Build not personal fiefdom in the name of our people: iLIVE - Times LIVE
Wed Apr 26 15:49:34 SAST 2017

Build not personal fiefdom in the name of our people: iLIVE

Selamolela Ngoako | 2013-02-19 08:33:24.0
Mamphela Ramphele, a former World Bank managing director, speaks during a news conference on the launch of her new political party Aganang, which means "Let's Build Together", in Johannesburg February 18, 2013. The respected anti-apartheid activist launched the new political party on Monday to challenge South Africa's ruling ANC, saying self-interested and corrupt leaders were threatening the continent's biggest economy.
Image by: SIPHIWE SIBEKO / Reuters

Dr Mamphela Ramphele is an amazing being. True evidence that our constitutional democracy is alive with possibilities.

Those of us who are in love with democracy are truly humbled by the fact that even self-righteous people can display their characters without shame.

Those who believe that they are holier than thou can expose their true colours and as well those who believe that they are being bluffed can as well publicly rebut the allegations. What a wonderful society.

A reason to feel privileged considering that millions around the globe can only wish to live in such a society.

Our 'honourable' start the speech delivered at the historic venue ( the constitutional hill on the February 18, 2013 on the occasion of a an announcement about the intent to what she calls a political platform by making a very dangerous assertion about the direction of the country.

She invites South Africans to join her in a journey to build a country of “our dreams”. What however she does not wish to embark upon is to ask South Africans what a country of “our dreams” is. How it should and will look like. She makes assumption that she knows the problems of South Africans from her comfortable home. She assumes that she has read the minds and hearts of South Africans to ascertain their needs and desires. Perhaps I am just being unnecessarily annoyed; perhaps we have found our own prophet.

The former vice-chancellor who cannot point her impact in transforming the University She was leading has all of a sudden developed confidence to believe that she can lead South Africans to build the country of “our dreams” determined by her, led by her. Where is the democracy she has always being preaching? Thought she does not like hypocrites, but I just remembered that I do not remember her making such allegations. Forgive me for my ignorance. Has she ever expressed herself on hypocrisy? I will love to hear her views on that. I believe it will be interesting to learn how she defines democracy since her description of democracy is the very one she stumbles upon. 

An intelligent fellow she is; upon realising that she is on an off-side position she quickly take herself back to line by announcing that she have said that “ she is no messiah” quite puzzling after she presented her glossy CV before the audience; largely members of the media who were keen to know what her much published announcement was to be as is with most of the limited few who ever heard of her name.

Trust a “global servant at World Bank” as she calls herself to be very creative to the extent that she can conceal her intentions in the very language she uses. She does announce the intended formation of what she calls “political party platform” and immediately announces that she is joining party politics. What is the medium will she be using to transmit her party politics? Is she joining another political party? No.

She is speaking of the “new beginning’ and consultations across the length and breadth of the country. I am very keen to know who was consulted and let alone who she is working with since she is only calling them a “ group of fellow South Africans” what an interesting statement. What is she hiding? Really why not call the group by their names?

What is Dr Ramphele actually creating here? A democratic political organisation or a personal fiefdom to salvage her from image from that of a freedom fighter to that of a humble servant of imperialism. I understand that working for World Bank might not in itself be regarded as being an agent of imperialism, but calling yourself a global servant at world bank knowing very well that the bank is an active agent of imperialism is really absurd.

The name “Agang” is a very interesting choice for a Pedi speaking individual like myself, but the reality is that the building to be engaged upon is her own image. All other who are to join her self-praising initiative are hereby called upon given the content of the speech to merely be her servant.

She already assumes that those who want to build the country are agreeing with her on electoral reform and what set of reforms to be introduced. An insinuation that if you defer with the set of reforms to be introduced you are not for “building”. Wait a bit. What happened to critical debate?

To our self-righteous doctor, I really wish her luck as she is about to travel a lonely road. I specifically wish to advise her that self-righteousness is a strategic threat to development of society as a whole. People must always keep it in their skulls that they are nothing without others. She must know that SA problems will not be solved with an elitist approach to development.

Salvaging personal fortunes need not national initiatives. Advancing your personal views is not synonymous with advancing the interest of the country your “majesty”. Anyway, let me wish you’re a safe travel on your new journey, but please complain not when you realise that the road is bumpy.  Good luck Madam!

Ngoako Selamolela is a president of SASCO; He is writing this article in personal capacity.


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