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SA government far from creating 'better life for all' – Mathews Phosa


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SA government far from creating 'better life for all' – Mathews Phosa

Image of ANC activist Dr Mathews Phosa
ANC activist Dr Mathews Phosa

17th October 2023

By: Sane Dhlamini
Creamer Media Senior Contributing Editor and Researcher


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African National Congress (ANC) activist Dr Mathews Phosa believes that the South African government is far from creating the 'better life for all' that was promised in the post-liberation period as a result of “sickening corruption” by political leaders.

Speaking at tertiary institute STADIO’s annual lecture, he pointed out that elected politicians were living in luxury while South Africans were hungry, unemployed and without electricity and water.


"We have seen, at best, a few token prosecutions and even less convictions,” he stated.

He questioned the point of spending such vast amounts of money investigating corruption through a commission, if there were no consequences for perpetrators.   


"We are protecting freeloading criminals and carelessly gluttoning away the liberation inheritance of our children [who are being] cheated by corruption, crime, gluttony and debauchery. The picture of an uncaring government happily utilising the taxes of its citizens for its own benefit whilst the hungry suffer presents an explosive, a toxic mix of what I call the ‘Black Swan’,” said Phosa.

He warned that there were many scenarios in the country's political system that could be turned into "Black Swans" if the government was not careful.

"Nothing illustrates this stark contrast better than the government leaders being driven around in the blue lights escorted by luxury vehicles while right next to them thousands [are] walking on pavements praying for work and food, begging,” he said.

The recent incident involving Deputy President Paul Mashatile and his security detail was an example, Phosa noted.


He also pointed out that the country's State-owned enterprises – Eskom, Transnet, South African Airways, et cetera – had become dysfunctional and added that they had become feeding troughs for cadres and their accomplices.

He questioned how a nation could be without a national airline carrier.

"We are losing Eskom slowly but surely and it scares me,” he warned.

On the issue of Transnet dealing with the recent resignation of three top executives, he questioned why “all the rats are running away”.

"We should not take these matters lightly, they affect us going into the future. Thirty years later, we have only a slow trickling of benefits for those who have now waited patiently for the revolution to deliver its fruits to the majority. I pray for new, fresh leadership and actions that will shape a South Africa that we all dream of and we must never stop dreaming about a good South Africa. We must work for it and we must tell the truth when we are given an opportunity to speak. The bible says the truth shall set you free. Don't be a prisoner of lies and distortions. I pray for an honest government that is the servant of people, not insensitive rulers. We deserve a better future,” he declared.

He said South Africans should never take for granted that they were free, however, he reminded the gathering that the duty to unite the nation had not been fulfilled.

Phosa said while it was agreed that apartheid was a crime against humanity, South Africans should refrain from blaming apartheid for today’s errors. In particular, he said politicians needed to take responsibility and stop blaming apartheid for not building houses, for potholes, for loadshedding and for watershedding. 


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