South Africa

Letter to the Editor: Will the credible leaders please stand up

By Logan Naidu 1 July 2017

Voluminous space has been consumed by the Gupta Leaks and how this notorious and corrupt family, with President Jacob Zuma at the epicenter, have nefariously captured our beautiful country. Any one of the multitude of shocking revelations should have been sufficient to bring down Zuma and his Executive. Yet, we hear hardly a whimper from senior, credible members of the ANC. By LOGAN NAIDU

The following words by President Zuma in his last appearance in Parliament defy all rationality and overwhelming evidence to the contrary:

Don’t even worry about anything. Just sit in peace and rest… There’s no problem.”

The people of South Africa did not make a mistake in electing me as president of this country. I am fit and it’s running very well.”

Voluminous space has been consumed by the Gupta Leaks and how this notorious and corrupt family, with Zuma at the epicenter, have nefariously captured our beautiful country. Any one of the multitude of shocking revelations should have been sufficient to bring down Zuma and his Executive. Yet, we hear hardly a whimper from senior, credible members of the ANC. Blade Nzimande seems to be a voice in the wilderness, with his criticisms totally ignored by Zuma and his sycophants, acolytes, cronies, or whatever term best describes them.

Let it be stated at the outset, State capture was done with the full cooperation and support of the majority of ANC members of Parliament and its National Executive Committee, National Working Committee etc. In spite of the mountains of evidence pointing to the fact that Zuma orchestrated the whole State of Capture project, his MPs most recently gave him a standing ovation in Parliament. So, while one may correctly blame Zuma for the mess our country is in – junk status, recession, lowest levels of business confidence, the poor and marginalised suffering even more – the rest of the ANC must also shoulder the blame.

Zuma has effectively publicly “instructed” the Speaker to ensure the forthcoming vote of no confidence will not be by “secret ballot”. This clearly flies in the face of the unanimous Constitutional Court judgement as follows:

There must always be a proper and rational basis for whatever choice the Speaker makes in the exercise of the constitutional power to determine the voting procedure. Due regard must always be had to real possibilities of corruption as well as the prevailing circumstances and whether they allow Members to exercise their vote in a manner that does not expose them to illegitimate hardships. Whether the prevailing atmosphere is generally peaceful or toxified and highly charged, is one of the important aspects of that decision-making process.”

However, it is obvious the Speaker will unquestioningly bow in obeisance to her master and decide on an “open” vote. This will probably be challenged, and the process will drag on indefinitely, to Zuma’s delight. He will continue merrily plundering the resources of our country and defrauding its people. 

Those ANC MPs who wish to distance themselves from Zuma and his benefactors the Gupta’s, will have a unique opportunity to do so in the forthcoming vote of “no confidence”. Whether it is an “open” vote or by “secret ballot,” it should make no difference. It is high time MPs voted according to their conscience, as highlighted by the CC:

Central to the freedom ‘to follow the dictates of personal conscience’ is the oath of office. Members are required to swear or affirm faithfulness to the Republic and obedience to the Constitution and laws. Nowhere does the supreme law provide for them to swear allegiance to their political parties, important players though they are in our constitutional scheme. Meaning, in the event of conflict between upholding constitutional values and party loyalty, their irrevocable undertaking to in effect serve the people and do only what is in their best interests must prevail.

The fact that it may be an “open” vote must not deter those ANC MPs, who have not yet been “bought off” by Zuma and the Gupta’s, from summoning the courage “to serve the people (of South Africa) and do only what is in their best interests”. They have only one choice: vote in favour of the “no confidence” motion.

An important aspect that seems to enjoy virtually zero media debate is the composition and integrity of those who will participate at the ANC Policy Conference this month and the ANC Elective Conference in December. Unless one has been living in Mars for the last few years, especially the past year, it is irrefutably evident that some key participants have been compromised to such an extent that they cannot and must not be allowed to be part of these conferences, especially the December Elective Conference. There is overwhelming evidence, especially following the Gupta emails dump, that both the ANC Youth League and MK Vets are doing the Gupta’s bidding. Even their messages and communication have been shown to be crafted by the Gupta’s. While no clear evidence seems to implicate the ANC Women’s League, it seems clear that they probably also owe their loyalties to the Zupta Mafia. Perhaps a few of the phenomenal civil society organisations will seek an interdict preventing the ANC Youth League, ANV Women’s League and MK Vets from participating in the Elective Conference until such time as this entire issue has been pronounced on by a credible, independent Judicial Commission of Inquiry, appointed by the Chief Justice, as recommended by the previous courageous Public Protector, Thuli Madonsela.

It is also fitting to recognise the tremendous public service done by news outlets such as  Daily Maverick and amaBhungane in investigating and revealing the true scale of State Capture. The latest revelations about the illicit funding of the Gupta V & A wedding, actively aided and abetted by Minerals Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane, then Free State MEC for Agriculture. It is staggering that the people of Free State and SARS were defrauded to pay for the extravagant, over-the-top wedding. The “collusion” by KPMG, and it’s CEO at that time Moses Kgosana, in turning a blind eye to clearly evident fraud, needs to be investigated by the Judicial Commission of Inquiry. Ditto to McKinsey’s dealings with Trillion.

The honest people of our beautiful country deserve better. We have numerous very capable leaders and people of integrity within the ANC, some of whom have clearly come out against the corrupt Zupta contagion. They must come to the fore now and permanently make their mark for a corruption-free future. Our country needs you to save us from total ruin and disaster. The forces of righteousness must triumph over rampant prevailing unrighteousness. DM

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