'A new future for our country': 5 highlights from Herman Mashaba's Action SA launch

01 September 2020 - 06:00
By Cebelihle Bhengu
Former Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba has launched a new political party, Action SA.
Image: Simphiwe Nkwali Former Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba has launched a new political party, Action SA.

Herman Mashaba launched his newly formed political party, Action SA, during a virtual event held at the weekend.

The former Johannesburg mayor said his party plans to contest the local government elections next year.

Mashaba roped in former DA and ANC politicians, including former MPs Dr Makhosi Khoza, Vytie Mentor and former DA Johannesburg regional chairperson Funzela Ngobeni.

Here are five highlights from Mashaba's address:

A time for change

Mashaba said his party is open to millions of South Africans who are tired of injustice and corruption.

“We have been silent for too long. We have given power to the noise of the few, who claim to speak for us — but not any more. Our voices are rising and rising, and we are ready to take action and take back the future of our country. Today I stand before you to launch a new future of our country in the face of our national depression.”

Social justice

Mashaba said Action SA will ensure social justice and nonracialism by providing South Africans with basic services like sanitation. He said some South Africans are still deeply affected by the legacy of apartheid, which enforced racial segregation.

“We cannot sit back and allow our fellow South Africans to live in squalor in informal settlements across our country.”

Let the private sector take over 

The former Joburg mayor said when his party takes over, abandoned buildings in city centres will used to build decent and affordable accommodation for those who need it.

“We are going to reclaim our buildings from criminal elements and offer them to the private sector to build affordable accommodation for our people, students and small businesses.”

Education revolution

Action SA will also improve the education system, with a sharp focus on maths and science, he said.

“We will launch an education revolution in SA, with a new curriculum that raises a nation of employers, not just employees. We are going to focus on investing in early childhood development centres to prepare and equip any child with an early start in education.”

Economic emancipation 

Mashaba said his party will give South Africans equal opportunities to thrive economically and eradicate joblessness and poverty.

“I personally know the power of economic freedom ... I know the pain of hunger. I started my business at the age of 22 and have enjoyed the freedom that arose from my hard work. This is my dream for all South Africans.

“Unemployment is destroying our country. More than 10 million of our citizens live without the dignity that comes with work, with millions more projected to join their ranks after this pandemic.”