The African National Congress (ANC) in the Western Cape says the appointment of Bonginkosi Madikizela as the Democratic Alliance’s (DA) interim provincial leader, will have no effect on its support base.
Madikizela, who's also the Western Cape human settlements MEC, clinched the highly contested spot in a resounding victory, gaining three quarters of the vote.
The newly elected leader will carry out his new position until the DA's provincial electoral congress, in August.
When asked if his appointment could boost the party's chances of gaining more black supporters, Madikizela said he doesn't believe a leader's race can attract more voters of the same race.
“What South Africans need is a leader that identifies with their flight and identifies what needs to be done. I think our brand of good governance as a party has done a lot in this regard. I think we need a leader that will continue with that brand.”
Madikizela will be going on an extensive campaign across the Western Cape to boost the party's structures, especially in areas that are traditional ANC strongholds.
But the ANC's acting provincial chairperson Khaya Magaxa says the DA leader won't make any impact in the townships as he is unknown to the people.
“He will remain an aloof person in our townships. The DA doesn’t have the capacity to get an organic leader in the African townships. By the way Madikizela is new in the Western Cape townships, he has never been an activist in our townships.”
At the same time, Madikizela has called on the other candidates who contested the internal elections to now work together as one.
“We must now put those minor differences aside to build unity in the party because it is the only way for us to be able to be the government in 2019.”
The newly elected leader will embark on an extensive campaign across the province to mobilize the party's structures for its campaign towards the 2019 elections.
(Edited by Masechaba Sefularo)