EFF seizes the future through social media
The EFF is now one of the major political parties in SA, after the ANC and the DA. The ANC is 100 years old and the DA goes back to the '50s. The EFF is just five years old.
The EFF is able to exploit opportunities to its advantage and arrest or deal decisively with potential threats.
The core of an MBA degree is educating students on these key business factors: exploiting business opportunities while dealing with threats. These are the two factors in a Swot (strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats) analysis. A Swot analysis is used to shape the success of a business, country, industry, product or person.
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The EFF exploited and leveraged social media to dominate and direct the national discourse. Social media has helped the EFF mobilise and galvanise its messaging. EFF fighters on social media are creating and sustaining conversations on the political, social and economic issues paralysing SA and are deploying spin to show how an EFF government would usher in an era of superb statecraft and surpassing leadership, to make the country a viable political enterprise.
The big deal is that the EFF is achieving subjective and maximum impact through social media.
The strength of the EFF is that it is a flexible organisation. It is not stifled by dogma and history like the ANC, nor finds itself obliged to deal with baggage like the DA. The EFF is forward-looking. The ANC is often backward-looking whereas the DA is inward-looking, mostly having to address internal contradictions and multiple personalities.
The EFF forces on social media are not violent, as some seek to paint them. What they are is an attack force that marshals arguments to destroy all the canons of lies, hypocrisy, corruption, resource vandalism, and other appalling failures of the ANC.
The EFF forces are perpetually roaming the social media savannah to shoot down damaging stories about their party. They are gifted novices, damage-limitation experts in defence of their movement. Without a doubt, social media is the EFF's competitive advantage. The radical politics the EFF pursues make it a pariah within the mainstream media. And so, a swarm of fighters has taken social media by storm.
Some EFF forces take to Twitter, many embrace Facebook, others communicate via WhatsApp and other social media. Twitter is the centre of gravity for the EFF forces. They tell the story of an ANC that has fallen from grace and has no way of turning back. The ANC has entered a vegetative state and it is time that we unplugged all the life machines.
The election of President Cyril Ramaphosa as president was supposed to usher the ANC into some kind of a new dawn. But Ramaphosa's search for political significance in the depressing, chaotic politics of the ANC is turning into his nemesis. Ramaphosa seems to be a student of Machiavelli. Machiavelli recommended several things to politicians, two of which were: 1. Duplicitous behaviour of sweet, slow, gentle talking, just to soothe the people (make them agreeable); and 2. On the surface, be like a leaf blown around by the wind - agree with all people.
However, there is something else. Ahead of Ramaphosa seem to lie tears, trouble and tattered reputations as his predecessor, Jacob Zuma, is threatening to open a can of worms. Ramaphosa seems to be a pre-packaged failure.
The EFF is the new don of South African politics. It has brought freshness and creativity to our old politics of liberation. It is time this country moves forward and defines itself in the terms of the future and not the ANC politics of spinning endlessly: "Apartheid did this, and we fought apartheid."
The EFF appears to be the party most concerned with the realisation of the Nelson Mandela nation. The majority of people in SA find themselves forced to belong within a space that has no spirit-lifting storyline.
The thrust of the EFF, its sharp, unshakeable focus, is about lifting the lives of these people. Theirs is to be a journey of remaking SA into a veritable, vital, and robustly healthy nation.
• Kanyane is a civil servant. He holds an MBA in strategic management