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Mashaba says his new political party is a viable alternative to the ANC

After spending three years with the Democratic Alliance as Johannesburg Mayor, Mashaba has now opted to start his own political organisation in a bid to contest next year's municipal elections.

Heman Mashaba announces his resignation as Johannesburg Mayor on 21 October. Picture: Kayleen Morgan/EWN

JOHANNESBURG - Leader of Action South Africa Herman Mashaba said his new political party was a viable alternative to the African National Congress (ANC) and could dethrone the governing party.

After spending three years with the Democratic Alliance as Johannesburg Mayor, Mashaba has now opted to start his own political organisation in a bid to contest next year's municipal elections.

Speaking during the launch of his party on Saturday afternoon, the Black Like Me founder outlined the organisation's policies to win over disgruntled voters.

He said his party was committed to non-racialism: “Every South African has an equal and intrinsic value as no more than the other. Racism diminishes the equality and worth of South Africans and sets us back in our progress. It has no place in this party and it has no place in our country.”

While acknowledging the role race plays in society, Mashaba said broad-based black economic empowerment no longer contributes to the achievement of sustainable social justice.

“BBBEE has not served anyone but the wealthy politically connected elite over and over again. It must be put in the rightful place, in the rubbish dump of our history. It must be replaced with a massive programme of investment in education and opportunity in areas where communities suffer from the legacy of our unjust past.”

Mashaba will serve as interim president of the new party and was joined by former Democratic Alliance regional leaders Funzela Ngobeni and Abel Tau.

Former ANC MPs Makhosi Khoza and Vytjie Mentor, who are known for coming down hard on former President Jacob Zuma's administration, will also form part of this new formation.

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