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Ian de Jager
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We miss you, Madiba

14 July 2014, 20:45
It’s been more than seven months since we said goodbye, Tata. It hasn’t been a good seven months.

The celebration of your birthday is coming up and we South Africans will remember “our” Madiba again, even if only for a day. Or for 67 minutes at least.

You have done so much for South Africa, and we thought your legacy would live on forever. Unfortunately, it seems as if the people are forgetting you day by day. Short memories.

I joined a campaign to keep your legacy alive three months ago, and then I requested 3,000 fellow South Africans to do the same. No-one did.

You said “Let’s recommit to work towards our common goal: a nation where all of us are winners, all of us have shelter, food and education.

I spend a lot of time on social media every day, and I try my best to educate my fellow South Africans. My small part in making this beautiful country a better place, bit by bit. And yes, every now and again I do come across a success story.

Did you know, Tata – our youngest doctor (Sandile Kubheka) is only twenty years old? That’s the same age as democracy. A young man who made the very best of the education that you fought for. He’s one of the new generation that we can be extremely proud of. I hope to live long enough to see the day that he becomes our Minister of Health.

On the subject of education – there’s a glimmer of hope, Tata. As I told you, I spend a lot of time on social media. It is heartening to see from the comments that are being made in this space that a small percentage of educated South Africans are making their voices heard – and putting the blame for the current state of the country squarely where it belongs.

The days where people were blindly following those who shouted the loudest, are coming to an end. A small percentage of South Africans are starting to think for themselves.

Whether these South Africans will gather enough momentum to turn our beloved country around in time, remains to be seen.

Unfortunately we have those whose loud voices are still being heard, shouting daily on social media – to burn our beloved country to the ground, and to make it ungovernable.

Our leaders are lying to us. They are neglecting us, defrauding us, and stealing our money. There is no-one left worthy of being called “Tata” anymore.

Since you left, it seems that we are heading in the wrong direction – fast.

You said “all of us should have food“. Our farmers are being murdered on a daily basis now. Eventually, we will all die of starvation. I fail to see the logic behind this – maybe someone can explain?

I am glad you’re not here to see this. It would have made you very sad.

On this topic, I want to provide you with a real world, grass-root level example. You will not believe this is actually happening:

“A well-known government official is the owner of a farm in the North West. A week ago, police and officials of the SPCA went to the farm, where they found 80 dead and 117 dying animals, including pigs, sheep, geese, goats and ducks. It appeared the animals had been without water and food for around two weeks. There were no farm workers on the property, no electricity, and the water pumps were broken.”

“The last farm worker to abandon the farm said his family was forced to leave because they too faced starvation. His predecessor also warned that he had only received R800 in payment for three months work.”

So, not only are the people of South Africa suffering at the hands of government officials – even farm animals are left to die due to neglect.

Did you give 67 years of your own life so people can do this to one another, and to animals as well? This example is just one of the most recent in a spate of atrocities being committed on a daily basis.

On the topic of crime in South Africa – when you were still with us, we felt safe. Not anymore. As soon as I wake up every morning, I say a prayer – thanking God that my family is still alive, my house hasn’t been broken into, and no-one in my circle has been hijacked.

Since you left, I’m preparing for the worst. I will most probably die a violent death, instead of natural causes, or peacefully in my sleep. Most likely, I will be killed in a hijacking, robbery or break-in.

I wish you were still with us, but I’m glad you’re not.

Rest in peace, Madiba.

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