I, like most South Africans, am currently in a state of shock, disgust, outrage, and deep inner hurt and turmoil.
Our country is once again wracked by violent protests, murder, corruption and many more sad events. I have very purposefully refrained from commenting on too many things over the past few days, as I needed to take a break from the reality that is our country for a while, even withdrawing from forums that were buzzing like a swarm of killer African bees about to attack.
In my mind August 2012 will go down as one of the most violent and distressing months of the past few decades.
Here is just some of the violence that took pace in the month of August, links that took me approximately 10 minutes to find:
Violent protests in Cape Town
Some of the Open Letters Written
Response to Dear White People…
Voice of Reason
Mine Protests & Violence
WHAT is happening in South Africa? Why is our government so slack and seemingly ignoring the fact that the country is imploding? What is the way forward? Are we headed for full-scale violence and a possible civil war or genocide?
This may sound alarmist to some, but let me tell you that from many, many comments made on some of the forums of which I am a member it is not that far-fetched. I withdrew from social networking for a while for one simple reason – overload of violence and negativity! I needed to de-stress and try to gather my thoughts around all that is going on from a perspective which is not fueled with emotion but rather cold, hard facts….
FACT: South Africa used to be split under a Nationalist regime that segregated people according to race. This did untold harm to generations of people who suffered all kinds of indignities, violence and murder with no way out.
FACT: The only way that they could get any attention and fight for freedom for themselves and all other people of colour was through protests and violence.
FACT: A referendum was held in which the majority of whites in South Africa voted to give the vote to all.
FACT: The ANC took over the government in 1994!
FACT: Like in most other countries, it has been proven in South Africa that a liberation movement CANNOT govern a country successfully.
FACT: Although “education for all” is supposedly a reality in South Africa post 1994, the education department is failing on all fronts. Firstly the syllabus has been changed so many times that it is a joke, secondly insufficient infrastructure has been done on the schools that need it most, especially in rural communities, thirdly the supposed increase in matriculation pass percentages is a joke when the pass mark has been lowered to a ridiculous 33%! The recent “textbook saga” that happened recently once again highlighted the ineptitude and corruption in the department.
FACT: The health department and the delivery of services in this sector has declined drastically, with hospital staff treating patients abominably in hundreds if not thousands of cases. Whole hospital departments in the majority of the country are experiencing major problems due to corruption and outright theft. HIV and AIDS patients cannot get their medication; Cancer patients are sent home again without medication and treatment because suppliers have not been paid. And the government wants to start a National Health Service?
FACT: Most other government departments and parastatals are in the same state of confusion, ineptitude, corruption, disrepair, and display a total disregard for service delivery.
FACT: Nepotism and Cronyism is the watchword of the day, whether it is regarding jobs or tenders.
FACT: The rot starts right at the bottom and stretches right to the top! Every day we hear new stories of more and more civil servants, including police members, politicians, members of parliament, mayors, etcetera.
FACT: We have a president who became president under very dubious circumstances even though he was voted in by his party who is the majority party in SA. He does not seem to get involved in running the country and, like his predecessor, seems to be more concerned in making nice and trying to solve problems in other countries whilst his own country is burning!
FACT: The ruling party is undergoing major infighting, to the point that there are murders, kidnappings, smear campaigns and various other things going on to the point that the ordinary Saffa can longer believe anything or take anything that happens at face-value.
FACT: The ruling party continues to sow dissension amongst the races; they continue to blame everything that goes wrong on apartheid – 18 years into their rule!
FACT: The poor are getting poorer, crime is rampant, jobs are scarce, service delivery in many areas is negligible at most, and all the politicians can do is make promises.
FACT: While the majority of citizens are starving the ANC bigwigs are partying on a diet of sushi and champagne and driving cars that cost millions – all on the taxpayer’s dime!
FACT: Most people do not realise that the fallacy that all whites are rich, drive smart cars, live in mansions and own large tracts of land is just that, lies! The ruling party and their infamous youth league continue with this sowing of dissension as it detracts from their own inadequacies in governing and the wholesale ineptitude and gross corruption perpetrated by the majority of government officials.
FACT: If it were not for the wholesale corruption and outright theft by the ruling part and those in positions of power and trust there could be far more schools, far better hospitals, a police force we could trust, many more people would have houses, service delivery would be good and delivered in all areas, and there would be many more jobs for the unemployed!
FACT: Most Saffas are not racist! Most Saffas do not really care who runs the country so long as they are doing a good job of it and are improving the plight of those who are most at risk. Most citizens just want to work, earn a decent wage, have a decent place to live, and be able to live without fear, to walk the streets at night in safety, to allow their children to play in the park or walk to school without the fear of gang-wars or rape.
FACT: Most Saffas are sick and tired of the ineptitude and lack of service delivery, hence the demonstrations. These demonstrations have become more and more violent as the citizens say that this is the only way that the government listens to them. They are tired of empty promises and want the government to start delivering now!
FACT: If the governing party does not start to deliver on promises, does not help those who are in dire need, does not root out corruption, does not stop blaming everything on apartheid, does not stop worrying more about what is going on in other countries than what is wrong in its own, does not improve the health, education, energy and security of the country, does not attend to the looming food shortage, we are in K@K!!
It is no good to say “the miners were wrong” or “the police are murderers” as that will not solve anything. We have stood by and judged too many times when people, ordinary citizens, many of which were innocents, were killed over service delivery. We sit in our lounges in front of our computers and judge all the WRONG people!! And as I am busy writing this post I am getting even more disgusted as I sit watching Interface and listening to the two unions involved in the Lonmin mine deny any responsibility in what happened there, blame eachother, try to one-up eachother and not even mention the miners who died.
People of South Africa, it is time that we all pull together as citizens of this country and tell the government ENOUGH!! It does not matter whether you are pink, black, coffee-coloured, dark tan or lime green with purple spots and yellow stripes – we are all South Africans! It is time that we stop letting those in power divide us for their own political agendas!
The only way that we will make South Africa work is by working together to heal this country of ours and to hold government responsible, to come together as a nation to tell them we do not accept their inept attitudes and governance any more!
We need to stop looking at other Saffas as the enemy and rather hold out our hand to help them up. We need to put aside our fear of each other and rather unite to hold our government (and we need to stop thinking of it as the ANC, it is the GOVERNMENT) to their promises. They need to deliver or get out, end of story!!
One thing that will never EVER happen again is Apartheid! This is the fear of many that will not vote for any other party, especially if they perceive that party to be a “white” party. People, we voted apartheid out, and it will NEVER come back. While we all recognize that there needs to be redress for the wrongs that were perpetrated during the apartheid era, if we do not change the way things are currently being done, there will be nothing left for your children and grand-children….
We need to STOP fighting in amongst each other, we need to STOP playing the race-card whenever something goes wrong, we need to STOP thinking with emotion, we need to stop looking at the government as a liberation party, as the ANC, and realise they are the GOVERNMENT and need to be held accountable as a GOVERNMENT!! By continuing to ignore the fact that they are greedy, corrupt and basically don’t give a damn about the citizenry we are all playing right into their hands! People WAKE UP, the government is playing games with all of our lives with impunity!!
South Africa stands on the verge of collapse, and if we do not do something to hold this government accountable as a nation we will have only ourselves to blame!