An assault on prized unity
THE debacle around our Finance Minister obviously poses very hard questions for all of us. Clearly we cannot allow ourselves to be given the false choice of rand or rule of law.
However, we face an even harder choice. We can choose to press forward with a united government and one that carefully treads on how we conduct government to government affairs, or we can retreat into a sharply divided government, reckless in our ways of dealing with one another, and ultimately, face an inevitable conflict, which will rattle us to the core, that being the ANC itself.
Unity of government is a main pillar in the edifice of our hard- worn freedom. It is what gives us hope for prosperity, It is what ensures our tranquillity in our homes, it is what makes us not fear enemies here and abroad, it is the reason we continue to believe in this democracy which we so highly prize.
What unity of government means to our democracy is the most commanding motive for carefully guarding and preserving that unity of the ruling party itself.
That is why government to government relations must be treated with such delicacy. There is almost no way, without unity of government, that citizens will be able to exalt the just pride of patriotism in our country.
The recent acts, particularly around the sense of state versus state, brings a sense of pain, as it begins to weaken in our minds the conviction about our government and, if there is an area to test our collective security, it is to direct a constant and active assault on this prized unity, and Rome will most likely not stand.
It is extremely important that at all times we must properly estimate the immense value of our government’s unity and its impact on our collective and individual happiness.
In this regard it falls upon all of us to always cherish a cordial, habitual and immovable commitment to this unity.
It is government unity that gives us a sense of political safety and hope for prosperity; we must watch for its preservation with jealous anxiety, discountenancing whatever may suggest even a suspicion that it can in any event be abandoned and indignantly frowning upon the first dawning of every attempt to destroy this unity, convinced that the sacred ties which now link together the various parts of our government are worth all the sacrifice, all the cost.
To choose to tread carefully when dealing with other organs of government is no diminution of zeal for your job or country, it is not any deficiency of appreciation of independence of your organ in the bigger scheme of government, but a full conviction that treading carefully is actually compatible with that very independence. Whatever peculiar value our services provide in government during our terms of office, it is but temporary, government is forever, and its unity is what guarantees that, hence patriotism forbids any act that may disintegrate that very government.
Whatever passion we may have for our work, it should never cause a sense of agitation in our government, it should never misdirect its cause, there should never be appearances that may be deem dubious. There should always be a sense that we want our government to succeed.
I do not believe strengthening government is possible if our desire to have power over other organs of government gives way to an impulse to dominate or humiliate other organs of government. Then the fragile bonds that keep our government intact will fray. Unity of government, however, is not by divine providence, it must be sought. Every citizen’s support is essential in these efforts and serves as a guarantee that with all our efforts, such unity is possible.
We must at all times be driven by a sense of brotherly affection and it must be perpetual. The great constitution which is the work of our hands must be sacredly maintained.
Such unity requires that every administration in every department be stamped with wisdom and virtue, that, in fine, the moral of the people in these departments, the relationship between government departments and organs, may be enriched by so careful a preservation and so prudent a use of our powers.
The bigger question then becomes, what are you, and you and you, doing for the entrenchment of government unity?