“I left the bad behind me, to form the GOOD”- Patricia De Lille
Former Cape Town mayor, Patricia De Lille was in Roodepan last night to launch her new party in the province and to introduce the party’s premier candidate.
The Roman Catholic Church hall was jam-packed with orange t-shirts bearing the image of “Aunty Pat” and the party’s Northern Cape premier candidate. With the presence of De Lille and the army of orange t-shirts one could have easily confused the gathering as a re-launch of the Independent Democrats (ID), which was also her brainchild. The ID merged with the Democratic Alliance (DA) and De Lille later became the executive mayor of Cape Town, a position she held until October 2018 when she resigned amidst a lengthy fight with the DA.
Jeremy Demi Botha, a youth member of the party set the tone for the gathering by reciting a poem that she dedicated to De Lille. The GOOD Movement’s candidate for premier of the Northern Cape, Leonard Mackay, was introduced to the crowd accompanied by a Brenda Fassie song. He indicated that a trust deficit currently exists in the country and his party will fix the Northern Cape and the country. Mackay stated that he immediately joined the GOOD Movement when he got word that De Lille is the founder of the party. He praised De Lille for her stance against corruption and believed that she’s currently the strongest female politician in the country.
De Lille’s ascension to the podium was preceded by an introduction from Elizabeth Johnson, the erstwhile Speaker of Sol Plaatje Municipality. Johnson held that she joined the GOOD Movement after the ANC expelled her and other councillors. Johnson was quick to point out that she only had good intentions as she refused a government job that was offered to her by the ANC after her expulsion.
The GOOD Movement’s manifesto according to De Lille is based on four pillars, i.e. social justice, economic justice, spatial justice and environmental justice. She pointed out that the people of the Northern Cape are too patient and should stand up against poor service delivery and corruption. De Lille warned Sol Plaatje Municipality against the nightly water cuts as it will only lead to more pipe bursts when the water pressure returns. She humorously said that she’s willing to provide free advice to the Sol Plaatje Municipality regarding issues of water as she successfully steered Cape Town out of the worst drought. De Lille told the gathering that workers in Kimberley are seemingly unable to repair burst pipes during the day, but are keen to mend the very same leakages at night and over weekends to claim overtime. She lambasted the continuation of apartheid era spatial planning by the current administration. This, she says, has resulted in poor families having to spend 40% of their income on transport due to being placed far from economic activity. De Lille undertook to do a land audit and change the spatial outlook of the province if her party wins the election. De Lille warned those present to change their relationship with water as a drought is on the doorstep if water is not preserved immediately.
She further promised that her party had a solution for all the ills of the country, whilst recognizing the lack of implementation from government, despite the existence of good policies. De Lille was dismayed at the rate of women and child abuse cases in the Northern Cape and appealed to parents to treat all their children equally to ensure that the pattern of patriarchy can be broken. “We intend to be among the first 5 parties and we will be contesting nationally and in all 9 provinces,” said a buoyant De Lille.