ANC is heading for disaster

2017-09-24 06:06
Gwede Mantashe (Gallo Images)

Gwede Mantashe (Gallo Images)

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Judging from the political ruckus within the ANC, the saying that “when elephants fight, it is the grass that suffers” is pertinent, as some branches and regions are in limbo because of leadership conflicts.

We are caught up in a whirlwind that has engulfed us, leaving a trail of destruction in its wake.

The divisions within the party leadership have left many of our comrades and in society in shock, as cadres have become archenemies.

Through factionalism and politics of patronage, these divisions are now entrenched within the rank and file, just like an epidemic disease.

The progressive values, principles and aspirations of the ANC are increasingly being replaced by self-interest, greed and misconduct of unacceptable magnitude.

The ideal of a nonracial, nonsexist and prosperous society for which Oliver Regional Tambo, Walter Sisulu, Nelson Mandela and others were prepared to die, has now been reduced to rhetoric and populist propaganda.

The ability of the state machinery to deal effectively with the contemporary challenges of joblessness, poverty, disease and economic inequalities is severely inhibited and paralysed by internal strife and innuendo.

The cadre deployment policy of the ANC has largely failed our constituencies as it has often been based on friendship, patronage and expediency.

It is rather embarrassing to see that many of our comrades – with no proven managerial or technical capacity to perform their duties and execute service delivery – have been deployed to key positions.

Change must come soon

The shortcomings in the ANC’s cadre deployment policy have turned friends into foes and political rivals, as those with a sense of responsibility and accountability towards serving the nation refuse to be associated with incompetence, corruption and ill-discipline.

The patronage network is crumbling rapidly as those without any capacity to deliver services to our communities now consider anyone who is against incompetence and corruption as their key enemy.

Since the formation of the ANC in 1912, differences among comrades and friends have usually been the main ingredients for strengthening unity, comradeship and loyalty.

In contrast, robust debate in the ANC has become an alien concept, such that expressing a different opinion is treated as a serious transgression that deserves harsh levels of political marginalisation.

As we watch these political developments with disdain, illegal interceptions and recordings of private phone calls, emails and social-media posts have become the order of the day.

It has become peak season for fake scandals to discredit those who are pushing the agenda of recovering and restoring the credibility of the ANC and its leadership.

Look, for example, at the recent media leaks targeted at the deputy president of the ANC, Cyril Ramaphosa, as some of his own comrades regard him as a foe to be destroyed at all costs.

The current media and public propaganda against him and his comrades should be treated with absolute circumspection if we are to save the ANC from further implosion and ultimate extinction.

The diagnostic report that ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe presented at the policy conference in June was very specific in identifying our current weaknesses, while making profound recommendations necessary to restore the ANC’s credibility.

It is disappointing to observe that the majority of those in leadership continue to speak and act contrary to the provisions of Mantashe’s report.

It is critically important for ANC members to constantly be reminded that we should always act in the best interest of the party and that nobody is bigger than it.

If we continue to defy those tried and tested recommendations that are made by our stalwarts, veterans and concerned citizens, we do so at our own peril.

Change must come soon because the ANC is not like a cat with nine lives.

If things do not improve, the general elections in 2019 will be the straw that breaks the camel’s back.

Chief Matsila is a member of the ANC in good standing

Read more on:    anc  |  cyril ramaphosa  |  gwede mantashe

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