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Mashaba says ANC is a ‘curse’, cannot coexist with a prosperous S Africa


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Mashaba says ANC is a ‘curse’, cannot coexist with a prosperous S Africa

ActionSA leader Herman Mashaba discusses his party’s election campaign ahead of the 2024 elections (Camera & Editing: Nicholas Boyd)

11th December 2023

By: Sane Dhlamini
Creamer Media Senior Contributing Editor and Researcher


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ActionSA leader Herman Mashaba has told Polity that a prosperous South Africa and the African National Congress (ANC) cannot coexist, labelling the ruling party as a "curse" and blaming it for “destroying our way of life" in an exclusive interview.

Mashaba, whose party is preparing to contest the upcoming elections for the first time, warned that if the black youth, in particular, don't remove the ANC from government, it must accept the consequence that "South Africa is going to die" and become a failed State.


ActionSA recently launched its election campaign at Mashaba's place of birth, in Hammanskraal, where he said it was disturbing to see that a place which was once a hive of business activity was now in poverty.

When asked about ActionSA’s election preparations, as the party has already launched Chairpersons in all nine provinces, Mashaba said going back home was a great decision as the people of Hammanskraal were “proud” that his launch had put his village on the map.


Mashaba told Polity that he was pleased with the party’s progress, with two of the nine provinces having their wards nearly reach the Electoral Commission of South Africa’s requirements to be able to contest the upcoming elections.

"We are not going to stop. Even next year we will continue to fill in the forms as it gives us personal contact with the voters. It is exciting as we have already announced four Premier candidates,” he said.

The party’s remaining Premier candidates will be announced before the end of February.

ActionSA is confident that before the elections it will have reached a minimum of 60% of wards with branches.

Mashaba said although he was privileged, he was not prepared to leave the country for “greener pastures” and added that he would not keep quiet as he had an obligation to save the country from the ANC.


The ActionSA leader accused the ANC of deliberately closing factories in Hammanskaal, which he said was one of the biggest industrial areas in the country.

He said businesses were now run by the ANC councillors who were allowing undocumented immigrants to “do as they please”.

Mashaba further claimed that ANC councillors had opened a floodgate of social disruptions and drug use in communities as people were unemployed.


Mashaba is promising South Africans a universal basic income stimulus package which will be more than the current R350, as he argues that no one can survive on such an amount.

He said his party would introduce short-term interventions as the country deals with 54% of people living below the bread line, "but at the same time we will deal with draconian laws, opening factories where no union will ever have a veto right on our economic policies".

Mashaba is adamant that once the number of social grant recipients is reduced owing to increased job opportunities, those who qualify for social grants will only be the elderly, disabled and the previously disadvantaged.

He is mindful that the “mess created by the ANC” requires an intervention but his plan is to ensure that industrial spaces flourish and resuscitate the economy.


On the appointment of new Eskom CEO Dan Marokane, Mashaba told Polity that his success would depend on the political support he received.

He said if the ANC leadership continued looting Eskom, Marokane was not going to do anything and would also not get the support of the criminal justice system.

"I can assure you [in that case] he is going to fail. There is no way that you can run a business or Eskom where you have the hyenas waiting to steal and there are no consequences, therefore, he is going to fail. That is a fact of life. His success is going to depend on getting the political will and stopping criminals and the tenderpreneurs who are milking Eskom,” Mashaba stated.

If it comes into power, ActionSA is promising to run Eskom on a commercial basis while putting professional people in key positions and offering political support, "but we will ensure that we deal with the level of corruption because we will have specialised units that are going to be dealing with corruption throughout the country”.

Mashaba told Polity that ActionSA would encourage the private sector to compete with Eskom on an equal basis, adding that if it failed, it would have to “shut down and die a natural death”. 


Under the ANC government, Mashaba believes that South Africa is more unequal than in 1994, with education a critical right, and he plans to restore a crumbling education system.

The party commits to run a one-department education system and stop unions from making decisions in schools.

Mashaba also promises to hire back teachers who were retired by the ANC as school inspectors and principals, as he believes that they can restore the way the education system was run.

He also believes that the schools should invest in teacher training colleges and boarding schools because "35% of the children since the ANC came into power don’t know their fathers and they are brought up by their grandparents in an environment that is not conducive for good quality education".

He also believes that investing in properly run early childhood centers in villages and townships will help solve South Africa’s low levels of reading for meaning.


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