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    ANC's Soweto Zone 10 Gala Dinner


     July 12 2016

    Many of us come from the black community – ‘clever blacks’, so to speak. In this regard, we would be concerned about a falsehood that has become the stock-in-trade in analysis of electoral trends. This is that black people vote in the manner they do merely out of sentiment. In the research that the Mapungubwe Institute (MISTRA) has conducted, the exact opposite is in fact the case. To quote from MISTRA’s analysis of the 2014 elections: “white support for the DA+ [including the historical configurations of NP/NNP/DP/DA] has remained solid over the years, averaging above 90% in this community." As such, while epithets of ‘historical sentiment’, ‘racial solidarity’ and so on have been levelled against African voters in particular, the trend among [African] voters has in fact shown greater openness and variety. Race and class intertwine more intimately within the white community than most other sections of society”. So, to use the logic of the superficial analysis, it is in fact within the white community that you find voting based on ‘sentiment’ – which in reality is representative of profound social self-interest.  

    The request was that we should this evening reflect on spatial dynamics and migration, and their implications for economics, ethics and a developmental state in the City (and I assume the hosts didn’t have in mind a certain sitcom about something in the City – that is, if it’s still screened in these days of local content ‘distinctions’ at the SABC).

    To understand this evening’s complex theme, it is critical, first and foremost, to appreciate where we are today as a nation. Lest we forget, the mid-1990s delivered a political compact in which the contending forces chose, in pursuit of the interests of their constituencies, to recoil from a scorched earth policy, from which any victor would have inherited a wasteland. Eighteen years later, in 2012, with the adoption of the National Development Plan (NDP), a unique possibility presented itself for us to forge a social compact, more intently and more speedily, to address the socio-economic legacy. 

    To read the full speech click here​


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