People's Bulletin: With your continued commitment to the dream of RISE Mzansi, we will succeed and grow

Remarks by
Songezo Zibi
July 4, 2024

With your continued commitment to thedream of RISE Mzansi, we will succeed and grow


Dear Leaders,


It feels like a very long time because somuch has been happening, but it has only been a month and a few days since theelections. What has made days seem like weeks and weeks feel like months hasbeen the political “drama” around the formation of a new government.


This is now done. The Government ofNational Unity (GNU) is a reality. Of utmost importance to us is that the needsof the South African people are placed top of the list, rather than pettypolitical squabbling. Our position has consistently been that we will alwaysact with maturity and in good faith with all political parties.


Makashule Gana, our Chief Organiser and Iare Members of Parliament in the National Assembly, while our National Chair,Vuyiswa Ramokgopa, is now MEC for Agriculture and Rural Development in Gauteng.Having taken centre stage for highlightingthe hunger stalking South African families, we now have an opportunity todo something about it in Gauteng.


Vuyiswa is a tireless hard worker that isgifted with a brilliant mind, attributes the people of Gauteng need, as so manygo through a tough time. I know she will treat this role with the seriousnessit deserves.


RISE Mzansi Matters


But in this note I want to talk about RISEMzansi and its future. I know that many of our supporters expected us to immediately have a strategy for the next phase of our lives, and this is understandable. But in the immediate aftermath of an election, the most important thing is to go through the electoral numbers in detail. The team has nearly completed this task.


We need to know which areas we did well in,and where we did not do well – linking these to Organisers and Volunteers. Thewe need to understand from those people what went right and what went wrong.Where we did right, then their ingredients for success can be shared throughout our organisation.


Where we did not do well, we need to understand why, and make sure those mistakes are corrected immediately. This process will also give people across the organisation an opportunity to voice their views. If the leadership were to simply develop a strategy from our heads, it would almost certainly be the wrong strategy and fail in future.


The good thing about elections is that it shows you where your actual voters are, not where you wish you had voters. Then you can double down in the areas where you have good pockets of support, while working out how to grow support in areas where we campaigned but did not win support.


Building Structures


We also need to build permanent, elected structures so that we can have an elective conference as soon as we are ready,and before the next elections. The design of those structures must be influenced by our long-term strategy. A solid strategy needs us to collect as much information as we can now so that we can make informed decisions.


For example, there are leaders who persuaded the campaign team to support campaigns in areas where we had “lots of support.”. We did not see that support in the voter numbers. It will be unwise to make decisions on the same basis again.


Other Matters


During the election campaign there weremany requests for “resources” such as gazebos, T-shirts, money for transporting supporters, food etc. This is understandable but I also need to emphasise thatpolitical parties rely on donations.


This means we do not have deep pockets.Successful campaigns cost serious money, which we simply did not have. For example, for its 21% a party like the DA would have spent well over R500 million in the past year. We don’t have that kind of money even though some of our opponents will point to a R15-million donation as a sign that we have “lots of money”.


So one of the things we all need to commit to is a fundraising strategy at national, regional and local level, which means hundreds of RISE supporters doing fundraising. It is pointless to put a strategy together if there are no resources to implement it.


At the same time you cannot raise fundswithout a strategy, so getting to an effective strategy is important and veryurgent.


Next Steps

The full election report will be considered by the National Leadership Collective (NLC) in the coming week, followed by reviews with various teams in the provinces. Once those insights have been obtained, we will make new strategic and tactical decisions about how to go forward.


This exercise is important so that we donot repeat mistakes. For example, it became clear to me during the campaignthat many Organisers and Volunteers were asking for political education. We must provide this otherwise our people will not be able to explain our politicsto voters and future members.


Soon our Chairperson will communicatespecific steps and work streams that will be undertaking this work. Please lookout for it.


Thank you for your continued commitment tothe dream of RISE Mzansi.


Have a great week,



RISE Mzansi National Leader