Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Are there any honourable ANC politicians left?

By Rhoda Kadalie
06 December 2011

I am frequently asked why I do not consider going into politics. My stock response is that I have seen far too many of my friends ruined by politics. Perfectly nice people prior to 1994 have become arrogant, pompous, self-serving and narcissistic. Politicians across the spectrum, except for a few, are a horrible lot.

One such friend, Yolanda Botha, received a damning editorial in the Cape Argus (November 30 2011) for lying under oath that she had vested interests in a business company that received R50 million contract from the Northern Cape Department of Social Development and in return her house was refurbished at a cost of R1.2m.

Worse, she retains her position as chair of Parliament's Social Development - wait for it - oversight panel, which adds R180 000 to her already exorbitant salary of R800 000.

Botha was a nice woman and one wonders whether there are anymore honourable ANC politicians left. The height of cynicism is the Speaker's reprimand which yet again reinforces the culture of impunity that has left political corpses strewn all over the place - likeable men and women like Winnie Mandela, Jackie Selebi, Bheki Cele, Mac Maharaj, Phumzile Mlambo-Nguka, Judge Hlophe, Baleka Mbete, Allan Boesak, and Tony Yengeni, to name a few.

More generally, the ANC has destroyed swathes of people who should have been in senior positions today to give direction and guidance to aspirant young people. Instead young, inexperienced, untrained and incompetent people are governing us and their role models are those at the highest levels of government, even in the judiciary, have been crooks.

This stranglehold of impunity in the hallowed halls of the legislature must be smashed. Its seeds are deep and were sown with the start of the Arms Deal and entrenched by the Travel Scandal. The most sacred space where the country's laws are made has been defiled and "moral regeneration" continues to elude a society desperately in need of a moral fabric that will inspire SA's youth.

Regrettably, when the morally degenerate occupies the levers of power, then we have no hope of addressing the challenges of health-care, housing, unemployment and poverty that the country. No wonder SA has declined on Transparency International's corruption index from 54 in 2010 to 64 in 2011 - worse than Namibia, Rwanda, Mauritius, Cape Verde and Botswana.

Can we blame some of the cops for being corrupt? Can we blame Home Affairs officials for taking bribes? Can we blame some magistrates and prosecutors for taking chances?

Political office and the entitlement that goes with it have destroyed wonderful people, many of whom were my friends; we belonged to the same political organisations; we worked at the same university; we frequented the same parties, and so on. Today many who now serve in government, universities, and on corporations view themselves as entitled and despise columnists especially when they become the objects of our critical pens.

Those who enter politics as a first step towards wealth and those who have wound up their vested interests with political office and steal from the very poor they profess to serve, harbour resentments towards opinion-makers, so venomous, that one knows they are guilty. The problem is - the fallen still remains mighty. We, the citizens, should dislodge them.

A pensioner friend of mine is starting the first act of defiance. She told me that she would refuse to pay in any tax demands over and above what she has already contributed this year.  She can no longer take the flagrant abuse of our taxes for personal enrichment and conspicuous consumption. I concur and will join her. Any takers?

This article first appeared in Die Burger... Sourced from:
The book, In Your Face by Rhoda Kadalie, is a fearless take on the state of our nation from one of South Africa’s most controversial commentators. This collection of Rhoda Kadalie’s best columns include sections on public figures such as Cyril Ramaphosa, Allan Boesak and Winnie Mandela, “troubled transformation”, “media meekness”, “foreign fumbles” and more.


Pensioner said... .....Click here to refresh this blog

I have come to believe that the only honest politician is a dead politician, and for that believe to "kick in", I want to see rigor mortis set in first!!!

Latest 5 Featured Posts:

Operation Vula, its Secret Safari, and Zuma’s band of comrades - Dec. 2013
During 1986 the ANC launched an underground operation called Operation Vula. A lesser-known fact is that it continued to operate after Nelson Mandela's release in February 1990, and for three years after his speech in August 1990 when he reiterated the total commitment of the ANC, Umkhonto we Sizwe and the SACP to the Groote Schuur Minute.

Heritage Day Photographs (Voortrekker Monument) - Sept. 2013
This posting includes a few photographs taken on Heritage Day 2013. The posting introduces an unusual but beautiful new structure called QUO VADIS? (with the question mark) which I’m sure many readers have never heard of.

The Yellow-Bucket Marula Tree: A Mystery Solved! - Oct. 2013
I came across a rather strange phenomenon one day while travelling along the R561 route between Tolwe and Baltimore in the Limpopo province of South Africa. A small yellow bucket was attached high-up in a branch of a Marula tree, hence the name of this posting. It’s a real funny story which I’m sure most readers will enjoy - as much as I enjoyed compiling the article  - (with illustrations).

Pretoria’s Monument for Victims of Terrorism - July 2013
Many people (including myself) had almost forgotten about a noteworthy monument in Pretoria that stood at the entrance of the old Munitoria building on the corner of Van der Walt and Vermeulen Streets (now renamed Lilian Ngoyi and Madiba Streets). When the Munitoria building was demolished on 7 July 2013 nobody could tell me whether the monument was still standing or not, so I decided to go look for myself.

Remembering The Battle of Delville Wood - July 2013
14 July marks a day when the South African 1st Infantry Brigade got engaged in the 1916 (WW1) Battle of the Somme, in France. The battle was one of the largest of World War I, in which more than a million men were wounded or killed, making it one of humanity's bloodiest battles. One specific encounter during this battle, known as The Battle of Delville Wood, is of particular importance to South Africa. The posting includes a comprehensive article (with pictures) compiled and written by Petros Kondos.

African Countries (Alphabetical list):
(The links will redirect to the page dealing with the specific country.)