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Multi-Party Charter for South Africa convention: A unified front to challenge ANC’s dominance

Sameera Casmod |
17 August 2023 | 10:30am SAST
2 min read

Multi-party Charter for SA national convention began on Tuesday at Emperor’s Palace

In a bid to reshape the political landscape and challenge the ruling African National Congress (ANC), seven political parties have embarked on a two-day national convention at Emperor’s Palace in Kempton Park, Ekurhuleni. The convention, which has been rebranded from the Moonshot Pact to the Multi-Party Charter for South Africa, seeks to foster collaboration and put aside political differences for a common cause.

The central goal of this coalition is to dethrone the ANC from power in the upcoming elections. With a renewed focus on unity, the participating parties aim to address critical issues such as economic growth, job creation, load-shedding, energy security, and law and order. Although seen by many as an ambitious wish list, the urgency of the situation and the country’s wellbeing lend significance to this united initiative.

The convention’s opening day showcased a promising start, prompting optimism among participants and observers alike. Political analyst Dr Ongama Mtimka, who provided insights during an interview with Radio Islam International, expressed enthusiasm for the initiative. Dr Mtimka noted the importance of parties attempting to establish an improved environment for coalition formation, emphasising that such endeavours are essential after years of fragmented local government coalitions.

“The key challenge lies in finding a balance between coming together for a common purpose while safeguarding each party’s individual identity,” Dr Mtimka remarked. The dynamics of the coalition bring forth an intricate dance of alliances, where parties must weigh the advantages of collaboration against the risk of diluting their distinct ideologies.

Ethel Trollope, one of the leaders of ActionSA, shared that the goal of achieving 50% plus one—the threshold for defeating the ANC—is a challenging target. While the ANC’s decline of up to 10% could be significant, it may not be sufficient to tilt the scales entirely.

WATCH | Professor William Gumede gives media address at the national convention

Dr. Mtimka acknowledged the likelihood of the ANC and EFF securing a dominant victory together but questioned the ANC’s willingness to align with its rivals. This opens the door for smaller parties, both those currently present and those not yet part of the coalition, to consider strategic alliances and the flexibility to choose partners post-election. The challenge lies in fostering a binding agreement among the diverse coalition members, which Dr. Mtimka believes will be a central focus of ongoing discussions.

The convention’s second and final day will likely delve deeper into these intricate discussions and explore strategies to solidify the coalition’s stance. While the exact agenda remains undisclosed, experts predict that the convention’s ripple effects will continue long after the two days are over.

Listen to the full interview on Sabaahul Muslim with Moulana Sulaiman Ravat here.



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