Good Party Will Fight Evil – Patricia De Lille

“We believe that if good people do nothing, that is when corruption and evil triumphs in our country,” Good party leader Patricia de Lille said in an interview with The Daily Vox. The party will be contesting in the upcoming national elections: nationally, and in all nine provinces. While Good is a newcomer on the political scene, having only launched at the end of last year, de Lille has been in the game for a long time.

De Lille is a former Democratic Alliance (DA) member and former Cape Town mayor. She launched Good just weeks after walking out on her mayoral position at the end of October, following 18 months of ugly political spats and infighting between her, members of her mayoral committee, and DA leaders.

Before her stint in the DA, de Lille was an MP of the Pan Africanist Congress in 1994, then left the party in 2003 to start her own party called the Independent Democrats (ID). The ID was eventually swallowed up by the DA in 2010, then disbanded as a separate political organisation in 2014 without de Lille.

With Good, however, de Lille said she is focusing on building a lasting movement. “This is a five-year project, we’re not just planning for 2019. We are using the [election] now to lay the foundation for our party to continue building it up,” she said.

The Good party is growing its membership all over the country too, de Lille said. The party has members in all nine provinces, but de Lille said it has prioritised five provinces: Gauteng, Western Cape, Northern Cape, Eastern Cape, and North West. It, however, doesn’t mean that there isn’t any other movement in the other provinces. “That’s where there is a great potential for us. We have prioritised them in terms of manpower and resources,” she said.

The Good party is committed to fixing South Africa, racism and all

“The Good Party is led by good people committed to fighting for good lives for every South African,” de Lille said. In the commitment to fixing South Africa, the Good party has created policies under four main themes: social justice, economic justice, spatial justice, environmental justice.

The party also puts emphasis on the issue of race. “We believe that good South Africans are not racist. For the past 25 years, the leaders in this country have shied away from addressing racism. We want to tackle racism head on,” de Lille said. As the former mayor of what was labelled a racist city, de Lille said she has experience in tackling racism. She had set up a special desk at her office and led campaigns with her team to deal with racism.

“We need to break the chain because the older generation is coming with the scars of the apartheid regime and passing it onto the current generation,” de Lille said. The Good party wants to break this chain by mobilising young people. “That’s why our emphasis is on young people,” she said.

A youth focus

In her party, de Lille wants to create a leadership consisting of at least 60% young people and 40% experienced people to groom the next generations of leaders. “I want young people to take over the movement when I leave,” de Lille said in an earlier interview with The Daily Vox.

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“By the time that I have left in politics, I want to create a movement whereby young people are given the opportunity to get involved, go into Parliament and speak on behalf of the youth,” de Lille said. She also said she will continuously be consulting young people about politics.

The Good party views educating the youth as an investment into the future of South Africa. “We need to make sure that we transform the content of our education,” de Lille said. What we see in our country today is a mismatch between the skills produced by our education system and what is needed in the economy, she said. “That is what we need to change,” de Lille said.

The Good party welcomed President Cyril Ramaphosa’s announcement in the State of the Nation address that Early Childhood Development will be compulsory for all South African children, she added.

Government must release the land

While the Good party does not support land expropriation without compensation, the party advocates that the state releases government-owned land to the public. We have not done enough to release the land owned by government. Public land must be used for the public good, de Lille said.

For this, de Lille will use her experience as Cape Town mayor, where she led the City’s commitment to redress and restitution, and ensuring that the rights of people who were dispossessed of land are restored. Good will be advocating for all three spheres of government to release the land, especially land that’s well-located for housing, and close to public transport, de Lille said.

But the party is not supporting the amendment to Section 25 of the Constitution to explicitly allow for land expropriation because, de De Lille said, Section 25 already makes provision for land expropriation. “We feel that it’s land reform that has failed the country, not our Constitution,” she added.

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In Good’s strategy to bring economic and spatial justice, it will not forget about women.

On women, and gender-based violence

“The face of poverty in our country today is the face of a woman. If we want to lift our communities out of poverty, we need to start empowering women,” de Lille said. “Even if we look at women in the labour market, there is no equal pay for equal work,” she added. The Good party will certainly be fighting against that economic injustice. It will also focus on the social justice issues surrounding women.

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“We see women and children being abused and killed in this country every day,” de Lille said. Patriarchy runs through all classes, and needs to be broken, she added.

De Lille said parents need to bring their children up differently. “I always say to mothers to stop spoiling the boy child, we must stop bringing that boy child up believing he is superior,” she said. “We bring the boy child up to perform in life but the girl child we bring up to behave,” de Lille added. If we want to deal with patriarchy, we need to start at home.

The Good party is different than any party contesting the upcoming election, de Lille said. The Good leadership views serving the people of South Africa an honour and a privilege. “We will not put emphasis on the party, but the people in South Africa. That is why we are mobilising the good people in South Africa,” de Lille said.

Featured image via Good