Things fell apart: We would have been better off without Zille’s infatuation (colonialism)

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“For those claiming legacy of colonialism was ONLY negative, think of our independent judiciary, transport infrastructure, piped water etc.” (Helen Zille, circa 2017)

 

I ordinarily do not have the energy, inclination or desire to engage with Helen Zille’s utterances. It is a futile exercise. She lacks the insight to understand the deleterious effects of her ideological leanings.

 

Even here I intend not to dwell on her comments (Zille elaborated her vitriol in this Daily Maverick piece) instead I make a critique of some of the responses to her comments.

 

I am rather disturbed by an array of commentators who are, on the surface chastising Helen whilst, implicitly accepting as immovable truth the core thesis of her tweet rant.

 

My reading of her core claim is that colonialism brought about industrial (roads, water infrastructure) and social order (judiciary) that are inherently better than what prevailed and that could not have been possibly developed by Africans in the absence of the arrival of the eternal visitors from the Netherlands and England.

 

I do not accept this assertion. I find it telling that so many people can accept it with virtually no evidence and little interrogation. In an imperfect analogy it is, for me, similar to person A raping person “B” and then telling her that he has given her the best debut sexual experience possible. “B” cannot now have a chance to have a sexual debut of her choice and thus there is no way of disproving the callous assertion but that is hardly proof of A’s statement.

 

There is absolutely no reason to assume that Africa would have under-developed (whatever that means) without the painful interaction with the hostage takers that were the colonizers.

 

It is regrettable that we have never bothered to study the psychopathic drive that made some men want to travel the entire breadth of the globe terrorizing others, voraciously acquiring senseless amounts of wealth whilst inducing intractable levels of trauma and suffering.

 

The intellectual pollution spread by colonial and apartheid masterminds and their apologists requires critical thinkers to debunk and demystify the fallacious remarks that are easily accepted as given truths. For this purpose I challenge you to read any or all of the following: Chinua Achebe (whose title I have altered), Ngũgĩ wa Thiong’o’s Decolonisation of the mind, Bantu Stephen Biko’s I write what I like, Paulo Freire’s Pedagogy of the oppressed, Thabo Myuyelwa Mbeki’s speeches on the African Renaissance, Na’im Akbar’s papers in African Psychology, the seminal Souls of Black Folk by W.E.B Du Bois…

 

Biko in particular left African folk with the arduous task of gifting the world with a more humane face. A commendable aspirational dictate that is made the more difficult by the world’s continued perception of Africa as not being a worthy student never mind a suitable teacher. What then can Africans do if the world is not a willing learner?

 

 

 

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Should #FeesMustFall fall? A comment on violent protests

South Africa is a violent country steeped in a violent history and students are merely doing things the way that things are done here.

 

The fallacious notion that students may protest but only do so peacefully is redundant and fantastical.

 

Let me issue the customary condemnation of violence. Violence is wrong, it begets more violence, and it should pre-empted, discouraged and dealt with.

 

Students or alumni will tell you that the matters raised by students, be it fees, residence related disgruntlement or calls for decolonizing the curricula and academic spaces, never invoke so much spark as to attract the participation of a majority of students. If a university has 20 000 students it is hardly ever the case that 10 000 +1 are ready to sing “Iyoooo Solomon” and get their voices heard.

 

The general course of events are such that a concerned group of students protest and as a means of getting their voice heard the remonstration includes a disruption of normal academic activity. Satyagraha campaigns do not fare well; this we know because students have been protesting against unaffordable fees and lack of residence spaces long before the Must Fall movement. Most of these fairly peaceful protests failed to revolutionize the status quo. Universities are enormous, if you quietly protest in some corner no one will know. More pressingly, everyone stands to benefit from the implementation of the demands of students insofar as a decolonized and accessible university programme is concerned. As a certain vice chancellor recently made note at a Golf Day event, the 1st degree has replaced the matric certificate as the mandatory qualification for job entrants. This throws out the “university is a privilege” claptrap.

