Former editor Songezo Zibi launches Rise Mzansi
Former newspaper editor Songezo Zibi has launched a political party, Rise Mzansi, which he deems a “people-centred political alternative to the failed political establishment” ahead of the 2024 national elections.
Zibi, a former Business Day editor and co-founder of think-tank Rivonia Circle, introduced the party’s ideals and its leadership at a launch in Johannesburg on Wednesday, saying it would contest the polls in 2024.
The newly launched political party would prioritise civic participation and education, he said.
“We are open to every South African who wants to build a nation that cares, not a country where only the most privileged enjoy a decent life,” he said. “SA has enormous capacity, but our political culture demands that people be card-carrying members of political parties to matter.
“At Rise Mzansi, the basis for contribution is an alignment of values and our vision, not party membership. This is the work of patriotic South Africans, not party loyalists.”
Zibi said the new party had been born out of “the brokenness” of South Africans and their current lack of hope.
Good people and patriotic citizens had yielded the political space to people who did not deserve it, which was why the country found itself in the debilitating position it was in, he said.
“The ruling party has come to represent failure, despair, incompetence, and corruption. Millions of its own supporters deserve a better political home, one that takes their valid dreams seriously instead of using them as fodder for personal enrichment and power,” said Zibi.
“It is not the load-shedding that demoralises us, it is the fact that we have lost the ability to deal with it. It is not that crime depresses us, it is that those who are tasked to deal with it are criminals themselves,” he said.
He added that the very system of politics was broken and needed a complete overhaul.
“We cannot use the same rules that delivered the unserious people who call themselves leaders today. We cannot deliver a better future by entrusting everything to a broken political system that relies on court litigation for the right things to be done.
“We must be bold and change the rules, and in our documents we set out a political reform programme that can finally deliver real democracy.”
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