It was to my great disappointment, that two potentially great leaders, recently chastised me about my ‘anti-ANC’ posts. As leaders in the community, one would expect their loyalty to the country, democracy and social justice to transcend their loyalty to any political party/organisation. An injustice to either, is still an injustice, irrespective of who is committing it and truthfully, it is they as party members who should be most vocal about these injustices, not only for the sake of the nation, but so that the party can be seen by the public as trying to correct its’ flaws- something which can only be in the best interest of the party. After all, being indifferent to an injustice to people, just because it’s being perpetrated by a party one is a member of, is to be an accomplice to the injustice. It also helps to bear in mind that as the ruling party, the ANC is more likely to be the recipient of a lot of scrutiny by civil society, it comes with the territory.
I am a South African and love my country dearly and contrary to popular belief, I am not anti-ANC. I am pro-democracy and have no doubt that certain phenomena in our country are not creating the necessary environment for democracy to flourish. These phenomena, will not disappear by themselves. As citizens of this country, we need to promote dialogue about them and create an environment in which they can be corrected, irrespective of who or what the cause is. We should be willing to do this without fear or favour, as silence would only be to the detriment of the nation as a whole. If voicing out for the sake of the preservation of democracy and using my right to the freedom of expression is anti-ANC then so be it.
I stand by my belief that, the media has an important role to play in not only the creation of democracy, but in the maintenance thereof. As such, in a democracy, one expects media to encourage public participation; one expects objective reporting on matters of public interest, not propaganda and a national broadcaster used as a tool by any political party, be it ANC or otherwise. I also stand in my belief that healthy opposition is a requirement for democracy to flourish, as such, the national broadcaster should promote democracy and not be used as a means of promoting propaganda. I also still stand by all views shared in my past posts.
Over and above all that, I am not content to live in a country in which there are people with no access to basic rights, such as healthcare, food and water- something which is a reality for many- whilst certain individuals enrich themselves with what should be state coffers. As someone who has first-hand witnessed almost 483 children go without food, due to a lack of water and has seen patients be pushed by wheelbarrows to get to the road because ambulances don’t enter a certain Informal Settlement, amongst many more injustices against society, I believe it my duty to voice my thoughts on such matters.
With the resources that I’m fortunate enough to have access to, I will use my voice to shout it out to the world, not only for myself, but for the illiterate unable to share their thoughts; for rural women, who as part of their daily lives go through unspeakable horrors; for the children dying from preventable diseases; for the orphans left behind by the HIV/AIDS pandemic; for the rape victims who will never see justice and for everyone whose voice has been taken away by social exclusion. Nothing can deter me from this path, I cannot succeed in everything I do, but I refuse to fail as a human being and turning a blind eye to all that is happening around me would amount to that, my indifference would make me as guilty as the perpetrator. For me, loyalty to South Africa; the well-being of its citizens; democracy and social justice should always be placed above any political party and by this I refer to all political parties, not just the ANC.
To conclude, I am pro-democracy, pro-social justice, pro-equality, pro-participation and unless the ANC is anti those, I don’t regard myself as anti-ANC.