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President Cyril Ramaphosa sounded a lot more like the late Robert Mugabe this week when he hinted at the ANC opting for invocation of the legislation to enable a rerun of the election if coalitions failed to materialise.
That worried me.
Isn’t that what Zanu-PF and Mugabe did when they lost the election in 2008, before he unleashed deadly violence against his opponents?
Mugabe’s madness saw members, supporters and leaders of the opposition Movement for Democratic Change tortured by his police.
Unprovoked attacks against innocent white farmers by military veterans ensued.
The rigging of the election outcomes became the norm as Zanu-PF tried to stay in power by hook or crook.
Ramaphosa did not say it in so many words but his excitement and the body language indicated that a rerun was on the agenda for the weekend’s crisis special meeting of the ANC national executive committee.
The party had realised that its struggle song ANC ayilelanga iguqe ngedolo (ANC is not down but kneeling) had become irrelevant after last week’s election results.
It obtained 46%, its worst electoral performance since 1994, something Ramaphosa acknowledged at the ANC thank you rally in Soweto on Monday.
The use of the term “thank you” event, instead of traditional post-election “Sinqobile Rally”, was itself odd.
In reality, their votes had dropped dramatically from both the 2016 local and the 2019 national polls.
It’s too late for the ANC to try and correct its ways. That horse has bolted. People are angry at the governing party for not listening to them despite their cries for service delivery.
Many citizens had been on housing lists since 1996. Instead of meeting the people’s demands for better life, police lethal force was used against protesters. The demise of young Nathaniel Julies, Andries Tatane and victims of the Marikana Massacre, come to mind.
Under the ANC, illegality thrives with no laws to control migrants, which has caused anger among locals who lost their jobs to foreigners.
Why can our politicians not create jobs for the unemployed youth by enlisting them as cops instead of always complaining about the shortage of police officers?
This would be killing two birds with one stone – providing jobs and ensuring law enforcement (crime and road safety).
Despite the open anger, authorities forged ahead as if nothing happened.
The ANC had been governing on borrowed time. SA voters had been looking for alternatives since Polokwane 2007. The massive support Cope received was the first warning the ANC failed to read.
Now we have the EFF and ActionSA as a potential parties of the future.
As I pondered Ramaphosa’s rerun statement, I thought of Prof Lesiba Teffo as someone to give me a balanced view on the current situation.
According to Teffo, the ANC demise is slowly but surely coming. In desperation, it might go the Zimbabwean route if the coalition talks failed because the law would require a rerun.
But the consequences of this are too ghastly to contemplate because the country may be plunged into violence with the ANC fearing an ever lower results.