Holding coalitions intact takes time away from service delivery: Helen Zille
DA federal council chairperson Helen Zille has admitted that holding coalition governments together takes time away from service delivery in some municipalities.
Zille was speaking on the DA's weekly online show The Inside Track.
She said parties spent hours in negotiations in governments that involved a bigger number of coalition partners instead of dealing with service delivery.
“Things are going well in 12 municipalities where the DA has an overwhelming majority and in the places that we have had to negotiate coalitions — in the simplest ones, two-party coalitions; in the most complex ones, up to 10-party coalitions — things are going deferentially.
So much time and energy is spent on holding the coalition together that service delivery has to take a back seat.Helen Zille
“I think it is safe to say that I hope this round of negotiations and the consequences will give voters a deeper insight into what they are voting for.
“The harder it is to negotiate complex coalitions with tiny parties that hold the balance of power, and switch sides at a whim on minor pretexts, makes it almost impossible for a municipality to focus on service delivery.
“So much time and energy is spent on holding the coalition together that service delivery has to take a back seat because you can't provide service delivery if you are not in power.”
It had become a priority to stay in government for the coalitions her party leads.
“This past week for three nights we have negotiated till 12 o'clock and we had those days in December where we were negotiating 18 hours a day and doing horse-trading.”
She said she was shocked by the duplicity, difficulty and lack of integrity in some cases.
Zille warned that voters had to live with the consequences of their choices where there was no outright majority.
“The consequences in most cases is failing service delivery. We are doing our utmost with some reliable coalition partners and some unreliable partners to hold these things together and to usher in the post-ANC era in SA.”
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