 

An oft made comment, that is usually the epitome of lazy thinking, says that students must use other means, discussion with management, to get their demands heard. This comment insults the intelligence of students. As is the case with labour strikes, and, to a large extent, service delivery protests the strike is the last resort. Discussions between students and management or the department of higher education are held on unequal grounds. Students- in whatever form of organization- effectively have to pitch their ideas to the decision-makers as opposed to egalitarian engagement. In fact to date there are decision making structures that decide on student matters without student representation. I am not advocating for a change of the structures, the students do not need my advocacy, I am merely offering a partial rationale for the strikes.

 

For an elucidatory understanding of revolutionary violence I implore you to read Steve Biko, Frantz Fanon, George Orwell and Fatima Meer’s “The (mis)trial of Andrew Zondo”. Should students be conferred with a criminal record for burning car tyres and blocking university entrances? No! What if a person burns a library, lecture hall or a residence? Yes, they must be charged! Same goes for physical harm of fellow students, lecturers, and people’s cars.

 

Regrettably there will be casualties of war. Sadists from student and security set-ups will use the protest as a cover for pursuing their anti-social urges. Some will suffer 3rd degree burns in their pursuit of their 1st degrees but history will judge the #FeesMustFall students kindly.Fees-Must-Fall.jpg

Unemployment: Rand Deficiency Traumatic Reality Disorder

Last word

Allow me to begin with a conclusion. To the employed people: Be kind. Unemployment, like acquired disability, happens. If you have nothing positive to say keep your thoughts to yourself. Most people who are actively job-seeking despise their situation of dependency. Do not aggravate their pain.

 

To those seeking an income generating activity, reading inane blog posts won’t help you find a job, I am kidding. Edit that CV: delete the claptrap about your excellent health and being a prefect in Grade 7. Keep hustling, do voluntary work, study further, network voraciously and when you are on the verge of giving up pretend you are one application away from getting that job or business break. Pray if you must but ease up on the donations at church, God should understand. Good luck! Do not tell me you do not believe in luck. Your day will come, or as they say in Thohoyandou Lidoda duvha. Stay in your lane and wait for the highway to merge into a freeway…

 

Optimism of the early days

There is something about the infancy stages of unemployment that spawns unbridled optimism. You have the recent graduate or newly retrenched person making plans for the next month, “when I get a job I will… ”. Some will even borrow money using the job, which they imagine to be on the horizon, as collateral. Lend it to the person at your own risk. One source said it takes a year, on average, for a graduate to get a job; this disadvantageously becomes 18 months if the graduate is black.  Another study said it took an average of 7 months for university graduates to get hired, with Humanities students majoring in the arts remaining unemployed for longer than their other university counterparts (Mncayi, 2016). I only skim read 2 sources. I am gainfully employed, I did not have the time to indulge.

 

Levels of patience vary but without fail the fluorescent optimism dims, replaced by a gale threatened candlelight. When you have been looking for a job, or a business break, for months or years on end you can’t help but doubt your prospects. Self doubt leads to a depreciation of self-esteem (ironically lessening your employability at interviews/pitches). At this juncture social evils like gambling and substance abuse become appealing. Charlatans and money-making schemers suddenly become your best friends. Resist!

 

Television etiquette

If you know what is good for you will accept the following:

As an unemployed compatriot my television viewing times are during office hours. I can watch TV in the evenings but I do not have remote control privileges. I cannot have favourite shows during prime time (evenings). I can watch TV when the worker bees have gone to bed but this is in defiance of the principle of “altruistic expenditure of financial resources that I do not contribute towards”. Watching TV late at night is a waste of electricity.

 

Chores and food

Be proactive. To avoid being asked if you are adhesively attached to the sofa make sure you do your part in the house upkeep, more importantly ensure you are seen doing chores.

 

Do not just sweep the house. Time it such that you lower the dustpan as the first worker will be walking in from a long, productive day at the office. Otherwise the person may incredulously pick up the broom and sweep the house (read curse you for doing nothing the whole day) thus rubbishing and nullifying your efforts.

