Leaders enrich themselves and do not help poor

The basis of the ANC manifesto is "a better life for all" and not for some. So why are our leaders taking the poor for a ride?

We have seen leaders using their political connections to become instant millionaires. Many become millionaires simply by exploiting the state tender system.

There has been lot of criticism about BEE - that it just replaced the white elite with a few blacks and that it does not redress the economic imbalances. The gap between the first and second economy is widening.

Political changes brought about the emergence of the elite. Former activists and their relatives have been rewarded for their part in the struggle.

Some argue that the ANC and the masses need the elite because they create a sense of hope and possibility. Others argue that some people join the ANC to access opportunities and not to build the movement or help the poor.

There is a need for a cooling-off period for politicians before they go into business.

The majority of us remain trapped in poverty. Poverty and inequality are systemic and structural, and requires more than a piecemeal approach. Programmes to empower the masses must be fast-tracked. Setting up cooperatives is an option.

Policy and decision-makers must eradicate poverty, rather than enrich themselves.

Sipho Ngwetsheni,

Mogale City