Madiba’s legacy must be elevated
Mvezo Komkhulu (The Great Place) — We greet the election of Cde Cyril Ramaphosa with elation and great anticipation. Legacies are forged in the crucible of struggle. History will bear testimony to whether he walked in the footsteps of the giants that raised up the flag of Africa’s oldest liberation movement founded in 1906 as the South African Native Congress and nationalized in 1912 to being the South African Native National Congress to later become the African National Congress, or whether he succumbed to the realpolitik of expediency, parochialism and self-serving interests.
We have come a long way since 1994 and achieved much, yet our people, all South Africans, look forward to advancing the legacy of President Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela and bring hope where there is desolation, prosperity where there is poverty, decent jobs where there is unemployment, and a better life for all.
Cde President Ramaphosa is uniquely suited to lead us in this challenging time. As a nation we must unite behind him and work together to build prosperity, service delivery and hope. This is no easy task and already those who have sworn fealty to a culture of oppositionism are rubbing their hands in glee as they prepare afresh to rubbish South Africa’s credibility and good standing in the public domain and the world community.
The ANC led government over the past nearly three decades has brought the once pariah apartheid state to the heights of credibility and achieved much acclaim domestically and globally in many spheres.
We owe a special debt of gratitude to the forebearance of our people who despite difficulties and very challenging circumstances remained loyal in their support. It is these ordinary South Africans that will hold high the torch carried by uNkosi Dalibhunga and hold elected leadership to account for nation building, radical economic transformation and restoring social cohesion.
His Excellency President Ramaphosa bears the weight of great expectations and the prophets of doom and gloom are already casting aspersions on his ability to make the changes that South Africa needs. If we listened to these soppy soothsayers we would be paralysed into inaction. South Africa needs the collective of our civil society structures, private sector, labour, progressive political players and a people centred government to ensure transformation of our society, economy and political sphere.
We salute our former President Jacob Zuma for serving as leader of party and state for the past nine years. All leaders have achievements and failures and we celebrate his many achievements.
The last years under his leadership have been characterized by intense bombardment on issues of corruption, state capture and breach of governance in State Owned Enterprises (SOEs). President Ramaphosa and the new leadership will have to be tough on corruption and ensure that we give teeth to the anti corruption laws and policies and ensure that we build a culture of zero tolerance to corruption.
The matter of investigating of State Capture is well underway but recent revelations in the public domain, social media and publications have highlighted that state capture is not a new phenomenon and we shall be advocating for the terms of this investigation to be expanded.
Two examples of broader state capture that requires attention come to mind but is undoubtedly not exhaustive. In the 1970s legislation was passed to the benefit of one private company that exempted them from fully declaring their mining production output. They only had to declare 10 percent and no surprises for guessing that the major beneficiary of their production output of unbeneficiated mining product, allegedly has been and continues to be Apartheid Israel.
The second example of broader state capture has been the Western Cape DA and in particular its national leader Maimane and the murky links to Apartheid Israel. The emerging allegations of collusion in the DA run City of Cape Town in the awarding of desalination plants with Israeli companies is cause for concern. There is no surprise that the DNA of Apartheid continues through DA rule. We shall call for a special debate on state capture and especially those companies that colluded with the Apartheid State and continue to do business with the democratic state. Perhaps it’s also time that we look at South African companies that do business with and support Apartheid Israeli and it’s war of occupation.
President Ramaphosa the freedom loving people of the world look to you with renewed hope. None moreso than the Palestinian people as evidenced by 16 year old Ahed Tamimi whom you met last year and who is now incarcerated in an Apartheid Israeli jail. She is a symbol of Palestinian resistance and defiance. We call on you to add your voice in calling for her release, the release of all minor children illegally held in Israeli jails, the release of Palestinian women in jail as well as the release of Marwan Barghouti and all Palestinian liberation fighters.
We want to ensure that the year of Mandela’s Centennial Celebration is reflective of the values and causes that he espoused. That what he considered ‘the greatest moral issue of our time’ is not sacrificed at the altar of expediency and myopia.
We wish the newly elected President of the Republic every success and assure him of our continued support and look forward to hosting him on the 18th July International Nelson Mandela Day at Mvezo Komkhulu, the birthplace of our global icon.
Royal House of Mandela
P.O. Box 126
Eastern Cape Province
Nkosi Zwelivelile “Mandla” Mandela, chief of the Mvezo Traditional Council and grandson of famed South African President Nelson Mandela. Member of Parliament (MP) South Africa National Assembly. All articles by Nkosi Zwelivelile “Mandla” Mandela