2014: The year that wasn’t so bad

2014-12-28 20:00

The people of Mzansi like the drama of living at fever pitch. This can mean that we don’t look hard enough at what’s working.

As it turns out, this year wasn’t a train smash.

The big picture is interesting for the progress it shows. The internet is connecting more of us – almost half the world’s population hit the World Wide Web in 2014. The digital divide is still big, but it is getting smaller.

In South Africa, the uptake of smartphones and data is high enough to ensure many of us are participants in a new democracy, where the web and its offspring make data available more widely to improve transparency. Very little can be hidden nowadays and more people have a say.

The Millennium Development Goals set by the UN to focus on good global ambitions are working. Child mortality rates are reducing (in South Africa, too) while hunger reduction continued this year, according to the Food and Agriculture Organisation.

There’s been a renewable energy surge across the globe and at home as wind farms blow and solar is powered up. Between April and October, 131?000 homes were electrified in South Africa, while the state has built 15 schools every month.

There’s lots more to do, but we are not standing still or moving backwards. Onward to 2015.

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