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Compiled by Devina Haripersad

‘We don’t want leaders who are going to lie’: Pappas backed as DA’s KZN premier candidate

The uMngeni mayor will be the face of the DA in KZN ahead of next year's elections.

The Democratic Alliance (DA) has announced uMngeni mayor Chris Pappas as its premier candidate in KwaZulu-Natal (KZN) for the forthcoming 2024 elections.

Pappas, the only DA mayor in the province, addressed a fervent crowd of supporters outside the Durban City Hall on Monday shortly after his nomination.

‘ANC failures’

Drawing parallels to the historic 1994 elections, Pappas commenced his speech by evoking memories of a nation uncertain of its future.

The uMngeni mayor lauded the bravery of those who ventured to the polls, bringing about transformative change.

However, he emphasised that the nation has weathered numerous challenges and unfulfilled promises in the years that followed.

ALSO READ: uMngeni mayor Pappas makes TIME100 Next list

“We cannot feign ignorance to the events that have unfolded since then. We’ve seen RDP houses, and we’ve seen electricity reaching households, yet many still dwell in darkness due to the failures of the ANC,” Pappas said.

He also raised concerns about escalating unemployment, inadequate infrastructure in schools, and and the failure of social grants to reach their recipients in a timely manner.

The mayor called upon South Africans to summon the courage to reconsider their voting choices and grant alternative political leadership an opportunity to govern.

“We no longer want people who are going to lie,” he proclaimed.

Earlier this month, Pappas received international recognition when TIME Magazine honoured him as one of 24 young leaders in the leadership category on the TIME100 Next list.

TIME commended his transformative impact on the uMngeni Municipality since taking office in November 2021.

His achievements include restoring the municipality’s fiscal balance, a feat not seen in over a decade, and facilitating the integration of 175 new homes into the electricity grid.

Other premier candidates

Meanwhile, the DA has announced its candidates nominated for the position of premier in other major provinces.

Alan Winde will be aiming to retain his position as Western Cape premier in the upcoming 2024 general elections after being backed by his party.

Winde, who has held the position since 2019, garnered praise from DA leader John Steenhuisen following the announcement of his nomination as premier candidate.

“If it ain’t broken, don’t fix it!,” Steenhuisen affirmed as he commended Winde’s role in propelling the Western Cape toward the status of “the best-run region in South Africa.”

In addition, Solly Msimanga, the DA’s Gauteng leader, was granted a second chance to vie for the position of premier in the country’s largest industrial hub.

Last month, Roy Jankielsohn was also announced as the DA’s premier candidate for Free State.

NOW READ: Solly Msimanga back in hot seat as DA’s Gauteng premier candidate