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Africa's corruption is different

28 November 2011, 08:44

When people complain about our extraordinary high crime rate government excuse makers will repeat the well-worn story that it is a worldwide phenomenon and not unique to South Africa.

That is true , crimes like murder, assault , rape, armed robbery, corruption etc occur where ever there are people , but it is the scale on which it happens  in sunny South Africa  that makes us different .

Take corruption for instance, which is as common as the common cold, but most countries however function well and even prosper in spite of it. In Africa however and now in our country  it has become endemic and is probably the main cause of failure and chaos  on the continent.

There is a joke going round which demonstrates the difference between Africa's brand of corruption  and that of other countries.

Two young men , one from Africa and the other from Asia became friends while studying abroad. They returned to their own countries and became politicians. Some years later the African went to visit his friend and found him to be very properous . Lovely house , luxury cars etc. He said : "Hell man , you have done well , how did you manage it ?" He took his friend to the balcony and pointed to an impressive new toll road. "You see that road , 10% " and he tapped his chest.

A few years  later the Asian called on his African friend and was surprised to find him even more prosperous. He lived in a mansion, and several "Mabenzis" and Rolls Royces were parked in the many garages. When questioned about his opulence  he took his friend to the balcony ."You see that new airport?"  "What airport ? I see no airport."  "Exactly", the African replied. "A 100% ," and tapped his chest.


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