I voted for the first time in 1994. It was an amazing experience! Unfortunately, the ACDP did not win the election that year... Yes I know – I voted with my heart, according to my convictions. Almost 20 years later South Africa seems to be headed exactly where my late Father warned it would go... and I really do not want to spend the rest of my life in a toilet!
From reading NEWS24 postings, it appears that most black South Africans believe that most white South Africans want the South African government to fail. This is not true. That would be like sawing off the branch that you're sitting on. We want South Africa to succeed! We want the same dream that Madiba once spoke so longingly of.
However, as we watch the litany of failures that is being written into the history of the ANC's role as the government of South Africa, we cannot help but feel a growing sense of despair. The worst part is that the people who are guilty of incompetence, greed and crimes against the poor KNOW that they are incompetent, greedy and guilty of crimes against the poor - but they either do not care or they believe that they must take what they can before this once beautiful country deteriorates into yet another African failure. Worse, it appears they are incapable of feeling even a modicum of shame when their selfish and evil schemes are brought into the light. Surely their ancestors cannot possibly be happy when these people rob the very ones who most need to be uplifted?
The truth is that the majority of service delivery problems in South Africa CAN be solved - if the government would accept the hand of friendship and the offer of help that is available from all population groups in this country. There is no population group which is 'better' than any other in this county. Together we built South Africa into what is once was; together we can grow into the miracle rainbow nation that was birthed in 1994.
Anyone who’s tried walking forward while looking back over their shoulder will know that a fall is inevitable. So the first things we to get rid of are the ‘apartheid’ legacy and the ‘race card’. The NEW apartheid (BEE & affirmative action) is underpinned by the race card at every turn. There is NOTHING in our past which is of any constructive value in our future. That’s right – NOTHING! All we have is today and our positive motivations to make tomorrow a better place for our children and grandchildren.
The government would do this country a great service by extending the olive branch to everyone who desires to make a positive impact on the problem areas and allow the rich pool of unused expertise to be used effectively to provide solutions.
Is it too much for the leaders to put their (substantial) pride in their pockets and concede that several heads (particularly the grey-haired ones) are better than one? It is nothing short of a travesty that so many mature, experienced and knowledgeable people are side-lined when they reach semi\retirement age – these people have the most to offer in terms of preparing the next generation of artisans and other skilled people who are needed to grow an economy. They would even be prepared to do such training for a fraction of what the ‘consultants’ are charging and would deliver a far better quality end-result. Why? Because these people come from a time when people took pride in their work and now there is just so much at stake that failure is unconscionable.
We can and should use every means at our disposal to achieve this goal. In our connected society it is possible to get an opinion from the South African people without going to the election polls every 4 years. The cellphone and Internet service providers could get meaningful and accurate statistics about major issues in a matter of days by using ‘voting buttons’ via emails and free SMSs. This is an incredibly effective tool which no-one is using! And if every provider participated, such ‘causes’ would be elevated above the sphere of politics into the ‘voice of the people’. It is time that the modern voice of South Africa was heard on issues which affect us all so that the leadership can have no doubts at all about what we expect of them – after all, this is a ’democracy’ where leaders are elected BY the people and are then tasked to work FOR the people.
I would also love to see a new law coming into effect – making it a punishable offence to show disrespect to others, unless the one being disrespected has a public record of malfeasance (Definition: official misconduct, the commission of an unlawful act, done in an official capacity, which affects the performance of official duties) or criminal activities. I find I can get along with virtually ANYONE as long as there is mutual respect in our dealings.
I hereby add my voice to the growing mass of concerned citizens who desperately want to see positive, restorative and constructive action NOW – before it is too late.