'EFF has potential to become official opposition'
The EFF has the potential of overtaking the DA to become the official opposition in the country, one political analyst says.
The EFF yesterday celebrated its seventh birthday.
Political analyst Levy Ndou believes that the EFF's achievements in just seven years places the party led by Julius Malema at a place where they can possibly become the second-biggest party in the country. He said the EFF could take advantage of the political instability of the DA brought forward by the return of Helen Zille to the higher echelons of power.
"The DA has got its own challenges now. The coming back of Helen Zille in the political landscape in the DA has created some form of instability in the DA and this is the time for the EFF to take advantage of that," Ndou said.
"So it is possible for the EFF to become an official opposition, so long as they keep the public cohesion together and ensure that they eliminate anything that might bring divisions within its ranks."
Ndou was speaking shortly after a keynote address by Malema, who highlighted his party's achievements since inception in 2013. The party has managed to attract just short of two million voters in the last general national elections and has also been able to be represented in parliament, the provincial legislatures and almost all municipalities and wards in the country.
The EFF has also used its positions in municipalities such as the City of Johannesburg to push for the in-sourcing of security guards and cleaners who also received increases from around R3,000 to R7,000. These, according to Malema, was one of the party's greatest achievements.
The party has also championed conversations on a lot of issues that resonated with black people such as nationalisation of banks and mines as well as land expropriation without compensation.
Malema said that party arrived to a parliament of "sleepists who were sitting on their brains" and managed to make citizens who could not be bothered find an interest in the affairs of parliament.
"In just seven years, we have achieved more victories for South Africans more than any other party," Malema said referring to, among others, the payback the money campaign against former president Jacob Zuma.
"We have used our leverage to pass legislation that will drastically change the lives of our people. We have lobbied councils to in-source security and cleaning staff. Our impact on SA politics has been guided by ideals in our manifesto."
Ndou, however, said in order to continue growing, the EFF had to reconsider some of its tactics.
"The posture that the EFF represented in the past, that of being disruptive in public events, is something the EFF has to change. Because they should not be known as a party of disruptors because some people might not want to associate with [that]." Ndou said that the party has, more often than not, been the voice for the poor and spoke on issues that were at the hearts of people including participating in the Black Lives Matter movement.
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