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Jewish South Africans’ hopes on the line

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“The most important factor to consider when voting is who has a long-term plan and a realistic roadmap to rectify the list of problems,” a young Capetonian man told the SA Jewish Report while waiting to vote on Wednesday, 29 May.

The SA Jewish Report went to voting booths to get a sense of what South African Jews felt about the election.

“Anyone who makes immediate promises is lying because none of the local issues – like water, electricity, roads, ports, corruption, crime, home affairs, education, healthcare, to name but a few – can be rectified without fundamental change at every level,” said the Capetonian man voting in Milnerton. “Changes like this have legal processes to be followed, and can be very slow to implement, even with the best intentions.

“My hope for this election is that the majority of voters choose to vote for a party that has a socioeconomic policy that encourages a free market, freedom of expression, and strict fiscal and legal accountability,” he said.

An elderly female editor voting at Summerwood Primary School in Fairmount, Johannesburg, said she was voting for “whoever isn’t a terrorist”. She explained that she wanted to vote for “someone who has enough clout to do something and make a change”.

“It has never been more important to vote,” she said. “This is the most important election since 1994. We need to take this chance to do something because otherwise, we’ll be left without hope for the future of the country.”

A fashion entrepreneur voting at the Sandton Fire Station said she felt it important to go to the polls because “⁠If the people of South Africa don’t see the importance of change now, how will we ever live in a corruption-free country?”

A 55-year-old man voting in Pretoria said he considered this election significant because, “It’s the last chance to rescue South Africa. We cannot afford another five years of ANC [African National Congress] rule for reasons across the board.” He said he hoped “the DA [Democratic Alliance] wins an outright majority, with ActionSA, the FF+ [Freedom Front Plus], BOSA [Build One South Africa] and the like winning seats in Parliament. And that MK [uMkhonto we Sizwe], the EFF [Economic Freedom Fighters] and similar parties, receiving fewer votes than they anticipated”. He said if the ANC were to stay in power, he would be determined to get his children out of South Africa.

“None of the parties is perfect,” said Linda Kruger, Ward 72 DA Branch Chairperson, at Summerwood Primary School. “There will always be things you don’t agree with. You have to choose the party that you believe will help the country as a whole move forward.”

Similarly, an 84-year-old man residing in Pretoria said the reason he went out to vote was to ensure that there was “less corruption and more employment opportunities for white people”. He believed this election was an opportunity to “defeat the ANC”.

A Johannesburg-based teacher voting in Sunninghill, said that if the ANC stayed in power to the same extent that it has, she would be “devastated”, adding “I’ve never wanted to leave, but if they come in again, I will consider leaving South Africa.”

A lawyer voting in Sandton said she took “the government’s position on Israel and general level of corruption and ineptitude” into consideration when deciding who she should vote for. Though she doesn’t think the ANC will lose its majority power and will rather form coalitions, she hopes her worst-case scenario of an ANC-EFF coalition doesn’t come to fruition.

A female university student in Cape Town said, “My approach to voting is that I don’t want the worst-case scenario – in terms of my interests – to happen. So, it’s not necessarily focused on specific policies or issues, it’s more about not wanting an incompetent party in charge of the province I’m in. Those parties would include the EFF and ANC. Their values and manifestos don’t align with the country that I think South Africa could be, and they are actively opposing the future of South Africa.”

She believes “the ANC will inevitably remain in power. A lot of South Africans feel like this as it has been our leading political party since democracy in 1994.”

Another Cape Town University student, voting in the Southern Suburbs, told the SA Jewish Report, “The things that matter most about voting are definitely how the government in power views Jews and, more specifically, Israel because you can’t separate the two.

“Anti-Israel rhetoric and anti-Zionism is the new antisemitism, and I wouldn’t feel comfortable voting for somebody whose views didn’t align with the Jewish people being able to live comfortably and freely in the land. I would never want to support a government that endorses the violent behaviour that has been adopted by pro-Palestinian supporters. I would want a country that keeps all people’s rights safe, regardless of their views,” she said.

“The worst-case scenario is that we continue to have a corrupt government that doesn’t care about its people. But on top of that, it leads to a bad fate for the Jews and Israel.”

A male Capetonian voter at Camps Bay said, “My worst-case scenario is that the ANC just misses the required seats for an outright majority and forms a coalition with the EFF, which will then gain more practical power than its percentage of the vote should allow.”

A middle-aged female voter, at Jabula Recreation Centre in Johannesburg, said that when she was deciding who to vote for, she had taken “the state of the country, the fact that our children are leaving South Africa, the state of our roads, and the state of our economy” into account as “soon, this country will be one filled with old people, so we need to vote to ensure that the young people want to stay”.

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1 Comment

1 Comment

  1. rafaelli

    Jun 1, 2024 at 9:30 am

    WELCOME TO SHADCHIN MOTORS!

    Election specials!

    New Hybrid model with 2 steering wheels!( 2 and 4 donkey power models)
    The Left driver has control of the Diesel motor., the right driver on the electric motor (Having been recharged by his generator)

    One will go left the other will go right.
    Of course there will be 2 backseat drivers to tell them what to do to kibbetz along.

    Well on the way to Tshwane the diesel ran out(just outside Laudium) while the electric motor bumped along jerking down the M1.

    The car of course was half yellow and half blue.The livery was blue as in from the liver to sea point.

    We expect a new 4 steering wheel model in soon to accommodate other drivers.

    Meanwhile diesel ran out of steam and the electricity supply was loaded somewhere else on the grid.

    The airforce was notified and came to fetch all these stranded drivers and dropped them in the middle of the Kgalagadi reserve. After all the negotiating they got hungry and thirsty only to be rescued by bottles of SODI water (purified) and roasted impala on the spit.

    Biettere gelegte…. Gauteng is in trouble..will they nationalise the private hospitals next on the expropriation without compensation model?

    Is a new Zulu civil war to be anticipated ?
    All the Eastern Capies have also semigrated you know to the Western Cape ….

    Hamas is on the back foot (if they are still in situ)…Tora Tora Tora! Our hostages will soon be out of their captivity.

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