The Herald (South Africa)

Opposition must commit to being anti-corruption

- Sandy Johnston, Nelson Mandela Bay

THE more we watch the ANC muddle its way through the ongoing and neverendin­g Jacob Zuma debacle, the more critical it becomes for opposition parties to convene and provide South African voters soonest with a declaratio­n of intent (DOI) that, should they comprise a majority after next year’s election, they will give effect to a Codesatype summit.

This summit will change our constituti­on to ensure that never again will a president be able to control sitting MPs to the extent that ours becomes a “lock up and go” parliament and never again will anyone in government be able to loot state-owned enterprise­s (SOEs) or bullet-proof himself or herself against prosecutio­n as Zuma has done via surrogate appointees.

We should be profoundly grateful to our courageous media for unstinting work in exposing the Zupta-style state capture which has almost brought our country to its knees.

It’s been only relatively recently that South Africans have realised the extent to which Zuma abrogated power to the Gupta family.

They were able to appoint their surrogates to do the bidding of the self-serving Guptas in areas of government and in SOEs whose proper functionin­g were (and remain) absolutely critical to the wellbeing of our nation.

The exposure in the media of the extent to which surrogates were hand-picked by the Guptas has provided a much-needed wake-up call to the South African nation.

Parties to the DOI must declare their intent to prosecute perpetrato­rs of state capture and its ghastly tapestries of corruption.

It’s common cause that the Guptas have subverted our government and criminally exploited South Africa’s resources.

They and their accomplice­s must be tried, in person or in absentia, and judgment handed down.

The South African people will accept nothing less. Ours is a damaged democracy. We need to repair the now obvious flaws before it is too late.

A post-election Codesa represents the only realistic way of doing this.

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