Floor-crossing Is Plain Political Prostitution
Dr. Motsoko Pheko
These are interesting times. These are disconcerting times. The political space we are in now is called the “window of opportunity,” but in reality, it is the window of opportunism. It is time for politicians to march for offers from the highest bidder.
“Floor-crossing” is not appropriate for consolidating democracy in our country. What we are witnessing is the liquidation of democracy. It is actually “cheque-crossing” because people are made all kinds of secret offers. Councilors and Members of Parliament who have no integrity sell themselves into a system of chequeocracy.
“Cheque-crossers,” disguised, as “floor-crossers” are thieves. They steal and use property that is not theirs for their own selfish ends and personal aggrandisement. Voters in this country vote for Parties not cheque crossers. Floor crossing encourages corruption and self-interest. It violates the electoral right of the voters. The votersâ€™ mandate is treacherously betrayed with impunity in the name of “democracy” which means political prostitution pass as “democracy”.
Floor crossing is entrenching corrupt politics in South Africa and will eventually destabilise this country. People will lose confidence in the democratic process and resort to illegal means of struggle.
Identity politics has been overtaken by politics of the cheque. The politics of floor crossing in South Africa undermines the values and principles that the broader citizens believe in. Politicians are not crossing the floor because they believe the ruling party can deliver poverty eradication, equitable land distribution, free education, health for all and the right to work. Floor crossing is shredding the values and issues that matter to the masses of our country.
Floor crossing is creating a new political, economic and social hegemony. It is privatizing freedom of _expression, and constructing a culture where it is objectionable to offer alternative thinking and ideas. When one examines closely the parties that have benefited from floor crossing, they are parties, which advance neoliberal policies that are inimical to the rights of citizens. They are parties that offer no alternative voice. Even the so-called official opposition party has no fundamental differences with the ruling party. It has cloned its policies along the same neoliberal tendencies of the ruling party.
Floor crossing is an attempt to liquidate radical transformative politics like those advanced by the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania. It is the only party that offers an alternative. It believes that this country will not survive if it continues to promote the politics of exclusion.
Unemployment is escalating. This violates the right to work. This country can afford to invest liberally in the African people by providing an unemployment allowance, instead of encouraging floor crossing for self-enrichment. HIV/AIDS is mercilessly decimating our youth. Poverty is increasing, especially among the African people, who not long ago were victims of apartheid. The African majority of this country remains landless.
Last week school children were shot at in the Free State in typical apartheid style, which is reminiscent of the Soweto Uprising on June 16th in 1976. 4000 students were marching for free education, which the PAC has been calling for. Twenty students were wounded and one of them died. Very little horror was expressed because the pseudo-democrats in this country were gripped with the fever of “floor-crossing” and pre-occupied with the “offers” of seats, which are being stolen this month.
Two years ago, the PAC went to the Constitutional Court to oppose this political gamble with the lives of the poor and the powerless. This court ruled in favour of this political prostitution, which is effectively doing away with true proportional representation as, mandated to political Parties by the voters. The PAC holds that the constitutional court erred in its judgment on floor crossing. Its decision seems to have been based on the school of thought which upholds law as it is.
There are two main schools of legal thought in jurisprudence. They are “positivists” who accept the law as it is, whether it is moral or immoral; just or unjust. On one hand there are naturalists who accept the law, as it ought to be.
The PAC subscribes to the naturalist school of thought. After, all many PAC members have spilled their blood in their fight against unjust colonial laws. The naturalists have made greater contribution to many aspects of human rights.
They are concerned that nothing defeats the principles of natural justice.
The PAC is leading the revolution of the poor. It invites all progressive forces to destroy the economic powerlessness of the African majority of this country. Floor crossing is plain political prostitution. END
If necessary contact Dr. Pheko on O8257132O7