Spotlight on EFF, DA coalition announcements

Political analyst Somadoda Fikeni says the EFF is in a dilemma as kingmaker in municipalities that have no outright winner.

The DA and the EFF will on Wednesday separately announce the progress made in coalition talks in hung municipalities across the country.

No political party was able to garner an outright majority in 27 municipalities, including key Gauteng metros – sparking marathon talks as the DA and ANC both met with smaller parties, including the EFF, to try to form coalition councils.

Fikeni says the EFF is in a tight spot.

He says should they go in with the ANC, some of the voters will feel what was all this about because the campaign was about punishing the ANC and ending its corruption.

“If EFF decides to go into a coalition with the DA, it is a coalition that may end up with a collision because their constituencies and policies are so far apart,” he adds.

DA’s Federal Chairperson James Selfe says the agreements that have reached so far have been guided by the party’s election promises to improve service delivery, to root out corruption and create conditions for employment.

“Within that rubric, we were able to find quite a lot of commonality with quite a lot of political parties. We also delved down into the principles of co-governance because any coalition is not just one party dominating others; it is a partnership and in any partnership there needs to be some mutual respect and understanding and space for political parties to be able articulate their own point of views. So, around those sorts of issues there were extensive discussions, but I think we bedded down those agreements.”

Selfe says they’ve also consulted with several smaller political parties

Selfe says the process of negotiations with various parties to form coalition governments in hung municipalities has not been easy.
Talks started two weeks ago, when the election results in four Metros and 23 other municipalities failed to give any party an outright majority.

Selfe says they’ve also consulted with several smaller political parties.

“We had a group of people, a sort of reference group which we kept here in Johannesburg for the most part, but then there were local negotiations that were happening on the ground with various councils. Some political parties preferred the negotiations to take place solely on a national level. We respect that and so, we were engaging them nationally.”

He says the negotiations process could still take longer.

“Others allowed their local people to do the running and then to report back to the national leadership. So, it has been a slowish process, but my experience of dealing these negotiations is that it may take a little bit longer. But the more satisfactory the result is in the end.”


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