“Who are you? Are you Ndebele or Zulu?”
These were some of the embarrassing questions posed by Ga-Sekhukhune grandmother Matshehle Phala to ANC deputy president Cyril Ramaphosa during his door-to-door campaign in Limpopo last Saturday.
Though Ramaphosa appeared unfazed, Limpopo ANC members who accompanied him dropped their jaws in shame.
“This man is not that popular here, they should have brought President Jacob Zuma instead,” whispered one in an ANC T-shirt as a seated Phala continued to demand that Ramaphosa identify himself.
Instead of answering, Ramaphosa asked Phala if she was familiar with the colours of the ANC that were emblazoned on the leather jacket he wore.
“Do you know these colours?” he asked.
“I know the spear. That is an ANC spear. We are going to vote for that spear.
“But you must increase our social grant,” she responded to the amusement of other party members standing behind her.
But it was grandmother Mangakana Seloma who generated the most embarrassment.
As Ramaphosa lectured Phala about voting for the ANC, Mangakana interrupted him by breaking into song and reciting a traditional poem.
When Ramaphosa asked the elderly woman to vote for his party, she said: “No no no, I will never vote for the ANC. Not even once.”
“We don’t have water and the roads are bad.
“How come these people here have water and where we live we don’t have it?
“We only have electricity thanks to the people you fired. We want them back,” she said, referring to the Sekhukhune ANC regional executive members who were disbanded by the provincial task team about two months ago.
Before visiting Ga-Sekhukhune, Ramaphosa went from door to door at Disteneng village outside Polokwane, where a few residents said they were going to vote for Julius Malema’s Economic Freedom Fighters.
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