African National Congress (ANC) president Cyril Ramaphosa’s launch of the Thuma Mina campaign in Stanger last weekend, has come under fire by opposition parties who have accused the party of being opportunistic by handing over title deeds as a part of the election campaign.
Underprivileged Stanger residents who have been renting homes from the government were handed title deeds by president Ramaphosa last Saturday.
KwaDukuza mayor Ricardo Mthembu said some Stanger residents had been paying rent for municipal-owned houses for as long as 30 to 40 years.
“Some of these people are pensioners and it is difficult for them to continue paying rent. Together with the department of human settlement, we decided we would hand over these homes to them so that they can own them.”
However, DA Ilembe chief whip Malcolm Hubner said the handover should not have been included as part of the election campaign as the property was owned by the municipality and not the ANC.
“Municipal functions should be apolitical. I have been in council since 2014 and the municipality has not once handed title deeds to people.
“Now, shortly before elections, they decided to do so. By doing this, they have confused what is supposed to be a municipal function with an ANC function. The party is simply panicked by all the noise made by the EFF and are stumbling around.
Handing over title deeds is great. But the ANC does not own those properties and this was an abuse of the ruling party’s power once again.”
Ahead of the 2019 elections, the campaign which translates as ‘send me’ aims to reconnect the ANC with ordinary people through the promise to restore dignity and improve lives.
Accompanied by ANC regional leaders, Ramaphosa spent the day cleaning the streets of Stanger as he walked through the town, greeting and conversing with eager residents and business owners.
Addressing almost 1000 people in Groutville and hundreds in Stanger, the president said giving people title deeds was the first step to undoing the injustice of apartheid. The next step would be land distribution.
“The ANC led government is now involved in a massive project to hand over the dignity back to people, in the form of title deeds and in the form of land.
“This is something that we are committed to irrevocably. The identity and dignity of our people were ravaged by the apartheid rule, it was reduced to nothing and our people continued to live under the yoke of apartheid. Now we are giving them back assets.”
Ramaphosa promised that the process of land expropriation had already begun.
“The ANC was formed in 1912 around restoring the land to the people of our country. Over the years, that has been the recurring theme and in December last year, we took a revolutionary decision to restore the land of our people, to expropriate land without paying compensation.
In the towns where there is land, it will be given to people to own their homes. This past week, I set up an interministerial committee who are now going to look at the process of redistribution and land reform. That means that the process of giving land to our people has now been kick-started. The slogans are over, we are now going to give land to our people without fail, whether people like it or not.”
WATCH: President Ramaphosa addresses KwaDukuza residents (apologies the sound cuts out half way through the live feed due to a weak signal)
President Ramaphosa addresses KwaDukuza residents (apologies the sound cuts out half way through the live feed due to a weak signal).
Posted by North Coast Courier on Saturday, 7 July 2018
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