Why votes for independents or smaller parties are NOT wasted votes and why change is so desperately needed in Knysna.”

Residents are invited to join a discussion with KIM candidates at the following meetings that will be held by the Knysna Independent Movement next week:

Date: Monday, 25 October 2021

Venue: Smutsville hall

Time: 18h45

Date: Wednesday, 27 October 2021

Venue: Sedgefield Community Hall

Time: 18h00



Why votes for independents or smaller parties are NOT wasted votes and why change is so desperately needed in Knysna

Residents are invited to join a discussion with KIM candidates,

Mark Willemse (Ward 10 and KIM mayoral candidate)


Siena van Schoor (Ward 9 candidate)

 at the following meetings:

Date: Tuesday, 26 October 2021

Venue: Leisure Isle Bowling Club

Time: 18h30

Date: Thursday, 28 October 2021

Venue: Knysna Angling Club

Time: 18h30


Meet your Ward 5 Candidate

The Knysna Independent Movement KIM invites you to join us for a boerewors braai and to meet our Ward 5 Candidate, Susan Campbell

Venue: Belvidere Manor Conference Centre

Date: Tuesday, the 19th of October 2021

Time: 5pm for 5:30 pm

Please share the invitation with your friends and neighbours.




As the hotly-contested race in Ward 5 heated up this weekend, the DA wheeled in the heavy artillery: Knysna native and Western Cape premier Alan Winde came down from Cape Town to hold three separate meetings with voters on Saturday: in Brenton, Belvidere and Rheenendal.


But hold on! Local by-elections rarely merit a visit from a provincial premier. Who has got the Big Blue Wave checking in  their rearview mirror?


At national, provincial and even local municipal level, the main threat to South Africa’s official opposition party is of course the ANC. 


But not in Ward 5. If we look at the results of the 2016 local elections, the ANC only managed to garner about 17% of the ballots cast in Knysna’s 5th ward—to the DA’s 74%!


Three months ago, even fewer ward 5 voters (14%) opted for the ANC in the May 2019 national and provincial election, whilst the DA still polled 68% of the total.


Similarly, this past May the “Plaaslike Besorgte Inwoners(“PBI”), only took about 10% of the votes in ward 5. As for the EFF: no one expects the party of Julius Malema to climb out of the single digits in ward 5.


That leaves only… KIM- the Knysna Independent Movement, and our candidate, Susan Campbell.


It seems that Susan “KIM” Campbell has been making serious inroads in the DA’s ward 5 stronghold over the past fortnight. Her turnout has been consistently better than or equal to premier Winde’s was on Saturday, and her performance in this past week’s debates has elicited approving statements on social media, (“The only grown-up in the room,” etc.) rather than criticism. 


Premier Alan Winde also seemed to recognise the threat posed by KIM when he sought to convince voters in Belvidere on Saturday not to vote for independents. Two weeks earlier, the DA’s campaign manager Dion George also warned against voting for independents, saying this would split the vote and allow the ANC to win. But as we have already seen, given their track record in ward 5, the ANC is not a serious contender in this race.


Even so, KIM faces a monumental task. Our party, which was registered on 19th July, only started campaigning about 3 weeks ago, whilst the DA has consistently garnered between two-thirds and three-fourths of the votes in ward 5 in the four elections since 2011. However, given the DA candidate’s less than impressive performance in the debates and the low attendance at their “Let’s Talk” functions, a victory by KIM’s Susan Campbell is still a real possibility if enough disgruntled voters make it to the polls. 


The result should be known by midnight 

From the Knysna Ratepayers Association Facebook page

From the Knysna Ratepayers Association Facebook page.


In his public interactions in Belvidere and Brenton on Saturday, DA Premier Alan Winde said that the ongoing conflicts in Knysna’s governing party were basically due to Mark Willemse’s refusal to resign as mayor after both he and Michelle Wasserman went through the DA’s mayoral selection process, and Wasserman won. Winde said that he himself had abided by the outcome of a DA selection process for premier, and had even threatened to take legal action when others failed to abide by it, implying that if Willemse had only followed his example and abided by the outcome of the DA’s mayoral selection process, all of the DA’s woes in Knysna could have been avoided.

