STEVEN FRIEDMAN: Why coalition governments have let us down
The parties make deals without bothering about what voters think
Whoever dreamt up the phrase “be careful what you wish for” may have been thinking of coalition governments in SA. In Joburg and Tshwane, as in other municipalities over the last years, voters are being reminded that coalition governments are not all they are cracked up to be.
When it became clear that coalitions were on the way here, it excited many people. The ANC’s power would be reduced, giving more citizens a say. Parties would watch over each other to stem corruption. Minority governments — as in Joburg and Tshwane — might give citizens more power because if the governing party rejected their ideas they could turn to other parties and try to assemble majority support.