Young gun aims for top
DA LEADERSHIP RACE: ‘MBALI NTULI DOESN’T HAVE ENOUGH EXPERIENCE’
Challenges are bigger than any candidates can handle – Somadoda Fikeni.
Former Democratic Alliance (DA) youth leader Mbali Ntuli may have big plans to bring fairness back to the DA as she runs for party leadership, but analysts warn she may be biting off more than she can chew.
The young politician from KwaZulu-Natal, who is expected to go head-to-head with Western Cape leader Bonginkosi Madikizela, Gauteng leader John Moodey and interim leader John Steenhuisen, among others, said the DA should return its focus to realigning politics in South Africa.
Political analyst Dr Somadoda Fikeni said Ntuli was a good candidate, but she did not have enough experience to manage the complexities of the party and neither did the others.
“I do think she is the right candidate to raise the debate and provide some clarity on certain issues, especially for black voters who might not be clear with the DA’s economic policies, for example,” said Fikeni.
He said that even if Ntuli won the race and became the party’s leader, the DA’s problems were far bigger than she could or any of the current leaders could handle as they lacked the experience and stature of former leaders like Tony Leon and Helen Zille, when she started out in politics.
“Even Steenhuisen does not fit the bill,” said Fikeni. “The challenges facing the DA now are bigger than the current list of candidates put forward so I do not think they will pass this test.”
Yesterday Ntuli announced she was running for the position because South Africa needed a different kind of politics – one that came from a place of empathy and kindness.
“I want to make the party kind, strong and fair. I’m running because I believe if we can show South Africans the people who really make up the DA, they would see the DA I see; a DA of people doing their best to serve in a political climate that tries to crush their efforts at every turn,” said Ntuli.
She said that one of her main concerns was restoring confidence in the DA which had taken a severe knock after the resignation of former party leader Mmusi Maimane and former Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba last year over what seemed to be differences of opinion with the party.
Ntuli said the new leader must have a vision that resonated with all South Africans and not just with the white minority.
“Our leadership must have the strength and credibility to win not only the minds, but the hearts of South Africans. We need a leader who has a vision that resonates with all South Africans. A leader who understands and has lived the realities of South Africans,” added Ntuli. –
We need a leader who has a vision
Former DA youth leader
HIGH HOPES. DA KwaZulu-Natal spokesperson on cooperative governance and traditional affairs Mbali Ntuli announces her candidacy in the upcoming DA leadership election yesterday.