Either Winde is uninformed, or he is being disingenuous.

To understand what actually happened, one must know that the DA mayoral selection process does not select the town’s mayor, rather, it only selects the DA’s chosen candidate for mayor. The mayor is actually elected by the full Council from the candidates nominated by each party. The DA selection process only becomes relevant when the mayorship falls vacant. It is important to note that this so-called Mayoral Selection Process is an internal Party process that is not required by law. The mayor is elected by Council and that is the end of it. 

After Willemse voted his conscience and Eleanor Bouw-Spies was removed as mayor on 6 June 2018, the position of mayor became vacant. When the vote came for the election of a new mayor, Bouw-Spies walked out of the meeting and the remaining DA Councillors followed, leaving it up to any other party to nominate a candidate of their choice.  Willemse was the only Councillor nominated for the position of mayor (by Peter Myers, a DA member who acted on the instructions of MEC Anton Bredell, the Chairman of the DA Provincial Executive Council). Since none of the other parties nominated an alternative candidate, Willemse was the uncontested candidate for mayor and by default, in terms of our legislation, became mayor. 

The DA then initiated disciplinary proceedings against him, claiming that he had failed to vote with his caucus, and the DA Provincial Executive Committee decided, among other things, that he must resign as mayor. 

However, Willemse appealed that decision to the DA’s Federal Legal Commission (“FLC”). While his appeal was pending, the DA proposed that he undergo their mayoral candidate selection process, even though he was still the lawfully-elected mayor and would remain so unless and until he lost his appeal. Willemse made it very clear at the outset that his participation in the selection process was “without prejudice” and subject to the outcome of his appeal. In other words, he would only abide by the outcome of the DA’s mayoral candidate selection process if he lost his appeal, and the mayorship then fell vacant. If the FLC upheld his appeal, he would be vindicated, there would be no opening in the mayorship, and he would remain as mayor, regardless.

Thus, although Councillor Wasserman reportedly outscored Willemse in the DA’s mayoral candidate selection process, that process became irrelevant when Willemse was vindicated by winning his appeal to the FLC on 1 November 2018. Wasserman merely won the right to be the DA’s chosen candidate for mayor the next time an election for mayor had to be held. It has to be said that none of the assessments and tests alluded to by Winde were followed in the DA mayoral selection process, which involved nothing but a relatively short interview, before a panel headed by James Selfe, who was clearly biased against Willemse.

Since Willemse won his appeal, no election for mayor had to be held, and Willemse remains as the mayor lawfully chosen by Council. So Premier Winde’s explanation of what happened, and who is at fault, is simply… wrong. Willemse, who enjoys wide support from Knysna’s various communities, has every right to continue as mayor.

Oh, and incidentally, Michelle Wasserman is not the “mayor-elect”. A mayor-elect is someone who has been elected mayor, but has not yet been sworn in. Wasserman has not been elected mayor: she has not even been a candidate in an election for mayor. She is  merely the DA’s preferred candidate should the opportunity for the election of a mayor present itself. Or, as Jimmy Cliff put it, Michelle has still got: many rivers to cross…




Tuesday 13th August 2019

Brenton Community Hall

6pm – 8 pm

(CR Swart Road, Brenton-on-Sea)

Wednesday, 14th August 2019

Rheenendal Community Centre


The Rheenendal debate will be broadcast by Eden FM 99.7.

This should be an interesting debate, offering residents an opportunity to get to know the candidates and where they stand on the issues.

You can attend either debate in person, or tune in to Eden FM 99.7 on Wednesday, 6pm – 8pm

You can also Whatsapp your questions live to Eden FM on

060 505 2693

All 5 parties contesting the election have been invited to send their candidate to take part in the debate.

{This is a public service announcement}.