Ex-premier Supra says people in North West still love ANC
Former North West premier Supra Mahumapelo has blamed the lack of proper communication in the government for the protests making the rounds across the province.
Mahumapelo, who is also a member of the ANC’s provincial task team, cast his vote at Kebonang Secondary School in Mahikeng.
He was removed as premier last year in April when angry residents called for his removal, saying his administration was corrupt and complaining about lack of service delivery.
Responding to angry residents who boycotted elections in Kagisano Molopo and across the province, Mahumapelo said he does not think that the ANC has done anything wrong.
He, however, admitted that the party has failed to consistently communicate with the masses about plans the government has on the challenges they are facing.
“It is a fact that people are angry. Residents of Madinonyane and other villages that are protesting wanted government to communicate well with them.
“People there know that they cannot get the road now. What they want from government is to [answer] 'if we do not get it now, then when are we going to get it?',” he said.
Madinonyane residents barricaded roads with stones, preventing people from going to the voting station.
On Monday they torched a car belonging to the IEC, saying that no one in their village was going to vote.
Madinonyane was one of the hotspots identified as areas where protests were suspected to happen.
Mahumapelo said his wish was that the current provincial administration had not scrapped the village, town and small dorpie idea he implemented while he was premier.
“I used to say to people in government that we have a national development plan. We need to have a village development plan and embark on a programme to do that. I wish government could have continued with my strategy,” he said.
He said his plan was to ask each village to prioritise their needs.
“Now instead of us increasing communication around the particular matter, we disappear. I think that is where the ANC needs to improve a lot,” he said.
Mahumapelo said to avoid protests in future the government must know the things people want most and that, according to him, certainly revolved around information.
“If we just disappear and people are looking for us they will lose hope but I think people still support the ANC and love the ANC."
Mahumapelo visited Piet Plessis and Tlakgameng villages under DR Ruth Segomotsi Mompati municipality where two of its areas were identified as hotspots for election protests.