The Hindu political party registered in South Africa
JOHANNESBURG: A political party, which aims to give voice to the minority community in, has registered with the country's Electoral Commission.
The Hindu Unity Movement (HUM) strives to raise community members and give them a voice in government. resident Jayraj Bachu is the new national leader of HUM while Hindu leader Ram Maharaj president of the South African Hindu Dharma Sabha, has been made the party's national chairman.
Bachu said the party was set up because the community had no voice in the provincial, national or local government that cared for the needs of Hindus.
The decision was also made after seeing political parties in the government representing Muslim and Christian communities, such as the Party, gaining a single seat in Parliament ahead of the 2019 General election after 12 years of testing, he said.
Existing religious and cultural organizations work from outside the government to address issues that the community is facing, but we need someone on the inside to effectively address these issues, Bachu said.
Bachu cites Indian language remakes as subjects in government schools and declarations Diwali a public holiday in South Africa that is among the major issues that will focus on HUM as they prepare for the 2021 municipal elections.
“Christian festivals such as Easter and Christmas are public holidays, but for Diwali, Hindus have to apply to employers for leave because it is a normal working day. Similarly, schools have to request special permission to close for the day on Diwali to accommodate their Hindu students, ”Bachu said.
Our languages like Tamil and Hindi are also dying and we can only work by being part of the government, Bachu added.
But analysts are skeptical about the party's possible success, citing the parties' failure to comply with religious guidelines to implement effective change since the first democratic government came into power in 1994.