This is the age of real hope

2009-08-15 00:00

THIS week has been somewhat of a historic one for South Africa. It’s 100 days since President Jacob Zuma first entered office, it is 300 days before the start of the 2010 Fifa Soccer World Cup, the interest rates were reduced 500 basis points, or half a percentage point, and Archbishop Emeritus Desmond Tutu received the highest honour awarded to a civilian in the United States.

During these trying times, there has been little or no good news, let alone so much good news within a couple of days. Needless to say, the good news has been welcomed.

While all the doomsayers wrote off Zuma before the April 22 elections, saying that if he was made president, this country would “go down the drain”, it has been the opposite. Perhaps it is too early to judge his performance, but according to everything his detractors have said, we should not be where we are as a country.

Here is a man who was portrayed as an empty vessel with no brain, who was unable to observe, think or make a deduction. If I did not know better, I would think that his detractors had shipped off to Perth or Adelaide but I know they are lying in ambush, like the scavengers that they are.

Even Tutu has woken up to reality and has said that Zuma needs to be given a chance. When Tutu tried his level best to assassinate Zuma’s character, you would have sworn that Tutu always got everything right the first time and that he was never given a chance. As if he is a saint.

When Zuma met Tutu, the latter said that the former needs to be given a chance and, despite his criticism of Zuma, Tutu commended Zuma for meeting with him, praising Zuma’s “African style of leadership”.

There is obviously a lot that Zuma knows that Tutu does not know as there was nothing African about his personal attacks on Zuma, which have evaporated with the post-election honeymoon.

If someone is corrupt and is way in over his or her head, why does he or she even need a chance, regardless of whether it’s before or after the elections?

If people are campaigning for a particular party, there is nothing wrong with that as long as they make it public and let it be known that this is the case.

They should not be like Michael Jackson and not disclose that they are not gay so that they cash in on gay sales. Very convenient!

Under the current administration, we are likely to see transparency at a level that has been unheard of in this country, with suggestions that the Monetary Policy Committee may be made public, as well as the committee’s formation coming under the spotlight.

The president is also not sending his “servants” in the form of officials to do fact finding but is going to hot spots himself. Opposition parties are feeling at home more than ever and, unlike previously when former president, autocrat and Robert Mugabe-wannabe Thabo Mbeki referred to an “age of hope”, this is the age of real hope.

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