ANC Schizophrenia Around Loss of Power

Tom Stokes MPP

DA KwaZulu-Natal Legislature

LISTENING to this morning’s debate on “Forum at 8”on the ANC plan to repair and reconstruct itself in light of its diminishing support, I could not help but feel that there is a fundamental schizophrenia around the issue of losing power.

On the one hand, the numerous references to the ANC as a “democratic movement” and its mandate to “create a free and democratic society”, reflects an alignment with the great democratic movements of our time. On the other hand there is the terror of losing power, reflected in the numerous statements around “the ANC being the only movement capable of liberating our people”. There appears to be an inherent inability to digest the ultimate and inevitable consequence of democracy: interchanging political parties in power. One wonders whether ANC members celebrate the change in leadership in the Western Cape as a victory for our country’s developing democracy – or whether they see it as a disaster for their political party.

Perhaps if there was greater faith in the rule of law and our democratic dispensation, the dread of losing an election would dissipate in the realization that power corrupts if it is not temporary and that change creates growth and greater vigour in any organism.

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