When watching the Zondo commission one
tends to be so moved by the stink that switching the TV off becomes the only
alternative. One cannot help asking what happened to the politicians who are always
quick to declare "we are serving our people, the poorest of the poor".
You simply wonder how destroying your country can be of any service to the
Most recently deputy Chief Justice Zondo,
apparently so overwhelmed by the mountain of malfeasance that he deemed it
necessary to establish a special task team to investigate exactly how our
watchdog, the Parliament, dealt with concerns of state capture and corruption.
Perhaps the MPs have long forgotten that theirs is to hold the executive to
account and robust monitoring of the executive is an indicator of good
This is the most welcome news in spite of
the fact that we ordinary citizens are tired of these endless investigations
without any conviction of the wrong doers. We are crying for the restoration of
the rule of law as the cornerstone of our constitutional democracy. Mounds of
evidence against politicians exist but none is arrested as if they enjoy some
special kind of immunity that no one else does. This is surely not what the
rule of law imbues.
Indeed, one wishes that this special task
team will come up with something really special. What everybody knows though is
that parliamentarians care not a dime about the interests of the voters. They
care about their own, families' and friends' stomachs only. Serving "our people''
catchphrase is a hollow bluff that is aimed at winning votes. Period. How do
you explain parliamentarians accepting bribes while enjoying exorbitant salaries
and perks except consuming avarice?
If you ever doubt this you must look at the
statistics. Our country is the most unequal society in the world and blacks in
SA constitute 90% of the poor while 47 % are living below the poverty line.
Blacks have faced incremental deprivation since the dawn of democracy. Most
perturbing is the dismal state of our education and the staggering youth
unemployment of 55 %. What have our MPs done about our plight? Raiding the
fiscus thus stealing from the poor they claim to represent. Supporting Zuma in
selling the country to the Guptas is a classic case of the politics of the
stomach in the ANC. Money is the great muzzler of any ethical considerations.
Without pre-empting the special task team's
work, the mammoth task that the governing party has is endemic corruption
driven by avarice of epicurean proportions that has soiled all the levers of
the government. It was not for nothing that former president Thabo Mbeki once
Thus every day
and during every hour of our time beyond sleep, the demons of our society ………
rhythmic and hypnotic regularity—get rich! get rich! get rich!"
This seminal lecture underscores the depth,
extent and palpability of putrid but persistent avarice in destroying the moral
fibre of our society.
The demons driving pillage consuming our
country can only be exorcised if and only if
the governing party has political will to put high profile political elite
responsible for mass looting behind bars. Only Tony Yengeni and Shabir Schaik
as high profile people have seen the inside of a jail. This undoubtedly shows
that the governing party does not have the political
will to prosecute its own. Hence it
certainly can never ever redeem itself.
Cyril Ramaphosa may have the political will but his organisation is so inured
to malfeasance to let go. The so-called fight back brigade is just the tip of
Empirical evidence has taught us that loss
of political power is the greatest inducement to political will by a governing
party. One or two terms will produce introspection. Until the helplessly
fractured political parties and active civil society wake up to this reality
prospects of a failed state are upon us.