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Thabo
 
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ANC Never Loved Us

11 May 2014, 19:00
After listening to our president say that the problem in this country is intelligent people, I was furious. Angry enough to hate someone I have never before met in my life. For the record, no Mr. President... My [black] people are poor, but they are NOT stupid!

The question about why the majority of poor masses continue to support a ruling party which abuses them is one which at first intrigued me, then confused me as much as it angers me.
I can understand the loyalty that the black majority may have towards a party that was at the forefront of liberating them from the wretched hands of their opressors during apartheid. Such loyalty which translates into, I think, a sense of guilt that leads our people to believe they "OWE" the ANC their votes after all they've done for us. But loyalty and guilt is not a policy of the ANC. We need to face the facts that the ANC of Nelson Mandela which gave us our freedom in '94 died with him (perhaps even long before he himself ascended to the Heavens, which is where I believe in my heart of hearts he currently is). And in the words of our beloved hero himself: "If the ANC does to you what the white government did to us, then you do to the ANC what we did to the white government". It's sad to see however that very few are willing to honour his wish.

Besides loyalty, perhaps another argument is that our people fought so long and so hard during the apartheid era, and so many lives were lost, that they do not have that "fighting spirit" within them anymore. Yes, few might still protest and burn tyres (and police stations, which is regressive really), but they are inherently too fatigued to invest energy into fighting and overthrowing yet another decaying government order.

Fear is perhaps a very big one. A lot of black people would never vote DA because they fear apartheid would return. It is an unsubstantiated fear, but I understand where it comes from. This does not, however, answer the question as to why then they do not vote for other "black" political parties...your Azapo, Agang, IFP, COPE etc. I hear so many ANC die-hard supportes chant the same tired theme "Better the devil you know than the one wwhich you don't" as a basis for their continued support of the ruling party despite its many weaknesses. But the truth is that most of these parties are not progressive. The DA is mainly reactionary and too obsessed with Zuma than really concerned with the needs of the people. Agang had some good policies and needed only to prove itself, but after the failed merger with the DA people lost hope in them.
None of the other parties inspire any real confidence as they are either out of touch with reality of have fallen apart beyond repair.

We are forever indebted to the old ANC, but as for Zuma and his ANC, which has a good story to tell:
1. Gupta gate
2. Andries Tatane and police brutality
3. Marikana
4. Arms deal
5. Shabir Shaik and Jackie Selebi who were found guilty of heinous crimes and are healthier than nost of us but walk as free men on medical parole
6. CAR
7. Textbooks in Limpopo
8. Malawi national roads and the infamous "don't think like an African in africa"
9. Fake interpreter at Mandela's funeral
10. E-tolls
11. Nkandla palace of corruption
Ja neh, good story to tell ya masepa! 

But who is out there actually voting for the ANC? THE POOR PEOPLE...THE MAJORITY of South Africans the president exploits by visiting their rural areas and handing out free food parcels around election time, but forgets about as soon as the hustle for votes is over and goes to feed his cows KFC wings. The same poor people who are disrespected enough to be given ugly yellow t-shirts yet the ministers wear Caducci suits and step into their Mercedes C-classes and drive off to their million-rand homes. No one in Zuma's family can swim, but he owns a 3 million-rand pool, yet millions across the country have no access to clean water.

But do you think the poor care about this stuff? The poor don't care if Zuma's Indian friends landed their plane on a national military base and they aren't offended that he even thinks they're dumb. They are out there too busy fighting real battles trying to survive. For a poor old woman who never had electricity during apartheid, living in an RDP house is a dream come true. For that unemployed single mom who had a baby when she was a teenager and her boyfriend deserted her, that R260 she gets for child-support grant is everything. For that poor student studying at varsity funded by NSFAS, the ANC continues to be a bunch of superheroes in their eyes. For them all they want are the basics, and the ANC gives them that much..the mere minimum.

But 20 years post democracy should we not be asking for MORE, for BETTER than just the basics. We have one national ruling party, a black party, yet white people do not know how it feels to have the electricity trip during winter or to walk to fetch water to drink..yet we are governed by the same municipalities. White people do not know how it feels to live in constant fear of debit orders or for your house to be broken into and have your mother/sister raped by someone you know and not even report it. But what's really sad is that black people themselves do not know their own stigma..the lived reality of their own people. So even the educated middle class continue to vote ANC when they should know better. The ones who aren't poor. The ones who vote ANC because they're out there buying BIS for their BlackBerry with their NSFAS loans. The ones who vote ANC coz they got a tender. The "yellow bones", the ones who are no longer black coz they have a brazillian weave and live in Sandton.

But hey, maybe I'm too smart for my own good so maybe I'm part of the problem in SA like you suggest Mr. President. Maybe despite the fact that i dont like Malema, I actually read the manifesto and agree with a lot of their policies instead of just making a blind vote. Maybe I'll just be happy with the free coffee Wimpy gives out to voters...but only for today. Cause Mr. President, it might not happen today, but I dream of a better South Africa. And I just hope there are more people out there like me.

P.S this is not an open letter, just the thoughts of a random 22year old soon-to-be law graduate who loves South Africa and what it has potential to become.
So I drink my free Wimpy coffee with the edited words of the great philosopher Drake (yes, the American hip hop rapper).
"Worst behaviour. Remember? ANC never loved us!"

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