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Rupesh Hari
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Proud of South Africa

15 November 2010, 07:20  - Rupesh Hari
I am a South African living abroad and came across New24 asking views of South Africans on their view of SA from a distance.

I live in the US, very employable, PhD from a US university, got offered positions in UK, and the US and would get a greencard within a year of my work in the US but I plan to leave all that for a life in SA.

Everyone has been telling me that SA is going to fail for the past 16 years and I am tired of waiting for SA to fail. It seems as if SA is moving on with life while the rest of us overseas are waiting for it to fail.

Before the World Cup, South African haters said the WC in SA would fail. After the WC, they said it was a success despite (not because of) the government. Seems like there is always an excuse why SA succeeds in anything but an obvious reason from them for when SA fails (mostly SA or black majority government).

Happy overseas?

In all that time, SA has gone from a near bankrupt country at the end of apartheid to a G20 country, widely respected for its human rights commitments. It is a major player in the world for its economic clout and furthermore, it can hold a world cup like no other. This is despite not having a brilliant soccer team (Bafana Bafana - still I am proud of your efforts).

I always wonder if people are truly happy outside SA. I think some people are and some of them would have been happy wherever they had been because they make it work (SA attitude, isn't it?). Some are not so happy outside SA but convince themselves it is much better than being in SA. These are some of the real haters because they feel they were forced to give up SA and its lifestyle.

And there are those who believe they could be happy anywhere and being home would give them either a bit more happiness or they believe they can contribute to a better SA. Ultimately, you can go to China but can never be truly Chinese. You can go to France and never be truly French but anyone can be a South African.

Some SA statistics do scare me. I am scared of the crime. I am scared of the corruption. It is everywhere in the world, trust me on that. It is just that poorer countries cannot afford the wastage due to corruption. I am scared that only 7% of the schools have libraries, and most of all, I am scared of the Julius Malemas of the world because I think some of their policies will not only lead to lower quality of life for those they want to crush but most to those who they claim to represent.

Coming home

But I am also intensely proud of SA and her achievements. Look at our financial system, rated 5th or 6th for stability, look at our political clout in the world. Look at our constitution that can only make policy makers of the world jealous.

I am proud that despite being largely a male dominated homophobic society (as much of the world), our constitution provides for exact equal rights to women and differently sexual oriented people. Look around the inspiration from Natalie du Toit, Pistorius and Mr ke nako himself, Cameron van der Burgh. Look at the people who are making a brighter day every day. Look at some of the well to do people who give up their time to make a better SA. Look around in SA, and you will see ordinary South Africans doing extraordinary things. Look around and you will be amazed at my country and her people.

I am coming home South Africa, keep a place for me. Ke nako, hai hai, ke nako.

- Are you a South African living abroad interested in sharing your views? What is it like for a South African living in a foreign country or how do you view South Africa from a distance? Send us your columns to and you might get published in our new Beyond Borders section.

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Disclaimer: All articles and letters published on MyNews24 have been independently written by members of News24's community. The views of users published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24. News24 editors also reserve the right to edit or delete any and all comments received. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

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