On the first day in National Government the DA will devolve powers to the Western Cape

Issued by John Steenhuisen MP – Leader of the Democratic Alliance
11 Nov 2023 in News

 Note to Editors: The following speech was delivered by the DA Federal Leader John Steenhuisen at the DA Western Cape Provincial Congress in Century City, Cape Town today.

Fellow Democrats,

Dis lekker hier in die Kaap vanmôre!

Ek kan aan niks beter dink as om vanoggend hier saam met julle te wees nie.

Want vandag neem ons saam die eerste tree om geskiedenis te maak in volgende jaar se verkiesing.

I want to start by congratulating the newly elected Western Cape leadership that will emerge from this Congress.

Trust me, I know what it takes to run and win a leadership campaign, and it is an achievement worth celebrating.

Maar moenie hierdie naweek te hard feesvier nie. Want Maandag begin die harde werk.

I want to call on each delegate here today to make sure that we put Congress season behind us on Monday.

On Monday morning, I want us all in this room to wake up as one united province, with only one goal in mind: winning.

Colleagues, friends and fellow Democrats,

In this Western Cape, this beautiful DA-led province, we have a lot to show. We have a lot more to do. And we have a lot to lose.

A lot to show. A lot more to do. And a lot to lose.

That is what is at stake in the Western Cape in 2024.

Let’s start with what we have to show.

After nearly 15 years of uninterrupted DA good governance, there is no doubt that the Western Cape is, by an enormous margin, the best-run province in this country.

As the other eight provinces have declined and collapsed under the weight of ANC misrule, DA Premier Alan Winde and his team have elevated the Western Cape to new heights.

It would be no exaggeration to say that, thanks to the DA, the Western Cape is now the best-run regional government on the entire African continent.

And it shows.

In this province, we have better roads, better sanitation, better public healthcare and better public education than anywhere else in South Africa.

While the ANC eats tax money in other provinces, 100% of the Western Cape Government’s departments received unqualified audits last year.

While ANC cadres rob citizens blind in other provinces, in this province, we do not tolerate cadre deployment or corruption.

In this province, we have by far the lowest unemployment rate in the country.

In recent times, the Western Cape has produced up to 98% of net new jobs in South Africa.

That means that out of every 100 new jobs created in this country, 98 of them are in the Western Cape.

In this province, we have invested more in creating safe communities than anywhere else.

At a cost of over R1.2 billion, over 1 200 additional law enforcement officers are currently patrolling the streets to make this province safer.

I want to remind you today that not one of these things happened by accident.

They are thanks to two little letters: D and A!

The Western Cape did not automatically become the best-run province in this country through osmosis.

It happened because the people of the Western Cape, through an act of the will, drew their crosses next to the DA.

That is why we must go out from this Congress and demonstrate to the voters of the Western Cape all that we have achieved.

We need to go out from here and report back to our voters all that we have to show in return for the faith they placed in us over the past 15 years.

And, indeed, in the Western Cape, the DA has a lot to show.

But we are also honest that we have a lot more to do.

This province is making enormous progress, but it is not perfect.

Every life lost on the Cape Flats, is a tragedy for all of us, and strengthens the DA’s resolve to wipe out criminality.

Every resident of the Western Cape who lives in a backyard, or on the street, reinforces the DA’s commitment to provide fair access to housing and jobs in a growing economy.

Every person who is robbed, every person who can no longer take the train to work, and every person who has lost their job due to load shedding, fuels our passion to force the devolution of powers over policing, public transport and electricity away from the failing and corrupt ANC national government.

It is precisely because we have a lot more we still want to deliver for the people of the Western Cape, that the DA is going to put our hearts and souls into the election campaign.

Our mission is clear: the DA cannot and we will not stop fighting for the people of the Western Cape until every resident of this province lives in a safe community!

We cannot, and we will not, stop fighting for the people of this province until every last one of them can find work and put food on the table for their families!

We cannot, and we will not, stop fighting for the people of the Western Cape until we have ended load shedding!

The DA cannot, and we will not, stop fighting for the people of the Western Cape until every last one of them has access to dignified housing and quality services!

To the people of the Western Cape, I say: you have a lot to show for the trust you have placed in the DA.

And, indeed, the DA plans to still do a lot more for you.

But there is also a lot for you to lose.

Let’s make no mistake about it.

The ANC and their coalition partners in the EFF are desperate to get their hands on the Western Cape.

Hulle het al die ander provinsies leeg gesteel. Hulle weet dat die Wes-Kaap die laaste provinsie is waar daar nog iets oor is om te steel.

