Makashule Gana, a member of the Gauteng legislature, announced on Thursday that he is leaving the DA.
He said in a statement that he is leaving the official opposition to further his political career with an “emerging generation of leaders and activists committed to mobilising and organising to return power to the people of South Africa”.
Gana, who joined the DA as a student when he was 19, has been a member of the party for 20 years. During that time, Gana held various positions including deputy federal chairperson and councillor in the City of Johannesburg.
“I joined the DA as a 19-year-old student from the University of Limpopo in 2002. For the last 20 years, I have served as an activist, member, and leader in the DA,” said Gana.
“I had the honour of serving as the DA youth leader, deputy federal chairperson, MPL Network chairperson, and campaign manager for several elections such as Midvaal 2016.
“In the last 13 years, I had the honour of serving the people of South Africa through the DA as a councillor in Johannesburg, a member of parliament [National Assembly and National Council of Provinces], and the Gauteng provincial legislature.
“I leave the DA with a clear conscience, no regrets, and a cemented sense of purpose and calling to serve the country. I am grateful to my colleagues – activists, members, staff, and public representatives – with whom I have shared two decades of hard yet fulfilling work. I wish them well in the future.”
Gana explained further: “[South Africans] deserve a country where all are free and secure to pursue a life of happiness and wellbeing. This requires bold, decisive leadership that gives power back to the people and enables them to work together in developing and implementing solutions that work for their communities.”
Elaborating on the dangers faced by local politics, Gana said the voters are deviating from their right to vote because of trust issues and disappointment with their political parties.
He added that he does not believe the current leadership in South African politics would be able to re-orientate their parties to regain trust.
“I believe that the next generation of politics in South Africa will be built on citizen political empowerment, localised organising and participation to elevate local issues and to grow new younger leaders to take communities and South Africa forward.
“This must include the ability to choose and hold to account public representatives and government officials who are both capable and focused on restoring power to the people. There is a new generation of leaders raising their hands to shape a new political culture that does exactly that.”
He noted that this new generation of leaders has resolved to create a strong national collective grounded on constitutional and social justice values, clear priorities, and leveraging the talents and capability of diverse South Africans.
“In the next few weeks, I will be joining others in exploring the possibility of building an inclusive political alternative that will take South Africa into the future. I am excited and emboldened by the possibilities of what a new generation can bring to our country,” he added.
It is still not clear if Gana will join another political party or perhaps start his own revolutionary organisation.
Wow. This is a devastating loss for the DA. Makashule Gana has been with the DA for 20+ years, through thick and thin. I can't think of anyone who has worked the ground harder for the party.
Also has an excellent grasp of Gauteng voter dynamics on the ground. Interesting times. https://t.co/y8E2qRWewd
— Dawie Scholtz (@DawieScholtz) August 4, 2022
All the best for the future. 👊🏽
— Sizwe Mpofu-Walsh (@SizweMpofuWalsh) August 4, 2022
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