Guest Column

ANC stalwarts welcome the return to the values of Luthuli, Tambo and Mandela

2019-05-24 06:00
ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa during the ANC's NEC meeting in Pretoria in May 2019. Photo Thulani Mbele

ANC president Cyril Ramaphosa during the ANC's NEC meeting in Pretoria in May 2019. Photo Thulani Mbele

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By taking up the challenge to lead South Africa and its people out of the Egypt of corruption and malfeasance, Ramaphosa has entered into a social contract with the people of South Africa to lead them to the promised land, writes Thami Ntenteni.

Since Cyril Ramaphosa emerged victorious in the highly contested elections for the position of president of the ANC in Nasrec in 2017, a new phrase has entered the South African political lexicon: "Ramaphoria".President Ramaphosa has also reinforced the atmosphere of optimism by talking of a "New Dawn".This suggests a recognition that the previous administration presided over the long and dark night and the nightmare of the ANC as a corrupt and arrogant organisation which has lost its moral compass.

There is much in the public domain to reinforce this view including and not limited to the testimony of former Bosasa COO Angelo Agrizzi before the Zondo commission, the report of the Nugent commission on the orchestrated attempts to collapse SARS and the report of the High-Level Review Panel on the State Security Agency led by Dr Sydney Mufamadi.

In the context of the divisions and factional battles within the ANC, the high levels of unemployment, inequality and rampant poverty in South Africa, it is understandable that some analysts have suggested that President Ramaphosa has inherited a "poisoned chalice".

To some, he faces a challenge where he has to deal with an opposition that resides within his organisation and is not externally based. Fast forward to the outcome of the elections in which the ANC has once again been given a mandate by the people of South Africa to govern for the next five years. This mandate is to lead the country towards the vision of an egalitarian, non-sexist and prosperous country. It is not as if the electorate is unconscious and unaware of the challenges facing the ANC. One can suggest that this is once again a vote of confidence in the leadership of Cyril Ramaphosa and the ANC, albeit with a reduced majority.

It is an expression of confidence that President Ramaphosa has the capacity and the capability to restore the ANC to its erstwhile glory and deal with the morass of corruption that has tarnished the image of the ANC of Luthuli, Tambo, Mandela and all the other great leaders of this organisation.

By taking up the challenge to lead South Africa and its people out of the Egypt of corruption and malfeasance, Ramaphosa has entered into a social contract with the people of South Africa to lead them to the promised land. Without going into the details of our lived experience it is however necessary to keep in mind how we got here in the first place.

Suffice it to say that in the past nine years or so South Africa teetered on the brink of the bottomless abyss of moral decay and the flaunting of the ethical standards and values of the ANC by an elite bent on undermining what the ANC stands for and the looting of state coffers.

In this regard we must once again take cognisance that in taking his oath of office President Ramaphosa pledges to "solemnly promote all that will advance the republic and oppose all that may harm it... to discharge my duties with all my knowledge and ability and true to the dictates of my conscience..."

President Ramaphosa has his work cut out for him. The people who have given him the mandate expect him to act in accordance with the true "dictates of (his) conscience".

But he must derive solace from the fact that he does not approach this Herculean task alone, the people of South Africa are with him and the tried and tested Stalwarts and Veterans of the ANC are with him.

He will not cross the red sea of "the betrayal of a promise" alone.

The Veterans and Stalwarts have been steadfast and unwavering in their call for a return to the values and principles of the ANC. They have called for the holding of a Consultative Conference to diagnose and root out the malfeasance and the demonic actions of some within its ranks and the scourge of factionalism within the ANC.

The Stalwarts and Veterans of the ANC are fully aware of the immense challenges and the efforts required to pull the ANC from the brink of the precipice.

As always, we support every effort to restore the ANC to its former glory.We congratulate President Ramaphosa on his inauguration and pledge to give him all the support in the effort to rehabilitate our country and elevate the status of our country and people to the same level it was in 1994 when the world looked at South Africa and marvelled at the birth of our new democracy.

We believe very strongly that the strong rays of the New Dawn will evaporate the morning dew that settled during the long night characterised by all that which was an anti-thesis of what the ANC stood for.

To paraphrase the words of President Mandela during his inauguration speech… Never, never and never again shall this beautiful land of ours be subjected to the looting of state coffers and the plunder of resources meant for the alleviation of the state of poverty and the suffering of the majority of the people by those who seek to use the state as a vehicle towards self-enrichment at the expense of the poor of  our country. 

- Thami Ntenteni is a Veteran and Stalwart of the ANC and he writes in his private capacity.

Disclaimer: News24 encourages freedom of speech and the expression of diverse views. The views of columnists published on News24 are therefore their own and do not necessarily represent the views of News24.

Read more on:    anc  |  cyril rama­phosa
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