Politicians score points on Heritage Day

Politicians profited from Heritage Day as they canvassed to reel in votes for next year’s elections.

Mamphela Ramphele gestures as she speaks during the launch of her new opposition party called Agang ("let's build") in Pretoria West on 22 June 2013. Picture: AFP

CAPE TOWN - Political rhetoric featured prominently in Heritage Day speeches as politicians used the occasion to canvass for votes.

Events were held in different provinces on Tuesday to mark the public holiday.

But with elections coming up next year, politicians didn't waste the opportunity to score political points.

Speaking at an event in Limpopo, Agang SA Leader Mamphela Ramphele said South Africans need to build a new prosperous country with dignified jobs, a safe health care system and a police service which works.

In Soweto, the Democratic Alliance (DA)'s Premier candidate, Mmusi Maimane, spoke about his intention to create business opportunities and jobs in Gauteng.

He called on people to "unite behind change" and believe in a "new heritage of hope".

Meanwhile in the Eastern Cape, Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe blamed land dispossession for poverty and underdevelopment.

And in the Western Cape, Rural Development Minister Gugile Nkwinti marked Heritage Day by handing over land to the rural community of Mamre.