Acknowledging the gains over three decades

Acknowledging the gains over three decades

By Johnson Qobo

Not everyone is all bad, and likewise not everyone is all good. A close survey at every situation one is guaranteed to find whatever they are looking for, whether it be good or bad.

From its formation in 1912, when my late grandfather was only two years old, the intentions of the ANC were good, genuine and sincere. Led by its founding leaders like Sol Plaatjie and John Langalibalele Dube, just to mention a few, the party was determined to fight for the marginalised and oppressed and get the land back.

The leaders fought to the bone, some members sacrificing their lives; of which their blood nourished the land for the birth of democracy. No African was free to move around as they pleased and associate with whomever they wanted, or even stay wherever they wish in the country. South Africa was a land for the minority while the majority had limited rights and were servants valued second to animals.

The minority occupied prime land in the country with fertile soil and had lots of water, with the natives shifted far away from the economic hubs to a land that semi-barren, brown and disheartening.

Many had to leave the country in fear of their lives, while others stayed behind to continue the fight; some continued the fight from the shores beyond the seas. Political parties, alliances and black conscience movements united in bringing the apartheid regime to its knees with the help of the international community.

Finally apartheid ended, Madiba was released from prison alongside with other leaders like Walter Sisulu, Govern Mbeki, Ahmed Kathrada, Andrew Mlangeni amongst others.

Negotiations ensued that led to the fall of apartheid and the first democratic elections in 1994. Nelson Mandela emerged the first black president of South Africa. At that time, we, as kids, were playing in dusty streets of our townships, no storm water drains in place. We hardly had sports grounds, if there were, they were under developed.

With the ANC in power, initiative for reconciliation and forgiveness were implemented, Africans were brought up to the status of humanity and their dignity restored. Hope shone in the hearts of the natives. RDP houses were built, roads were built, economy policies that allowed everyone to participate were introduced, Africans had access to universities to further their studies even further without discrimination.

Most houses were added to the national grid and received electricity for the first time. Many areas were developed and we witnessed the rise of black diamonds (black millionaires). Racial interaction, the poor are taken care of through the social security grants. Funds have been made available for those who cannot afford university education.

In some areas, underground sewerage networks have been upgraded. More investors have brought into the country, as such, jobs were created and many black households were able to put bread on the table.

This is not to mean that one is oblivious to the short comings of the ruling party. Just like language, as it passes through time, some terms lose their original meaning and are now interpreted to mean something else which it was not. The ANC fell victim to the same fate, with members joining the party with ulterior motives, some are outright careerists, while some are in the party to steal and take advantage of the opportunities at the disposal of the ruling party.

Greed and selfishness consumed the party, the land agenda has been forgotten, instead self-enrichment plagues the liberation party. This resulted into in-fighting and the neglect of communities, a slow paced delivery on services and eventually resulting in unhappy societies.

With its many flaws, it will not be correct to say the ANC government has done nothing, however, the party need to do some self-introspection and rid itself of all the bad apples.  


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