Open any newspaper or read the headlines online. Underperformance, tender fraud, corruption, scams and dishonesty dominate the news. It is as if the cadres and their leaders are trying in a last desperate attempt to loot what has not already been stolen.
In a recent meeting of the ANC cadres’ review of its election manifesto in Boksburg, the ANC took stock of its promises. It should have become clear during the conversation that the ANC’s hot air promises have not materialized in recent years. This forced President Ramaphosa to look elsewhere for blame. Thus the blame has been placed on the Covid-19 pandemic, state capture and the ongoing economic problems as well as the July 2021 riots.
In fact the president was quoted as follows: “The period in which I became president is possibly the most challenging period that any president in the democratic era has ever faced. No other president has faced so many challenges, which not only I have but the entire country.” In fact the president reported that he had 14 obstacles in his way. Covid-19, which has confronted the whole world, remains a convenient excuse for the ANC and the president. The other obstacles to which the president refers were probably created or exacerbated by the ANC itself.
The president conveniently refers to statehood as if it was another administration or another party that benefited from it. In the same way, the ANC as a party and its leaders’ complicity in corruption is also always talked about. With this, the ANC falls into the pattern of so many other African countries’ liberation movements.
The ANC, which so often and sacrilegiously presents its freedom fighter ideals in the decades before apartheid, has become today’s free-eaters and fallen into the African pattern. Prof. William Gumede van Wits writes about this in April 2021 and says that “in many African countries the poor, the marginalized and the desperate often support the leaders and parties that seem to go against their own interests and in doing so they only increase poverty, marginalization and underdevelopment even further .”
Prof. Gumede then concludes that one of the reasons why Africa has remained poor since the end of colonialism is the result of “power-hungry, violent and cruel leaders”. It is these leaders with their populist rhetoric, corrupt behavior and poor policies that collapse their countries’ economies leading to mass starvation, societal collapse and violence.
The liberation movements which include South Africa’s African National Congress (ANC), Zimbabwe’s Zimbabwe African National Union-Patriotic Front (Zanu-PF), Algeria’s National Liberation Front (NLF), Angola’s People’s Movement for the Liberation of Angola (MPLA ) and Mozambique’s Mozambique Liberation Front (Frelimo) turned to armed resistance in the struggle for independence. Liberation from colonialism, apartheid, and oppression was indeed achieved, but this in turn led to disaster for the countries.
The ANC’s liberation history once placed the movement on the platform of high morality. Freedom has been gained but the free-eaters today fall over their feet to scavenge and plunder. With this, the ANC has landed in the quagmire from which it can no longer get out. The President’s promised New Dawn of 2019 and 2020 and beyond was not hindered or hampered by 14 obstacles. It was stolen by his own party, the ANC.
This news commentary was provided by Pretoria FM. Listen daily to Clankkoerant on Pretoria FM for the latest news commentary.