Roger Jardine enters politics with his new movement

Roger Jardine has officially entered the political arena with the announcement of his new movement. File Picture

Roger Jardine has officially entered the political arena with the announcement of his new movement. File Picture

Published Dec 11, 2023


Former banker Roger Jardine has launched a new political movement at his birthplace of Riverlea, in Johannesburg, after it emerged weeks ago that he was entering the political arena to contest the elections.

Jardine was said to have been in talks with the Democratic Alliance, but over the weekend he launched his movement called Change Starts Now in the south of Johannesburg.

He said the country needed new leadership that would turn around the crisis that was created in the last few years.

The economy was in dire straits and it needed urgent intervention, Jardine said.

He said in 2024 the country had to choose whether it continues on a slippery slope or gets new leaders into power.

“In 2024, we will be faced with a choice to continue down the path we’re on either by continuing to place faith in a party that has abandoned its principles, its mission and our people or by standing on the sidelines,” said Jardine.

“Or, we can try to change the road we’re on by coming together to say politics does not only belong to political parties.”

He said this would be a broad movement that would bring together people from diverse backgrounds.

He said this would be a journey that takes the country to where it was before.

This will be a new beginning for South Africa that has been in throes of rampant crime and corruption, a collapsing, public healthcare and other social challenges, he said.

“I’m inspired because I share the clarity of thought and purpose of these many who choose hope rather than cynicism,” said Jardine.

“And today, in this place of personal memory and symbolism, I ask you all to join us on this journey of political rehabilitation and national redemption.”

Jardine said the electorate must be decisive next year by choosing leaders who are prepared to fix the country, and not politicians who are feeding at the trough.

There was no rule of law or justice as state capture cases have also been thrown out in court.

The country was in need to real change. They cannot allow the country to go down this road for the sake of the future generations. They need to rebuild all the institutions that have been damaged and destroyed by politicians.

The state-owned entities are the engine of the economy but both Eskom and Transnet are in a crisis.

“The leadership of our cabinet must include people who can tackle the complex challenges we face to reform Eskom, Transnet, Metrorail, and a host of other state-owned enterprises feeding through the corruption instead of aiding our economy and our development. We must change the culture where jobs are for politicians and friends instead of competent, talented, patriotic South Africans,” said Jardine.

He said they will work with other parties and civil society organisations because this was about rescuing the country from the crisis it was in.

They want to build this consensus ahead of the elections next year.

“We believe that there are many allies to be found on this journey towards change: political parties, social justice movements, civil society formations, social partners and others who will have to be enlisted in this effort,” he said.

“We want a democracy where political parties fight for citizens, not for positions. We must clearly state that we do not want coalitions that think primarily about power; instead, we want coalitions that centre communities and their struggles and voices,” said Jardine.

He said 2024 was not 1994 where there were ethical people in the African National Congress (ANC).

But the ANC of today was not the ANC of his generation and that of his parents.

This was a different ANC that has failed South Africa.

It was out of serious concern that he reached out to many people who are in the ANC and other parties to seek counsel.

There were other veterans of the ANC who were concerned about the state of the country and the crisis.

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