Zamikhaya Maseti
3 minute read
1 Apr 2019
6:05 am

There’s no obvious choice for voters come voting day

Zamikhaya Maseti

Corruption in this country is so rife and getting more institutionalised as many politicians are heavily implicated.

A voter casts his ballot as part of the general elections at the Ntolwane Primary School in the rural village of Nkandla, on May 7, 2014. Picture: RAJESH JANTILAL / AFP

South Africa is less than eight weeks away from the national general elections and all political parties have released their lists for the public to see who they chose to represent them in the 10 legislative chambers.

This year, more than ever, voters will face a very serious challenge when they ponder which party to vote for. The euphoria of the 1994 democracy is long gone and has been replaced with dismay and hopelessness.

Corruption in this country is so rife and getting more institutionalised. Many politicians are heavily implicated. I guess, for now, we can take comfort in the constitutional principle that says they are all innocent until proven guilty by the courts.

Sadly, what is coming out of the Commission of Inquiry into State Capture is disgusting and discouraging to say the least. Nevertheless, voters have to make democracy work by voting on May 8 to return the 400 MPs in the National Assembly and a sizeable number to the National Council of Provinces to make laws that will improve lives.

That is the reality South African voters are confronted with and agonising over. The dirt emerging from the Zondo inquiry is hurting the once good political image of the ANC, the oldest tried-and-tested liberation movement on the African continent.

Liberation movements, once in power, often get entangled in the web of corruption, especially as they come closer to their second decade of democratic rule. It’s almost natural that in many African countries former liberation movements are now occupying opposition benches. Such scenarios have played themselves out in countries such as Zambia, Tanzania and Ghana, and surely South Africa will not be spared in the not too distant future.

The Zondo commission has so far been a double-edged sword to the ANC and is painfully piercing through its heart. Many of its leaders implicated in the Bosasa corruption scandal have clearly lost their collective revolutionary morality and do not deserve to be public representatives, nor to occupy any other public position or office.

The return to the ANC’s parliamentary list of those individuals who are heavily in the Bosasa financial feeding scheme and the Gupta pillaging of state-owned enterprises (SOEs) is disappointing. Equally, the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) has its own skeletons jumping out of the closet.

Its leaders have been implicated in the VBS scandal. The intimate relationship that EFF leader Julius Malema has with alleged tax evader Adriano Mazzotti leaves much to be desired. This clearly confirms that the EFF’s ideological outlook is twisted and lopsided. The EFF is nothing but a club of shrewd nationalists who masquerade as Marxist-Leninists.

Actually, their collective behaviour and newly found elitism represent an antithesis of the Marxist-Leninist doctrine. Their lifestyles and cosy relationships with businesspersons disqualify them as Marxist-Leninists. They are not walking the revolutionary talk. In simple terms, they run with the hare and hunt with the hounds.

The Democratic Alliance (DA), also faced its own Achilles heel. The David and Goliath fight between Patricia de Lille and the DA eroded the confidence of the black people in the party, especially in the Western Cape.

It remains to be seen how this constituency will respond to the harsh treatment De Lille received from the DA. The DA has been found wanting on a number of policies that speak directly to the historical plight and pain of black people in general.

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