Cape Town – With a tainted and scandal-ridden president clinging on to power at all costs and a clear lack of leadership in practically all spheres of public life, former finance minister Nhlanhla Nene stands out as a beacon of integrity and courage to ordinary South Africans.
Fin24 has received an overwhelming response to a call for users to send Nene their best wishes, with many saying that his principled stand against corruption has made the country a better place.
They thanked Nene for his integrity and the sacrifice he made to the country on Friday, exactly one year after he was fired by President Jacob Zuma.
“We the people owe you such a debt,” said Fin24 user Sally Davies. “Today everyone stands up, ‘popping like popcorn’ to use the Speaker's expression, but when you spoke to hold the line for all of us, it must have been so tough and frightening.”
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“We really respect your leadership in South Africa and strongly believe that you are the right man to lead South Africa,” said Fin24 user Wandile Msibi.
“Thank you for your integrity,” said Fin24 user Michael Walker. “South Africa is in your debt and you set a good example of how to serve our country.”
“Thank you for standing up to what is right when the temptation was so great,” said Fin24 user Jacqui Moolman. “Integrity always pays off! May God bless you and I pray that you will be a great inspiration to the youth of this country.”
“Our family pray that whatever has been taken from you; not just your ministerial post, but your peace, your income, your opportunities; will be fully restored to you,” said Fin24 users Carl and Joanne Bottcher.
“We are extremely proud of you,” said Fin24 user Omeshia Hemraj. “Thank you for putting South Africans first.”
“You saved this country billions,” said Fin24 user Ricardo Mackenzie. “Thanks for speaking truth to power and not allowing the looters get their hands on the cookie jar.”
“Mr Nene, you are a tsunami when it comes to money matters,” said Fin24 user Omley Maebela. “I wish you all the best because you are the best amongst the best.”
“Good governance will prevail,” said Fin24 user Bill Kelly. “All the very, very best for the future.”
“Viva Nene viva,” said Fin24 user Iain Cochrane.
“I want to commend you as a man of incredible integrity and bravery in the stance you took,” said Fin24 user Penny Bush. “While you are a loss to the country's leadership, I do believe that you are going to add incredible value in the farming and private sector as you apply your mind to transforming that sector and the challenges faced. May you continue to be a voice and influence in our beautiful nation.”
“You became a victim for being honest, hardworking, clever and a man of integrity,” said Fin24 user Hamish McBain. “These are values that are not shared by those intent on the capture of state institutions in South Africa. Thank you for the role you have played to date and may you go on to help save South Africa from those intent on its destruction for selfish ends.”
“I am so sorry, Mr Nene, that it had to take firing you to wake up the nation to what was going on behind the scenes,” said Fin24 user Elizabeth Chamberlain. “We thank you for the way in which you did your job as Finance minister with such integrity, standing up against corruption at great personal cost. I hope your own career will continue from strength to strength. This country needs you in whatever capacity.”
“It was unbelievable what happened to you and it is something that I am still smarting from and all because certain individuals sought to usurp your due diligence for this country so that they could plunder state coffers and push through arrangements for things this country can ill afford,” said Fin24 user Roxana Kelly.
“I do hope that someday you will come back into the fold of government when it is under new and good governance protocols, although I think after the way in which you were treated you may, and quite rightly, think otherwise.
“Have a wonderful Christmas holiday with your family and I hope that 2017 is everything you wish it to be, you truly deserve it! My hero, you truly are a South African hero.”
Fin24 user Sue Swart said that whilst she cannot begin to understand the difficulties Nene must have experienced in maintaining his ground in the face of enormous adversity, as a South African she thanks him for being the catalyst for the activism amongst citizens that it generated.
“I personally was so outraged and incredulous that I have become more politically astute and will not ever again be complacent,” said Swart. “We need more people like yourself who display a level of personal integrity, and solid value system.
“I salute you sir, for your role in highlighting much of what is wrong, and for inspiring many ordinary citizens to say 'enough, no more'.”
* Send Nene your wishes on Nenegate Day and we will publish them and send him a copy of your thoughts. Email Fin24 now.