The future is better than it used to be

02 August 2017 - 13:39
By The Times Editorial
Atul Gupta at his home in Saxonwold in Johannesburg. File photo
Image: KEVIN SUTHERLAND Atul Gupta at his home in Saxonwold in Johannesburg. File photo

A common question asked as the scandals of state capture rain down is: What difference will this make?

We have shared your despair over what appeared to be an edifice of silence and terminalinaction. But a future is now hinted at that might be less bleak than we once imagined.

In this near future we see the promise of a society with a more sharply defined value system and where the tolerance threshold for corruption has found a level consistent with a constitutional democracy.

Make no mistake, this will not happen overnight or easily but it is happening as actors in society embrace a new assertiveness and realisation they have the power to spark real change.

We saw evidence of this last week with the effective suspension of Eskom’s chief financeofficer, Anoj Singh, as the Development Bank of South Africa and other financial institutions demanded action.

We see it in the flexing of muscles in parliament ’s oversight committees now probingstate capture and in the growing handful of MPs who are putting their conscience first and their political careers second.

We are heartened by suggestions the National Prosecuting Authority is stirring fromits slumber to force the Hawks to do their job.

We are witnessing the effect of an interim SABC board determined to clean up yearsof malfeasance and the same from an outgoing Passenger Rail Agency of SA board throwing the book at former executives and others.

We see a global firm like Bell Pottinger sent packing, its reputation in shreds, and we see a free press, among which we are proud to count ourselves, refusing to bow to threats in order to expose an important truth.

So, what difference will this make?

The answer is simple. It will make all the difference in the world.