SA Elections 2009 À“ Leaders people can trust

Date: January 1, 1970
  • SHARE:

This set of articles discusses the leadership race, including one article reflecting community-based concerns.

Articles analysed:
  •  “Wanted: Leaders people can trust,” The Sowetan,  1 April, 2009
  • “Parties vie for power,” Sunday Times, 12 April 2009
  • “DA warns voters against giving a two-thirds majority to ANC,” Business Day, 14 April 2009
 These articles may be used to:
  • raise discussions on leadership;
  • demonstrate importance of issue based reporting; and
  • Highlight role of media in informing electorate.
 Training Notes
The “Wanted: Leaders people can trust,” is about a campaign undertaken by the ANC in a constituency where people are complaining about the provision of houses, a clean environment and leaders who are accountable. The people are calling on transformative leadership. They are demanding leaders who they can count on and who can keep their promises. It includes three sources, Gladys Moroe, Paul Mashatile and Florina Jali. The story attempts to show how women are affected by lack of service delivery. What is lacking is that men’s voices are not included in the complaint. Is it only women who are concerned about the provision of houses?
 “Parties vie for power,” looks at two parties’, ANC and IFP, battle for Kwazulu Natal (KZN). ANC President Jacob Zuma and Inkatha Freedom Party’s Mangosuthu Buthelezi ware said to be intensifying their campaigns in the province. The IFP is said to be confident of winning back the majority they lost in 2004. There are is only one source in the story. This is IFP chief whip Koos van der Merwe. Not only should there have been an ANC voice to balance this up, but contrary to the first article the voices of the electorate are missing. This was an opportunity to talk to both women and men and get their views on the upcoming election. There are also no female voices in the story. There is however, a picture of a female ANC supporter clad in party regalia. Women appear in images but their voices are missing in the stories.
The second article talks extensively about the two political parties as they compete for leadership, but fails to actually address any of the issues or policies that the intend to implement. Similarly, in the third article, Helen Zille, leader of the DA, discusses their “Stop Zuma” campaign and she explains why she believes that if the ANC wins a 2/3 majority in the elections the constitution will be in jeopardy. She mentions property rights will be in “jeopardy”; media freedom will not be independent from government and the courts will not have autonomy from government influence. Basically her viewpoint is that if ANC wins 2/3 majority South Africa could be on a “downward spiral towards a failed state such as Zimbabwe…” Yet, she is not clear about what the policies of the DA are.
Discussion Questions
  •  What makes a good leader?
  • The 2009 elections were largely event based, and coverage of issues was lacking. Why could this be?
  • Consider the “Stop Zuma” campaign. Is it an effective campaign platform?
  • Is it important to conduct voter education and political messaging specifically designed for women? Why?
Training Exercises
  • Conduct a survey amongst women and men. Do they feel government represents their needs? Do they feel there is a gender difference when it comes to whether politicians represent their needs?
  • Choose a gender issue, analyse national parties’ policies and performance on this issue, and write a commentary.
Other Training Resources
Click here and search theme "Elections" for more related GL Commentaries. 

Download : Wanted leaders people can trustSAElections2009
Download : DA warns voters against - Business Day (14-4-09)
Download : Parties vie for power

Comment on SA Elections 2009 À“ Leaders people can trust

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *