Umm Muhammed Umar
Former DA Mayor Bongani Baloyi is now one of the highest-ranking members of ActionSA. Rumour has it that he may be the party’s premier candidate in the 2024 national elections. Baloyi resigned from the DA last month. ActionSA leader, Herman Mashaba made the announcement yesterday that Baloyi would be joining his party.
Radio Islam spoke to Baloyi regarding the fact that he ran a very successful tenure under the DA flagship, but nevertheless resigned from the party and joined ActionSA. He said, “Look, for me, it was a time for me to move on to other things, I had initially, I mean, I’d achieved everything I set out to achieve in the Democratic Alliance. And I thought that it was time for me to move on.” Baloyi added,” And prior to that, I mean, I think a year before the elections, I announced that I won’t be running for the office of the executive mayor. So, it was a it was a clear indication for me that the exit is very close. And I did so it in the most dignified and professional manner that I could.”
Baloyi denied having been unhappy with certain decisions or the trajectory of the DA and its leadership. He reiterated that prior to him having announced his departure to the party, he had had conversations with the party leadership about the trajectory of his path which they had proposed to him. Baloyi said, “So it was it wasn’t any disgruntlement or anything of that nature, or sour grapes, that made me leave the DA. I simply left the DA because I thought that is my time to come to an end in pursuing opportunities in the private sector.” Herman Mashaba reached out to him subsequent to his announcement.
Mashaba and Baloyi enjoy a shared history. Baloyi said that when Mashaba left the Democratic Alliance and started ActionSA, he asked him to join him. However, Baloyi decided to stay true to his commitment to the people of Midvaal. When he announced his resignation, Mashaba once again extended his invitation.
Baloyi had had some lucrative offers from the private sector as well. However, he felt that they restrict his ability to still be politically active. He said, “And I wanted to do a number of things, which is venture into business, which still allows me to be involved in politics through various NGOs, which looks at issues of governance, strengthening governance, holding the executive to account and just putting the spotlight in ensuring that active citizenry is better informed through understanding of the all the legal mechanisms, to afford, or make it available for communities to engage with executives in holding them to account.” Baloyi said, “So it’s a strategic fit for me, I don’t need to be in any executive position in the government at this stage. I can remain in the in the party suitably, while I tend to my other interests.”