Picture: Photographer Ayanda Ndamane / African News Agency (ANA) – ANC supporters singing in Khayelitsha, The Western Cape ANC conference, which is due next week, is highly unlikely to take place as there are forces in the ANC who are against it.
By Ayanda Zulu
There are two primary reasons behind this argument that I propose to concern myself with in this article.
The first reason, which is glaringly apparent, is the fact that the ANC has almost completely ravaged the South African state. Only a few systems that belong to the state work today.
In a brilliant piece on the political future of South Africa, the courageous and astute intellectual, Prince Mashele, makes the following observation: “In the main, a modern state rests on four crucial pillars: security, health, energy, and education.” The ANC has destroyed all these crucial pillars.
I dare you to ask any South African about the SAPS; they will tell you how useless it is. This is to be expected, given that it is managed by someone as incompetent as Bheki Cele.
As for our porous borders, we are lucky they have only attracted petty traders from Pakistan and economic refugees from Zimbabwe. Only God knows what will happen to us when they eventually attract terrorist organizations, such as Boko Haram and ISIS.
Under apartheid, the South African National Defence Force was a major continental force that commanded respect internationally. Just last year in July, the same SANDF failed to protect our businesses from the matches of angry, rented mobs.
The ANC has destroyed the public health system to the extent that no one trusts it. You may not hear this often, but the primary reason why people invest in medical aid is that they do not wish to end up in a public hospital on a bad day. Even ANC politicians don’t trust the public health system – the likes of David Mabuza and Jacob Zuma trust doctors in Russia.
A government that cannot keep the lights on is unworthy of its power over the state. Owing to the ANC’s failure to increase Eskom’s generation capacity over the years, load-shedding has had to become a part of the daily South African experience.
To make matters worse, Eskom has issued several statements recently, warning South Africans about the instability of the national grid, which means we can expect load-shedding to continue in the long term.
When it comes to education, forget the sweet tongue of the ANC’s spin doctor, Angie Motshekga. South Africa’s education system is in shambles. Eighty percent of public schools (mostly located in townships and rural areas) are dysfunctional. That is to say, they fail to obtain an overall pass rate of 50% and/or above because they typically lack the resources and support required to assist students in their academics.
Furthermore, the dropout rate in these schools is overwhelmingly high – almost half of the learners who enter them in first grade don’t write their final matric exams.
These statistics do not suggest that the ANC has been building a better life for all.
Denying people access to quality education is a sure way to keep them trapped in poverty.
I have dealt with the first reason that disqualifies the ANC from governance. I now move to the second reason, which is often overlooked but should bother us more than the first.
The second reason
The ANC has no plan to fix the mess it has created.
Beyond the empty slogans of radical economic transformation and renewal, there are no concrete solutions to rescue South Africa and transform it into a prosperous state. The ANC has become, as Zweli Mkhize rightfully describes it, a “factionalised and directionless” organization. A shadow of its former self.
During its infancy, the ANC was an intellectual movement that was helmed by sharp minds like Sol Plaatje, who produced documents that expressed transformative ideas. Plaatje’s Native Life in South Africa is still required reading for anyone seeking to understand the catastrophic effects of the 1913 Land Act, on the black majority.
Today, the ANC has abandoned its intellectual roots. It has morphed into an anti-intellectual movement, characterised by intellectual dwarfs like Cyril Ramaphosa, who have never displayed any sign of critical thinking. Can anyone tell us of an original idea that Ramaphosa has ever articulated? What about his domestic and foreign policy? Has anyone heard his position on these two cardinal pillars, which determine a country’s direction?
To be fair, our president is not trapped alone in this abyss of intellectual poverty. Have a look at his comrades-in-arms, such as Paul Mashatile and Gwede Mantashe, who has toyed with the idea of an Eskom 2.0 against the backdrop of a demolished 1.0! Besides the usual rhetoric and empty promises, have these two men ever said anything worth remembering?
In short, I have provided, as it were, a comprehensive description of the ANC’s destruction of our state. Moreover, I have proven that it is incapable of repairing this destruction and guiding South Africa to prosperity. Remove it from power in 2024 and elect a new government!
Zulu is a Politics student at the University of Pretoria.