Black elite are the cause of social problems

THIS past month, democratic South Africa's birthday has thrown the spotlight on our "freedom".

THIS past month, democratic South Africa's birthday has thrown the spotlight on our "freedom".

Many things still linger 16 years after liberation.

The people have gone beyond merely pointing out at the deteriorating conditions that are worse than before liberation, but are out in the streets to stress the point strongly.

Certainly poverty has increased and inadequate provision of services has marked this period.

These are not the legacies of apartheid as a new generation has grown and must be given more and better houses, and so forth.

The population has been exploding through a high birth rate encouraged by licentious child grants and immigration from the rest of the continent.

Indeed the presence of large numbers of black immigrants is evidence that "freedom", which their countries have had for 50 or more years, does not deliver changes in the material, cultural or social lives of people.

Since the attainment of "freedom" there has been an exodus from these countries, as if people are running away from plagues or worse oppression than before Uhuru.

It would have been mysterious if in South Africa "liberation" and "democracy" would have brought something different. The same forces and dynamics that mark the practice of statehood in sub-Saharan Africa are at work in this country. The chief aim was the replacement of the ruling white elite by a black one to do as they pleased.

The difference being that, in South Africa mostly, the white Afrikaner elite had taken the interests of their people to heart and hoisted them to better standards.

The spirit and practice of self-determination and dedication to social and national issues were present.

The white elite was truly integrated and involved in the social, cultural and moral lives of their people and provided significant and positive guidance or leadership to uplift their people as a volk.

This is what the founders of black national congresses and conventions had committed themselves to do.

But the present ruling black elite has betrayed their people. They are concerned only with their class and personal interests and gains, in addition to their alienation from black communities and cultures.

They are not original and creative but imitative and acquisitive, feasting on enterprises and environments that were created and developed by whites under the guise of "transformation".

The black elite has avoided reckoning with the complex social, cultural and moral conditions and challenges facing blacks as a unique people with peculiar histories and heritage that must be reckoned and resolved through creative and developmental actions.

The black elite's indifference and negligence, in addition to their deliberate actions to undermine the stability and solidity of people, are at the root of the huge and increasing material, social and moral problems.

These are deep-rooted issues that protests over service delivery by political and superficial outbursts will not solve.

That is why the highly organised and sophisticated ruling elite continues to ignore and treat all these demonstrations as a nuisance and irrelevant.

These problems call for the emergence of a nationally minded and socially integrated and more rooted leadership. The current one was never geared to generating social and cultural developments upon which sound political systems and economic programmes and objectives must rest.

But the propaganda controlled by the ruling elite continues to convince the majority that they are serving them well even when the evidence shows the opposite.