BLOG: Had Nelson Mandela's successors followed on with his altruistic and exemplary legacy and adhered to and respected the constitution, what would our country have been like today?
Easy answer. A parliament filled with honest, dedicated people, chosen for their professionalism with the sole aim of serving the nation at large.
All departments and SOEs running like welloiled machines and handling tenders with kid gloves - the word "corruption" not part of the vocabulary. And of more importance to ordinary citizens, many of whom make up the poor and unemployed, this ethic filters down to the municipalities with service delivery their only priority.
Not unlike parliamentarians, municipal councillors are elected for their experience in specific portfolios, like engineering and accountancy for starters. It's at this level that governance either keeps the citizenry happy and contented, or makes them miserable and troublesome.
In hindsight we know poverty and unemployment spawn the likes of Julius Malema who promises a better life for the downtrodden at the expense of ridding society of "white capitalism". With Madiba-like governance there's no need for violent protests and looting.
There's enough money in the kitty for basic needs like proper housing, electricity, water and sanitation. Schools and libraries built and transport provided in rural areas. The taxi industry, unlike now, controlled by intelligent leaders and a properly trained police force.
Then again, under a decent government, these problems probably wouldn't arise.
By now we've become fully aware that what's needed is a new political direction - or rather, to go back to the one Nelson initiated: honesty, tolerance and clean governance. With these three elements in place, policies can be negotiated, policies aimed at improving the lot of communities-at-large.
We are also conscious of the fact that the ANC has screwed up and is a spent force. So it follows that the opposition must seize the moment. This calls for strong leadership and political will in the opposing ranks. If I were in the DA's shoes I'd go on bended knee and recruit Ms Thuli Madonsela. Her track record speaks for itself. She'll knit together a strong team to drive the municipal elections.
And she's ideally suited to take on the mantel of the Mandela legacy. John Steenhuizen a good deputy. I can't wait to see the two in action in parliament. Cringe, Juju, Ace & Co, cringe.
The opinions expressed are those of the writer, and not those of Group Editors, the publisher.
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