Message from the UDM at the Western Cape Provincial Congress of Cope on 22 May 2010 Provincial Secretary of the UDM in the Western Cape

 

Ladies and Gentlemen,

The UDM expresses its gratitude to you for extending an invitation to us to be present at this event.

At national level our organisations have been in talks regarding the realignment of the political landscape, as well as the ways in which we can all cooperate to promote multi-party democracy in our country.

Therefore it is only correct that at provincial level we should extend the hand of friendship to each other. Irrespective of whatever the outcome of the realignment process, there can be no doubt that all parties and individuals who care about this country will find common ground around certain major challenges, irrespective of which political party we vote for.

I’m talking of course about the burning questions of poverty, unemployment, crime, corruption and a lack of service delivery. Our beautiful country faces a growing crisis with each additional year that the ANC is in power.

The ANC has become removed from the people; their leaders are concerned only with more power and more wealth. In the streets of communities across the country, the people are growing restless with failures of government. Many communities have given vent to their frustration in violent protests, in other words we are seeing people reacting in undemocratic ways because democracy is not delivering. This is where it is our duty to reach out to these communities to provide them with a democratic and real alternative.

At the root of the challenges facing us is a lack of decisive leadership in Government. The ANC of today is not the organisation of Luthuli, Tambo or Mandela – the current crop of leaders seem more inclined to get plush government jobs or company directorships, instead of addressing the concerns of the people. The hunger for power and wealth fuels a culture of individual and institutional corruption which loots the resources of the state to enrich the political elite. This is why a certain rude man who claims to be a youth leader seems to be the leader of the ANC, because the obsession with power and influence has overtaken principles and morals.

South Africa needs new leaders, indeed South Africa deserves new leaders. As a nation we have come too far, worked too hard to allow it all to go to waste under the stewardship of the ANC. The dream of freedom – which still eludes millions of our people – is now in our hands. The question is whether we can rise to this historical task with dedication and vision.

In conclusion, allow me – on behalf of the UDM – to wish you a fruitful and constructive congress.

I thank you.