 

A woman who is unemployed automatically becomes the maid, nanny & cook. Most of us do not protest this. It is the patriarchal norm. We go with the wave, enjoy the readymade warm meals and cleanliness of the homestead. Unfortunately the reverse also applies. An unemployed male in his 20s- 30s is also expected to moonlight as a maid-cum-cook. If you do not cook for 1 afternoon you hear the murmurs “besekunzima nokubeka amanzi ophuthu nje, umuntu ezineke ku sofa usuku lonke”. You opted to lie on the sofa the whole day and did not even boil water for phuthu.

 

Cereal is out of bounds.  It belongeth to the school-going children (and working adults who may need an easy-to-make breakfast). Pap/porridge is your loyal friend, cue the lemon juice.

 

Woe unto you if you have a beer or two when you do a piece job for a paying neighbour (most won’t pay you in cash). “He couldn’t even buy bread. He doesn’t even know how much it costs”.

 

21 Questions

You can’t even take a bath and dress presentably without being asked Uyaphi? Where are you going?  Are you posting curriculum vitaes? Did you see that you friend bought a car? Are you praying about your situation?

 

Unappreciated

Generally speaking gender and age are two of the factors that determine one’s ascribed power in the family unit. Head of the house and you think of a _ _ _. Heir status is usually reserved for the eldest _ _ _. You get my drift.

 

Unemployment has the power to change this. When you are unemployed you risk losing that status. Suddenly decisions that should be made with your input are discussed in your absence. The advice of younger, moneyed, siblings is sought- including suggestions on how to deal with your ‘unemployment situation’. This becomes awkward for all and sundry.

 

Camouflage: Do not draw attention to yourself

Desist from expensive habits. You can jog and lift weights but do not go to the gym.

 

Do not even think about playing Pokémon Go! “Unama bundles uwathathaphi”? “Where did you get the money for data bundles”? Even in that augmented reality you must be an unemployed somebody with a CV in hand chasing a job opportunity.

 

The knicker dilemma

Parents, aunts, uncles, siblings and cousins may help you out where clothing is concerned. Emphasis on ‘help out’ as opposed to buy you clothes. When you start to resemble the nyaope/whoonga boys (it is always boys regardless of the person’s age or sex): shirts with no buttons, torn jeans that are literally hanging by a single thread and white clothes that now look cream brown, you may earn a pity shopping spree at the buyer’s chosen store.  The dilemma arises at this point, do you casually add underwear to the items you point out to the buyer or do you let pride get in the way. Remember everything you do may be held against you. The next time you get a verbal drubbing your purchase may lead to a reminder of how you have everything bought for you right down to your undergarments. To kill a man’s pride suddenly becomes more than just a title of an anthology of short stories.

 

Introduction

There is nothing wrong with being unemployed; except when it is for perpetually long periods of time. Time spent unemployed should be like time spent in public toilets, brisk, unavoidable and pedagogic.

 

Job experience

Indians in South Africa: Are they Black or White? Does it even matter?

It does matter. Race is not a negligible, arbitrary category in the Republic of South Africa. The institutional racism that permeated during slavery, colonialism and apartheid makes race a real, albeit socially constructed, reality. In a democratic dispensation race cannot be ignored, we cannot act as if Mandela’s long walk to the Union Buildings blew racial realities away.

The purpose of this article is to encourage critical thinking around the role or ‘place’ of Indian people living in South Africa. The term Indian is generally used to refer to people with Indian ancestry. I stay in the largest ‘Indian’ city outside of India namely Durban. One Trevor Noah, a South African comedian, jokingly asserts that the province should be renamed KwaZulu namaNdiya Natal, I jokingly agree.

Indians arrived as indentured labourers in the 1860s to work on sugarcane plantations in the Natal colony. Needless to say they stayed on and now they own that shop you go to for the best bargains in town. At this point it is important to note that not every Indian in South Africa has an ancestor who worked in the sugarcane plantations, or owns a shop. Some Indian people came to South Africa as slaves during the height of Dutch slavery and furthermore globalisation has led to some people choosing to leave India for South Africa over the years. Indian people are not a homogeneous group. It is not a matter of knowing one Reddy and knowing them all. There are poor and rich, Christian and Hindu, ANC, DA and Minority Front, extra hot and mild, aloof and friendly Indian people. To think any differently is to make a mistake.    

