Former Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Tony Leon presented his analysis of the 2019 general election result in a talk called “What does it mean”, at Groot Constantia on Monday May 13.
The event was hosted by the Constantia Residents’ and Ratepayers’ Association (CRRA) as a fund-raiser to fight ongoing densification in the area.
Mr Leon, who moved to Constantia 18 months ago, served as leader of the DA from its inception in 2000 until his retirement from leadership in 2007. Before that, he led the Democratic Party from 1994.
The DA has held onto its lead in the Western Cape with 55.45% of the votes, down from 59.38% in the 2014 elections. The African National Congress (ANC) came in second place with 28.63%, also down from 32.89% in 2014, and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) with 4.04% of the votes, an increase from 2.11% in 2014.
Patricia de Lille’s new Good Party secured 3.01% of the Western Cape vote and the African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) came in fifth with 2.66%, up from 1.02% in 2014.
Mr Leon asked who the biggest loser is in the election.
“The IEC with 57 500 spoilt votes because of ballot papers not being stamped, non-indelible ink and zipzap machines not working.”
Mr Leon added that 9 million South Africans who are eligible to vote did not register, and that 34% who had registered did not “pitch” to cast their vote.
He said he joined premier elect from the DA, Alan Winde, on the campaign trail, from the Cape Flats to the Karoo and Centurion, they found that many people had “given up” on politicians.
However, the ANC had their sixth consecutive win of the national vote although with the lowest percentage since 1994. “Despite only one percent economic growth and nine million people unemployed,” he said.
Alan Winde said the party was grateful to voters who came out in their thousands to vote on Wednesday May 8, “despite the rain and Independent Electoral Commission difficulties”.
“We thank you for placing your trust in the DA – we won’t take your vote for granted and will use it responsibly. We will keep fighting for you, and will deliver on our promise to residents. We will keep growing the economy to deliver more jobs for our people. We will fight for a provincial police service, so that the Western Cape receives the police resources it deserves. And we will fight to run a provincial train service that works and runs on time,” said Mr Winde.
Bonginkosi Madikizela, DA Western Cape leader, said this is not the time to gloat. “Instead it’s a time to reflect, and take in everything our voters said during the campaign. It is time to implement our manifesto with precision, be on the ground and keep our voters informed. There must be less focus internally and we must put them first. We are busy doing proper analysis of these results to see where we can improve,” he said.
Faiez Jacobs, ANC provincial secretary, thanked those people who voted for the ANC.
“We are grateful to those former ANC voters who returned and resolved to give us another chance. We won’t let you down. We pledge that we will honour your trust by going into the Western Cape Legislature as the official opposition that will play a watchdog and activist role.
“We congratulate the DA on its win but we put Alan Winde on notice that we will be watching them closely to ensure that they govern the province in the interest of all of our communities instead of for a few,” he said.
Mr Jacobs said the party will continue to build non-racialism, unity, non-sexism and equal social economic rights for all.
“We are still committed to get rid of the divisive negative politics that the DA used in their campaigning to divide black, coloured and white. This scare tactic might have short dividends but in the long term, it produces a bitter harvest. We do not want different groups resenting each other.
“Our time to govern again is near. We will return as the government of the Western Cape; it’s only a matter of time. To begin that journey we will hold a thorough assessment of what went wrong in our campaign. I have issued an instruction that this process must begin,” said Mr Jacobs.