Let De Ruyter ride on

The Citizen (KZN) - - Letters - Danie To­e­rien

I’m not sure when it hap­pened, but South Africans have be­come a mor­bid, dis­trust­ful lot. My guess is that the state cap­ture saga has played a sig­nif­i­cant role in turn­ing us into glass half-empty vi­sion­ar­ies.

I no­ticed this phe­nom­e­non again with the ap­point­ment of An­dre de Ruyter as the new CEO of Eskom. Be­fore the ink on his con­tract had dried, a flood of crit­i­cism en­gulfed the me­dia.

Every con­ceiv­able rea­son why he should not have been ap­pointed was aired – from his skin colour to his ten­ure at Nam­pak was de­cried as rea­sons why he is bound to fail in his en­deav­our to rec­tify one of the ANC’s big­gest fail­ures.

To be hon­est, the man is tak­ing over at the worst pos­si­ble time. Eskom’s debt is un­payable. The in­fra­struc­ture is fail­ing. And let’s not pre­tend there will be no political in­ter­fer­ence.

If he has any plans to cut off de­fault­ers like Soweto or Zim­babwe, he’d bet­ter think again.

The predica­ment he finds him­self in re­minded me of a joke:

A man comes home from work and his wife sees a blonde hair on his shoul­der. In a rage, she ac­cuses him of hav­ing an af­fair, de­mand­ing he di­vulge the name of his blonde lover.

Need­less to say, he ends up sleep­ing in the spare room.

The next day, he comes home and his wife sees a red hair on his lapel. Again, she rages, ac­cus­ing him of hav­ing an af­fair and de­scrib­ing in de­tail what she will do to the “other” woman.

This time he lit­er­ally is in the dog box.

The next day, he ar­rives home and his wife sees a black hair on his coat. Her re­ac­tion is a re­peat of the pre­vi­ous two days, but with more vol­ume and in­ten­sity.

The next day, when he ar­rives home, his wife scru­ti­nises him from head to toe. Find­ing not a sin­gle hair, she ex­plodes, ac­cus­ing him of hav­ing taken a bald lover.

I fear South Africans have al­ready started scru­ti­n­is­ing De Ruyter, even though he only takes of­fice next year.

And, in typ­i­cally South African fash­ion, we will not let the ab­sence of any in­crim­i­nat­ing ev­i­dence stop us from lead­ing him to the gal­lows.

Good luck, sir.

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