A lot can be said about South Africa, her history and her people, some of it good, some of it bad, depending on how you want to view life.
But what can be said about her people is the amount of patience they have and ability to pull together when times are rough.
In a sense, one has to explain the backdrop of what I am speaking about, and one must stare the realities of the past in the face, confront it, work around it, as not to be haunted by it in the future.
For years South Africa has suffered the biggest failure of Imperialism, and that is to build your empire on top of the ashes of bones of a broken communities of people.
Imperialism, driven by the human “Greed Gene” has been the cause of great conflicts, but also great advancement, and one should already remember it in such a way. The problem lies in the fact that someone need to do the work, and not all is really willing to work for it.
This Empire wanted the minerals in the soil of South Africa, and this also brought about a South African Genocide which few really remember these days, home and abroad.
This Empire also imparted the gift of Segregation Laws on us through a man called Sir Milner, and he and fellow imperialistic figures like Rhodes made sure that they would have “slave labour” to do their bidding.
This brought about the Apartheid State of South Africa which should also not be forgotten, because forgetting about your past is a sure way to repeat the mistakes you suffered in the past.
It brought great advancements in technology, healthcare, civil order and structure, but, it was broken.
Because all of these advancements were achieved on the backs of millions who didn’t benefit from these advancements or the money they generated.
These Segregation Laws revamped into the form we called Apartheid created the gap, a rift, which made terms like “middle class” and “lower class” acceptable. It also created the situation where we are now sitting in, even after a Government change.
Now this is not the blame game, this is realty, and we need to confront it and move on.
There are two simple facts that one should face and that is
- Government is dividing the people successfully by polarizing the groups in opposition with each other. Fueling racial tension causing rifts with good policies which got badly implemented like AA and BEE. Creating strive between the different income groups, as well as racial groups.
This in turn left them up to their own devices and extra time to line their own pockets while we were busy fighting each other.
- That even though everyone has said it a million times before, and even though most might be tired of hearing it, but that Apartheid had a massive role to play in this tragedy, because of the legacy of “Greed” it left behind in Corporate companies like Lonmin, and crafty State sponsored entrepreneurs in Government like Zuma who enriched themselves at the cost of the many.
The reason one must face this, it to understand how patient the people of South Africa really are. After all of these years, nobody is really free. We are all still slaves on a tax making machine for Government, but just divided along “class” lines more than racial lines.
Taxes which are supposed to be used to uplift the people, but are now siphoned off into the pockets of Corporate elite, dirty politicians who pay lip service and Government “Officials” (at some stage they manged to change the title from Public Servant” to Government Official without us even noticing)
These taxes do not only affect the middle income group, they also affect the low income group, and the unemployed. Taxes like E-Tolls, which is one of but many such little surprise packages we found out about. Who knows what we are yet to learn?
The problem is, that Government dealings are not transparent and nobody is accountable, and the political parties who make up Government are also not really transparent, as they don’t reveal their party funding so that one can sniff out the rot of corruption even before it starts.
But now, the patience of the people of South Africa is wearing thin, and the emergence of a Civil Social Movement is on the grow, small communities are linking up and standing in solidarity with each other, united against a common threat to national security like the blatant corruption of Government “Officials” and asking questions about where all the money has gone.
Dodgy dealings which have surfaced in the last couple of years have created a platforms for people of all different groups in South African where they can pull together. Pressing issues like unemployment, poverty, inflation, service delivery protests (Andries Tatane), wage related issues like Marikana (with Government ties), Nkandla, WC2010, Armsgate and other scandals like GuptaGate and their kickbacks to Government and failures like Eskom has for once done something amazing, it has created an environment for Civil Movement Groups to grow, because people have seen that Politics is just about that, politicking and not really doing something about the problems.
Groups now have a chance to stand together, against a common enemy, The Corruption and Decay in Government. People like Steve, Vavi and Rob can sit around the table and talk the same language, but first, for that to happen, we must start caring about each other again. We must find our humanity and our empathy for each other and each others plight.
The Struggle is far from over, it has only yet begun. Because we need to struggle against our Greed gene, which would allow for situations like this to come about, we need to struggle against putting ourselves ahead of those around us, because if the community is prosperous, the individual is prosperous.
A luta continua