South Africa will be holding General and provincial elections next year 2024.1 On Saturday the country held its first major vote registration drive on Saturday in a bid to tackle widespread apathy ahead of those elections.2 Voter disillusionment is largely due to wide spread corruption in the ruling party. This has impacted all levels of government at national, provincial and local in terms of both state capture and the misappropriation of public funds. Polling stations across the country opened their doors to let would-be-voters register or check their details as part of a two-day exercise to woo electors back to the ballots after years of dwindling participation.3 However the air is heavy with pessimism; “I’m hoping that these elections are going to change South Africa, because if it keeps going downhill there is no point me staying here, I’ll have to emigrate overseas”.4 (The Star)
This was said by Oliver Carliwis, an 18-year-old high school student who registered to vote for the first time in an affluent Johannesburg suburb.5 (The Star)
Poor services, a prolonged energy crisis and a buckling economy have left many in the nation disillusioned with how the government of the ruling National African Congress (ANC) has conducted itself.6 Voter numbers have shrunk every five years, since South Africans of all racial hues jubilantly queued to cast their ballot in the first election of 1994.7 At the first elections in 2019, only 49 percent of those of voting aged 18 to 19 and 30 percent of 20-to-29-years-olds cast a vote.8 “Calling out the 14 million unregistered youth – time to step up!” the electoral commission wrote on social media on Saturday, urging young people to “gather your squad (friends) and hit a registration station”.9 (The Star)
The focus to persuade people to come to the polls is largely done by the ruling party, but the opposition also has its hand in encouraging the voters to give their support to them (the opposition). However, with the ruination this country has gone through voters have become disillusioned with the manner, the current administration does things. Democracy is meant to put the power of choosing the leadership in the hands of the voters. The voters like Carliwis and others who should have to rise to the occasion to vote a new administration into power. The first election in 1994 was a beginning rather than a conclusion that not only brought President Nelson Mandela to power but laid the foundations for change in the form of the bill of rights and the independence of the judiciary. The role of South Africa’s opposition parties is to persuade the electorate to grow their numbers in parliament to form the next government.
The country meanwhile still has to contend with the continuity of load shedding and repairing our power stations.10
According to President Cyril Ramaphosa, the restoration of Kusile Unite One will lead to the levels and frequency of load shedding were expected to improve the fourth quarter that the state owned enterprise of Eskom was on the right path to end load shedding.11 The experts such as Lungile Mashele are sceptical.12 “It responds to maintenance, correctly spec’d fuel, quality control measures being in place, the weather and demand, among other issues.13 I would take what politicians say half-heartedly.14 The system operator has, in the latest Eskom annual results, indicated that only two things will alleviate load shedding – maintenance and 4-6GW of new firm capacity.15 Until then, we may see a reduction in loadshedding but certainly not the end to it.”16 (IOL)
A reduction in load shedding alone would be a blessing. The power grid will be strengthened to improve the transmission of energy to consumers.
Ramaphosa should have clarified on the issue of how much energy we will be able to have with the Kusile Unite One. This is still a coal powered power plant. The time has come to switch to solar and wind powered facilities which take only two years to build.17(IOL) A coal or nuclear-powered plant takes ten or more years to construct.18 (IOL) The problem with our capacity is that it is coal based and we need to transition more swiftly to solar and wind. However, politicians such as the president may be protecting their interests, by sharing good news with their constituency ahead of next year’s election. It is a time for the people to choose as regards to who should lead the nation.
Should the ANC under Ramaphosa continue to lead or should someone new take the helm?
South Africa held a major voter registration drive on Saturday in a bid to tackle widespread apathy ahead of national …1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10
With the restoration of Kusile Unit 1, President Cyril Ramaphosa said the levels and frequency of load shedding were expected … 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18