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The great contender

I admit that I am a pseudo-terrorist, that I have in the past engaged in pseudo-terrorist and pseudo-guerilla activities in the pursuit of certain political goals. Indeed the hypocrisy and contradiction of doing so would give me cause to lose sleep at night, were it not for my monastic lifestyle and my community service which allow me get a few hours of shuteye each weary night.

But I am left to wonder why when liberalism in South Africa is so willing to condemn the ANC and everybody else perceived — by liberalism — to have failed to meet their performance and delivery obligations and when liberalism is so willing to condemn my pseudo-terrorism, that they have remained fixed, static and immobile at between two and three million voters.

Indeed, if we are to believe that the DA has more than ten thousand contribute-to-change volunteers, then it is clear that in order to meet the four million votes required in this election that each of these volunteers needs to get just four hundred voters to register as DA voters (with the DA) in order to be able to guarantee that liberal South Africa is seeing a reasonable return on its investment in the DA over the last one hundred years.

Liberals in South Africa must be certain that our decision to give credence to the DA’s monopoly over liberal politics and indeed policies is in fact the correct decision. The only way for us to be sure is if we are seeing growth in the numbers of people who are choosing the liberal values of the rule of law, tolerance and equal opportunities.

From the year 2000 to now, we have not seen this growth in a manner which inspires any confidence in me. And while I am hopeful that most of the DA’s C2C volunteers already have their four hundred DA voters, it is important that we must no longer tolerate inertia and the absence of definite direction. The DA must be unshackled from the parochialism of the insecure few and be allowed to grow as a liberal party.

In essence we must practice what we preach. We say that MP’s and public servants must resign for performance failure — and yet we mollycoddle our own internal administration through all of their failures and inabilities to secure more than ten million votes. Surely, we as the DA should set the standard for leadership, if we are to critique it as vigorously?

Surely, we as the DA should be able to take the oath of honesty (see previous posts) to ensure that we implement corruption free politics? Surely we should capitalise on the “restructuring” of the DA and seek to enable the “new constituency model” to actually work.

I did just three hours of telephone canvassing for the DA, some two months ago. I was thereafter prevented from recruiting DA members and potential activists, whom I had found in the canvassing, into a process which would see them establish a branch in my ward, which hasn’t had a vibrant branch since the late 1980’s.

It has come to my attention that a DA branch has in fact been started and that it revolves around people who are connected to the closed crony society which is the DA. No wait, the ANC is the closed, crony society and the DA is the open, opportunity society? No that’s complete balls, the DA believes in open, opportunity for everyone except those not connected to the DA’s centrally controlled pyramid network of activists and agencies.

That sounds like the ANC. Thankfully in a liberal party like the DA, I am able to say all of these things in public, because we encourage dissent and disagreement, because we don’t bank on blind loyalty and fealty in the face of fecklessness; so much so that it is opportune for me to make the following announcement.

That I, Avishkar Govender, will be challenging Helen Zille for the office of leader of the DA, at the next elective DA congress, and that I will stand on the following platforms:

  1. That I am the only person in the senior leadership of liberal SA who has first-hand experience of investigating, exposing and removing corrupt leaders from office — and my rivals don’t have this experience.
  2. That I am the person in the world who solved the problem of political corruption (the WNPC’s), the problem of civic participation (the CFS’s) and the problem of citizen satisfaction (the ARCS) — and my rivals don’t have this knowledge, technical expertise and experience.
  3. That I am already a lay-journalist and my relations with the media are and will be far better than those of any other politician — and my rivals don’t and can’t have this advantage.
  4. That I am a liberal who is never going to back down or cower from a fight. Can you imagine a person who says, ‘I believe in Jesus, I believe in the Bible, I live my life according to the principles of biblical justice and charity, but I’m not a Christian’. No, neither can I. And yet we must accept that some politicians deny that they are liberal but claim all of the liberal values and beliefs — sounds a little dodgy to me — – and my rivals have been the ones cowering all these years.
  5. But most of all, that I am the person who is able to bring together people from diverse walks of life to achieve that ten million voter mark — and my rivals are unable to do this.

So to get things rolling, if the DA fails to get four million votes on the 22nd April 2009, then the CEO and CEO led bureaucracy must be fired, because the new constituency model didn’t enable each of the C2C activists to each get out their quota of four hundred DA voters; and that’s performance failure in anybody’s language.

After all we Liberals should be prepared to stomach a taste our own medicine, shouldn’t we? Naturally I now expect some blithering response from the DA and its minions.

Avishkar Govender
The Contender
The DA Leadership Race: 2014 and Beyond