The Moonshot Pact is ready for lift-off!

As the DA launches its 2024 election campaign, “Moonshot” is the word on everyone’s lips. But what does it mean? What actions are being to taken save South Africa from ANC failure? DA Leader John Steenhuisen fills us in on the details of the Moonshot Pact and what has been happening behind the scenes.

ChangeMaker (CM): What is the ‘Moonshot Pact’?

DA Leader John Steenhuisen (JS): The DA has invited like-minded South African political parties and prospective political parties to form a “Moonshot Pact” to work together to defeat the ANC and keep the EFF out in the 2024 national election. The term “Moonshot” is used to refer to a worthy goal which is ambitious, but achievable with great effort and determination. This Pact has a credible pathway to power in 2024. Support for non-ANC/EFF parties grew by 7 percentage points between 2019 and 2021, from 28% to 35%. Now we need to grow by another 15 percentage points to get to 50%. We can do this. South Africa is ripe for change.

CM: Why are the 2024 elections so significant? 

JS: The 2024 election will be the most important since SA’s first democratic elections in 1994. Thirty years on, the ANC has run its course. It has failed to bring prosperity to most South Africans. Instead, every day brings more poverty as crime, corruption, living costs, unemployment, and debt continue to soar unchecked.

The 2024 election may be our last chance to use democracy – political freedom for all – to achieve SA’s crucial second transition, to being a country of economic freedom for all as envisaged by the Constitution. By the next national election in 2029, even if our democracy is still intact – don’t count on it – there will be a lot less to save at the rate that infrastructure and institutions are crumbling, and skills and capital fleeing South Africa.

In 2024, South Africa will properly enter a coalition era. Credible polls already have ANC support well below 50% nationally and far lower in Gauteng and KZN. It will continue to fall as high-stage load-shedding, a direct result of ANC corruption and incompetence, continues unabated.

All indications are that the ANC will form a coalition with the EFF to try stay in power. They’ve already done this in Johannesburg and Ekurhuleni metros. Make no mistake: this will be a calamitous outcome for South Africa. The EFF will insist on a socialist agenda of expropriation without compensation and greater state ownership of the economy, leading to mass disinvestment and even more corruption and poverty.

This will accelerate South Africa’s slide to state failure, a situation which is extremely hard to reverse, as seen by the Zimbabwean predicament of economic stagnation, rigged elections, and opposition oppression. It would truly be a Doomsday Coalition, destroying virtually all hope of economic freedom for all. The Moonshot Pact offers voters a clear alternative. No one should sit out the 2024 election. Every freedom-loving South African must register and vote. Your vote has never been more important.

CM: Which parties have come on board so far / how many have signed up? 

JS: So far, seven parties have come on board. They are the IFP, the FF+, ActionSA, the NFP, the UIM, the SNP and BOSA. Some other leaders are still consulting their parties.

CM: There is a Moonshot Pact convention / meeting coming up – tell us about that?

JS: The Pact will be negotiated at a National Convention in June in Gauteng. At this historic Convention, we will negotiate our offer to South Africa. This will include our vision and shared governing principles, as well as a programme of action to get South Africa working again.

CM: What can SA expect from a Moonshot Pact coalition government in 2024 and beyond?

JS: I cannot give any specifics as those will only be finalized at the National Convention. But I can say that the Moonshot Pact government will put South Africa first, focusing on growing the economy, ending load-shedding, fixing service delivery, cutting crime and corruption, and building South Africa’s constitutional democracy.

John Steenhuisen is the leader of the Democratic Alliance, elected at the 2023 DA Federal Congress on 2 April 2023. John previously assumed the role of interim Federal Leader from November 2019, having served as the chief whip of the Official Opposition from May 2014 to October 2019. John has been a public representative for over 20 years.