Sunday World (South Africa)

ANC’S statement needs to be more than platitudes


All eyes should be focused on the ANC’S traditiona­l January 8 statement, which takes place at the Mbombela Stadium, Mpumalanga, on Saturday – a statement that should have a significan­t impact not only on the organisati­on itself but also on the nation as a whole, because the organisati­on is the governing party.

Saturday’s statement is to be followed by a series of other important events – whose dates are yet to be determined by the national executive committee taking place this weekend. These will include the Mayihlome rally to be held at the Moses Mabhida Stadium, Durban, and the Siyanqoba rally at the FNB Stadium, Johannesbu­rg.

All these events are significan­t. They are calculated to gauge the ANC’S electoral strength and readiness for the upcoming general elections – national and provincial – to be held between May and August this year. The events are to shipshape the organisati­on’s trajectory as it prepares to navigate its path to cement its authority as the party of choice.

The ANC has been reeling from an assortment of difficulti­es, including palpable political tensions within its own ranks. We hope the ANC, on its path to redeem itself, will own up to its failures and shortcomin­gs, and as it were, reach out to the confession­al.

The statement on Saturday is meant to carve a pathway, a call to war or action, to defend the ANC from whatever onslaught it may face – and to do better if it is to retain political power. Solutions are better than platitudes. The country suffocates. The failure by Eskom to sort out its power supply difficulti­es is a concern to all South Africans. Big and small businesses suffer immensely, and there are reports of many companies that have imploded, and no longer trade because of loadsheddi­ng.

Yet, we acknowledg­e that President Cyril Ramaphosa has been at work to get the ministry of electricit­y to sort out the power supply difficulti­es. In addition, the cost of doing business has escalated because of the power utility’s poor performanc­e and its inability to find a solution to permanentl­y stop the scourge affecting the country’s business entities.

We hope, in keeping with the January 8 statement sentiment, the escalating crime rate will be dealt with, and Police Minister Bheki Cele, in collaborat­ion with other security units, will deal with the debilitati­ng problems of crime and violence troubling our country.

Additional­ly, that the Anc-led government will decisively deal with millions of undocument­ed foreign nationals who pose a serious safety threat.

Xenophobia is one thing, but to turn a blind eye to genuine complaints by the country’s residents about the escalating crime rate that could, in part, be attributed to the presence of undocument­ed immigrants, is to run away from reality staring the country in the eye.

The nation deserves better, and we trust, as we begin the new year, there will be new beginnings.

The ANC, as the governing party, must turn its January 8 statement into practical action that will save the country from economic implosion.

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