The Season of Political Manifestos or Political Many-Tings?

TK Pooe
TK Pooe

Guest Writer: Kagiso Pooe

Ah have you heard them, did you see them or have they even come past your door over the week? If you are confused as to what one is referring to, one is speaking about the political season which sees politicians of all colours and existence launching their manifestos and then trying to convince you to give them a shot/chance at governing your Ward and municipality.

It was interesting to note how this political season was not begun by the governing party with the most amount of municipalities in Gauteng and South Africa, namely the African National Congress (ANC) but rather the leading opposition parties like the Democratic Alliance (DA) which governs the second most municipalities across South Africa and the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF). This was followed by what one might argue to be the third leading political party in municipal elections terms, the Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP), which runs the third most amount of municipalities, mostly in KwaZulu-Natal and other parties like the United Democratic, Pan Africanist Congress of Azania, African Christian Democratic Party and countless others.

Yet, I have always wanted to know why all out political parties seem so brought into the concept of manifesto production. So for a change rather than being bombarded and waiting for the 2024 National and Provincial Election’s volley of manifestos, I actually started to research what lies behind this concept and idea of a manifesto. Like most English words, I found it has Latin origins, moreover a BBC 2015 article titled The Vocabularist: Where did word ‘manifesto’ come from? contends that it means, ‘Manifestus-meaning clear, public or notorious’. If this is the case one has to commend most of the political parties’ manifestos; for giving sound magnum opus (great work) starting with the EFF’s (overly) ambitious thesis, the DA’s sound and managerial document, the IFP’s minimalist but clear proposition to voters. So, in terms of producing clear documents clear, public or notorious ideas or propositions job well done to most opposition parties.

However, one has two main problems with some of the opposition manifesto offerings and even the governing party’s generically bland offering. Firstly, in giving a clear analysis of the problems that exist what is the cost for altering the many broken municipalities in Gauteng, say for example the Emfuleni Local Municipality? No one can deny that most of the opposition parties’ identification of problems in local government ring true, but for me the missing link is a clear proposition and discussion around how they will change the status quo in the given five years.

For example the City of Johannesburg (CoJ) is estimated to have an operating budget or rather passed one for R73.3 billion. Yet, a cursory reading of all the manifestos does not explain in detail how such a budget would be used to address infrastructural backlogs and problems, detail plan on how to use it to build a realistic post Covid-19 employment creating economy and finally how to grow this budget without overly taxing already cash strapped ‘middle class’ families. It would seem most of the political parties in their offerings, have not factored in how economically disastrous Covid-19 has been on citizens pockets and also it employment destroying capability.

Secondly, while acknowledging the nuanced approach taken by the EFF in their ‘EFF Gauteng Municipalities Commitments’ document it is rather bizarre that still in 2021, political parties do not explain in great detail which and how they will produce a policy specific context for the CoJ, City of Ekurhuleni Metropolitan, City of Tshwane Metropolitan, Sedibeng region and Westrand. In the absence of such a plan, how do we know which hard decision and options each of these political parties will be willing to invest in or simply not support whoever comes in on them. It is hard to trust any document that seems unable to admit that political decision needed to rescue and build politically and financially sustainable municipalities, post-2021 will require actual sacrifices and hard decisions.

Ultimately what one was looking for was not a manifesto, but rather a commitment by leaders to tell in exact terms how and what it will mean to fix problems in my Ward and municipality, in the given five years. Moreover, it would have also been excellent to see what successes or lessons the previous Local Government Elections (LGE 2016) taught these parties and what remedies emanated from them. However, it would seem the given offerings seem to be the promise of more ‘Political Many-Tings’ by most (NOT ALL) manifestos/parties.

Perhaps as a parting shot, one would advise that moving toward the 2026 LGE all political parties could still offer their ideological laden offerings, but be compelled to offer citizens a contract/offering based on Chapter 7 of the South African Constitution, specifically Section 152 (1) Objectives and 153 Developmental duties of municipalities, to detail how they will lead Wards (each municipalities) in a clear, quantifiable, honest and sustainable manner. Just a wish!!!

