Can the DA just leave Mandela out of this election?

Our political parties have been doing everything they can to woo us into voting for them in the upcoming local elections. In one of their latest ads, the DA have even roped in Nelson Mandela to convince voters to vote DA – questionable from the get-go. But that isn’t all that’s amiss. We look at the ad in detail.

It starts out in a woman’s home – she opens the curtains, turns on the radio, and is making sandwiches for her family. Nothing too strange here.

DA advert 1 screengrab

She steps out of her home and tells her neighbour that she’s off to vote for change – something he scoffs at, as he says that there isn’t anyone worth voting for.

She also decides to take daughter along – and as soon as she gets out of her taxi, is accosted by ANC members who are set up outside the polling station. YOU HAVE NEVER SEEN THIS MANY ANC FLAGS IN A DA AD.

DA advert 2

But eventually, she manages to make it past these terribly rude electioneers.

When she gets into the cubicle, she’s just about ready to put her X down for the ANC – something she deliberates on heavily. She is in this meditative, conflicted, pensive state – eyes closed – when she hears a voice in her head: former president Nelson Mandela uttering an excerpt from his famous quote, “Let there be justice for all. Let there be peace for all. Let there be work, bread, water and salt for all. Let each know that for each the body, the mind and the soul have been freed to fulfill themselves.”

DA advert

Which seems to be just the divine inspiration that she needs.

The camera pans down to her daughter, wide-eyed and smiling, and her decision is made: she votes DA.

If your first thought to this was “huh?”, then you’re not the only one.

And as the ad pans out, one last bit of ridiculousness: a struggle song starts playing, which translates to “Even if we are on our knees, we’ll stand up and keep going.”


There are quite a few exasperating elements of this ad, and moments where it just comes across as the DA seriously just reaching.

Why use Mandela? Did they think it would be the tug on people’s heartstrings that would win them points? That upon hearing his words we would be so moved that we would vote for the DA?

But why have they conveniently forgotten Mandela’s TRUE feelings about the DA?

Why not use someone who was or is an actual DA member, AND fought for equality for all South Africans?

Some advice to Mmusi and his people: desperation is not cute.

You can watch the full ad here –