Failed cooperation between DA and Agang

Dr Pieter Mulder

Cooperation between opposition parties is essential in order to end the dominant position of the ANC in South Africa.

The question is what type of cooperation is the best to achieve this objective.

The DA’s way is to merge with other parties while the DA still retains its identity. This DA-swallowing of parties such as with the ID and nearly Agang, causes many anti-ANC votes of the ID and Agang, who do not agree with such mergers, to be lost. Often this method only succeeds in accommodating the leaders without the supporters of these parties overwhelmingly supporting the merger. The failure of the DA-Agang merger proves this.

The FF Plus’ way is better. Every party retains its values and identity and in so doing gets the maximum support from its supporters in an election to then cooperate with others in a coalition against the ANC after the election. Without the FF Plus, ACDP and other parties’ cooperation in this manner in Cape Town, Ms. Zille would never have become mayor in 2006.

This is also the way in which the Collective for Democracy between Cope, the FF Plus, the ACDP and the UCDP was established. Other parties are still welcome to join this collective.

It is extremely important that the maximum number of opposition voters should go and vote in the forthcoming elections. We cannot afford failed cooperation attempts leading to more opposition voters refraining from voting. In previous general elections more eligible South Africans voters did not vote than the number of people who had voted for the ANC.

In 2009, 43% of all South Africans who were eligible to vote did not vote. The result was that the ANC won the election while only 37% of all eligible voters actually voted in favour of the ANC. If only half of the non-voters had voted against the ANC, the ANC would have lost.


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