Dirty politics enemy of true liberation

The ANC has missed the essence of true liberation. In spite of countless opportunities in the past two decades, it has refused to move ahead, preferring instead to return to the stale old world of cloak and dagger, betrayal and manipulation, violence and poverty.

BANTU MNIKI Picture: FILE

Instead of creating a world founded on justice and developing prosperity, the ruling party has led us into the quagmire of unfulfilled human aspirations where wealth means possessions for a select few rather than beautiful dreams for all, pursued firstly by those with the strength of character to carry them through.

Buying into the idea that “politics is a dirty game” is utter nonsense. This single line has been used as propaganda, that has, perhaps more than any other disingenuous narrative, brought to life our current nightmare.

This piece of nonsense has continuously been hammered into our consciousness since 1994, almost ratified as a principle that we ought to accept rather than challenge.

Yet it is amazing that just before this, we knew measured politics, perhaps resistance politics, according to an altogether different narrative – one of honour and selflessness.

If you think about it, the line that politics is a dirty game has seemingly been designed so that citizens will give politicians a blank cheque and ask no questions of them.

It is indeed a piece of propaganda, carefully crafted to dupe citizens into allowing all sorts of unacceptable behaviour from politicians.

As long as we accept that the “game is dirty”, we are expected to remain mute as we witness dirt and grime pouring through the corridors of political power.

This nonsense, this tiny and seductive line, has been wielded by members of the ANC like a mugger’s knife to devastating effect.

Tragically, history will record that soon after the seemingly impregnable walls of one of the most repugnant political systems in the world fell, another system of apparently impregnable impunity began to come into place.

At the forefront of this process, hoisted high, was not our unifying South African flag, but this piece of political nonsense.

“Forgive us our deadly sins, we are playing a dirty game here!”

Nelson Mandela and his peers, at great personal cost, sought the greater ideal, a truly liberated South Africa.

However, from the onset, there were some who preferred to emulate their former apartheid oppressors. And the “some” then became the “many” and the “many” ultimately became the “most”, if not “all”.

Instead of building up the beautiful dream of a rainbow nation, the ANC has increasingly preferred to produce the nightmare of division, driven by a horde of rent-seekers, manipulators, thieves and traitors.

Such are the types that quickly amass great riches, grasp after “donations” and gravitate towards the party and national coffers!

Having thus refused to build on the beautiful dreams of our founding vows, the ruling party has instead become the enthusiastic catalyst of our present nightmare.

Closely linked to its own mammoth misunderstanding of its role in history, is the ANC’s complete lack of appreciation for the sacrosanct nature of the rule of law.

The seductive nature of the narrative which seeks to dupe citizens into accepting the monstrously unacceptable under the blanket term of “dirty politics”, has itself been at the centre of the ANC’s inability to subscribe fully to the rule of law.

The ruling party exalted itself above all things, as … eh, leader of society. It then sought to master the “dirty” side of politics.

Little wonder that in this terrifyingly short-sighted process it regarded the concept of the rule of law as an inconvenience.

It has become part of ANC culture that the powerful shall not be held accountable, as if accountability is a tool of some enemy, whoever that enemy might be.

Yet, the truth is: the enemy of the truly liberated is the lack of accountability.

It’s absence is the surest way to learn nothing, improve nothing and care for nothing.

The persistent manipulation of our laws – perhaps the worst form of disregard for the rule of law – has found its most sinister expression under Jacob Zuma’s terrible presidency.

As we speak, death threats have become the order of the day within the ANC. When corrupt deals are exposed, it is no longer unexpected that people are murdered.

It is now almost a foregone conclusion that during periods of leadership contestation, people will die.

Before ANC elective conferences, smear campaigns, intimidation and black bags full of money will be the order of the day. This is a norm.

But it should never be. Nor is the spilling of blood necessary or inevitable. Yet the narrative stays in place, locking the ruling party into a cycle of killing its own.

The murder of many, such as Sindiso Magaqa, can and must never be seen as acceptable.

Instead our understanding of true liberation must be demonstrated through selflessness, honour and accountability.

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