I am ready to bring change to Johannesburg as DA Mayoral Candidate

By Herman Mashaba, DA Mayoral Candidate for Johannesburg:

It is my great privilege today to accept the DA Mayoral candidature for Johannesburg. I would like to thank the Democratic Alliance for putting its faith in me for this crucial campaign.

I am proud to be part of this great movement of change and to campaign for change in South Africa.

Since 1994, Johannesburg has experienced progress. There has been improved housing delivery, utility access, and transport innovations.

However, corruption, hollow promises, poor implementation, and inefficient governance are holding us back, keeping the poor in poverty, and the workless unemployed.

Today’s ANC are not delivering the life-changing opportunities for the many who remain marginalized by apartheid’s legacy.

It’s now time to turn the page on the past and write a new chapter. Local Government is at the forefront of delivering the building blocks of real opportunity for people, and I believe that by bringing change to Johannesburg we can begin to truly redress the imbalances of the past.

Following this nomination, I will visit every ward and community across the length and breadth of this great city. I will listen in the same way as I lead.

And’s that’s why I want to use this moment to share what I will do if elected. I want this city to be the shining gateway into Africa, and South Africa’s springboard into the world.

In this modern age of the city, Johannesburg must compete with dynamic African cities like Cape Town, Nairobi and Lagos. We live in a constantly changing global economy and Johannesburg’s leadership and innovative edge is threatened today by a government that is taking us backwards.

In the Mayor’s office, I will apply the same brand of leadership that I used to build up ‘Black Like Me’ into a business that thrives and feels at home in millions of homes around South Africa. It did not happen by chance. It took grit and drive. When I recruit, employ and train new workers, I identify the skills my companies need and I pursue them with passion. This is how I intend to provide excellent service delivery for all.

I have been privileged to work every day to create jobs for thousands of South Africans, and I intend to bring that same commitment to government in Johannesburg.

In the public service, we need to employ people who can do the job, not friends and family.

Similarly, we need to match people’s jobs to the work available, and relentlessly seek out investment opportunities.

That’s why we must have a proper system for attracting that investment, and investors must know that their investments will be treated fairly. Governments don’t create jobs. But smart city administrations create the conditions for a vibrant private sector in which small and medium business can flourish.

We must give incentives to small business owners who create jobs and give shares to their workers.

We will give title deeds to our citizens to buy their homes and land, so that it becomes much easier for black people to access funds to establish businesses.

We must also ensure that our infrastructure is in good shape and works. As a city we can and must do better to deliver services. I will ensure that every rand spent by the Johannesburg metro government is spent on quality outcomes, is value for money and improves the lives of people.

I will not accept the blunting of opportunity of Johannesburg’s youth any more than I would accept it in my own children.  I will not be satisfied until every person who can work starts the day with a decent job, or their own small business, and prospects upon which to raise their loved ones.

As a parent, I’ve had enough of how drugs destroy the lives of many of our young people. Too often, their schools are the street corners and their educators are the drug lords. A DA government under my leadership will declare war on the dealers of Nyaope and other drugs. We will launch an anti-drug and anti-gang unit in the Metro Police, and we will evict druglords from the properties they rent from the City of Johannesburg.

There is a truth that I’ve know my entire life: the only true freedom is economic freedom. Apartheid was wicked, but young people are becoming impatient with leaders who blame the present only on the past. Creating jobs is the only way to mend our broken society.

When I founded Black Like Me In 1984, black South Africans and white South Africans rarely had any kind of social interaction, and it was unheard of for a black man to approach a white man to join him in business. But with a small business loan I met with people of all races who could help me realise my dream and  I saw how one opportunity could change the life of a young man brought up by a single-parent in near-poverty in GaRamotse.

This is my story, and it has stirred in my heart the call to public service.

My business career has been built upon a bedrock of doing what I promise. I will always be honest and live up to my promises, but I am not afraid to admit when there is something we really can’t do.

As I embark on this great journey, let me simply say this: If you elect me as Mayor, and I do not deliver on the DA’s promises, take back your vote and vote me out. That is the power of the vote, and the power of the people.

