By Ebi Kesiena
South Africa’s ruling ANC has pledged to perform better if re-elected into office, as it unveiled its manifesto for upcoming local elections vowing to renew itself, woo back supporters and stop opposition inroads.
In a televised event, President Cyril Ramaphosa launched his party’s manifesto from a public square in the capital Pretoria, pledging a reformed party while admitting that the party has made some mistakes in the past.
“We pledge to you, the people of South Africa, that we will do better, much better than we have done in the past. This is a pledge, and this is what we dedicate ourselves to you all. We have not always done the best that we were meant to do,” he said.
The ANC’s campaign has already been in full swing for the past two weeks, with Ramaphosa leading party officials criss-crossing impoverished townships and villages.
Head of organising and campaigns for ANC, Nomvula Mokonyane, spoke of the party’s main agenda. He said the party’s primary target are the youth.
“Amongst other things that we will be speaking about is improvement on delivery of water, sewer, electricity, maintenance of our infrastructure. But of importance, ensuring that our cities and towns become integrated through our human settlements development programs,” he said.
The ANC party which has ruled South Africa since the end of apartheid in 1994, suffered its worst electoral setback during the last local polls in 2016, eking out just under 54 percent nationally while losing an absolute majority in five of the six largest cities, including Johannesburg and Pretoria.