DA’s Mike Waters slams BEE, says the party needs to go back to its old ways

08 October 2019 - 10:27 By Unathi Nkanjeni
DA MP Mike Waters says the party needs to return to its 'roots of classical liberalism and non-racialism'.
DA MP Mike Waters says the party needs to return to its 'roots of classical liberalism and non-racialism'.
Image: Gallo images

As the DA continues to make headlines in the face of criticism about so-called “double standards”, party MP Mike Waters says it needs to go back to its old ways if it wants to reconnect with voters.

Sunday Times reported that former DA leader Tony Leon said the party had lost its way under its embattled leader, Mmusi Maimane, and that the attempt to lure black voters by having a black leader had backfired.

In an interview on 702, Waters said the party needed to let go of policies such as BEE and return to its “roots of classical liberalism and non-racialism”.

“I believe we need to reconnect with our voters, as we are losing votes.

“We continue to bleed voters and we do so because we are not connecting with them." 

He said the DA would resonate with a lot of voters if it dropped race-based issues.


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“We need to drop issues like race-based BEE and become the party of opportunity and aspiration. I believe that will resonate with the majority of voters in the country."

Waters said race-based policies didn't work, adding that they were discriminatory.

“The reason I oppose race-based policies is that they are discriminatory and they do not work. If BEE worked, there wouldn't be 10 million people unemployed — a vast majority of which is black.

“We need to look at another method on how to spread opportunities in order to uplift people and BEE is not that.”

Waters is one of four senior members competing for a federal council chairperson position in the DA.

TimesLIVE reported that former DA leader Helen Zille, the party's federal chairperson Athol Trollip and its acting federal chair, Thomas Walters, were also competing for the position. 


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