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AJ Oosthuizen
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Leadership through the eyes of a teenager.

09 May 2013, 09:00

What is leadership?

Most summarise leadership as a quality enabling you to instruct, motivate and to be good of nature. But to me, leadership is so much more than that. Leaders need to be innovators, they have to change the way people live and interact with their environments. Leaders have to be able to make the hard decisions that they may be hated for today, but will be loved for tomorrow. Leaders need to represent each and every person. They have to be able to put morals, beliefs and personal agenda aside for the people's sake.

Leaders do not necessarily have to be good, on the contrary, things like rebellion may be seen as a “bad” thing, but has produced some of the greatest leaders of our time for example, Nelson Mandela, a liberator who fought for the rights of all his countrymen.

But truth be told, our leaders lack most, if not all of these qualities. We see reports of corruption, crime and international scandal each day, but what do we actually do about it? Nothing sadly, and in turn these problems get even worse.

When we allow leaders that break this country apart, to continue doing so, we are stabbing ourselves in the back. Then we are the actual criminals and fraudsters. People need to learn that their opinion counts, that their vote counts and that their voice counts.

They should not just sit back and take everything as it comes, when they themselves know that what is going on is not right. And when they, the people, finally stand up for themselves, then, and only then they will not have to crouch down to eat the crumbs, while the elite are busy stuffing their cheeks with this country's hard-earned resources.

Alas, this is where true leadership comes in, to motivate the people to speak out. To change the game, not by changing the rules, but by changing the way we play it.

We need new voices, clean and promising. Leaders that understand our current situation and can adapt and modify to the ever changing political spectrum, who do not blame their own shortcomings on others and who can break the chains of our past that is withholding us from greatness.

With the death of the last Iron Leader we have entered a new era of leadership, one that can be seen as a new hope for humanity. Upon being elected the first female prime minister of Britain, Margaret Thatcher stated in her speech,

Where there is discord, may we bring harmony. Where there is error, may we bring truth. Where there is doubt, may we bring faith. And where there is despair, may we bring hope.”

I believe that these four pillars, Harmony, Truth, Faith and Hope, should be our and our leaders' guidelines when fixing our crumbling society. To restore harmony by letting our citizens sleep safe at night, to bring out the truth by removing corrupted officials from our society, to regain faith by putting the people first and to rebuild hope by delivering, and not just promising, a better and brighter future. A future in which we can remove the burglar bars from our windows that are separating us from our countrymen,

Just think of the endless possibilities that stare as right in the face, think of what we can become. The South African people deserve so much more. What is the people's freedom worth if they have to live in shacks and come by on R5 a day? The time has come where each of us are going to make a difference, no matter your size, age, sex, race or religion.

This country will be rocked to its core by the winds , or rather the earthquakes, of change. Step by step, until we reach our ultimate goal of an equal and free society.

Someone once told me that I will never be able to change the opinions of others, never change their take on life and that I won't make a difference. Well, he or she may be right, I may not change other people's opinions nor will I be able to make a difference, but I sure as hell am going to try.

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