LETTER TO THE EDITOR | A People’s manifesto for real change

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The unrest was a wake-up call for government argues the writer.
The unrest was a wake-up call for government argues the writer.
Rajesh Jantilal/AFP

Civil society needs to step up and become the voice of the people as government has proved it is unable to govern, writes David Gant.

The recent collapse of law and order in some areas of the country has yet again exposed the many failings of our incapable ANC led government.

The nation has had a wakeup call. It needs to be heard by all, - politicians, business, community leaders and civil society and particularly by the haves vis a vis the have nots - and we need a dramatic reconstruction of our political and socio economic foundations.

Under different but equally disturbing circumstances, the CODESAs of the 90’s supplied a much needed new lifeline for our country and our nation fed on that lifeline for a number of years with renewed hope and promise. However, that lifeline has been destroyed by the ANC led government and it is now time for a new one.

People's manifesto

In the mould of the CODESAs, this new life line could be created by the establishment, processes and decisions of an all inclusive South African Convention for Political, Economic, Social and Constitutional Advancement. SACPESCA.

Civil society, not political parties, through organisations such as the Defend our Democracy campaign and the Council for the Advancement of the SA Constitution etc should convene and manage such a SACPESCA attended by representatives of all salient broad based sectors of our society.

There are hundreds of organisations that are appropriate representatives of the South African societal make up including, NGO’s, movements, parties, foundations, campaigns, unions and associations that could rightfully claim to have a voice at such a Convention.

Views must be heard

The Convention would mobilise and consolidate the voices, views and resolve of business, including labour, and civil society in respect of the manner in which our political, social, economic and constitutional environment s can be urgently managed and advanced in the interests of all South African citizens. It would generate a People’s Manifesto containing the approved resolutions, decisions and recommendations of the Convention and engage with the body politic of South Africa ie. parliamentary and extra parliamentary political groupings to ensure the acceptance and implementations of the People’s Manifesto by Government.

We cannot rely on this government or our parliament any longer. The views of civil society must not only be heard – they must be respected and followed.

- David Gant, Kenilworth.

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