What do you make of a pageant titled Miss India South Africa? Do you make a blanket judgement on Indian people based on how your boss of Indian descent treats you? Are you an Indian South African or an Indian in South Africa or, my personal favourite, just a South African? Would you marry a person of Indian descent? A child born from an Indian father and Black African or White mother should be classified as what race? For the purpose of this blog it is not a matter of finding rigid answers but a proposition to being open to thinking about these questions to create a fluid dialogue.

An Indian friend of mine once remarked that during apartheid Indian people were not white enough to be beneficiaries of apartheid, yes those people who go silent when land redistribution is mentioned are beneficiaries, and now they are not black enough for BEE and affirmative action. In ‘Racial redress and citizenship in South Africa’ a 2008 book edited by Habib and Bentley this view is validated as one held by many Indian people. A study cited in the book reports that in a survey Indian people, alongside White people, identified employment equity and employment policy as the single largest source of racism. On the contrary Indian people and Coloured people alongside Black African people reported experiencing racism perpetrated by White farmers, employers, former white schools and the police. The historical basis of this contradictory standpoint is particularly interesting. Why are Indian people sometimes identifying with White sentiment and at other times siding with the views of Black African people?

During apartheid Indian people were racially discriminated against. Important to note this was not to the same extent as Black African people. The tricameral parliament system which came into existence in the 1980s highlighted the differences in discrimination with Indian and Coloured people being allowed ‘representation’ in parliament alongside the white government to the exclusion of the Black majority. Needless to say the United Democratic Front campaigned against this farce and with a turnout of less than 20% Indian and Coloured people at the polls leaders elected in to this tricameral system were seen as sell-outs who lacked credibility. Interestingly during the lead up to the elections for the tricameral parliament Indian shopkeepers, yes they have been selling at discount prices for a long long time my friend, were not unanimous in their action. Some shopkeepers supported UDF calls to close their shops on days like May Day whilst other shopkeepers did not close shop. Like I said ‘not a homogenous group’. They were not ‘Reddy to Pillay’ it the same way.

Indian people experienced real oppression during apartheid hence Indian people were a part of the liberation movement as members of the South African Indian Congress, COSATU, ANC and later the UDF. Indian people are entitled to racial redress measures such as affirmative action. Affirmative action policies make provision for Indian, Black African, Coloured and White people to participate in racial redress in labour. Thus at the policy level we can clearly say that Indian people should benefit to the extent that they were discriminated against. In a nutshell this means more than White people but less than Black African people.

Are Indians White? No. Indian people are not white. The fact that the cunning white government of the 1980s attempted to incorporate Indian people in their plans to eternally oppress Black African people does not make Indians white. A separate analysis is worth exploring. Have you ever heard a Black African person refer to their employer, regardless of their race, as ‘umlungu wami’? For many Black African people their employers, supervisors or line managers are Indian people. The relationship is more often than not a tumultuous one filled with animosity. Accusations of nepotism related to employment and promotions are ubiquitous. Does this make Indian people equivalent to White people? I do not think so. We have large groups of impoverished Indian people in areas such as Chatsworth and Phoenix that dispel the stereotype of Indian people as an affluent group. Yes there are many Indian people who have historically benefited from relatively better social circumstances as illustrated by better schools and delivery of services but issues of class and race are becoming murky.

Cultural outlook seem to offer a clue on why Indian people are neither white nor black. Indian people have to a large extent not assimilated to the culture of the majority in South Africa or the elite minority. Thus Indians living in South Africa are South Africans whose identity reflects both their ‘pro-black’ political existence in the republic and the ‘made in India’ religious and cultural heritage. They should be allowed to just be. If we are to truly celebrate our diversity than I say embrace Indian people and next time you are offered Diwali goodies find out about the meaning of the gift.

ImageAhmed Kathrada, seen alongside Nelson Mandela, spent 26 years in prison after being found guilty of treason during the Rivonia trial.

 

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This cartoon captures the essence of the Tricameral parliament. In the squashed top left and right rooms are Indian and Coloured representatives. In the spacious room down stairs are the White representatives. There are some observers checking over the fence as well.

