Why ANC needs a new leader
IN THE past few days I have read the "Second Transition" document and found it had a lot of very good and valid points.
The one very big problem I have with the document is its authors and its timing in our history.
The document was amended by a special national executive committee of the ANC on February 27, and as such it is a high-level ANC document endorsed by the ruling party leadership.
This makes it an insult, not only to all card-carrying members of the ANC but to the South African public and to all blacks in Africa.
The first thing you notice about the document is that it makes a lot of direct reference to another document (Strategy and Tactics 2007), basically a copy-and-paste job. But that aside, the main issue I have with the document, as with all ANC policies, is the lack of a schedule or even a mere forecast based on thorough analysis.
I know it is a high-level document, but in the main the ANC has shown it lacks capacity for planning and often gives vague time-lines like "In the next 20 to 50 years." which are seldom pursued with any vigour and are hardly ever achieved, as their current failure to reach set targets shows.
I call this governance by fire-fighting - a fatal flaw in any democracy and the reason why Africa is still where it is after decades of democracy and with a mostly young population. Even the so-called National Planning Commission has not given us any concrete plan but perhaps they too have no clue what project planning, control and implementation is.
Most of the information and proposals in the document have been common knowledge among South Africans for quite a while. For example, disparities in income per capita by racial grouping is a known fact that is encouraged and perpetuated by the dominant entrenched white minority capital.
The ANC government has not done anything to rectify this situation and I doubt it will start now. Black economic empowerment policies have not worked and the blame falls squarely on the shoulders of the governing party for abusing the policy for its narrow interests. The affirmative action policy has done a little better but even there we have not reached set targets.
There is also the looming mining crisis. Thousands of jobs will be lost under the watch of the ANC if nothing is urgently done to stop the wholesale export of unbeneficiated minerals, especially to our so-called friend China. The state should take the lion's share of all mining licences by investing heavily in mining in the long term. Moaning about white capital flight in the face of adversity, as the document does, is weak leadership mentality and such "leaders" need to step down and leave the podium to those who are capable. Another issue that renders this document unnecessary - and quite simply meaningless - is the continued emphasis by the ANC leadership that the Constitution will not be changed.
There is no way to achieve drastic changes in this society based on a compromise constitution drafted with those who seek to retain privilege at all costs. I was born in 1982 in KwaZulu-Natal and have been called a monkey and the so-called k-word by white men, just for being young, black and ambitious.
The fact that the document mentions that we are a divided society but proposes no concrete remedy leads me to say racial relations in SA will never improve.
President Zuma and his ruling elite have no clue how angry SA citizens are. He says violent lawlessness will not be tolerated, but has put no solution forward for the aggrieved public. No reconciliation plan is in place and it is essential to have such a plan for the survival of this democracy, judging by the manner in which the different races interact daily. It's not uncommon for different races to not greet each other on the street.
The land issue is one of those things that the ruling party seems to think is in its court, while the reality is that it is actually not for it to decide. It is an issue for public discussion - not ANC magic, postulation or prophecies.
The Zimbabwean government also thought it was in charge until people started taking farms by force. Do not be fooled: Zanu-PF reacted to the situation and claimed it as their success but the reality was totally different. The ANC must stop trying to be prophets and Messiahs and start listening to the people, which is what the ANCYL is doing. Writing "white-owned land" a million times will no more make that land belong to whites as much as it belongs to all of us who occupy this land. The problem is not the scarcity of land, it is greed and retention of privilege.
So we want to buy the land? Where is the money to buy all this land going to come from? There is a rather racist assumption that blacks do not know how to farm nor do they want to farm on a commercial scale. Commercial farming is not rocket science, the ANC should encourage and support black people who want to learn to do it. Saving the best for last: education is the cornerstone of any thriving modern society.
The ANC has managed to rip to shreds the hope and dreams of many hundreds of thousands of young black talent - talent that was never nurtured or harnessed, but simply thrown in the dustbin.
Point number 45 on page 10 of the report brings tears to the eyes of anyone with any integrity. If ministers are driving vehicles that cost R1.3-million each it shows a total disregard for reality.
Logic says it's the same thing as saying I will buy a Mercedes-Benz ML66 AMG and my kid and his or her education can go to hell. The ANC cannot travel down this path without consequences and it is fully aware of this. The fact that the ANC leadership has the nerve to mention education and healthcare in the document, while there have been so many loyal cadres and others from the public who have tried to provide solutions and new strategic directions in these ministries and have been continually shot down is laughable and tragic. It shows arrogance and I beg all citizens to sit up and take note because their freedoms could be eroded by such unscrupulous individuals.
Very good policies exist, but the ANC has been unable to enforce them due to a lack of leadership and political will. To me this document is a farce. What the ANC needs is a leadership overhaul and an internal cleansing process, from municipal level to the top.
The ANC has brought basic services, civil rights and other limited opportunities to millions of the poor and previously disadvantaged and for this it must be commended, but this document is an admission of failure and shines a light on its general incompetence more than anything else. What the document fails to tell us, for example, is what the ANC is doing about the adoption of technology. I will continue to vote, but I honestly do not know who to vote for because I can't vote for a white DA. We can only hope the right kind of leader emerges or we are doomed to be another Ghana or Nigeria - if we are lucky.