Herman Mashaba says ActionSA will be 'unapologetically pro-poor, create jobs'

Under ActionSA, abandoned buildings will be handed over to the private sector and used for business and, in turn, give the economy a much-needed boost and help create jobs.

23 September 2021 - 08:00
Action SA's Herman Mashaba has vowed to fix dysfunctional municipalities. File photo
Action SA's Herman Mashaba has vowed to fix dysfunctional municipalities. File photo
Image: Alon Skuy

ActionSA will be unapologetically pro-poor and deliver adequate services to communities in need of basic necessities, said leader Herman Mashaba.

Mashaba launched the party's manifesto on Wednesday ahead of the local government election on November 1. 

The former Johannesburg mayor recounted meeting with the city's poor residents who lamented a lack of basic services, and vowed to have them high on the list should he get elected.

During his resignation from the DA in 2019, Mashaba accused party members of ignoring his pro-poor views, something he hopes to champion through ActionSA. 

Here are five important takeouts from his press conference: 

Foreigners must come to SA, but legally

Mashaba said ActionSA has been mischaracterised as a xenophobic party, something he said is not true.

“As a fellow South African, I want the people of the world to come to SA, in these municipalities we govern. But, they must come here legally and obey our laws. Just as we are required to obtain visas or permits before entering foreign countries, the same should apply to those who wish to visit SA.”

Undocumented immigrants 

Mashaba said if elected, ActionSA will undo the crisis caused by the national government which he blamed for the failure to crack down on undocumented immigrants.

He said the party will offer assistance to eligible undocumented foreign nationals who are victims of failures of the department of home affairs.

“We cannot remain unresponsive in local government. It is for this reason that ActionSA will establish a dedicated unit within the metro police departments to process any undocumented foreign nationals arrested for a crime.”

Unapologetically pro-poor

Mashaba said service delivery for the poor will be one of ActionSA's priorities.

“In my experience in Johannesburg, wherever I spoke of [the poor] to those who were more fortunate, without exception, they wanted the city to do everything in its power to correct that kind of injustice.”

Access to the internet 

Mashaba said lack of access to the internet will be a thing of the past with ActionSA in governance. This is aimed at making job hunting and studying easier for all.

“We will roll out affordable, high-speed internet especially to poor communities. Our goal will be to ensure that every resident must be within 2km of a wi-fi hotspot. That will reduce the cost of data and make it easier to study, search for work and access municipal care services.”

Reclaiming the cities and townships 

Under ActionSA, abandoned buildings will be handed over to the private sector and used for business purposes and, in turn, give the economy a much-needed boost and help create jobs.

“The decay of our inner cities across SA offers this opportunity and we will pursue this model relentlessly wherever we govern,” said Mashaba. 


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