No matter which political party they support, most people seem to have an issue with trusting politicians.After the DA came into power in Knysna, there was an anomaly as many were supportive of the DA purely because they weren’t the ANC. What was lacking was reason. Opinions should be based on fact and actions would have been best served by ensuring that the DA was truly representing us, the people of Knysna.
I became a lonely voice critizing their failure to uphold their election promises. No matter how much i explained, my critics would simply throw facts out the window and base their attacks on ANC = bad/DA = good. I was, and still am, interested in “right” and “wrong”, regardless of colour or party.
Lately, in several conversations lately, i’ve heard people using phrases equivalent to “all politicians are the same.” It may be a step in a “better” direction but resignation will not improve our lives.
I give that prelude as i believe that all politicians should be held liable by their constituents. I’m hoping that you do to0. It’s totally unacceptable that a politician can lie to get elected and then reap 5 years of high salaries that can’t be challenged. Politicians must be accountable for their actions or non-actions. I’d previously promised to compose a commitment form to be presented to local politicians but have been saved the composition by adapting an already made form by Jim Powell, the founder of Direct Democracy SA.
Ask yourself, is this not what you’d want from your local councillor? Would you want them to sign this?
Councillor Commitment Form
I, (candidate councillor ID), acknowledge that I will effectively be an employee of the voters of ward (number, Council) if elected as a ward councilor during the 18 May 2011 local elections by the said voters of the ward in question, and that it is the voters of the said ward who, through payment of their rates and taxes, pay my salary.
I therefore commit myself to direct democracy in the following ways:
- I commit to regular and effective consultation with the voting public through public meetings and continuous communication with local residents’ associations and community groups via the local press, local radio stations or in person.
- I agree to vote in Council in accordance to the best interest of the voters who elected me, who may from time to time be polled by means of a referendum similar in format to that used for Council petitions.
- I am committed to ensure that the wishes of my constituency are effectively communicated and advocated for in Council and at all levels of local government.
- I am also committed in doing everything within my power to ensuring that the by-laws are upheld and that service delivery is efficient and effective in the ward elected.
- I commit to being held accountable for my performance by the voters.
I further agree that the registered voters in the ward in question should be able to remove me from office. Should 51% or more of the number of voters who voted in the previous election of the said the said ward sign an open petition I will comply with their wishes and resign. The petition must however adhere to the following rules and regulations:
- The petition must have a proper heading stating the reason of the petition on every page of the petition;
- The petition must be completed within a 30 day period showing the date the petition was drawn up in the heading;
- The following information must on the petition per voter:
- the full names of the voter & valid id number of the voter;
- the date signed by the voter & the signature of the voter.
- The petition must be an original document and no photocopies will be accepted.
- A petition of this nature may not, however, be initiated within 6 months of me taking office or when an election date has been set and may not continue once an election date has been set.
Should I not follow the results of a recall petition or should I refuse to resign as required by the recall process, I will donate R150.000 to the community, payable in installments over the remainder of my term, for use in the community in a way to be decided by the voters in my ward at a public meeting with at least 50 registered voters attending the public meeting.