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Maimane bent on 2019 victory

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With the centre failing to hold in the governing party, DA leader Mmusi Maimane said he was fully focused on unseating the ANC in 2019, even if it meant it would happen through a national coalition.

“The ANC thought that it would govern until Jesus came back and now they are shocked by things that are happening to them.

“In 2019 we are looking to do away with the ANC, even if it is through a national coalition,” Maimane said.

He told City Press this week that his party would be using “critical platforms”, including face-to-face engagement and the courts in their bid to unseat the ANC come 2019.

The DA is the main complainant in the bid to have the state capture report released.

The party will now look to challenge National Prosecuting Authority head Shaun Abrahams’ fitness to hold office, saying that these days he prosecuted whoever he wanted.

Maimane also confirmed that the Constitutional Court had indicated that it had an interest in hearing the DA’s case against the state in the matter of Sudanese president Omar al-Bashir.

The party leader earlier this year implemented an aggressive door-to-door strategy in the run-up to the local government elections.

The move paid off as the party took over three metros – Johannesburg, Tshwane and Nelson Mandela Bay – by coalition. The metros were all previously run by the ANC.

So serious is the DA in its bid to unseat the governing party that it will set up house in Gauteng, which will house its election campaign team.

“We are in permanent election campaign mode. It is all systems go from now,” Maimane said.

“In Gauteng, the last electoral numbers were great, but we will not just be focused on winning Gauteng.

“The campaign is not just about provinces, but about numeric growth. All provinces are strategic. Even in the Western Cape we must increase our numbers.

“This is about setting up a national footprint. We are the only party that can put up structures all across the country, whether the area is rural or a suburb.

“We appeal to black, white, coloured and Indian.”

This week Maimane set off on a “back-to-the-people tour”, where he is personally visiting all DA-run municipalities as resolved by the last sitting of the federal council.

It is a two-pronged campaign focusing on ensuring that structures are on the same page, as well as engaging communities as a precursor to 2019.

Referring to a series of disruptive incidents on Thursday in councils of the three newly DA-run metros, Maimane said the actions were orchestrated.

“They [the ANC] disrupted all of the councils in an orchestrated event. It is in fact childish, undemocratic and unrevolutionary. The ANC must not come and seek to undermine democratic processes.”

The DA resolved a few weeks ago to support demonstrations in the capital city this week relating to charges faced by Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, but Maimane says this week’s protest would not just be about Gordhan, but about safeguarding democratic institutions.

“We are not marching for Pravin, he just represents what is wrong with South Africa. We are marching for the safeguarding of the Constitution.

“[President] Jacob Zuma has set himself up to state capture, so the march is broadly about state capture and corruption. Pravin is symbolic, but he is not the only defining issue.”

Even as the DA works to set up a well-oiled machine for 2019, the party will be aided by ongoing factional battles in the ANC.

Last week ANC chief whip Jackson Mthembu called on the national executive committee of the party to resign for their series of failings.

He also warned that the ANC could lose power in 2019 if it did not change its ways.

Maimane says Mthembu’s words were meaningless without action, especially if he did not vote with the DA in yet another vote of no confidence in the president.

“The ANC can’t self-correct.”

[Source: News24]
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