Like most marriages, our relationship with the newly elected and darling government starts off with flatters of butterflies and promises of greater things to come. A home for our children, roads for transportation, schools for more education and bacon with French bread on our tables.
In the recent general elections we have seen what I would call grovelling Politian’s do everything in their power to woe the voters, flattery of every form to a point where known leaders have stooped to ‘public shows of affection’ more specifically ‘kisses’ all in an attempt to publicly seem all encompassing and unbiased.
Now here is where the outcry begins, a day before the swearing in of our ‘beloved’ msholozi, a leaked document detailing the round figures of the amounts of money spent on the presidency alone (which is a small fortune) has become breaking news and talk of the town. Let me put it this way, just like a relationship gone sour the very things we are attracted to in the beginning are the things that become a nag and a pain that we cannot live with later in the relationship.
I fondly remember the time that Jacob Zuma was first announced as a candidate for the presidency, almost all of the south African men were elated at the fact that they putting a man who is openly polygamist in power. Back then we didn’t know anything about how much it costs to support 5 presidential wives, all we cared about was the fact that he was a man doing what almost all men wanted, having the time of his life with more than one woman. And now those five women cost the tax payers a whooping R15million a year, which i must say is a staggering amount to spend on non-elected individuals who don’t even provide any public service.
Another issue to be tabled is Nkandla, which is an article on its own but just to address the shock and surprise that people showed when the president, the leader of the country and commander in chief openly declared that he had no clue what was happening in his own back yard (fire pool), its needless to say do you really expect him to know what is happening in the homes of the south African people??? but wait, did we not realise that we were electing a man who’s qualifications are less than adequate for a president? What are his qualifications apart from being a freedom fighter? what are his social achievements, can we track his activities and capabilities? all those questions needed to be asked then, but all we wanted was a new president regardless of the consequences.
Thabo who in my opinion is a brilliant leader and man was impeached ruthlessly but because politics in the same way a marriage is started, is all about the butterflies and the good vibes and feelings we get at the beginning without putting any thought into what happens when there is a crisis and what kind of person will he or she turns out to be the day when there is no bacon on the bread (if there is any bread at all) and there are no books in schools and the roads have potholes and you have spent your last pay check on your bills only to receive that heart-warming letter that you have been retrenched because your company can’t afford to pay your salary.
Everyone was excited when the ANC stood up to fight apartheid and when they succeeded to end it all, they went as far as promising to empower the people and distribute wealth to all south African’s. The marriage proposal was all but pure honey and gold but the realities we face today are entirely different. Wealth is distributed amongst select few who have amassed ridiculous amounts of personal wealth, jobs in a country that has been the leading economy until recently are dwindling with every word you read in this article. Truth be told this has become a circus, corruption is through the roof, the mines and the unions are at loggerheads and government is sitting there waiting for someone to fix this whole situation, we just don’t know who that someone is.
Perhaps we should shy away from antics and political parties whose sole purpose is to gain power and reap the very benefits that the current government is luting. Frankly the eff’s swearing in of mp’s in overalls was brilliant I must say, true show man ship but what will they really deliver with six mp’s in parliament? A new road, maybe a bridge or even better, a bill or two in the next four years which will not pass anyway simply because they are opposition. That kind of show man ship is what is killing politics in this country. We flatter and impress the people with flowers and candy and the promises that things will definitely be better but yet we fail to deliver when times are tough. To a point where the party didn’t even have the time to come up with a proper manifesto but had time to design elaborate t-shirts, banners, adverts and so on and so forth.
The same goes with the DA and these other parties that are so thirsty for more power they forget to make a difference with what they already have. If there will ever be a political party that will unseat the ANC then we need people who are not just hungry for a 2.5million pay check at the end of year or the power to sway tenders and large projects to whoso ever you wish.
A true leader doesn’t wait until he sits at the head of the table to make an impact, we should start delivering idea’s and making meaningful contributions way before we even think of taking up power or even standing for any elections. Think of the Thambo’s, Mandela’s, Sisulu’s who made a difference before a single ballot was cast in their favour and today they are heroes, martyrs , legends.
To start with, let all the opposition parties come together and set up a coalition of mp’s that will vote on bills that make a difference for the people. Propose to cap the presidencies huge expenditure, introduce systems that will prevent another Nkandla from happening in the next four years, lets start with mowing the loan and keeping it pristine before you ask to clean the peoples fine china. For if we don’t stand together to make a difference against tyranny that is happening in this country the few that already have amassed wealth will get wealthier and the people in the grass roots will suffer even more.
At this age as a democracy gimmicks, antics, tricks, political marketing schemes should all be inconsequential, the only time we knew that south Africa has more than 30 political parties was when the posters started springing up everywhere. We have money for posters and t-shirts and banners and adverts but we don’t have the money to buy books for a single school in a community? That’s like having money to go to spur for a fine dinner date with wifey but neglecting to buy school shoes for the kids. Give the people what they need and I can guarantee their loyalty will reflect at the polls.
Much like a bad marriage or relationship, when the glamor fades and pockets are dry and there is no sensible planning for a rainy day, that is when we get tempted by tricks and apparent greener pastures of another would be suitor, all the while not realising that we should make an effort to fix what we have and not continue the cycle of bad relationships.