FRIDAY BRIEFING | A brave new world beyond old politics, or My Little Pony and rainbows? | News24

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A brave new world beyond old politics, or My Little Pony and rainbows?

South Africans are weary – and wary – of politicians. Municipalities are collapsing, service delivery is dysfunctional and political leaders make promises they often don’t even attempt to keep.

But recently there has been some movement inside formal politics and also outside of formal politics as new formations, seeing opportunity in a sea of apathy, try to shake things up and force change. Because, surely, we can’t be stuck with the ANC forever.

Herman Mashaba’s ActionSA, despite being born in anger after its leader split from the DA, performed remarkably well at last year’s municipal election. Songezo Zibi, the erudite former newspaper editor, has launched a movement he hopes will awaken the middle class from its slumber. Mmusi Maimane, the former DA leader, is working on creating a grassroots groundswell, and Lindiwe Mazibuko, also a former DA leader, is helping to cultivate a new generation of civic-minded political leaders.

These are all new formations that seem to move beyond old politics and staid ways. There’s a national pall of depression hanging over South Africans at the moment. And most people don’t believe that our political systems serve them well, or that it can provide solutions to the problems facing us.

In the last election (the municipal poll last year) 39 million South Africans were eligible to vote. Of that number, only 26 million registered. And, incredibly, far fewer than half of those – 11,5 million – actually bothered to go cast their ballots. If that doesn’t scare the leaders of our political parties, nothing will.

In this week’s Friday Briefing we investigate the new brand of politics beyond the traditional, and try to look beyond where we are now, to what might come in future. Susan Booysen, Mbhazima Shilowa and Mmusi Maimane are all in one neat package.

Best,

Pieter du Toit

Assistant editor of in-depth and investigations


With ANC looking set to sink below 50%, the future is coalitions

South Africa isn’t well served with hundreds of parties and thousands of candidates on the ballot. With all indications that the ANC won’t get above 50% in the next election, fewer concrete parties and movements with strong leadership can agree ahead of time to work together after 2024, writes Mmusi Maimane.

cartoon by carlos



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