Better Future Plan
UDM Manifesto 2004
MESSAGE FROM BANTU HOLOMISA – FREEDOM FOR ALL
Dear Fellow South African
This year we celebrate ten years of freedom. We understand freedom as the ability of individuals and groups to make choices and pursue their aspirations freely. This includes choices such as where to live, what work to choose and where to engage in it, where and what to learn, where and what business to pursue, and many others.
This means that the level of freedom depends on the socio-economic conditions. The better the socioeconomic conditions, the greater the freedom of citizens to pursue their aspirations and address their concerns.
Our democratic Constitution seeks to guarantee our freedom, but this can only be achieved if the socioeconomic environment allows the Bill of Rights to become a reality for all South Africans. Freedom is not just a political condition; freedom is also a social and economic condition. Political freedom, without social and economic freedom is a hollow concept. Has the political freedom gained in 1994 translated into social and economic freedom?
Freedom of choice will be the key symbol of our celebration of ten years of liberation. South Africans will exercise their freedom of choice to determine who must govern, both and national and provincial levels.
This political choice will not only determine who governs, but also which political party is best suited to keep an eye on the ruling party. This party will use Parliament to ensure that the ruling party sticks to the mandate it received and that it serves the entire nation, not just those that voted for it. After all, the entire nation, irrespective of party political support, contribute to the funding of Government through taxes and are equal under the Constitution.
The United Democratic Movement (UDM) is ready, willing and able to fulfill either of these roles: to govern and deliver, or to hold the ruling party accountable to the citizens of this country.
The UDM is seven years old, but already has established itself as a significant player on the political landscape. In less than two years since our launch the UDM participated in the 1999 elections and gained 16 seats in Parliament, and representation in six provincial legislatures. In the process the UDM became the official opposition in the Eastern Cape and Limpopo legislatures.
The UDM has given value to all South Africans who voted for us in the 1999 elections, and to those who did not vote for us but who are committed to the democratic principles of good governance.
Three examples of this are:
The floor-crossing legislation
When the ruling party, with the support of the DA and NNP introduced the floor-crossing legislation, it was the UDM that took the fight for the rights of voters to the highest court. Voters need to ask these parties why they supported this law, and thereby gave the right to a single individual politician to nullify the votes of tens of thousands of people.
The Arms Deal
The UDM is amongst those who took the lead in challenging the Arms Deal that appears to be a hotbed of corruption and fraud. Eventually certain Government officials were found to have been guilty of improper behaviour. Even now, the matter is not resolved, with powerful people linked to the ANC facing court trials, and a cloud of suspicions hanging over Deputy President, Jacob Zuma.
The Hefer Commission came about as a direct result of these unresolved matters relating to the Arms Deal. The UDM will continue to pursue this matter because corruption cannot be tolerated. We disagree with the wastage of billions of Rands of weapons of war when the real enemies of our country are unemployment, poverty, crime and HIV/AIDS. This is part of the UDM’s commitment to accountable and responsible government. We have the resolve and commitment to fight corruption, and take on any party, no matter its history or power, to