Shackdwellers movement endorse

Shackdwellers movement endorses the DA in KZN

On 2nd May 2014 Abahlali baseMjondolo, the shackdwellers’ movement of South Africa, announced that their KwaZulu-Natal branch had collectively decided to vote for the Democratic Alliance (DA)

Shackdwellers movement endorse


The KwaZulu-Natal branch of Abahlali baseMjondolo decided to support the DA in order to weaken the ANC in the 2014 elections.

The movement revealed their motivation in an interview on 5th May 2014 via their spokesperson S’bu Zikode: “We [ABM members] have suffered under the ANC’s rule. The ANC has consistently demonstrated that it lacks the political will to take the issues of the poor seriously.”

“As a movement of the urban poor, we think our priority is to vote out the ANC. We do not agree with the DA fundamentally on many core issues. This decision is not one that is based on ideology.”

“Poor people do not eat ideology, nor do they live in houses that are made out of ideology.” – S’bu Zikode

In order to make a democratic decision on who to vote for as a united movement, Abahlali baseMjondolo invited political parties to present their manifestos. “We invited the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), the Democratic Alliance (DA), the National Freedom Party (NFP) and the Workers and Socialist Party (WASP)”, said Zikode. “The ANC was not invited deliberately; this was a conscious decision we took.”

After considering each party, members took a vote and the majority favoured the DA.

Zikode added that “the decision to invite the DA was a contested one”.

“Many of our members argued that the DA is just like the ANC and would be unable to take our plight seriously. We debated it at length and decided to invite them. Internal democracy is important for Abahlali, so this is a decision that has the support of the members.”

Other shackdwellers’ movements have also decided to vote against the ANC. The Unemployed People’s Movement has opted for a “Vote No” policy, in which they will refuse to vote for the ANC or DA.  “We are calling on our members to refuse to vote for the ANC and vote for any of the small parties, but not the DA, or to spoil their votes if they cannot bring themselves to support any of the small parties”, they said in a press release.