Leave government before you make a bigger mess

2008-05-23 00:00

Dear Mr President, I am writing this open letter to you because I am hoping the messages will hit home and you will do what is right for the country. As a deputy president of the country, under the leadership of Nelson Mandela and later as president, you did a tremendous job in terms of strengthening South Africa’s international relations and putting us on the global radar.

Through our involvement in the establishment of the African Union and Nepad (New Partnership for Africa’s Development), you showed us and the world that you were ahead of your time in terms of your vision for the continent and how it must start taking ownership of its problems.

Alarm bells started ringing when you did not share with us what your government’s approach towards HIV was, while our people continued to die.

Initially, your government was seen as a breath of fresh air as it dealt decisively with corruption and graft, until you were perceived to be protecting those close to you.

How do you explain your deafening silence on the country’s biggest procurement of goods (the arms deal) while you were the chairperson of the portfolio committee in charge of the multi-billion dollar transaction?

Tony Yengeni was but one of the many thieves sitting in Parliament.

Look at how the taxpayers are going to pay for the money which was stolen by dishonourable members of Parliament after they were found guilty of milking the house’s travel scheme.

Your lack of decisive action against “Mad Bob” has been shocking and underscores the saying “birds of a feather flock together”. The way the two of you maintain a firm grip on everything shows that you were cut from the same cloth. What is happening in Alexandra, Johannesburg, is all your fault. It would not have happened if you had been decisive about Zimbabwe.

You have done little to bring the country, or your comrades, into your confidence about the state of affairs in the government. How often do you hold routine press conferences with members of the media to relay information to the rest of the country on government affairs? I have never heard of a single press conference like this; instead, they are always held as a form of damage control. You and your government have twice left us in the dark: on government affairs and with the electricity fiasco. Have you ever wondered how much of a difference the R60 billion your government paid for arms would make to address our current electricity woes?

You have failed us as a leader and as an African. Your love of setting up commissions of inquiry has not addressed the actual problems and has been wasteful expenditure. The only commission of inquiry you need to set up before you leave office will be one that will investigate what it is that you fill your pipe with because it sure has not helped the cause you were deployed to carry out.

And as for the Scorpions … what Scorpions?

Do the right thing and leave government before you make a bigger mess.

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