‘Make choices relevant’

Anthea Balfour, founder Cape Flats Youth Foundation

The Cape Flats Youth Foundation (CFYF) is a newly established non-profit organisation soon to be launched in Cape Flats communities.

Our mission as CFYF ambassadors is to build strong, successfully functioning social communities – independent of “corporate-government” agencies – which do not stand to serve our immediate interests and needs.

In this election period we sincerely believe, after careful and thorough deliberation and research, that the only worthy vote is a vote for your local community independent candidate.

As independent thinkers we must support those whose only allegiance is pledged to the people – our people of the Cape Flats.

We must think critically about our current situation, make choices relevant to the present but which paves the way for our future aspirations as a society.

Current political and social ideals are still stuck in a time that is no longer relevant to the wants and the needs of the people.

And in truth, were they ever? It’s a widely acknowledge and accepted fact that politics is not about the people. Politicians are not for you: The single mum, the struggling family, the hardworking man, the neglected, addicted and abused. They don’t stand for you. So what do you stand for when you vote today Wednesday August 3?

Think independently of political commentary – the job of the established political party candidates is to carry forth a manifesto that’s not been devised with you in mind.

The DA or any other “political figure head” has not offered you a loaf of bread (unless of course it’s in exchange for your vote); they’ve not walked your children to school, or fled with anxiety from the constant flying bullets.

They’ve not laid your mothers, fathers, sisters or brothers to rest; they are not paying your bills. They do their rounds come election time, and then they vanish like thieves in the night.

Politicians come with strings attached – people do not, you do not. Don’t let them steal your vote.

They consistently put flowers on the graves of our dreams and pour salt into the wounds of our inevitable disappointments.

When will enough be enough? What does real change look and feel like to you? What does real education reform feel like for your children? What does real social reform feel like for your parents?

It’s time to clean house. And no one does a better job of creating a beautiful home environment out of nothing – than this community.

Do not forget that the strength of this community was not fostered by practical, ethical and progressive local policy, but built on mutual respect; trust and understanding of your own and your neighbours’ shared experiences.

Remind yourself that your strength, courage and conviction is built out of the rubbles of apartheid – an oppressive and elitist regime that was deliberately designed to keep us uneducated, isolated, economically disenfranchised and socially deprived. We must ask ourselves: Why are the social, economic and educational ills of an old system still prominent today?

Stop allowing those in control to do cosmetic work on rotting foundations.

New parks and paintwork will not fix communities that are fractured at its roots. Demand better. Insist on more.

After the elections are done, after your vote is counted, the only thing that will still remain the same is you. Make your vote count.

Think independently and think for yourself. I strongly and sincerely believe that you cannot expect the hand that pushed you down to help you up. Do not represent false ideals – represent yourself – share your own story. Share it with the people of your community; there is progress in unity. And together, we must all rise up and unite independently.