There is a saying that the people get the leaders that they deserve. We have an ANC government with a minority opposition. There is huge corruption in this government, and ineptness followed by giving BEE deals to family members, friends and other bigwigs within the ruling party. Now South Africa is not alone in having corruption, our neighbour to the North has had such corruption and evil perpetrated by dictatorship that it’s more like a large criminal gang than a supposedly legitimate government. South Africa has had to watch and bear witness to state capture under an ex president who has a criminal conviction for refusing to appear before a legally convened tribunal and is still waiting prosecution under a huge array of charges which has been many years in the making and we have not yet seen justice.
Justice is incredibly important, not just because it reflects law and order and the fairness of the legal system but it also reflects that those who abuse power, steal, destroy and poison institutions will be caught and dealt with. It gives hope to the people that the people elected may actually be held accountable at least for some of their many illegitimate transgressions. If there is no justice and the high level and influential perpetrators are not brought to book, then the complete distrust of government already at a record low will only increase and mob vigilantism will only increase as people know that the crooks in power are immune. It also serves as a warning to those committing the theft and skulduggery that the people will hold them accountable for the theft and corruption and destruction through ineptitude and corruption, cronyism of institutions like Eskom and other state parastatals. At present political parties on the very extreme ends of the spectrum have not been dealt when they have made clearly racist comments, incited violence and other acts not befitting their status as supposed leaders of the country. The worst thing is that the media gives them coverage causing what should be extreme fringe groups to grow dramatically in stature and influence. Social media of course is also partly to blame for this.
If the saying that a people gets the government that they deserve is true then we really need to take a long hard look at how we view politicians and their plethora of lies and utter nonsense spouted to try and garner votes. We need to remember all the drivel and propaganda spouted by these same individuals and parties and see the inconsistency between empty words and false promises and the reality on the ground. Imagine that each political had to sign a legally binding manifesto of their claims and ‘promises’ and that if they do not meet them, they are forced to resign from government and or their respective political parties and are no longer eligible for any position in government. There would be a fact checking team linked to the IEC and any false claims about rivals would be publicly rectified by the IEC and the politician who stated the falsehood would need to publicly acknowledge this. Also, allow only one term as president. You have four years to make a difference, not eight years to develop your state capture mechanism and implement it before your relieved of power. Lastly have an independent tribunal consisting of ordinary honest folk who have the capacity to hold the government accountable and freeze any legislation or actions which are contrary to the public interest. Just one of millions of possible examples here would be SAA. The airline that has cost many billions of Rand and should have been allowed to go bust well over a decade ago without using our precious resources again to bail out state owned and senior government officials and their cronys who have stolen funds from and destroyed what was once a profitable airline. Hectic you may think and perhaps it is but with a landscape of crooks calling themselves politicians and officials that are out to fill their pockets, perhaps that’s exactly what we need. Imagine, there would suddenly be far less claims and promises made and the crooks (I mean politicians} would be held accountable for their claims.
How incredibly refreshing, politicians being held accountable and government becoming far more productive. I’m not saying they would be ‘honest politicians’ thats way too far a stretch but we could say politicians being forced to have some honesty in their dealing with the electorate. Food for thought.