 

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Miss India South Africa 2013 contestants.

 

What is happening with South Africa’s education and labour systems?

Welcome to 2013. I can’t wait until 13 September 2013 when we will be blessed with Facebook statuses telling us it is Friday the 13th in 2013. That doesn’t freak me out though.

I was slightly perturbed by news of the National Press Club’s Newsmaker of the year for 2012 being the Rhino. I would have thought the annihilation that took place in Marikana on 16 August 2012 would have been slightly more newsworthy. I would have also assumed that the scandalous revelations of challenges in our education and labour sectors, such as Limpopogate, the deaths of 8 people who were being assessed for police posts where 1 in 350 applicants would be accepted, and the imminent school closures in the Western Cape, would have been priorities.

Before I continue allow me to say: I have nothing against the Rhino. In fact I would dye for the Rhino. Save our rhinos. Save our rhinos. Save our rhinos. Even on the bank notes we negotiated and had Madiba monopolise just the one side. I digress. The objective of this post is to critique the country’s education and labour systems and offer alternatives.

The thesis of my argument lies in perceiving the education and labour systems as inextricably linked and interdependent. If you excel in the education system you should, generally, go on to excel in the economic sector. When the economy suffers and jobs are scarce education that does not create jobs is merely an expensive academic exercise because we produce degrees whilst their holders cannot find jobs.

A lot is said about education in South Africa but the debate tends to be sensationalist, one-sided and unconstructive. We generally talk about education after we have heard a shocking media report, be it textbooks that were not delivered or a child with a 39% average being allowed to progress to the next Grade without knowing 61% of their work. We make uninformed comments and go all out to criticise without really understanding the matter. Professor Jansen is the exception to the rule. Similarly we only really care about workers when they are on strike and become an inconvenience to us. I will write to accomplish three things: firstly to highlight the successes, secondly to point out the challenges and finally to offer alternatives.

What we are getting right?

Every once in a while we get people on a high horse who matriculated in 19 voetsek claiming that education has gone to the dogs and it was better during apartheid. Let me avoid swearing and rather say this is tantamount to the solid excrement of a bull. Comrades this is a historically incorrect fact. First of all your Black African parents would tell you that subjects such as Mathematics were disbanded for the Black child and replaced with subjects such as needlework and Malema’s woodwork. I recall being in Grade 12 and how the Grade 11s who were using a curriculum that differed to ours had Mathematics homework we could not help them with because it was offer a higher level than what we had been exposed to.

We have more learners starting school than ever before. You may know an uncle or grandparent or even a president who never had the chance to pursue a formal education because he had to herd cattle. Thankfully this is now an atrocity of the past.

Education has become far less racist, patriarchal and sexist. Importantly the ANC led government has realised that it is not sufficient to depend on the Matric results to gauge the quality of basic education. The introduction of the Annual National Assessments that enable us to see just how poorly we are performing is invaluable. Furthermore evidence of minimal improvement in the outcome of these assessments is pleasing, albeit minimally. Initiatives such as the Funza Lushaka bursary scheme that offers full bursaries to people who want to teach in public schools will hopefully aid us avoid the embarrassing Annual National Assessment Maths result that revealed that our learners averaged a meagre 13%.

Last year we were shocked by the lack of delivery of textbooks in Limpopo. According to a Mail & Guardian report In 2013 Angie Motshekga has proudly announced that 98% of the textbooks were delivered before schools re-opened in inland provinces. Into enhle iyanconywa!

Fee free schools are becoming a reality. The National Student Financial Aid Scheme (NFSAS) is allowing us access into universities. Freedom charterists be proud!

Where we can still improve?

There remains a plethora of challenges in the education system. Some of these problems are a direct legacy of the apartheid era. Nkosi of the Mail & Guardian reported on the 24th of January that more than 50 learners from Thembelihle, an informal settlement in southwest Johannesburg are without a school three weeks into the year due to schools being full and the nearest available school being 20km away. If informal settlement means more to you than that eyesore by the freeway on your way to work you will know that there are no funds to pay for the learners transport thus trapping them into a cycle of poor education>unemployment or poorly paying job >extended stay in the meant to be temporary shacks>poor education for their children.

