Mario Wanza, stalwart ANC activist, and founder and chairperson of the community organisation, Proudly Manenberg, has thrown his hat into the ring as an independent candidate in the local government elections. Wanza, who is still a member of the ANC, contests the election in three Manenberg wards against the ANC and historically dominant DA.
He faces an uphill task. In the 2000 and 2006 local government elections the DA obtained increasing majorities over the ANC in these wards, with a clutch of smaller parties failing to make substantial inroads.
Comparing the last three election results in Ward 46, one of the Manenberg wards Wanza is contesting – 2004 (national), 2006 (local) and 2009 (national) – support for the ANC has plummeted from nearly 50% in certain voting districts to below 10% in all districts.
On the Proudly Manenberg Facebook page, Wanza says he wants to, “build civil society and people’s participation at grassroots levels… We need to have elected representatives who are answerable to a constituency (a community)”.
Oryx Media, which assisted in the establishment of Proudly Manenberg six years ago, watches this space with interest.