‘Don’t waste our time’- Mashaba reveals ActionSA’s coalition non-negotiables
ActionSA will not engage in coalition talks with political parties that are only interested in advancing their own interests, party leader Herman Mashaba said on Tuesday.
He said the needs of South Africans must be central to coalition talks to ensure good governance across municipalities. There is a need for improvement from the poor performance seen in coalition governments in the past five years, Mashaba said.
ActionSA contested six municipalities in last week’s local government elections, including eThekwini, Tshwane and Ekurhuleni.
Mashaba said the party's performance was historic, as it garnered 2.34% of votes and 90 seats nationally.
He added the party will not compromise in its negotiations for coalitions.
“ActionSA is a vehicle, and I think we have been very clear as a political party from the day we were founded that we are here to represent society. We are not going into a coalition arrangement at all cost.
“We are going to put people first. It’s not about political parties. If you believe you want to put your party ahead of serving society, then please don’t waste our time because the deal will not be concluded. I think it is important for parties wanting to negotiate with us to put South Africans first,” he said.
Mashaba added if ActionSA was unable to find common ground with other political parties and conclude coalition talks, it would not get into unstable coalitions but would rather remain on the opposition benches and prepare for the general election in 2024.
He said this would be unfortunate as ActionSA did not set out to be in opposition when it campaigned for the elections.
“When we were campaigning we said to the people of SA we don’t want to be in the opposition benches, but people have spoken. [Take], for example, the city of Johannesburg where we got 16% and really performed well, but you can’t form a government with 16%," he said.