Also Read: DA Leader John Steenhuisen on his election trail

    Don’t miss out on the latest local news, interviews and competitions.

    Don’t miss out on the latest local news, interviews and competitions.

    More Articles
    Receive the latest news

    Subscribe To Our Newsletter



    Copyright Notice


    1.1 The contents of this Website, including but not limited to its compilation and arrangement, is the exclusive property of Kaya 959, alternatively the suppliers of content to Kaya 959, and accordingly remain protected by South African and International Copyright and Trademark laws.

    1.2 Any person accessing this Website, may not, save for downloading one copy for their personal computers and solely for their private and non-commercial use :

    1.2.1 Copy, disseminate, distribute, advertise, publish, adapt, modify or in any way reproduce the contents of this website for commercial purposes, unless this notice and any disclaimer attached thereto is published in its entirety, or unless the permission of Kaya 959 is obtained in writing.

    Privacy Policy


    POPIA ActTo promote the protection of personal information processed by public and private bodies; to introduce certain conditions so as to establish minimum requirements for the processing of personal information; to provide for the establishment of an Information Regulator to exercise certain powers and to perform certain duties and functions in terms of this Act and the Promotion of Access to Information Act, 2000; to provide for the issuing of codes of conduct; to provide for the rights of persons regarding unsolicited electronic communications and automated decision making; to regulate the flow of personal information across the borders of the Republic; and to provide for matters connected therewith.


    • section 14 of the Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996, provides that everyone has the right to privacy;
    • the right to privacy includes a right to protection against the unlawful collection, retention, dissemination and use of personal information;
    • the State must respect, protect, promote and fulfil the rights in the Bill of Rights;


    • consonant with the constitutional values of democracy and openness, the need for economic and social progress, within the framework of the information society, requires the removal of unnecessary impediments to the free flow of information, including personal information;


    • regulate, in harmony with international standards, the processing of personal information by public and private bodies in a manner that gives effect to the right to privacy subject to justifiable limitations that are aimed at protecting other rights and important interests,
    1. Definitions and Interpretation

    1.1.“Personal Information” means information relating to an identifiable, living, natural person and where it is applicable, identifiable, existing juristic person, including all information as defined in the Protection of Personal Information Act 4 of 2013. 

    1.2  Parliament assented to POPIA on 19 November 2013. The commencement date of section 1Part A of Chapter 5section 112 and section 113 was 11 April 2014. The commencement date of the other sections was 1 July 2020 (with the exception of section 110 and 114(4). The President of South Africa has proclaimed the POPI commencement date to be 1 July 2020.

    1.3. “Processing” means the creation, generation, communication, storage, destruction of personal information as more fully defined in the Protection of Personal Information Act 4 of 2013.  

    1.4. “You” or the “user” means any person who accesses and browses this website for any purpose. 

    1.4. “Website” means the website of the KAYA 959 at URL www.kaya959.co.za or such other URL as KAYA 959 may choose from time to time.   

    1. Status and Amendments

    2.1. KAYA 959 respects your privacy. This privacy policy statement sets out KAYA 959’s information gathering and dissemination practices in respect of the Website. 

    2.2. This Privacy Policy governs the processing of personal information provided to KAYA 959 through your use of the Website. 

    2.3. Please note that, due to legal and other developments, KAYA 959 may amend these terms and conditions from time to time.  

    1. Processing of Personal Information

    3.1. By providing your personal information to KAYA 959 you acknowledge that it has been collected directly from you and consent to its processing by KAYA 959. 

    3.2. Where you submit Personal Information (such as name, address, telephone number and email address) via the website (e.g. through completing any online form) the following principles are observed in the processing of that information: 

    3.2.1. KAYA 959 will only collect personal information for a purpose consistent with the purpose for which it is required. The specific purpose for which information is 
    collected will be apparent from the context in which it is requested. 

    3.2.2. KAYA 959 will only process personal information in a manner that is adequate, relevant and not excessive in the context of the purpose for which it is processed. 

    3.2.3. Personal information will only be processed for a purpose compatible with that for which it was collected, unless you have agreed to an alternative purpose in writing or KAYA 959 is permitted in terms of national legislation of general application dealing primarily with the protection of personal information. 

