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Is Agang the answer?

23 June 2013, 09:49

The launch of Agang on 22 June 2013 is quite possibly one of the most significant political events  to occur in the last decade. But like any other political party in South Africa let's not count our chickens before they hatch - there is a lot of work to be done here.  

Dr Mamphele Ramphele, former Apartheid activist, academic, business woman and doctor has embarked on what some might call "the impossible". She is set on reforming our countries political structure and aiding us towards becoming that first world country we think we already are.

The honourable Dr. Ramphele issued a press release stating: “This is a momentous week for Agang SA as we prepare for the launch of our party on Saturday. Agang offers the prospect of restoring the promise of freedom and a hope for the future that is striking a chord with people across the country.”

What strikes me as particularly interesting is how much of a juxtaposition exists between our current president and Dr. Ramphele. Her political party has been criticised of being "elitist" whereas much of the reasoning given behind the support of our current president Jacob Zuma came from the fact that he could resonate with the people. Although one might have to reconsider that branding position for our infamous president when we consider his relationship with the Guptas.

Jacob Zuma has been criticised by many for being a polygamist, and attempting (some might even say succeeding) to combine his cultural position with his political one, forcing us as a nation to accept what some may choose to call a corrupt, "terror" who uses his power to intimidate those under his rule to silence and submission.  Kenny Kunene's open letter ring a bell, anyone?

On the other hand we have Ramphele , an acclaimed academic, honourable woman who stands firmly for all that is just and fair. Not only does it seem that she has been sent from the heavens above, but I don't believe South Africa has very many positive stories to tell of women in parliament.

Failures and scandals aside, what has our current president done in his ten year reign? Nkandla  ward elections, a rape trial, legal matters of corruption as well as recent viral "letter to the president" written by Kenny Kunene would lead one to believe that he has failed our nation. And this would not be a lie. Our country has seen some of the most despicable crimes committed in parliament during his tenure.

Perhaps it is time we gave an educated woman whose mind is set on transformation, zero tolerance for corruption and crime with a long history of fighting against Apartheid a chance to restore the faith in the ideals we held so strongly during the times when we believed that our democracy would lead our South Africa to a better place.   Or we could let her party join the long list of opposition parties that have tried but failed dismally in trying to gain a solid opposition against the ANC which stands at 65.9% of the national vote in the last elections. Only time will really tell. 

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