Democrats, I would not be doing this if I did not believe that the ANC can and must be defeated in Johannesburg and that the DA can and must bring change to Johannesburg.

The power to change South Africa is in the voters’ hands.

This change starts on the voter registration weekend; 5 and 6 March 2016.

I ask every voter to register and vote for change.

Together, we will change the direction of Africa’s greatest city.

DA to announce Johannesburg mayoral candidate

Media Advisory:

Tomorrow, Saturday, 16 January 2016, DA Federal Leader Mmusi Maimane MP, and DA Johannesburg regional chairperson Khume Ramulifho MPL will announce the DA’s Johannesburg mayoral candidate for the 2016 local government elections.

Two candidates have been nominated; Wits Professor and DA Councillor Rabelani Dagada, and businessman and entrepreneur Herman Mashaba.

The announcement of the successful candidate will be made as follows:

Date: Saturday, 16 January 2016
Time: 10:00
Venue: DA Johannesburg regional office, 66 Carr Street, Newtown.

There will be opportunities for interviews and photographs.

Registering to vote a first step to change in NMB

By Athol Trollip, DA Mayoral Candidate: Nelson Mandela Bay:

Click here for a picture of DA NMB Mayoral Candidate, Athol Trollip, in front of the 54m² billboard on the corner of Cape Road and 6th Avenue, Newtown Park, Port Elizabeth.

In this year’s Election, the people of Nelson Mandela Bay have the opportunity to elect a government that delivers better services, cuts corruption and creates jobs.

For too long we have been at the mercy of rampant unemployment, corruption, unacceptable housing backlogs, dilapidating RDP homes, murderous gangsterism and drugs – all because the ANC government in NMB has given up on delivering a better future.

This week eleven DA billboards have gone up around Nelson Mandela Bay to remind the people of this Metro of the importance of registering to vote.

Registering to vote is the first step to bringing change. If any eligible doesn’t register, they cannot vote, and cannot be part of change in Nelson Mandela Bay.

With the first registration weekend set for the 5th and 6th March 2016, the time for activism is now!

Every eligible voter needs to be registered in the ward in which they currently live. Any voter who has moved since the last election must re-register, in order to vote in their ward.

Change is coming to NMB, and with it a new era of freedom, fairness and opportunity.

DA pledges to free and fair Tlokwe elections

By Juanita Terblanche (MP), DA Constituency Head, Tlokwe, Potchefstroom:

The Democratic Alliance in Tlokwe today signed the Independent Electoral Commission’s code of conduct pledge for the upcoming by-elections which will be held on 24 February 2016.

The pledge underlines that political parties will reinforce a culture of tolerance to other participating parties, that they will not intimidate voters or candidates and will not provoke any violence.

The pledge also states that they will not reward a person to vote for them nor deface or remove posters of other political parties.

By signing this pledge the DA reinforces its commitment to free and fair elections, where the people choose who governs them without fear or intimidation.

The DA urges all other participating parties in these by-elections to adhere to the code of conduct as set out in the pledge and to ensure that the elections are free and fair.

Trollip to unveil 54m² registration billboard

Media Advisory:

Today, 11 January 2016, Mayoral Candidate for Nelson Mandela Bay, Athol Trollip, will unveil one of the DA’s newly erected registration billboards.

As we approach the 2016 local government elections, the importance of registering to vote is of the utmost importance.

With less than two months to go until the first registration weekend, the placement of these billboards comes at a crucial time.

The event will take place as follows:

Date: 11 January 2016
Time: 10:30am
Venue: Corner of 6th Avenue and Cape Road, Cotswold

There will be opportunities for interviews and photographs.

DA to launch #LoveMyJozi campaign

Media Advisory:

Tomorrow 26 November 2015, DA Gauteng Provincial Leader, John Moodey MPL, DA Gauteng South Regional Chairperson, Khume Ramulifho MPL and DA Johannesburg Caucus Leader, Cllr Vasco da Gama will launch the DA’s 2016 local government campaign platform, #LoveMyJozi.

The campaign is a rallying call on all residents of South Africa’s greatest city to unite behind the DA as we work towards bringing Jozi residents a DA-led government.