    3.2.4. KAYA 959 will keep records of all personal Information collected and the specific purpose for which it was collected for a period of 1 (one) year from the date on which it was last used. 

    3.2.5. KAYA 959 will not disclose any personal information relating to you to any third party unless your prior written agreement is obtained or KAYA 959 is required to do so by law. 

    3.2.6. If personal information is released with your consent KAYA 959 will retain a record of the information released, the third party to which it was released, the reason for the release and the date of release, for a period of 1 (one) year from the date on which it was last used. 

    3.2.7. KAYA 959 will destroy or delete any personal information that is no longer needed by KAYA 959 for the purpose it was initially collected, or subsequently processed. 

    3.3. Note that, as permitted by the Electronic Communications and Transactions Act 25 of 2002, KAYA 959 may use personal information collected to compile profiles for statistical purposes. No information contained in the profiles or statistics will be able to be linked to any specific user.    

    1. Collection of anonymous data

    4.1. KAYA 959 may use standard technology to collect information about the use of this website. This technology is not able to identify individual users but simply allows KAYA 959 to collect statistics. 

    4.2. KAYA 959 may utilise temporary or session cookies to keep track of users’ browsing habits. A cookie is a small file that is placed on your hard drive in order to keep a record of your interaction with this website and facilitate user convenience. 

    4.2.1. Cookies by themselves will not be used to identify users personally but may be used to compile identified statistics relating to use of services offered or to provide KAYA 959 with feedback on the performance of this website. 

    4.2.2. The following classes of information may be collected in respect of users who have enabled cookies: The browser software used; IP address; Date and time of activities while visiting the website; URLs of internal pages visited; and referrers. 

    4.3. If you do not wish cookies to be employed to customize your interaction with this website it is possible to alter the manner in which your browser handles cookies. Please note that, if this is done, certain services on this website may not be available. 

    1. Security

    5.1. KAYA 959 takes reasonable measures to ensure the security and integrity of information submitted to or collected by this website, but cannot under any circumstances be held liable for any loss or other damage sustained by you as a result of unlawful access to or dissemination of any personal information by a third party. 

    1. Links to other websites

    6.1. KAYA 959 has no control over and accepts no responsibility for the privacy practices of any third party websites to which hyperlinks may have been provided and KAYA 959 strongly recommends that you review the privacy policy of any website you visit before using it further. 

    1. Queries

    7.1. If you have any queries about this privacy policy please contact us by emailing [email protected] 

    Competition Terms and Conditions

    • The competitions are open to all persons over the age of 18 years; except directors, partners, employees, agents, service providers, and consultants of Kaya 959, the sponsor and all its subsidiaries and its holding company, if any, as well as all spouses, life partners, parents, children, siblings, business partners and associates of such persons.

    • The outcome of the competition is subject to the decision of the judge/presenter, whose decision is final and no negotiation will be entered into thereafter. Neither Kaya 959, sponsors nor their agents will be held responsible or answerable to any dispute arising from the competition or prize awards.

    • Participants/listeners enter or take part in competitions at their own risk and Kaya 959 bears no responsibility for any loss, damage or harm suffered as a result of participation in any of Kaya 959 competition.

    • One listener is entitled to winning one prize in a period of 3 months. Kaya 959 reserves the right not to award a prize if the listener has won a prize prior during the 3 month window period. This also applies to listeners who provide family or friend’s contact details.

    • Kaya 959 reserves the right to redistribute all unclaimed prizes if not claimed after 3 months after being given away On Air or on the website.

    • Prizes are not transferable and may not be exchanged for cash.

    • Finalists will forfeit their participation in the competition if they fail to attend the draws.

    • The competition will run during the period advertised on Kaya 959; entries received outside of the competition period will not be considered for the competition draw.

    • Kaya 959 and their sponsors reserve the right to cancel, modify or amend the competition at any time if deemed necessary in their opinion, or if circumstances arise outside of their control.

    • By entering the competition, entrants agree to accept these rules and to be bound by them.