Fol­low Jor­dan’s ex­am­ple

CityPress - - Voices -

The ANC stal­wart, Pallo Jor­dan, did the right thing. Upon be­ing found to have pimped his qual­i­fi­ca­tions by the Sun­day Times, he re­signed as an MP.

The act felt like a throw­back to a bet­ter era when peo­ple fell on their swords for the dis­junc­ture of stated val­ues and per­sonal prac­tice. It was an ex­am­ple of an old ANC where prin­ci­ples mat­tered and ac­tions had con­se­quences. Kudos fol­lowed his move, as they should, for the move is un­usual and holds up a stan­dard that oth­ers now have to fol­low. Will they?

In the new ANC, the ten­dency is dif­fer­ent. The gov­ern­ing party al­lowed a new cul­ture to set in. This was the cul­ture of “in­no­cent un­til proven guilty” – where cadres who face al­le­ga­tions of malfea­sance hang on to pow­er­ful po­si­tions pend­ing a court ver­dict. Of­ten, they pur­sue the mat­ter to the high­est court, with lawyers funded by the pub­lic purse. Think for­mer com­mu­ni­ca­tions min­is­ter Dina Pule, who was reshuf­fled out of of­fice on her red-soled Louboutins.

This has­tened a trend of di­vorc­ing eth­i­cal prac­tice from le­gal out­come.

From this trend grew one where politi­cians or pub­lic ser­vants stay on be­cause there is no­body more pow­er­ful who can charge them. And then this prac­tice mor­phed into one where you lever­age your con­tacts to stay in of­fice.

This is a sub­ver­sion of ethics and le­gal process by us­ing net­works of in­flu­ence or the cre­ation of crony net­works. From here, it is a short step to im­punity, which is where we are now. Jor­dan has re­set the im­punity clock.

Here are a few oth­ers who should fol­low suit.

The most ob­vi­ous ex­am­ples are re­cent ones. SABC chief op­er­at­ing of­fi­cer Hlaudi Mot­soe­neng and SABC board chair­per­son Ellen Zandile Tsha­bal­ala have been found to have faked their qual­i­fi­ca­tions. They should stand down, but both seem in­tent on hang­ing on to their po­si­tions for dear life.

Oth­ers who face rev­e­la­tions that are harm­ful in­clude ANC MP Pule Mabe, who is fac­ing cor­rup­tion charges re­lated to his pri­vate busi­ness in­ter­ests. This week, the na­tional direc­tor of pub­lic pros­e­cu­tions, Mx­olisi Nx­as­ana, brushed off the mur­der, reck­less driv­ing and abuse charges he has faced in the past as too small to men­tion.

They are not. As head of the Na­tional Pros­e­cut­ing Au­thor­ity, his rep­u­ta­tion should be cleaner than a load of Omo-soaked laun­dry. Time to go.

Two more. The Gaut­eng leg­is­la­ture’s Chief Whip Brian Hlongwa faces a range of eye-pop­ping cor­rup­tion charges re­lated to his ten­ure as Gaut­eng health MEC some years ago. He should step down.

And that great Te­flon Min­is­ter of En­ergy Tina Joe­mat-Pet­ters­son should con­sider whether she is up to the task of run­ning our fu­ture en­ergy needs.

Joe­mat-Pet­ters­son has had nu­mer­ous ad­verse rul­ings against her made by Pub­lic Pro­tec­tor Thuli Madon­sela, but she has been pro­moted to a more se­nior Cabi­net role – she pre­vi­ously led the de­part­ment of fish­eries and agri­cul­ture.

Of course, there is an ele­phant in the room, and that is Num­ber 1.

He is the one who has en­trenched sev­eral of these harm­ful prac­tices and changed the old cul­ture in the gov­ern­ing ANC.

Tina Joe­mat-Pet­ters­son

Hlaudi Mot­soe­neng

Ellen Tsha­bal­ala

Mx­olisi Nx­as­ana

Brian Hlongwa

Pule Mabe

Dina Pule

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