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Analysis: Makhosi Khoza Can Occupy The Space Between The ANC And The DA

Makhosi Khosa has, in the end, become a victim of the political chaos in the ANC.

21/09/2017 12:46 SAST | Updated 21/09/2017 13:26 SAST
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The resignation of Dr Makhosi Khoza from the ANC was announced on the same day as the re-introduction of Dr Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma to Parliament as a member of our national legislature.

It is a pity that someone like Dr Khoza, that was seen as part of a small moral reservoir in the ANC with people like Pravin Gordhan en Derek Hanekom, could not stay longer in the ruling party. She has, in the end, became a victim of the political chaos in the ANC.

At least six issues or a combination of issues could have prompted an earlier date for her resignation:

  • Personal pressure on her and her family in the pressure cooker of dysfunctional and factionalized, and deadly ANC KZN politics;
  • The success of the Ad Hoc committee where she was seen as a rising political star -– to the irritation of the current ANC top leadership;
  • Her outspoken criticism of the Jacob Zuma leadership and several requests for the resignation of the president;
  • Her role and views on and during the no-confidence debate in August 2017;
  • Removing her from an important portfolio committees in Parliament; and
  • Disciplinary proceedings lodged against her by the KZN ANC leadership, despite then being declared unlawful by the High Court.

Many people before her have remarked that leaving the ANC is like going into a political desert. She hasn't yet said that she wants to start a new political party, like former ANC members Bantu Holomisa, Mamphela Ramphele or Julius Malema did. There is, however, an emerging political space between the ANC and the DA emerging where Dr Khoza can play a role.

Makhosi Khoza has the ideal profile of a young, energetic and ambitious politician. She is very well educated, she is well-spoken and she has a presence in all her actions.

The more the Zuma faction maintains its immoral and state capture power grip on the ANC leadership the more the pressure will increase for pragmatic and principled ANC leaders to explore alternatives. This is already clearly seen in the political language of the Gauteng ANC.

Dr Khoza could have waited until December for this announcement especially in the scenario where the Zuma faction emerged as the winners. She could then have capitalized on it and expected a COPE-like reaction. Should, however, the Ramaphosa side [Or the Zweli Mkize option] emerge as the victors in December 2017, the position of Makhosi Khoza will be much weaker and she may have played a far more significant role in the re-emergence of a different ANC.

Makhosi Khoza has the ideal profile of a young, energetic and ambitious politician. She is smart, she is well-spoken and she has a presence. She has made an impact in resolving the SABC issues and has spoken her mind on several issues, including the way in which Jacob Zuma captured the ANC leadership.

She has done her political education in KZN, one of the most treacherous political environments and learning schools. These things are crucial elements in making up the chemistry of good leadership.

There are very well developed case studies in what to do and what not to do if you want to establish a political brand of your own -– especially as a woman in a male-dominated political environment. Money is important, good management is important, organizing capacity is important, time is important and a worthwhile political message is very important.

She [Khoza] may even take a master class or two from Shenge, the ever present Dr Mangusothu Buthelezi [IFP] that at the age of 88 is still maintaining his political profile.

Most politicians assume that their political persona and profile will bring the votes, but good South African case studies [UDM, COPE and Agang come to mind] tell a different story.

She may even take a master class or two from Shenge, the ever-present Dr Mangusothu Buthelezi [IFP] that at the age of 88 is still maintaining his political profile.

Dr Makhosi Khoza has done a very brave and principled thing to resign from the ANC today. She is embarking on a very steep hill to enter politics on her own, but few South African are as well equipped to start that arduous journey than the firebrand from KwaZulu-Natal.

Theo Venter is a Political and Policy Specialist at the NWU School of Business and Governance