On Friday 25 January 2013 a friend of mine mentioned that he recently visited a rural school in Baynesfield, rural KZN, without water or electricity where learners in Grades 3-5 share a single tin roof class. Mind you the temperature went up to 40 degrees Celsius this week. Will that class produce an Actuarial scientist? Must we be content with being security guards or constables?

The structural challenges that are being tackled include an inequality in resources. Some schools have a library, laboratory and tennis courts whilst some learners are still learning under trees with attendance being determined by weather conditions.

It would be a misnomer to attribute all our challenges to Verwoerd and his Bantu education policies. When teacher unions hold meetings during school times and learners are left to their own devices this is criminal behaviour. Having changed the basic education curriculum three times since the end of apartheid has been no help. The learners and teachers are worse off for it.

What can we do to make things better?

If you read the title of this sub-heading you will notice the word: we. Writing letters to the editor is not enough. The media has a responsibility to continue exposing any challenges we are faced with. Teachers, learners and school governing bodies have to work together to ensure today’s learners have a better chance than the youth of 1976, 1986 and 2006. The school cited above where learners are stuck in a stuffy, debilitated classroom illustrates the need for communities to intervene. The school should belong to the community and not to the principal. If need be that community must build two more classes with their own funds. A core argument of Racial redress and citizenship in South Africa edited by Adam Habib and Kristina Bentley is that South Africans became depoliticised in 1994 and stopped being community participants but adopted a culture of waiting for service delivery. During the apartheid era Indian communities would actually build schools from scratch and only call in the government for accreditation purposes. Long story short if you live in triple story, drive a Hummer but the school in your community has no desks or the roof is leaking you are being unAfrican and unpatriotic.

I propose a more synchronised relationship between the basic education, higher education and labour system. Learners must complete Grade 12 and when they enter higher education they must knowingly select courses that lead to qualifying for jobs that are in demand. To quote the minister of Higher Education Blade “I love his radio and newspaper interviews” Nzimande “We are short of very critical skills that one cannot get at universities… you can only get them at FET colleges. You can’t go to university to be a plumber, electrician, welder or a boiler maker”. This is a revelation considering that learners tend to idealise going to universities and end up staying at home with their degrees or applying for police posts. In 2012/13 the country is spending R207.3 billion on education. I propose a thorough commission of enquiry to find out where this money goes. Is the expenditure efficient? Why do some schools not have qualified Maths or Science teachers?

One of the miners who died in Marikana was in his early 20s. The education and labour system failed him. Amongst the people who perished in Harry Gwala stadium, where 150 000 applicants applied for 90 traffic officer posts, was a University of Zululand Bachelor of Arts graduand. Dr Mandela said “Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world”. Let this be a lived reality for South Africa’s youth who must get a proper education.

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She deserves the best education possible.

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Will their children still be fighting the same war?

**To assist raise funds or to give your time to renovate the school mentioned above please contact info@business-world.co.za or email me @ shuffle.mncwabe@gmail.com and I will enquire about how you can contribute.

Have a wonderful 2013.

A moral crisis defeats the purpose of analysis!

South African political analysts are working overtime, like ants at the site of a Coke Spill. Marikana, De Doorns, Lenasia or Mangaung used to just be another name on the map of Azania, I mean South Africa. Not anymore, not in 2012.

Hot topics have included the vacuum of leadership debate, analysis of the flawed second transition document, massacre not disaster dialogue, Nkandlagate or compounding matters of the compound or non-compound, information or secrecy bill, spy tapes and more recently the insult law. You could start a television series I tell you. It is political analysis paradise. To think I haven’t even started on Julius “I fight for the poor but give me sushi not Lucky Star Pilchards Malema”.

To cut a long story short the thesis of my argument is that political analysts, critics and the so-called opposition are all wasting their time with their analysis of contemporary South Africa’s political landscape.

