Stop greed for power and money - Mogoeng

2016-10-28 10:31
Judge Mogoeng Mogoeng (File, Foto24)

Judge Mogoeng Mogoeng (File, Foto24)

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Johannesburg – Chief Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng has cautioned against people clamouring to become leaders merely for the sake of access to power and money.

People were in love with the idea of becoming leaders and some were willing to go to great lengths to get there, he said, delivering the 2016 Oliver Reginald Tambo lecture on Thursday evening.

The ANC’s longest-serving president would have celebrated his 99th birthday on Thursday. He died in 1993.

Mogoeng cautioned people to be afraid of anybody seeking leadership positions at all costs. They could be driven to kill.

'What would Tambo do?'

“You can be an effective leader without occupying a position.

“It’s the betrayal of the highest order for any of us to be politically correct in circumstances where courage is called for,” Mogoeng told guests.

He described Tambo as a “functional leader”, as opposed to a “positional leader” who was merely interests in the benefits that came with power.

“He surrendered the reigns of leadership to Madiba, who went to onto become South Africa’s first democratically-elected president, against his wishes, insisting it was time to hand over.

“In these trying times we need to ask ourselves what would Tambo do?”

Mogoeng said that although he had never met Tambo, he learnt of him at a young age and was inspired by him and former president Nelson Mandela to study law.

The audience included former first lady Zanele Mbeki, OR Tambo foundation chairperson and former National Assembly speaker Frene Ginwala, and ANC deputy secretary general Jessie Duarte.

Avoid junk status like a mamba

Mogoeng referred to warnings that South Africa might be headed for a ratings downgrade and junk status. He called on leaders to plan ahead.

“Let us seriously reflect on the danger of what we face. Even if you are not an economist, junk, is this the status of your country?” he asked.

Investors should not be allowed to get the impression that a political crisis was looming.

“I think that anything that could wreck our economy should be avoided like a mamba.”

He addressed tension between the judiciary and government leaders, who have often been criticised for failing to adhere to court judgments.

“You must comply with orders of the court,” he said.

Recent examples included the SABC’s reappointment of its COO Hlaudi Motsoeneng to a senior management post, despite the Supreme Court of Appeal upholding a High Court ruling declaring his appoint irrational and setting it aside.

In June last year, the government ignored a Pretoria High Court order instructing it to arrest Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir while he was in South Africa for a two-day AU summit.

Read more on:    mogoeng ­mogoeng  |  corruption  |  judiciary  |  politics

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