Saturday, 12th August 2017 in Lorraine members of Civic Warriors of Maruleng descended on the family of their slain founder President Mr. Hendrick Shai. The occasion was to celebrate what would have been the 46th birthday of the late President of the party who was popularly known as Mapampole. In the build up to the main program members in party colours started trickling into the street leading to his house where a tent was erected next to the gate. By afternoon the street was filled with warriors waiting for the main program to start.
The main program started off with a rousing chant as the assembled members sang and danced in celebration of their slain leader’s birthday. It was obvious that the late President was a force to be reckoned with and his followers still hold him in high regard. The program was illuminated throughout with praises for the man who is reputed to have cut down crime by a very large margin and worked very hard for development.
In welcoming all present his sister implored members of the party not to loose hope but to work tirelessly in order to ensure that the party grows massively. She emphasized that the family is pleased to see that members continue to work very diligently within the confines of the party discipline and program of action.
His brother speaking on behalf of the family encouraged the current leadership of the party to engage them on all pertinent issues afflicting the party in order to ensure that it doesn’t crumble. He amplified his message by pointing to the fact that the party should stick to its founding principles and thanked the leadership for convening the special event in honour of the late leader. His widow implored members to work for unity of purpose in order to grow the party.
The current President Mr. Poopo Mohlabe took to the podium as the main speaker after the entire leadership was introduced formally to the membership. He took the members through the glorious past and the achievements the party scored under the leadership of the late President. Amongst other things he refreshed members about the principles that the late President lived by singling out the fight against crime as one area that produced massive positive results. He pointed that the party is still strong and that the current leadership is working very hard to grow it and to ensure that it has branches in every ward within the municipal jurisdiction.
Furthermore he assured members that the party is representing them honestly and diligently in the Maruleng municipal council. He indicated that as Civic Warriors of Maruleng they are pressurizing the council through debates and reason to ensure that when there are vacancies to be filled local people must be prioritized first and foremost. He announced that processes for the building of a shopping complex are at an advanced stage and that they are also focused in ensuring that an TVET college is established in Maruleng for skills development and general capacity building targeting the youth.
The President wrapped up his address by announcing two important areas of the party’s calendar in that February has been declared Mapampole Month and that the 8th August would be celebrated annually in remembrance of the fallen leader. He emphasized that there will be activities relevant to each area and that membership recruitment drive and development will occupy the centerpiece.
Civic Warriors of Maruleng was formed in early 2016 and went on to win three seats in the Maruleng council following the Local Government Elections. The question is: can the party manage to sail above the rough waters of the political game?
In the absence of the founding leader can it really avoid cracks and build sustainable unity? Has the party grown exponentially in terms of numbers since its inception? Is there cohesion in its existing structures with a visible program of action or does it rely on the gravity of the leader to function properly? The current leadership collective will have to answer the above questions by rising above challenges to mould the party into a formidable political player within the municipal jurisdiction. That it managed to win three seats in its maiden appearance at the elections points to some filling of a void as it relates to the voters’ needs and aspirations.
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Politics & Governance