An open letter to Helen Zille about the energy crisis in South Africa

This is an email I sent to Helen Zille, the leader of the Democratic Alliance. Feel free to let Helen know what you think. You can find her contact details here.

Dear Helen (I am assuming that this email will reach Helen Zille)

It seems to me that our energy crisis presents an opportunity to the DA to erode the ANC’s vice-like grip on this country. Although I would like to believe that no clear thinking citizen could not see how the government’s and Eskom’s gross negligence have literally left us in the dark and set us back a number of years in terms of our potential development (leaving aside how little the government has achieved relative to what it could have achieved since 1994), it is more likely that not enough people will see this and vote accordingly in the coming years. Instead, here is a suggestion for the DA: bring power back to the people!

There is much talk about alternative energy sources and private initiatives to introduce these technologies to homes and business across the country. What if the DA reached out to its supporters and sourced the skills, the funding and the connections to facilitate a large scale introduction of alternative power generation systems to those homes and businesses, certainly on a more meaningful and effective scale than Eskom’s initiative to introduce solar heaters to a limited number of homes? Surely actions must speak louder than words and if the DA is able to connect consumers to suppliers and empower those consumers in ways Eskom and this government can’t and won’t, this must translate into enough votes to wrench enough votes out of the ANC’s hands and place them in the DA’s hands and, in the process, make the DA more of a force to be reckoned with and remove the ANC’s ability to rule almost absolutely?

I am not a politician or a participant in the alternative energy market. I am just a guy with a family who has voted for the DA in its various forms since I was old enough to vote in 1994 and who believes in an effective and empowered opposition as a means to keep the majority party in check. I also don’t want to see the lights go out completely in this country.

Just a thought.

Paul Jacobson

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