Mmusi Maimane

One SA Movement Leader Mmusi Maimane.

Photo: Twitter/AfricanRep

Maimane and OSA to endorse independent candidates in local elections

One SA Movement leader Mmusi Maimane has vowed to reshape the country’s political landscape by promoting local leadership.

Mmusi Maimane

One SA Movement Leader Mmusi Maimane.

Photo: Twitter/AfricanRep

One SA Movement (OSA) leader Mmusi Maimane has vowed to reshape the way in which politics and the mechanisms through which we hold elected leaders to account structured as he commits to support independent candidates in the upcoming Local Government Elections who are nominated by the communities they seek to represent. 

The aim of OSA’s decision not to appear on the ballot paper themselves is to promote grass roots governance while maintaining their position as a social movement rather than a political party. 

One SA Movement ‘still not a political party’  

In a statement released by the party on Monday 25 January, Maimane said that the organisations National Council had met over the weekend to determine the best way to continue their progress a year after entering the political spectrum. 

“When we began OSA one year ago in January 2020, we committed to play our part in building One South Africa that is fair, reconciled and prosperous for all,” he said. 

“A critical element of achieving this is to reimagine the way we identify, elect and ultimately hold to account those in government. We are convinced that to change our country we desperately and urgently require a change in both governance and government.”

Maimane said that OSA is committed to offering South Africans a fresh political offering that is “guided by the principle of giving true power back to the people”. He insisted that this needs to happen to augment a “fundamentally broken part-political system”. 

“OSA is not a political party and will not become a political party. However, we cannot simply sit back and spectate while our country heads in the wrong direction,” he said. 

“What is patently clear is that local government is failing and our citizens are suffering as a result.”

OSA to endorse independent candidates in Local Government elections  

According to Maimane, the solution to this perceived shortcoming is to “support, train, equip and campaign” for OSA endorsed independents in wards across the country. 

“By working with communities and affiliates, we aim to bring change to councils and municipalities across the country,” he said. 

“These candidates will not be OSA candidates – they will be independent candidates of their community – supported by the people, focused on delivering for the people. Instead of candidates being imposed onto communities, this allows communities to choose the best of the best to represent them in councils.”

Prospective applicants will need to provide motivational letter, as well as list of signatures of ward residents pledging support for the independent’s candidacy. All submissions must be sent via e-mail to by no later than 17:00 on Monday 1 March 2021, they added.

OSA committed to training and leadership guidance  

In order to ensure that OSA fulfils its mandate to equip individuals to become statesmen and stateswomen, Maimane announced that the organisation will launch a host of training opportunities to prospective candidates as part of its core offering. These include: 

  • The establishment of an OSA academy, a training platform in partnership with AfricaX and AtVance. The programmes offered include leadership, local governance training, entrepreneurship and finance.
  • To work with the School of Governance and candidate training programmes in partnership with the Leadership Institute in Washington DC. The first training programmes will commence on 29 March 2021.
  • The first cohort of candidates will also be trained by the Chandler Institute of training in Singapore. This will commence in the month of March.

“We urge communities to use their power to get behind leaders in their communities whom can truly represent them instead of being imposed upon them by political parties,” said Maimane. “We call on all South Africans to join us and make your submissions for independent candidates.”

“It’s time to take power back to the people and give them a true voice in government.”