Affirmative Action must fall

2016-01-24 13:05

?#?AffirmativeActionMustFall?! That's the hashtag that I launch in this post. SA is like a wounded fabled Phoenix unable to rise from the ashes of  its past that it has conquered but has not slain.

In the wake of an editorial "Skin colour or merit" (Post 20-24 January 2016) I post this blog. I  have consistently argued through the media as well as on this site, that affirmative action is misapplied and has become a political whip to punish former beneficiaries and those associated with them under apartheid.

This includes minorities in a minority namely SAFRINDIANS (South Africans whose ancestors were from India but who are born here in SA).

The nub is the issue is the availability of places for students belonging to  minority communities who on merit would have been guaranteed a place to study medicine or sciences at a university in South Africa but who for want of available space and resources have been denied a place  through a complex application of  affirmative action.

Yes we have resource challenges, a common mantra that politicians use when challenged lather the electorate with but in the expectation there will be an allignment between the available resources and needs based on merit. 22 years later it's minorities that are still being punished with the result that youth are leaving SA to benefit other countries. Let me cite one example. In the University of the Free State of the 100 odd places for medicine just 5 are reserved for SAfrindians! This is morally repugnant.

Those that I spoke with and who have relocated  to  other countries not by choice but disappointment and despair, wanted to serve and build our nascent democratic society that my generation fought so hard for.

But they are being rejected at a time when this country needs talent and committed  and skilled people.

I have no qualms with the statement that it's morally repugnant to exclude people based on the colour of their skin and this is why I call for a forum, not a talk shop mind you, that will act as an interlocutor in an ongoing dialogue to ease the pain and mitigate against the injustice your editorial ascribes regarding the callously insensitive manner in which affirmative action is being exercised.

Now all chant after me #AffirmativeActionMustFall!

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