PRESS STATEMENT: DA Gave WC Peoples Bill its Name

PRESS STATEMENT: WC Peoples Bill based on ideology not race and DA must not forget they named it

PRESS RELEASE: WC Peoples Bill is based on shared ideology not race and DA must not forget they named it

The Cape Independence Advocacy Group (CIAG) is disappointed with comments attributed in the media to DA Deputy Provincial Leader JP Smith about the Western Cape Peoples Bill.

IOL quoted Smith as saying that the Peoples Bill was about self-determination and an “updated version of the Volkstaat in its racial nationalist view of self-determination”.

The CIAG would like to remind the DA that they were extensively consulted on the Western Cape Peoples Bill before it was tabled. The bill has never been about racial nationalism, it is based upon civic nationalism, where civic nationalism is a group of people who are linked by a shared ideology. It is a matter of record that the Western Cape holds fundamentally different ideological views to the rest of South Africa. Election results since 1994 have established this beyond doubt.

When the Bill was first written it was called the ‘Western Cape Cultural Recognition Bill’, with this name being derived from the province’s schedule 5 exclusive legislative competence to govern provincial cultural matters. The DA was squeamish about using the word ‘culture’ and asked could the bill not be named the Peoples Bill instead and this request was accommodated.

CIAG spokesperson Phil Craig says,

“We recognise that the DA has taken the brave and essential decision to confront the very concept of a South African unitary state and we applaud them for doing so. We also understand that this has political risks and that they will wish to appease those who may find this threatening. However, they claim to have always been a federal party. Federalism by design is all about self-determination and the DA must have the courage to own this. Self-determination is not a dirty word, it is a fundamental human right which South Africa has sworn to uphold”.

DA leader John Steenhuisen has warned the nation about a 2024 doomsday. Proposing a 10-15 year plan of ‘creeping federalism’ to solve a problem which arrives in 1 year is foolhardy in the extreme. The WC Peoples Bill will protect the province from that doomsday.

Craig says,

‘’Given the risks the DA themselves have publicly warned against, it cannot possibly be in the interests of the Western Cape people for the DA to vote against the right for them to make their own decisions (as opposed to allowing voters in the rest of South Africa to make those decisions for them). The DA must stop their nonsense and support the VF Plus’ WC Peoples Bill, just as the VF Plus will support the DA’s WC Powers Bill. The two bills are not competing, they work together. Now is not the time for party politicking and the DA must not throw the Western Cape people under the bus. Instead, the DA must promise other provinces self-determination if they, like the Western Cape, reject the ANC at the polls”.

DATE: 07 July 2023

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