Slogan 2019 Elections

South African opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane (C), delivers his speech during the party congress in Pretoria on April 7, 2018. (AFP PHOTO / GULSHAN KHAN)

2019 Elections: DA share the policies they hope will win them the vote

Could this sway the floating voters?

Slogan 2019 Elections

South African opposition party, the Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi Maimane (C), delivers his speech during the party congress in Pretoria on April 7, 2018. (AFP PHOTO / GULSHAN KHAN)

Mmusi Maimane has shared the basis of the DA manifesto with South Afric, ahead of the hotly-anticipated 2019 Elections.

Fresh from completing their Elective Conference eight days ago, the party have looked to clarify what they stand for, and build the foundations for a successful tilt at disrupting the ANC’s 24 years in power.

Over 50 resolutions were passed during the gathering in Tshwane. Maimane used his press conference on Monday to further detail what policies the party would be adopting and how South Africa could expect to see them implemented.

We’ve picked out the main highlights of their pledges. This is, effectively, what the DA’s manifesto for next year’s vote will look like…

DA set out policy for 2019 Elections:

Jobs and Economy

  • Introduce a jobseekers’ allowance for 18-34-year-olds who can’t find work.
  • Unveil the Job Centres project – a roll-out of places where the unemployed could go to find out about work opportunities and find help in seeking employment.
  • Bring in National Civilian Service for matriculant students with no employment or further education plans: Roles would be in work-based training with community healthcare, basic education or SAPS fields.

Approach to business

  • Clear the red tape engulfing businesses.
  • Exempt small businesses from certain labour and BEE laws to help them compete and create jobs.
  • Implement a Tax Amnesty for small businesses and working with all arms of government to decrease the time it takes to pay its debts, with a goal of bringing this period down to 30 days.
  • Provide funding assistance for small businesses totalling over R1.5 billion.

DA policy on land redistribution

  • Commit to promoting the pursuit of justice and redress in land reform – not by making the state a proxy for land ownership – but ensuring that those entitled to land receive it in the form of direct ownership.
  • Refuse to allow land reform to be used as a divisive and racially charged lightning conductor to pull public attention away from the failures of government.
  • Provide those who live on communal land with tenure, and where possible, title deed.


  • Create a single, national housing list, which every local government’s housing list must reconcile with, to cut down on corruption and the possibility of benefitting twice.
  • Launch a national housing audit to verify that only the real owners live in RDPs.

Basic Education

  • Ensure the appointment of senior positions at a provincial and national level require the relevant experience.
  • Introduce specialist Teacher Training Colleges in every province.
  • Ensure that curricula prepare students to be productive members of society and teaches the skills which will be required when they become adults.
  • Declare principals, cleaners and food providers as providing ‘essential services’ at all schools where they are full-time employees.

Higher Education

  • Introduce a new funding model to guarantee that no deserving student is unable to study because they cannot afford it.
  • Reintroduce agricultural colleges in areas where the need exists.
  • Increase the involvement of the private sector and labour organisations in training and skills development decision-making.
  • Expand access to tertiary institutions with the rollout of a range of online courses and programmes in a variety of fields.


  • If successful at the 2019 Elections, make available a further R2 billion, part of which would be used to grow medical school placements for multiple skills, including, doctors, specialist nurses, occupational and physical therapists.
  • Provide mobile clinics for existing settlements which are not yet formalised and exist beyond a 5km radius from existing public health facilities.
  • Conduct feasibility studies for underserved areas in order to assess the impact of extended clinic operating hours.

DA position on National Minimum Wage

The DA say they support “the intentions behind” a National Minimum Wage, but they aren’t convinced it will work in its current form.

Maimane criticises the “one-size-fits-all” approach that the NMW bill is currently operating with. It states that the wage will be fixed at R20 an hour per person. But the DA are concerned about both the effect it will have on small business and the fact that potential minimum wage workers haven’t been consulted about the changes.

The party feel like minimum wage is best carried out as a “sectional” programme, rather than as a national one.

“Sectoral minimum wages is the most feasible option. The great benefit of setting sectoral minimum wages is that the peculiarities and challenges of different sectors of our economy can be taken into account.

Ahead of the 2019 Elections, The DA has proposed the establishment of an independent panel – that cannot be unduly influenced by politicians, big business or big labour unions – mandated to set minimum wages for each sector, taking into consideration all relevant factors, including the need to create jobs.”

So that’s how the land lies with the Democratic Alliance. They’ve nailed their colours to the flag on many issues, but still feel that workers’ rights and minimum wage will need some fine tuning before SA hits the ballot boxes for the 2019 Election.

You can read the DA’s full policy resolutions here.