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Reflections post Mangaung

19 December 2012, 08:44

Zuma, amidst much grumbling from the public on various issues such as the Nkandla compound, Lenasia saga, failing education system, e-tolling, many instances of corruption and a pending vote of no confidence by the countries opposition parties, has been re-elected as ANC president and by default the countries president for another five years post the 2014 elections.

This is the time of great opportunity both for Zuma personally, ANC as an organisation and the South African masses at large.

Mangaung's outcome opens up an opportunity for Zuma the individual and the president of the country to redeem himself. An opportunity to make good on promises made in 2009, amongst many the economic reform that was promised, the slashing of the unemployment rate and the eradication of corruption. Now more than ever will be the time that Zuma will need to show great leadership. 

If I were in the president's shoes I would be filled with mixed emotions. Relief that I had been spared great embarrassment of being the only president to date that would have served less than the prescribed two terms. Tremendous pressure to perform, arising from the amount of public outcry on his leadership and the ANC government during his time of steering. With not much of an option we must wish our president luck and stand by him during this time.

For the ANC the organisation this is an opportunity to repair the cracks within. This is the time to bind the different factions together and put the happenings of Polokwane in archives. Now is the time that the organisation must pull all the available skills together to make good on their promises and mandate. This is the time that amends are made of the broken relationships and that the loosening grip on the hibernating middle class is tightened. In the absence of a credible opposition party the future of the ANC is bright lest they fail to make use of this life line.

For the masses the results of Mangaung have sealed our fate for the next few years. We have no choice but to accept the fact that Zuma will be our president for longer than we may have wished or liked. With this said this is the time for us as the future leaders of this country to mobilize and ensure that change is going to come. Change will not come if we remain in our current state of hibernation. It is time that we realise that passive political participation will not yield change. Not to sound clichéd but we need to be the change we want to see. We must join a political party and be actively involved to influence policies and decisions. Those who favour the policies of the ANC must join them officially and actively foster change within the organisation and those who favour the DA must do the same.

Despite our opinions of the ruling party and its leader, it is evident that much more action is needed from us as the public. We can no longer afford to sit on the sidelines waiting for the next person to represent our views within the political space. What happens politically ultimately affects every single one of us as the inhabitants of our lovely country.

An attempt, to set aside our differences and support our president in the mountainous task that lies ahead of him, is of significant importance.

I can only wish Mr Zuma and his administration success in achieving their goals and meeting the expectations of South Africans.

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