Constructive criticism, or rather constructive critique-ism, has no place when those being criticised are fully aware of the situation and just lack the will power and desire to ensure remedy. In fact it is not in their interest, emphasis on the word: their. Why bother with an elaborate analysis of how a second bite of the cherry for the president-elect will merely lead to the maintenance of what President Mvuyelwa Mbeki refers to as “a dangerous and unacceptable situation of directionless and unguided national drift”?

Humour me and allow me to elaborate on this further. The point of analysing any situation is to highlight what is working, i.e. bravo on the response to HIV/AIDS, lament any blatant deviation from the agreed upon plan and offer recommendations for the future implementation of the policies and plans that the populace has agreed upon.

Now ‘as far as I am concerned’, this line ought to be referenced and credited to one Tshawe from Emzin’ Wezinsizwa, the current political context illustrates defecation on any alternative, advisory or cautionary views which are interpreted as counterrevolutionary and suspect and thus negligible regardless of their content.

Now I am not saying that those with the critical ability must stop writing or commenting. Not in the least, not while we still have access to information. Firstly this is a source of income for many and thus I cannot propagate for job loss, particularly not in the current economic climate with our credit ranking dropping to a paltry Baa1 rating.  Secondly and more importantly it is critical for analysts to ensure that the people whom the Freedom charter said shall govern know what is happening in their country. So as much as I have little faith in any analysis influencing the African National Congress delegate’s choice when faced with a ballot paper with different heads, big and medium-sized, I think people must know so as to vote with a perceptive conscience in the future. Mandy Rossouw of the City Press reports interviewing an ANC cadre who is quoted saying “Mandy, you know me, you know I’m a Zuma man through and through. But I can’t say anything about Nkandla, even I can’t defend it” . This information must guide us at the polls.

The ludicrous intervention by the supposed to be federation of the workers, COSATU, who are trying to convince Kgalema Motlanthe to rubbish the nomination of the branches and asphyxiate any remaining democratic light by opting to not stand against Prof. President Reverend Zuma at Mangaung, gives credence to my argument. The reason for this standpoint is not because Kgalema is not ready to lead or because his policies are inefficient but the crux of the matter is to preserve the Zuma administration. I cannot debate Zuma or Motlanthe policies because the fact of the matter, I will accept correction on this point, is that the ANC policy statement is voted on by delegates and not dreamed of by the leader. Thus just like we had a Zuma-led administration not offering drastic policy changes from the previous administration, bar a few policy name changes, I will opine and say Motlanthe would not change much in terms of policy unless he works on IMPLEMENTATION.

People can write and analyse, inquire and investigate corruption and blatant theft allegations against the leadership until they are blue in the face. Fact of the matter is gone are the days when ideas dictated which leader would triumph. The big idea has been settled upon and certified as it satisfies those it serves. ENRICHMENT: Politics of my stomach. Live like kings and queens, be it luxury flights with security planes or what Public Protector ma Thuli Madonsela refers to as “displaying a blank cheque attitude towards public funds”. The less said about palaces the better lest this page be banned much like the advert from the Fish and Chip company. Like this paper has argued. Talking about it right now will not bear any fruit. Let us live and leave it at that… for now!

 

Where to from here? Challenge me at your own risk!


 

Kwakuhle kwethu! If the allegations are true and this is indeed the work of taxpayer funds.

To Mangaung and beyond!

 

Be authentically and unapologetically AfriCAN!

  Our deepest misfortune, as Africans, is that we have internalised the Westerner’s interpretation of who or what we are. In the process we have lost a sense of ourselves. We are in a continuous struggle to chase something we can never attain, ‘Western sophistication’. We are Africans damn it and that is the ultimate superiority in the human condition.

Africans espouse ways of being and living that will have all the Gods from Jesus to Jah and Allah to Mvelinqangi marvelling at our humble, simplistic, homeostatic, cosmic and coherent way of life. Being African is the realisation of the actualisation of the human condition.

Africans need to stop being apologetic for who they were and who they should be. We need not allow ourselves to be relegated to the backstage of the world act.

The dark-skinned inhabitants of this land must lead the world back to that philosophical place where each lights the other’s path and we collectively ignite a rejuvenating fire that will bring light to the world.

 

The former home of Utopia! The current home of ‘Aluta Continua’. The future abode of Utopia?