Something tells me that Pravin Gordhan isn’t getting any Christmas gifts from parliament this year, or maybe he gets a bonus. Who knows?
As most have probably read already, earlier this week Mr Gordhan declared that all government credit cards be cut up and wasteful expenditure be stopped immediately, leaving all MP’s with the unfortunate decision to cancel that Hilton Hotel booking and instead stay in one of the Protea hotel’s rooms, the horror I tell you…
In a bid to assure the masses that taxpayer monies would no longer grease the luxuriously fluffy lives of our supposedly hard-working officials and states personnel, Mr Gordhan goes on and boldly claims that no new credit cards would replace the ones to be tossed out. He went on to assure us how all these ‘benefits’, that have been funded by our hard earned income by the way, such as fancy cars and comfy flights and so on would end… apparently.
But of course as I came to the end of the article I finally saw the catch where all this was only to come into effect on the 1 December. [I assume it to be this year 2013, though the article I read doesn’t specify.]
In all honesty, this announcement doesn’t come as a surprise to me. The government has been attacked by other political parties, the public and media for long enough now to know they need to actually do something or they are good and thoroughly screwed.
All the financial misconduct that has been leaked out and continues to leak out is starting to anger the majority and I’m guessing it’s starting to affect their pockets in some way, or why else do something about it?
Okay, yes… I can be somewhat of a pessimist at times, especially when it comes to our lovely government, but I work on facts] and experience. In the past few months alone, too many officials have been caught with either their hand in the cookie jar or with their pants down, both scenarios which somehow seemed to expose some kind of huge financial hiccup.
Now whether or not it was a case of false accusation or someone using those caught as scapegoats, I think it can be considered generally irrelevant in this case. Why you may ask? Well, because;
A) Karma will deal with that, and
B) The Money/Property/whatever Valuable is still gone, wasted, lost between outstretched words and continuous explanations that explain nothing.
So with such a pothole of a track record it was only a matter of time before something was going to happen and with it a reaction.
Personally, I think the E-Tolls were the public’s last straw, the ‘event’ that tipped the bucket, if you will. It was bad enough that SANRAL was pushing for it to exist, but really what broke the stick was the signing of the ‘E-Toll Bill’ [let’s be honest, no one will really call it anything else…] by our President, who ensured his absence from the country at the time of the big news to the rest of us.
Sure you could say the bucket was already swinging with the whole Nklandla stuff and the Guptagate area of things, but those were ‘over the fence’ kind of issues. E-tolls on the other hand live in your backyard and suck the colour right out from your sunrise and we all need those beautiful colours of our country’s sunrise when we wake up and need to start a day without ramming our cars into unwanted structures or setting fire to incompetent colleagues/bosses put into positions to make the company look good, while you actually do the work, without the pay….
But getting back on track, E-toll was the hand that pushed and the result was simple, enough was enough. Already being taxed three ways to Sunday for those roads AND other’s fluffy life styles, the public obviously wouldn’t just sit back and accept a fourth hand digging into a very slimming salary as well. So now we have the bucket tipped and all this goo crawling around and we see it spawning some strange things, take the EFF for example.
And the result: The Government trying to cover its ass with all the same pre-election ‘tactics’ [which still boggle my mind as to why they still work], except of course it would seem our president has realized that maybe, just maybe, he should talk to the ‘educated’ and thus he sends our former president to talk to those considered worthy. Of course we should just forget he was chased out by JZ and all those whispered fights and scandals, but whatever right? Water under the bridge…
Let’s not forget the ‘punishments’ for all those officials who were caught being bad. But to that I can only quote Trevor Noah in asking ‘Who gets fired into their position?’
If being caught and punished by my boss meant I not only kept my job, but about 16 million rand as well, where do I sign up!
Now we have Pravin Gordhan, most likely just trying to calm the riled citizens who watch as the higher ups live it up, while the rest of us wonder where the hell we will get the next pay out to feed our children, ourselves, our pets. How much we will have left to pay for our barely roadworthy vehicles or public transport or even how much we can scramble together to pay school fees, house payments, rental… how much we have to live AFTER we’ve probably bought the left shoelace of some official we are likely never to meet.
Don’t get me wrong, I like the message he comes with. The picture he paints looks promising. The words he strings together are hopeful, HOWEVER, they are still just words.
Actions speak louder than words and unfortunately, over the last 19 years of leadership, our government has shown a progression of action that went from the outlines of hopes, dreams, the writings of laws and then suddenly to complete disinterest, corruption and the blatant disregard of the public’s opinion.
So forgive me while I don’t believe the beautifully stringed sentences until action is taken, proven and a difference is seen and the public actually matters more than how sad MP’s are that they can’t have an all-you-can-eat at meetings about their next vacation in Mexico.
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