RISE Mzansi signs GNU Statement of Intent

We believe that GNU presents a unique opportunity for collaboration, says Songezo Zibi

RISE Mzansi signs GNU Statement of Intent

22 June 2024

On 29 May 2024, South Africans made the unprecedented decision not to give any political party an absolute majority, thereby instructing political parties to work together to meet their pressing needs. Since 9 June 2024, RISE Mzansi has been consulting various political parties and stakeholders to inform our decisions on how best to participate in shaping South Africa's future in a changed political environment.

In essence, these discussions have involved whether or not to participate in the proposed "Government of National Unity" and "National Dialogue", and the implications of either choice.

Yesterday, the RISE Mzansi National Leadership Collective (NLC) met to discuss a final approach to the Government of National Unity (GNU). The sitting of the NLC followed our initial approach, which was to ensure that the first sitting of the National Assembly elected a Speaker, Deputy Speaker and President to ensure constitutional, democratic and social stability.

In yesterday's meeting, the NLC decided that RISE Mzansi should form part of the GNU and National Dialogue to ensure that the aspirations and hopes of the people who elected us to serve are heard.

Through the election campaign we were clear and consistent in saying that in our constitutional architecture, the work of Parliament and Provincial Legislatures is as important as the government Executive. South Africans deserve legislation of a high quality. We also said that proper oversight by elected representatives, and accountability of the Executive branch are also important, especially in light of the devastating experience of state capture and rampant corruption.

In making their voices heard through the ballot, South Africans also expressed the need to be represented by new leaders who are capable, caring and ethical leaders, which is the platform on which we conveyed our politics to communities.

We believe that GNU presents a unique opportunity for collaboration, and to influence for implementation the issues found in the RISE Mzansi People's Manifesto. These include:

- Ensuring that hunger and food insecurity are urgently addressed

- Freeing communities from crime and violence

- Delivering spatial and land justice that reshape our urban and rural spaces to build thriving communities and economy

- Delivering economic justice to millions of South Africans who remain marginalised and poor and the climate crisis is given the urgent attention it deserves to protect lives and livelihoods

Our engagements have been in good faith and based on the unwavering and fundamental principles of:

- Upholding the Constitution and the rule of law

- Protecting the constitutionally-guaranteed independence of key institutions so they may serve the South African people without fear or favour

- Ensuring that critical public services are not interrupted or undermined.

RISE Mzansi's participation in the GNU will remain dependent on these principles. We believe that our People's Manifesto and organisational principles align with the priorities and principles of the GNU Statement of Intent.

RISE Mzansi will continue political party and movement building towards the 2026 Local

Government Elections, with work already underway to contest upcoming by-elections.

Statement issued by Songezo Zibi MP, RISE Mzansi National Leader, 22 June 2024