If we allow the ANC and the EFF to form a coalition with sell-outs in small parties like the Patriotic Alliance, the Western Cape will lose everything.

Under an ANC/EFF coalition, the looting will start on day one.

Just look at a place like Ekurhuleni, where the DA left behind a healthy budget surplus when the ANC and EFF Doomsday Coalition took over.

Within a matter of weeks, they looted it all.

Only a few months after the DA was removed, and Ekurhuleni today is bankrupt.

If we allow the ANC/EFF Doomsday Coalition to take over this province, it will not be long before roads start exploding like they do under the ANC and EFF in Johannesburg.

Until people lose their lives in building fires that could have been prevented.

Until the taps run dry, and the electricity stays off for weeks at a time even without load shedding.

We must never fool ourselves into thinking it can never happen here in the Western Cape.

It can happen here.

And the way it can happen, is if we allow greedy small parties to split the DA’s vote.

There are parties out there who openly say that their goal is to drag the DA below 50% in the Western Cape.

Just think about how selfish that is.

These greedy parties want to destroy the only province in this country that works, for their own selfish gains.

Their plan is simple. They want to split the DA’s vote so that we go under 50% in this province.

When that happens, they will sell your vote to the ANC and EFF quicker than you can say “traitors.”

Don’t believe any party that promises you they won’t vote for the ANC and EFF.

We have already seen how parties like the Patriotic Alliance betrayed their voters by putting the ANC/EFF Doomsday Coalition into power in municipalities across this country.

The truth is that these small parties can never guarantee that the ANC and EFF will not take over if the DA goes below 50%.

All they care about is splitting the DA’s vote and selling you out to the highest bidder.

All they care about is positions, money and power.

Voting for a greedy small party is simply a risk not worth taking.

There is only one proven, guaranteed way to keep the ANC and EFF out of the Western Cape.

And that is to vote DA.

A lot to show.

A lot more to do.

And a lot to lose.

Fellow Democrats,

There has never been an election in the history of this country where we have had more to play for.

Specifically, here in the Western Cape, voters have the greatest opportunity we’ve seen in any of our lifetimes.

Because, in 2024, a vote for the DA in the Western Cape is a win-win.

A vote for the DA in the Western Cape is a vote to protect what we have already achieved here.

A vote for the DA in the Western Cape is a vote to end load shedding, for safer communities, and for many more jobs.

And a vote for the DA in the Western Cape is the only way to guarantee that the ANC and EFF do not take over this province.

But the winning doesn’t end there.

Because, for the first time ever, a vote for the DA in the Western Cape is also a vote for a new national government.

According to all credible polling, the ANC will struggle to even get 40% in provinces like KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng in next year’s election.

If the DA wins the Western Cape with an outright majority, and we drag the ANC out of power in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, then we will get a new national government next year.

It’s that simple.

Western Cape + KwaZulu-Natal + Gauteng = a new national government.

This means that, for the first time since 1994, we can defeat the ANC nationally.

Working with our partners in the Multi-Party Charter, the DA is perfectly positioned to become the big, strong anchor tenant for a new national coalition government.

Just think what this will mean for the Western Cape.

With the DA as the anchor of a new national government, the Western Cape will have an ally in Pretoria, rather than an enemy.

Instead of having to fight with the ANC to take control over policing, transport and electricity, this new national government will work with the Western Cape to devolve these powers.

Rather than being undermined by ANC national Ministers at every turn, Premier Alan Winde will be able to pick up the phone and call his DA counterpart in the national Cabinet.

In fact, I came here today to make a commitment to the people of the Western Cape.

If you help the DA to not only win the Western Cape, but to also enter national government next year, our very first order of business will be the following:

On day one in national government, the DA will introduce a new Devolution Act that will transfer control over policing, trains and electricity to the Western Cape!

To the residents of the Western Cape, I say: there has never been a better time to go out and register to vote for the DA.

In 2024, a vote for the DA is not only a vote to protect the Western Cape.

It is a vote to rescue South Africa.

And it is a vote for a new national government that will work with the DA-led provincial government to take the Western Cape to even greater heights.

In 2024, a vote for the DA is the very definition of a win-win situation.

So, Democrats, let’s go out from this Congress and take the message to every corner of this province!

Let’s use this message to get every single DA voter to go and register during next weekend’s registration weekend.

That a vote for the DA in the Western Cape is a win-win!

Let’s go out there and win the Western Cape, let’s win national government, and let’s rescue South Africa! Thank you.

Be part of the mission to rescue South Africa, get help registering to vote at check.da.org.za