Newly-elected Democratic Alliance (DA) Gauteng leader Solly Msimanga says his priority is to ensure the effective delivery of basic services in the province. He was speaking on Saturday after delivering his acceptance speech.

Msimanga’s election comes in the wake of the DA’s dismal performance in the recent by-elections in Gauteng where it lost municipal wards to the African National Congress (ANC) and smaller opposition parties.

He says it is important for the DA members to unite ahead of the local government elections because voters don’t want to support a divided party.

“Real change for our people will only happen when we as the Democratic Alliance stand firm and focus on our values, principles and policies. Real change will only happen when we are part of people’s daily lives and experiences. We have to connect with every resident of this province who shares our value but not yet voting for us.”

‘Set Tshwane on the right path’

Earlier, DA Federal leader John Steenhuisen said the party will again set the City of Tshwane on the right path. He further said the DA-run Midvaal Municipality is an example of good governance.

“What we also need to tell voters is that the reason why Johannesburg and Tshwane were allowed to be stolen back after DA had made progress since 2016, is because our majority was not strong. The same thing happened in Nelson Mandela Bay. We did well enough in 2016 to put DA run in place but not 100% safe. One thing we know about the ANC is that they will force their way back to the feeding through if you leave the door open, just a tiny crack.”

Outgoing DA Gauteng Chairperson Mike Moriarty says the DA must build trust with the electorate by being on the ground driving issues that communities are facing. Moriarty’s chairmanship has ended after being at the helm for over three years.