What is inexplicable is the fact that our political establishment – and especially the opposition – appears to have become comfortably acclimatised and desensitised to the prevailing political quagmire and have lamentably become a complicit part of the decayed establishment, writes Herman Mashaba.
Just as our country has reached its lowest point regarding ineptitude in every sphere of government, we are exposed to new cases of maladministration, mismanagement, and social carelessness.
This situation manifests in the heightened plight of a population that continuously finds itself against the proverbial “ropes” as far as unemployment, safety and security, social welfare, quality of education and healthcare are concerned.
It is understandable that the ANC intends to do everything possible to defend its woefully indefensible track record in government, especially during the “Nine wasted years” under the Jacob Zuma presidency. And now, tragically also the ensuing five years and counting of “Ramaphoria” and “Thuma Mina” of Cyril Ramaphosa.
What is inexplicable is the fact that our political establishment – and especially the opposition – appears to have become comfortably acclimatised and desensitised to the prevailing political quagmire and have lamentably become a complicit part of the decayed establishment.
In case one might feel that this is a harsh and unjustified observation, allow me to allude to some observations to demonstrate that indeed those whom the gods seek to destroy are first made mad.
How else can one explain the ruling party’s brazen corruption and how comfortable and ineffective the current opposition establishment has become. And how badly the opposition has abdicated the responsibility of being the bulwark against the excesses of power.
Take the case of the Premier of Kwazulu-Natal, Sihle Zikalala’s self-serving abuse of state resources which he diverted to ensure his personal residence had access to potable water when so many people in KZN have suffered without access to safe drinking water following the recent devastating floods.
The devastation caused by these floods has been unimaginable, but we would be remiss to simply accept their impact as an unavoidable “Act of God”!
Instead, as with all else that has gone wrong in our country, put the blame where it belongs, right at the doorstep of ANC corruption.
The people of South Africa must not let the ANC government off the hook once more.
There can be no denying that it is precisely due to the ineptitude of ANC government officials; their aversion to conducting mundane maintenance of municipal infrastructure.
Not to have planned and put risk mitigation measures in place that could have alleviated the massive destruction of property and unnecessary loss of so many people’s lives, not to mention innocent children, is nothing less than criminal.
Unfortunately, the senselessness of government is not limited to KZN or only as far as the impunity of ANC sponsored insanity goes – their behaviour has gone viral.
Mockery of oath
Consider how pathetically Parliament has managed the case against Julius Malema, who, despite having sworn or affirmed the Oath of Office on more than one occasion, committing to being faithful to the Republic of South Africa; to obey, respect and uphold the Constitution and all other laws of the Republic, has unashamedly continued to make a mockery of this oath.
His encouragement of illegal foreign nationals to “find creative ways” to enter South Africa without proper documentation has gone unpunished. But how can we expect him to be held accountable when ANC leaders who have been implicated of unspeakable wrongdoing are free to do as they please?!
And so, Malema has been absolved of any negligence by Parliament without so much as a slap on the wrist.
And then there is the case of former Health Minister Zweli Mkhize, a senior government official who now has his sights set on the presidency of the ANC, who has also been absolved of wrongdoing by Parliament’s Ethics Committee despite his son’s Digital Vibes being implicated in Covid-19-related corruption.
Citing a frivolous reason for his absolution, the ethics committee dared to tell South Africans that it was because his son was not his dependent.
Nevertheless, it continues to get worse!
SCOPA chairperson and member of the opposition, Mkhuleko Hlengwa’s treatment and subsequent throwing out of Eskom board member Ms Busisiwe Mavuso has now added to the list of the madness our society has become accustomed to.
Was Mavuso incorrect in her assertion that Eskom finds itself in the mess that it is in and South Africans forever without electricity due to ANC mismanagement?
The fact that Hlengwa could not bear to hear the truth of how the ANC’s kleptocratic tendencies have brought Eskom to its knees is also perhaps understandable because he must be very careful not to rock the rusty boat of the ANC too much for fear of losing his lucrative position “awarded” to him, when, ordinarily it should be occupied by the official opposition who must conduct unbiased and effective oversight over the executive.
This lack of ethical conviction and moral courage is what will surely lead to the destruction of our beloved country. It is now time to turn this fearful tide around. It is time for us all to heed the words of Brutus in the Shakespearian play, Julius Caesar, when he said, “There is a tide in the affairs of men, which taken at the flood leads to fortune. Omitted, all the voyage of their life is bound in shallows and in miseries.”
Alas, we cannot afford to be bound in misery when we have the wherewithal to fix South Africa, and that we must.
– Herman Mashaba is President of ActionSA.
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