Mmusi Maimane expects to launch his movement by April
The Movement for One SA (Mosa), which former DA leader Mmusi Maimane wants to create, will soon take concrete form after months of his talking about it.
Maimane outlined his plans for the movement during an address to the Cape Town Press Club on Wednesday, saying a consultative forum would be held in about two weeks to decide on Mosa’s policies, with the official launch provisionally planned for March or April.
Maimane envisages Mosa being a platform for individuals, civil society, non-governmental organisations and religious bodies and smaller political parties in much the same way the United Democratic Front (UDF) operated in the eighties.
He said it was possible the People’s Dialogue, the party former Johannesburg mayor Herman Mashaba plans to create, could participate in the movement.
The movement has already begun recruiting individuals and civil society organisations and Maimane said the response had been very positive, especially from community organisations in informal settlements, and traditional leaders, who felt democracy had let them down.
It will have national and provincial councils and will be funded by a R20-R25 membership fee by individuals, who would be encouraged to undertake crowdfunding on its behalf.
The aim of the movement will be to mobilise people to become active citizens.
“We have lost a deep sense of activism in SA. It has disappeared,” he said, stressing that excluded communities needed to become involved.
Maimane said there were already 48 political parties in SA and he did not see the need to create yet another one as he was not convinced parties could reform and bring about political change. What was needed was a pragmatic, future-focused movement along the lines of Solidarity in Poland or French President Emmanuel Macron’s movement, La Republique en Marche!, which could disrupt traditional political parties and mobilise for change.
Maimane resigned from the DA in October 2019, along with Mashaba and former federal chair Athol Trollip, after Helen Zille was elected federal council chair.
This followed a series of attacks on Maimane’s leadership. The former DA leader said when he quit, the party was not the best vehicle for him to pursue his vision for SA. His aim as DA leader had been to cement diversity as a core value of the party and the country.
He said on Wednesday SA was perishing because of a lack of vision. He emphasised the need for electoral reform to ensure the direct accountability of political representatives to the electorate.
Other issues raised by Maimane were the need for private-public partnerships in the education and health sectors, and for SA to become a leader in Africa for democracy, energy and climate change.