South Africa: Who Is Navigating the Democracy?

South Africa
The African National Congress (ANC) governing party of South Africa is not the only force navigating Democracy in the country. After years of the liberation struggle, the ANC finally won the first Democratic election in 1994. As the state of the country deteriorates after 21 years of freedom, questions arise about whether democracy is the ultimate goal of the ANC.

The historical Freedom Charter document of the ANC party supports the Democratic freedom of the country and says the people shall govern. The vision of the document is to establish South Africa as a Democratic non-racial state whereby the people would be the guiding voice in government. The only guiding voice the people delegate toward government is in the form of strikes, violence, and crime.

Political stability is not guaranteed and the ANC government are not navigating toward Democracy, but rather toward a socialist society. The coalition government of the ANC receives piloting from the Congress of South African Trade Unions (COSATU), and ultimately, from the South African Communist Party, all with conflicting agendas. Tensions among the three partners grow, and there is the threat that the alliance will not stay committed forever.

Years of the liberation struggle for the ANC and alliances have not given the people of South Africa real freedom, but rather forced the country into a socialist state of poverty and crime. The major negative factor is the government corruption causing political instability.

The first ANC president to steer South Africa into a Democracy was Nelson Mandela. During the Mandela five-year term, it would appear that many of the countries problems were deferred or concealed under the cloud of goodwill and spirit of freedom. Thabo Mbeki, the second president, was not as vibrant as Mandela, and as the veil of euphoria lifted, the problems emerged. Under the circumstances, Mbeki did a respectable job even though government corruption and internal conflicts began to take a toll on good governance.

Jacob Zuma is currently serving a second term as the president of South Africa. The collapsing of Democracy grows stronger each year, and in six years under the Zuma rule, South Africa faces enormous problems that continue to intensify. The only voice the people have is through violent reaction to the increasing failing Democracy of South Africa.

The tripartite partnership of the ANC spilling over with political instability and the formation of powerful unions, coupled with unskilled expensive labor discourage foreign investment. The disgraceful health facilities, violent crime, and slow genocide of the minority white race diminish the willingness of foreign investors. Government officials have failed to curb the infiltration of the Nigerian Drug cartel into South Africa. Drug abuse is a monstrous problem linked to the HIV infection, raising the mortality rate in the population.

Perhaps the most destructive policy the ANC have implemented is the affirmative action plan. The policies of the black empowerment policies force companies to replace qualified people with unskilled labor, driving skilled people to emigrate. The affirmative action is a policy that is characteristic of racial discrimination.

The constitutional court of South Africa set up to safeguard and protect the citizens, ensuring that all is equal before the law. It is the Constitutional Court that has on many occasions told the ANC government to get its act together. The Constitutional Court is the only pride of the Democracy.

South Africa has a Public Protector, and this department have uncovered some serious crimes under the Democracy. Corruption and maladministration in government departments are discovered by this department, yet the effectiveness is missing. The independence of this office is critical to ensure fairness and curb the abuse of power. The Public Protector findings are ignored by the ruling party, and unfortunately, rules out constitutional Democracy.

It is said that South Africa has a vibrant parliament. A parliament filled with militant, communist ignorant, half asleep politicians, and the only vibrant entity is the red overalls worn by an opposition party. The robust measure of communism and secrecy is the navigator of the ANC Democracy.

Opinion By Laura Oneale

Daily Maverick
Photo By Paul Saad –Creativecommons Flickr License

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