HOW HAVE WE FARED SINCE BIKO’S PASSING?
WE HAVE just commemorated 40 years since the death of one of Africa’s greatest thinkers, Steve Bantu Biko, at the hands of apartheid hooligans.
He was just 30 when we were robbed of this universal thinker.
He had realised that the killer wound inflicted on blacks by colonisers and oppressors was to the mind.
We need to reflect on how we’ve fared since his passing in developing the way we think and do things (culture) as Africans and how the way we do things impacts our lives and Africa’s status quo, as one underdeveloped continent.
Did we get a fair deal out of the new political settlement (democracy)? Was it the only viabIe option? Is our education system decolonised and effective?
Are we winning the fight against poverty and inequality?
Do we need to spend more money on funerals, tombstones, cultural events ( imisebenzi) than on education?
Are the RDP houses (and yards) adequate for our often extended families?
Do we spend more (money and time) on churches, religion and muthi (some, if not most, with no proven healing capabilities) than other countries?
Do we want instant gratification rather than investing in the future?
Do we eat healthy, balanced diets as our forebears used to?
These and many more questions need to be raised.
We need to take an eclectic view of our traditions (and Africa has many good ones, for example ubuntu) and bolster the ones that are worth keeping and do away with nonsense.
I wonder what Steve Bantu Biko would think. Just saying.