Outgoing DA Deputy Federal Chairperson Makashule Gana says he will propose constitutional changes at their elective congress, to allow the party to hold its own DA led governments and municipalities accountable.
He also wants the number of ordinary delegates to be increased during the DA congresses.
Gana remains confident that the DA will soon run the country. He is not only the youngest outgoing deputy federal chairperson, but was the youngest to be elected at the previous DA congress in 2012. He is also a young DA member of Parliament serving in the Human Settlements Committee of the National Assembly.
DA was talking about a New South Africa that it wanted to create and I saw myself playing a role in that.
Who is Makashule Gana?
Makashule was born at a small village of Lefara in Tzaneen Limpopo province. “Growing up I was a heard body who used to herd goats and cattle, we used to have a bit of livestock at home so it’s the responsibility people of the young once to look after the livestock.”
Gana says he took a keen interest in politics after the release of former president Nelson Mandela. “There was a bit of unrest in the homelands especially Gazankulu just all the former homelands, once Mandela was released there was unrest and my uncle is a political activist, he is the one who helped me to understand politics.”
He became politically active as a student in 2000 when he was studying for his Bachelor of Science degree.
“I always had an interest in Education, so when I got to the University of the North Turfloop Campus, I joined formal politics, you know obviously, coming from an ANC background, the Natural thing for me to do was to join the ANC youth League and SASCO, but it did not take long for me to realise that one does not have to realise that where you come from politically you need to define where you will end up and around 2002 I started to look for a political home.”
And it was in 2002 when Gana joined the DA as a student. But why did Gana choose the DA as his political home, – the first and only party which he says, he has ever voted for since became eligible to vote in 2004.
“When I Joined the DA I didn’t know what I was getting myself into. What attracted me was not because the DA was an excellent party, it’s the Challenge that it brought, the DA was talking about a New South Africa that it wanted to create and I saw myself playing a role in that, that challenge attracted me, the challenge of saying instead of saying the DA is white or it is predominantly White then I cannot go in, for me was to say, I want to go in there, be the first one at the varsity, attract others to come in there and then together we will be able to help make the DA look what South Africa looks like.’
Gana, a former councillor in Johannesburg, who also served as an NCOP members for a short period before the May 2014 elections, is running a political school in Johannesburg, which he says he established with DA MPL in Gauteng Khume Ramulifho. “We cover lot of topics around leadership the kind of leaders we want to see in society some of our politics inside the DA. So we cover a range of issues.”
At the conference, Gana is expected to submit proposals to change the constitution of the DA. He says he wants to see an increase in the number of ordinary delegates represented and to take part at DA congresses. He also wants an amendment that would allow the DA to hold its own DA led governments accountable.
“Because the DA is a part of government now and as a party we need to start holding our governments accountable. Let’s say the government is a municipality and elected on a DA manifesto, therefore it makes sense for us as the DA to hold them accountable and wait after five years and only subject it to the voters, because we need to make sure that our government implement the promises that we have made to the voters.”
Gana will stand against Eastern Cape Leader Athol Trollip and Western Cape MPL Masizole Mqasela.