This is the reward for some whose ancestors came to South Africa from Europe centuries ago (as other Europeans went to other new world lands). They built farms, businesses and provided employment for the local people. What did they do to deserve Mr. Ramaphosa’s crime-ridden South Africa?
THE REAL STATE OF THE NATION.
The nation’s realities to which Mr. Ramaphosa did not aver are significant.
+ Can he fix local government while the same incompetent “deployees” that destroyed municipalities are still warming council seats throughout the country? Most carry on with their venality and corruption without so much as a blush. Only 18 of the country’s 257 municipalities have been given a clean audit by the Auditor General (AG). The rest are either hopelessly in debt or under administration. If you want to know why South Africa doesn’t work, check SA’s local government performances. Each year the AG gives recommendations to rectify the state of these bodies, and each year his advice is ignored. For arrogance and ignorance, there’s no better example than the country’s ANC-controlled local councils. Mr. Ramaphosa will not get it right until he unseats these political appointees. But ads for council jobs still demand Employment Equity (as it is euphemistically called): they say the councils are “equal opportunity” employers yet some declare conversely that “preference will be given to women and disabled persons”.
Perhaps preference should be given to persons who arrive at the office on time, who answer the phone, who don’t take two hours for lunch, and who are not so incompetent that they need to ask a “consultant” to do their job. (The Auditor General disclosed that R907 million had been spent over the last book year on consultants just to assist with the drawing up of financial statements!) Mr. Ramaphosa declared he was “worried” about the AG’s report. What’s the wager that he won’t appoint competent people to the local councils any time soon? It is thus a given that the current situation will worsen. The majority of municipalities’ Chief Financial Officers – 64% - do not meet the minimum competency levels as specified by the Municipal Finance Management Act. In the meantime sewage runs in the streets and this particular effluent recently drove 200 employees out of the Emfuleni council building as it flooded the offices! ANC councils bill electricity to citizens and then don’t pay these funds over to electricity provider Eskom - they presently owe the provider R17 billion - while large percentages of municipal budgets go to salaries and perks for employees and officials.
+ Some parts of Gauteng have recently been without electricity for weeks, on and off. These are residential areas where children go to school, mothers work and come home to cook, and heating is needed as winter grips. In most cases the causes are lack of maintenance, the stealing of cables and illegal connections. (This never happened under the previous government, it should be noted.) People who historically never planned ahead still have the same mindset. This shows in the collapse of infrastructure due to lack of upkeep.
As there is no control at SA’s borders, no one knows how many electricity free loaders come from points north. Why wouldn’t Nigerians and others come to a country where they really don’t pay for anything? The power problem has been going on for years. In May 2016 alone, Johannesburg residents suffered at least 300 power outages over a period of four weeks – an average of 11 outages per day, some lasting more than 72 hours. And all the time Eskom was being plundered by ANC acolytes and political appointees and nothing was done. Mr. Ramaphosa was significant in his silence at that time. Now he’s rushing around trying to salvage Eskom. But it didn’t die overnight – the cancer had infected its body years ago.
+ Eighty eight percent of South Africa’s transport is by road. Attacks on trucks and drivers have now reached crisis level. Since April 2018 more than 200 truck drivers have been killed, and 1 200 trucks have been either destroyed or damaged, at a total cost of R1,2 billion. Maps are now appearing in the press outlining which highway is life threatening for truckers. Profits in the truck business are low – some at only 3,8% - and many may drop out of the game. Who will then transport South Africa’s food? Mr. Ramaphosa’s ANC? Is the president even looking at this awesome problem?
+ Can the president fix some of the plundered parastatals – South African Airways, the SA Broadcasting Corporation, Denel, Eskom, Transnet, PetroSA, Prasa, the SA Post Office and many others? How will he really sort these entities out? SA doesn’t need any more ten-point plans, turn-around strategies, meetings, forums and working breakfasts to “assess the problems”. Replace the incompetents and political appointees with competent new blood. Will this happen? There is doubt if this will happen because Mr. Ramaphosa values his chances of re-election. Once again, the rot set in some time back but there was silence then from those now making noises about “turning things around”. In 2003, an internal audit report forecast a R2 billion loss for SAA. This was due to the appreciation of the SA rand, but did nobody foresee this? Clearly experience and foresight were lacking at the national carrier. At the same time a number of Transnet units were posting serious losses. Was nobody in the ANC watching?
+ Doctors are being raped in our public hospitals. Mafia-type gangs are terrorising construction sites demanding protection money and a hefty share of the profits! You don’t pay, your equipment will be destroyed. Your car breaks down in a suburban main road and you are shot and killed at point blank range as you await petrol from a friend. Eighty seven percent of South African schools have been broken into over the past year, while parents of some Afrikaans schools are spending R50 000 altogether per month on security measures. Crime is rampant in schools throughout the country, including armed robberies, with violent protestors wielding torches and weapons entering the grounds. In many cases, there were not enough policemen to handle the situations. Schools are now war zones.
In 2016 already the cost of damage to 18 universities throughout the country was nearly R700 million. Violence continued until 2018, with taxpayers forced to pay for repairs amounting to further millions. Violence continues throughout the country as townships burn and residents are killed, almost on a daily basis. Illegal miners plunder our mines and kill those who get in their way. Those who almost stole our country – the Gupta state capturers - are now spending SA taxpayers’ money on lavish weddings overseas. None of them were brought to book.
The economy? As long as there is uncertainty about property ownership, few will invest in South Africa. Although not many will admit it, the BEE story where 30% of a company ‘s profits must be given to a black person simply because of his colour has gone against the grain of many prospective investors.
There is only one way Mr. Ramaphosa can salvage SA’s sinking ship and that is to appoint competent people to run the country. The ANC cannot run the country, this is patently clear. When it is so obvious what can be done, why not do it? Only the president knows the answer.