going to do that, if they fail, what should their constituencies do including the processes of recalling them. There should be regular conferences to elect new leaders.

There should also be a specific guidelines on how party constitutions are written, which should include the ability for their constituencies to call them to give periodic progress reports and to account to them.

The constituencies must be the owners of the parties that are founded in their name. People cannot be reduced to mere numbers, just good enough to vote their leaders into office.

If one were to look into ANC-offshoot Congress of the People, is there any justification for us the public to continue footing the remaining members’ salaries, benefits and perks?

And there are other organisations, and various MPs too, who – in all honesty – are in parliament not for the “people” but f0r themselves.

The government has created jobs for them without them having to do anything, except to have rallies close to every election season.

Monama is an independent commentator and a former Azapo leader.

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