At the launch, the DA will meet with a number of residents who have been suffering by the billing crisis as a result of smart meters installed by businesses with close links to President Jacob Zuma and the ANC.

Date: 26 November 2015

Time: 12h00

Venue: 7979 Mokonyane Street, Dobsonville.

There will be ample opportunity for interviews and photographs. Members of the media are welcome to attend.

DA win in Mokgalakwena bodes well for 2016 local elections

By Jacques Smalle (MPL), DA Limpopo leader:

Yesterday the Democratic Alliance Limpopo  won Mogalakwena ward 32 by-elections.

This victory  reaffirms that the residents of Mokopane and in particular those living in ward 32 believe that the Democratic Alliance is the only viable alternative to the ANC.

The success achieved yesterday confirms the DA’s belief that the ANC can be brought down to less than 50% of the vote  in the Mokgalakwena municipaliy in the upcoming  2016 muncipal elections.

Newly elected DA Cllr Yolanda Coetzee’s passion for community work resonated with the voters and she has consitently shown a firm commitment to serve the whole community.

The DA thanks every single one of our supporters who contributed to this immensly succesful result depite heavy downpours experienced yesterday.

By sustaining this momentum the DA in will make Election 2016 the most competivie Limpopo has ever seen.

NMB residents call out for a Safer City

By Athol Trollip, DA Mayoral Candidate: Nelson Mandela Bay:

The following is an extract of a speech delivered today by DA Mayoral Candidate for Nelson Mandela Bay, Athol Trollip, at the Safe City Rally in Gelvandale Stadium, Nelson Mandela Bay, attended by DA Leader Mmusi Maimane, and DA Western Cape Leader, Patricia de Lille.

Today we launch a blue-print for making Nelson Mandela Bay a Safe City, after consulting thousands of residents across all wards of this Metro. Safety is the number one concern of the people in the Nelson Mandela Bay Metro, because crime is thriving as the economy shrinks and the Metro fails to police crime.

Over the last 60 days I have been with the people of every single ward of Nelson Mandela Bay, out of my commitment to being in 60 Wards in 60 Days. I have kept this promise, and have found inspiration in the people of this Metro who are calling out for change.

From Ward 52 in Despatch, to Ward 29 in Kwazakhele and from Ward 2 in Humewood to Ward 32 in Bethelsdorp, I have walked the streets at one with the people of Nelson Mandela Bay.

Together, NMB residents young and old have all contributed to building our blueprint for change as they have engaged with me during the 60 days tour. It has been a joint effort to shape the future of the Bay.

Across 60 Wards, I have met people who struggle every day to get ahead. There has been progress since 1994, but today in South Africa and in Nelson Mandela Bay that progress has stopped.

Nelson Mandela Bay is moving in the wrong direction under an ANC government that has given up on delivery for our people.

Nelson Mandela Bay wastes the most public money of any Metro in South Africa.
Nelson Mandela Bay has the most bucket toilets of any Metro in South Africa.
Nelson Mandela Bay has the highest unemployment of any Metro in South Africa.
Nelson Mandela Bay has the highest water wastage of any Metro in South Africa.

Of everything told to me over the past 60 days, by far the most tragic failing of government is the failure to keep our residents safe.

We are not a safe city.

80% of people living in Nelson Mandela Bay are too afraid to go out after dark.

Gangsters own the streets, and both young and old are unsafe because there is no plan to prevent or police crime in Nelson Mandela Bay.

Crime thrives when jobs are lost and the economy shrinks, and this ANC government in NMB has allowed the economy to stagnate.

Unemployment in Nelson Mandela Bay is the highest of any South African Metro at a staggering 36.6%, with youth unemployment even higher at 47.3% making crime a trap for our young people to fall into.

And as more people are unemployed, and more fall into the trap of crime, there is no plan to prevent or defeat crime in the Metro:

  • The Metro Police Chief earns an unjustified R1 million per year, with not a single officer on the beat or in training.
  • There are no drug or gang units, and no special focus on ridding our communities of drugs and gangs.
  • There are no regular patrols in our vulnerable areas, targeted at preventing and stopping crime.
  • Traffic Police motorbikes have been neglected in a garage for five years and aren’t used to make our roads safer.
  • The existing CCTV cameras have gone to rack and ruin and aren’t being used to prevent crime.
  • The recently launched “Taking Back our Streets” isn’t working, and residents in every ward have told me they’ve seen nothing of their streets being taken back at all.

