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Politics not a dirty game – Prof Matebesi

By Emily Setona

QWAQWA – Political analyst Professor Sethulego Matebesi, has described the Constitutional Court’s judgement to remove the African Congress for Transformation (ACT) from the national ballot paper, as a big blow for the political party, although that is not the end.

In an interview with this publication, the University of the Free State’s Professor Matebesi said the ACT leadership won’t openly admit that the judgement handed down on May 10 is a major blow for the party.

According to Matebesi the ruling party fails to consider the implications of having a party such as ACT on the campaign trail when this party’s leader is an experienced leader who knows the ins and outs of the ANC and may use this time to campaign despite the outcome of the courts.

“The leadership of ACT will not openly admit that this judgment is a big blow for their political party but, depending on what their strategy is, I think they will be able to disrupt the status quo. The court judgment removes them from the national ballot paper but in some provinces, they appear on the regional ballot. So through campaigning and not stopping their rallies this will cause great confusion with voters.

“South Africa has a history of low voter turn-out because the youth do not strongly participate in politics as they are led to believe that politics is a dirty game which in my opinion is a misnomer because politics are a very important part of life that the youth fail to see clearly and participate in,” Matebesi said.

Political analyst UFS Prof Sethulego Matebesi.

In response to media reports, a defiant ACT stated that the party will contest the national ballot in all nine provinces; ACT will contest the provincial ballot in six provinces, with the exception of Limpopo, Mpumalanga, and the Western Cape. It will contest one regional ballot only in the Western Cape. The party’s application to the Constitutional court sought a relief to participate in regional ballots of all six provinces where they will be contesting the provincial ballots.

“This judgment shows exactly what democracy and South Africa is all about. I think that the intention is that they wanted to close us out, but the lucky part is that we are contesting the elections in the Free State, the province of North West, the Northern Cape, the Eastern Cape, and Gauteng. We are on the regional ballot in the Western Cape and on the national ballot. We are going to contest elections, so we are still happy that as a new party we are a party to run this country,” party leader Ace Magashule told the media.