Oblivious political masters are disconnected from peoples’ realities

There is little doubt that recent rhetoric is an indication that the government has lost control of the country.

Our fragile democracy is under a severe and sustained threat.

We are bombarded daily with divisive, militant and populist rhetoric. Whereas elements of this rhetoric might have substance, much of it is aimed at trying to generate votes for the political party that propagates this rhetoric. After elections, all their promises are trashed.

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There is little doubt that the rhetoric is an indication that the government has lost control of the country.

Corruption continues unabated, law and order is close to collapse, municipalities are on the verge of disintegration, state-owned entities are bankrupt and good news is but a pipe dream for citizens.

Govt strives for self-interest

The people’s anger and disenchantment is frequently founded in valid reasons. There is no doubt that the manner in which the ruling party strives to ensure self-interest, while disregarding the people it is supposed to work for, is causing the build-up of large-scale anger and resentment.

An overburdened taxed populace will soon be forced to cope with higher taxes to fund the much-maligned National Health Insurance.

This despite the fact that many advanced countries are unable to effectively implement such a system. But having failed in virtually everything, government believes it will get this right.

Or is this just another ploy to take control of the large pots of private health insurance money to use on themselves?

Let us not forget the collapse of Eskom and its devastating effect on the country. Businesses and vital industries have been forced to close down and relocate elsewhere.

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This is having a huge negative impact on our employment figures, economic growth and opportunities. Will the government do some introspection and understand that its incompetence has resulted in the economic mess we are in?

Instead, and as the situation deteriorates daily, they choose to blame the banks and industrialists.

While South Africans live the daily realities of a lack of food, water, electricity and unemployment, it seems our political masters live in a different universe, totally disconnected with the realities of our daily lives.

While government plays its silly divisive games, foreign investors have taken approximately R1 trillion out of South Africa in the past decade.

Does government realise the impact this has on the economy and on job creation?

Despite its flip-flopping with new and destructive economic policies aimed to further impoverish the nation and marginalise segments of the populace government claims it is making efforts to restore institutions and rebuild the economy to ensure more desperately needed jobs are created.

We have become used to these false pre-election promises.

Exodus of skilled workers

The exodus of skilled people from SA is frightening. There is a skills shortage in our country, but government is doing nothing to stem the tide of people who are leaving.

They view the departure of skilled black, white, Indian and coloured people as an opportunity to fill the vacuum with unskilled family members and friends.

This approach has resulted in numerous infrastructure and associated failures that government’s Cuban and various other allies are unable to rectify.

With more than 40 000 civil servants earning over R1 million a year, you would expect to see an efficient and functional civil service. Not so.

The lesson here is that if you want to get rich, you should join the civil service. Despite civil servants being in the top wage bracket with no accountability, you have to ask how we will continue to sustain their salaries.

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It will also be interesting to see how many of these overpaid, underperforming civil servants are foreigners, or have criminal records.

Government has cost SA billions through corruption, theft and mismanagement. We have suffered great reputational damage and our once-prosperous nation has been plunged into a criminal state. The list of failures is endless.

Failed and bankrupt municipalities are unable to provide energy, infrastructure, education, health, ports and rail networks, law and order, security, food, fuel and more. Failure always starts at the top.

Government has propelled us into a low-ranked Third World country and has threatened the very essence of our democracy.

If we do not get rid of this threat to our democracy, things will only get worse.

• Mashaba is a political analyst