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Students are Maimane’s best bet

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Maimane also found himself at odds with others in the DA because of his policy thinking on affirmative action and transformation in his former party

Former DA leader Mmusi Maimane. Picture: Ayanda Ndamane/African News Agency (ANA)

Former DA leader Mmusi Maimane’s hint that he will form his own political party has started intense discussions on where he will position himself in terms of political leaning and policy.

Maimane doggedly went after former president Jacob Zuma and was reportedly forced into a corner by the DA when he tried to use the same tactics on President Cyril Ramaphosa and those who had donated to his CR17 campaign.

Maimane also found himself at odds with others in the DA because of his policy thinking on affirmative action and transformation in his former party.

The future of elections in the country lies with young voters and those who will be able to vote for the first time in local government elections in 2021 and the 2024 national elections.

The EFF and ANC firmly positioned themselves in this space by aggressively pursuing university students. Any new political party has to be able to connect to these potential voters.

If Maimane is to focus on this demographic, then a different approach will be needed to the one he used at the DA and it is likely that he will rely on coalitions for power.

If he decides to form his own party, it will add to the melting pot of South Africa’s democratic mix but there will be no guarantee of success.