During a press conference in Cape Town on Tuesday, Mmusi Maimane led a delegation of the DA’s top brass to blow his own trumpet to the assembled media. To be fair, he played a pretty good tune…
The second-biggest political party in South Africa certainly have their wobbles. The Patricia de Lille saga floored them in 2018, and it’s conceivable that they never really recovered from that during the recent elections. A few high-profile members have also suffered some foot-in-mouth moments, harming the DA’s credibility.
Mmusi Maimane on DA achievements
However, with the rough, there is usually the smooth. Maimane went through some of the independently-verified facts and figures about DA governments in the Western Cape, Cape Town, Johannesburg and Tshwane, then hand-picked some of the more flattering sets of data.
“Despite this depressed economic and governance environment, DA-led governments are a step ahead – spearheading innovative plans and policies which are fast yielding positive results for the citizens living under these governments.”
“The DA has a vision for cities where city-led economic growth occupies the future of South Africa. Beyond supplying citizens with energy, water and basic services, our cities need to be at the centre of sustainable development because they are directly accountable to the people.”
The numbers, which have been acquired from the President’s Office, rating agencies and Independent Governance, go some way to showing that the DA are at least “capable” of running large metros and provinces:
- As many as 508 000 new jobs were created in the Western Cape where employment grew by almost 25% over the past decade.
- Land reform projects supported by the Western Cape Government recorded a success rate of 72%.
- The province has the highest life expectancy in the country.
- They have a national record of 83% clean audits in 2018/19 across all entities and departments.
- The Western Cape’s retention rate from Grades 10 – 12 is the highest in the country, at around 63% for the 2018 matric results. No other province managed to achieve a retention rate of over 50%.
Metros and Municipalities
- The wider unemployment rate of SA is 38%. But in the City of Cape Town, this rate is just 23.4%.
- A total of 43 950 new jobs created since the DA assumed office in the City of Tshwane.
- Operation Buya Mthetho – conducted by the City of Johannesburg – has ensured over 8 000 arrests by law enforcement officials and the recovery of R1.5 billion in lost revenue since the beginning of last year.
The other side of the coin for the DA
That’s all well and good, but not many people have been feeling the love for the DA, who recorded just over 20% of the public vote in the 2019 Elections. They have come in for criticism over unsatisfactory service delivery in certain municipal regions, with grumbles over housing also being dropped on their doorstep.
Like we said previously, with the smooth, there is usually the rough. But the figures that had Maimane and co purring on Tuesday are to be appreciated. They may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but the DA do have a few things brewing.