On Friday Mayor Jordaan held a red-carpet launch of two Metro Police vehicles that can only be described as a political gimmick, when he knows that there are no officers to drive those vehicles, and no plan to get them onto the streets. Our Metro Police have been spoken-of for years and years, yet nothing has happened under the ANC. For a Mayor to launch Metro Police vehicles, when we have no Metro Police Officers, no Metro Policing Plans or Strategies, no Metro Police empowering by-laws and no Metro Police public accessibility, is an insult to the people of our Metro who will still  continue to be unsafe tomorrow after the Mayor makes his next empty promise.

But there is hope for change in Nelson Mandela Bay, under a caring DA government that will get things done to make this Metro a Safe City. We will prevent crime, we will police crime and we will keep our young people from turning to crime.

We will deliver a fully functional, skilled Metro Police force with a specialised anti-gang and drug unit, which will work with the SAPS to squash drugs and gangs.

Where the DA governs, we have already established these units and they work miracles. Our Drug and Gang units where we govern in Cape Town, arrest over 1000 gangsters and drug dealers every month. We want to bring the same thing to Nelson Mandela Bay.

We will launch an anti-cable theft unit to prevent disruptions caused by theft of copper cables.

We will prevent crime by working with the SAPS to share intelligence, we will upgrade dangerous areas in a way that makes them safer and more accessible to police including regular clearing of bushes and overgrown hideouts for gangsters and criminals.

A DA government will upgrade and expand CCTV to connect to a well-trained Joint Operation Centre with direct contact to the SAPS and Metro Police. We will shut down problem buildings and keep your street lights on, while installing high-mast lights in informal areas – there will be nowhere for criminals to hide. We will evict gangsters and drug-dealers from municipal rental properties, and will eradicate illegal liquor outlets through Metro Police raids.

If elected to government, we will keep young people out of crime by growing the economy, creating jobs and making our young people economic agents.

The DA can make Nelson Mandela Bay a safe city for all built on the values of freedom, fairness and opportunity.

In Election 2016, you can vote for a Safer Nelson Mandela Bay under the DA.

Midvaal elects Bongani Baloyi as mayoral candidate

By John Moodey MPL, DA Gauteng Provincial Leader:

The DA is delighted to announce that Midvaal executive Mayor, Cllr Bongani Baloyi has been elected unopposed as the mayoral candidate for the 2016 local government elections.

Since taking office in 2013, Mayor Baloyi continued to deliver on the DA’s promise of cleaner, better and transparent governance – with Midvaal winning accolade after accolade as Gauteng’s best governed municipality, such as:

  • Ranked as the top performing municipality in Gauteng in the 2014 Annual Municipal Financial Sustainability Index compiled by Ratings Afrika;
  • Won the award for “The institution doing the most to clean the environment” in the 2014 Sedibeng Regional Survey Business Excellence Awards, conducted by PMR Africa; and
  • Achieved a clean audit for the 2013/14 financial year.

Since 2006, Midvaal has set the benchmark for local governance in Gauteng, and through well planned and effective implementation of its spatial development policies, has fast become a preferred investment destination.

According to StatsSA, Midvaal performs best on the provision of water and sanitation, with no backlogs at all.

The Municipal Productivity Index, a survey of 226 municipalities across the country, ranked Midvaal first in Gauteng and 6th in the country for its response to poverty, access to basic services and municipal finances.

Most importantly, its unemployment rate stands at 18,8% much lower than the provincial average of 28,6%.

Through hard work and determination, Mayor Baloyi and his team have been instrumental in providing residents with increased access to basic services, and are set to continue with this mandate in the years ahead.

As we head for the 2016 local government elections, it is becoming increasingly clear that where the DA governs, municipalities are free from the scourge of corruption, deliver quality services to all residents, and provide an environment for thriving economic activity.

The DA is certain that Midvaal residents will not hesitate to re-elect Mayor Baloyi to carry on with his stellar work, because where the DA governs, life is indeed better.