Mbeki has become a menace to our country

Our outgoing president, Thabo Mbeki, has set the lowest standards for our country and our people, and yet he is dismally failing to meet them.

I think the less of a public role he plays in the few months left in office, the better for all of us.

President Mbeki has become a menace to our society, he is like a fly in the pudding.

The first signs of a discordant relationship with the majority of his people surfaced in 1998 when he launched the Partnership Against Aids campaign on national television.

He was then still deputy president.

During that live programme he was surrounded by children while he sat on a chair making a conscience call to the nation to wise up and take decisive action against HIV-Aids.

There was hardly any chemistry and parental warmth between him and those children. In fact, he seemed so distant and distracted that one could not help but notice the disparity in such behaviour.

At that time, most unfortunately, the whole country was suffering from the intoxicating smell of freedom.

Just as happens in the early stages of a blossoming love affair, we ignored the imminent warning signs and blindly believed that things would get better.

The arrogance that the president displays is atrocious, his mistimed and misleading comments are embarrassing, to be polite.

Then there is the lingering corruption trial against ANC president Jacob Zuma, which is further muddled with the spy saga whereby one conspiracy theory after another crops up.

Following hot on the heels of the spy saga is the electricity crisis of which President Mbeki has admitted to have made a mistake and as a direct consequence of which the lives of ordinary citizens are disrupted almost daily.

In the middle of all these childish blunders, there is the Zimbabwe issue, which continues to be a paralysing pain in the backside.

Even on that score the South African president claims "there is no crisis in Zimbabwe".

Even a blind man can see and understand that there is something wrong in a country whose inflation rate is more than 165000percent.

As a practical example, why are there millions of refugees from Zimbabwe in neighbouring countries, both black and white, if there is nothing amiss in that country.

Under the [mis]administration of our president, children aged 12 are granted the constitutional right to abortion without the legal consent of their parents.

The so-called Black Economic Empowerment, which was an ANC policy in the first place, benefits only a selected few while the rest of our people are languishing in squalor.

At some stage, Mbeki told the global media that he does not know of anyone who has died of HIV-Aids in his own country, where about 6million people are living with and are dying of HIV-Aids-related complications.

The worst thing that is happening in our country - and I hope the Zimbabwe scandal serves as a serious warning - is that South Africa does not have a powerful opposition.

President Mbeki has overstayed his welcome. Millions of our people will never miss him after his mismanaged two terms.