Shilowa doesn't understand true democracy - COPE YM

Marius Redelinghuys condemns ousted DP for saying he won't vote in poll

Shilowa doesn't understand or appreciate true democracy

Claims by Mbhazima Shilowa, former member of the Congress of the People, that he intends on boycotting the upcoming local government elections by not voting vindicates the Youth Movement's position (see here).

We have firmly held that Shilowa has no regard for democracy and does not understand its functioning and is definitely not committed to COPE's clarion call "in defense of our democracy and Constitution!"

Shilowa's understanding of democracy is skewed and counter to everything that the post-Apartheid democratic society endeavours towards. His repeated withdrawal from legitimate democratic procedures - both internal and external to COPE - of which the outcome does not suit him, or his blatant manipulation of the basic mechanisms of democracy to deliver the results he requires, speaks to his wholesale failure to appreciate or understand democracy.

Additionally, his withdrawal from participating in the Local Government Elections because he did not get his way portrays him as a little boy throwing his toys around in a fit of rage.

His refusal to participate is an insult to the countless men and women who have spilled their blood to ensure that South Africans have the basic right of voting in an election.

If Shilowa was truly committed to democracy, he would have urged his small band of remaining followers to, at the very least, spoil their ballots by indicating their disapproval of all candidates.

Instead he chooses to rob his supporters, true COPE members and South Africans in general of a democratic right and responsibility by setting a most objectionable example in boycotting the elections.

COPE YM calls on all South Africans who love their country and wish to ensure a prosperous future for South Africa to march to the ballot box in their masses on 18 May and vigorously defend their hard won right to make their X.

The sour grapes and irresponsible actions of Shilowa should not deter South Africans from making their voice heard and demanding real change and a meaningful stake in the affairs of their local government!

Statement issued by Marius Redelinghuys, COPE YM Head of Communications and Spokesperson, May 11 2011

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