The Guard

The Truth On Board

‘Voters play politicians, too’

By Emily Setona

QWAQWA – It is commonplace to think voters are loyal to their party until you meet Tsokolo Mphuti, a woman from ward 14 who attended back-to-back election rallies in Maluti-a-Phofung (MAP), to get a free T-shirt and a plate of food.

During the African Content Movement (ACM) electioneering rally that was held at the Phuthadithjaba stadium on May 11 2024, Mphuti was part of the crowd that gathered there to see ACM president Hlaudi Motsoeneng address his supporters.

This elderly woman attended the EFF election rally that was held in Bolata ward 13 and the following day she was in ward 27 wearing an ACM t-shirt cheering with the crowd gathered there.
This observation that one of the loyal supporters of ACM, Puleng Mosia, to question the sincerity of the audience there.

“I don’t trust these voters anymore. As an ACM supporter I have realized that many people just attend these political rallies so that they can get a free T-shirt and a plate of food. That is why I hope that ACM president Hlaudi Motsoeneng prays for his supporters to vote on May 29,” Mosia said in an interview with this publication.
Makarabo Mosikidi who confessed to having attended all the political rallies that have come to MAP, said she is doing this all in the name of generating an income.

“I started attending these rallies from the time that the President Cyril Ramaphosa came here. That is when I realized that my income for the day is great, because the people at these rallies buy from me and I can make more money than I usually make. That is why I decided to attend all these political rallies. Yesterday I was at the EFF rally and today I am here. I am doing this because my oldest child is in university and this money that I make helps me to send my child reasonable pocket money,” Mosikidi said.

ACM supporters entertaining audience at Phuthaditjhaba stadium.

Makhala Mofokeng who also sells snacks for a living, said she lives off the unemployment grant of R350 and must take care of her 82-year old mother with the little income she gets.
“I am here today because I do not have a job and live off the R350, so I sell snacks to generate an income to help at home. I don’t have a child that is earning a grant so the money that I make is not enough,” Mofokeng said.

While addressing the crowd, Motsoeneng said:

“If we would focus on the issue of unemployment then we will have done our job because most of the challenges that are in Maluti-a-Phofung are there because our people do not have jobs. I will create job opportunities for everyone who is able to work, not just the young people. I will give people a reason to go to work and be productive because I will also pay them enough to live better lives.”