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Daniel Silke: In Light of Nelson Mandela’s Death, It Might Be a Very Different Voter Who Goes to the Polls

Tracking the Future“In some ways, Mandela’s passing has re-invigorated the ANC,” writes Daniel Silke, author of Tracking the Future, in a piece for PoliticsWeb on how he expects the passing of Nelson Mandela to impact on next year’s national election. “It has reminded the feuding factions of the unity of the past and has served to re-educate a generation of younger voters about the struggle history.”

However, he points out that remembering Mandela’s ANC has highlighted the deficiencies of the current leadership and could leave voters dissatisfied and confused as to whom they should vote for. He hopes that abstention from voting will not be the outcome of this confusion, because “that would be a real travesty to the legacy of Mandela”.

There was much to digest from the 12 days of mourning, memorials and eventual funeral of the great Nelson Mandela. Just as in his lifetime, Mandela has again in death left yet another significant mark on the South African political fabric – and all politicians will need to scramble to deal with the fall-out.

Firstly, South Africans almost universally venerated Madiba. In fact, such was the acclaim and dissection of the man that it constantly reminded us of what was missing in our current crop of political leadership. In the immediate hours after his passing, it was already clear that the country was making a distinction between the ANC of Mandela and that of Jacob Zuma and this was manifest throughout the following ten days.

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