Msholozi must show the way

Moeti Kgamanyane

Moeti Kgamanyane

Leadership is not about omniscience, but more about the ability to listen and learn from one's followers and subordinates.

A leader does not stop learning. This trait is what has practically shaped many leaders in the corporate and political arena.

My cursory analysis of the Jacob Zuma persona is that of someone with unquestionable humility and invincible strength of character. The former attested to by many who know Zuma personally.

They profess to his willingness to always listen, admit to his mortal deficiencies and has always portrayed himself as a "man of the people" in word and deed. The latter is manifested by a protracted legal battle against the NPA and also the rape case for which he was acquitted.

A prolific leadership furthermore lies in the ability for one to be an independent thinker and thus be able to make unpopular decisions as long as they serve to attain a common good.

This, in my opinion, will be one of the yardsticks that Zuma's presidency will be judged on, given competing interests in and around him, from business, the constitutional democracy that he should uphold and the interests of strategic alliance partners in the SACP and Cosatu.

A balanced application of judgment and clarity of thought requires of anyone in a position of authority to employ vision and strength of character that enables one to rise above prosaic political loyalty to entrench the principle of diligently serving the needs of all South Africans.

Unquestionably, the presidency is also about creating an environment that entrenches a positive public perception about the rule of law.

The reputation of the judiciary, the NPA, the SAPS and intelligence agencies has been vehemently questioned recently, and rightly so.

Zuma's presidency will have to do more than pay lip service in restoring the rectitude, confidence and perceptible independence of these institutions, given the barrage of mistrust, abuse and conspiracies that have bedeviled those entrusted with running them.

Furthermore the presidency entails the creation of a climate of confidence for both foreign direct and indirect investment to grow the economy in order to address the paucity of skills, job creation, poverty and other socio-economic ills.

There has been at least an assurance that little or nothing will change regarding our micro-economic policies.

South Africans are looking with interest at how Cosatu and SACP will influence events, given their innate hatred of so-called liberal economic policies that benefit the rich at the expense of the poor .

Finally, a realisation that after 15 years of ANC rule there are still millions of South Africans who are yet to witness "a better life for all" should inform the mandate of the proposed planning ministry in Zuma's presidency and more importantly oversight mechanisms to monitor policy implementation and shortcomings, lest confidence is lost in the ruling party.

l Kgamanyane works for the Department of Transport. He writes in his personal capacity.