What has Mandela achieved?

2012-07-28 09:49

I am glad the media has stopped pretending that every black person in South Africa necessarily shares the illusion of former president Nelson Mandela’s “godlike” status.

No talk show host ever invites those with a different view and nor do you find elaborate articles in newspapers giving readers an alternative view of the man.

I’m hoping someone can help me understand this highly punted heroism with a response.

Except for a warm feeling that the man generates, I cannot find anything of substance that Madiba has achieved for African people.

Of course, most will answer with their imagined reality based on historical distortion.

Mandela may have been part of our struggle history, but which action of his caused the apartheid government to falter?

What is obvious is that the apartheid government and its predecessor did not perceive the ANC as a threat for 48 years leading up to 1960, when the PAC staged a real challenge to the status quo.

Only then did they find it prudent to ban the ANC, even as collateral damage.

When he left prison, Mandela was instrumental in preventing a referendum among black people to express their views about the nature of the negotiations that took place in 1990.

In fact, the only people who negotiated with a clear mandate was FW de Klerk and his National Party.

It was he who also sabotaged the constituent assembly route which all liberation movements had endorsed.

This would have made it possible for ordinary people to vote for people to draft our Constitution.

But more than anything else, what in his five years as president did he do for black people?

Can we call the squatter camps, dysfunctional education and health systems, corruption and tenders the fruit of what he planted from 1994 to 1999?

Please help me understand this view that Mandela is a great African leader.

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