Over the last two weeks many South Africans have sat and watched with abject horror at the political scene from the State of the Nation opening. I was more interested in the reaction on the different social media platforms and the general consensus was that South Africans were ashamed, ashamed of the countries leadership and more disturbingly, ashamed of being South African.
I cant say that I do not understand their reactions but my thoughts suddenly went in the opposite direction. Why should we, the ordinary South Africa, feel ashamed for ourselves over the behavior of an elite group of corrupt politicians? Was it you and I who rolled ourselves to the feeding trough, dipped our noses in and guzzled and slurped up illegal funds and tenders? Was it your next door neighbor who flounced their illegal earnings for the country to see and even built himself a house, tuck shop and all! It was not certainly your bother who initiated a full on public brawl in the hallowed halls of parliament that cause several members to be assaulted and even locked up for the night. So again I ask myself why should it be you and I who are ashamed to be South African?
The way that I see it is perhaps this fiasco will allow the South African communities to stand together and finally say enough is enough but somehow I don’t think so. So another question should be, what will it take for us as a nation to stand together to allow South Africa to actually have a chance to regain the respect of the International community? To allow South Africa to regain the economical and financial lost ground from the past 6 years? And at what point do we reject the current government structures that are bleeding this country blind?
I may sound somewhat annoyed by everything that is going on in our beloved country and many people have raised the issue that because Im an expat means that I don’t really have anything to be concerned about because it does not effect me but they are wrong. South Africa will always be our home, our families are all still living there and even more than that we have investments in South Africa. It was always our intention to come home to the country of our birth but even the fact that we have to justify why we still have an interest in the country. Many people think it is so that we can say to other, “wow, did you see the disaster that is happening in SA at the moment, aren’t you and I lucky we got out when we did?” When actually, that is the furthest thing from the truth, we are not out, we are in! We are in because we want our son to know where he comes from and his heritage and I want him to feel the warm soil beneath his feet one day and call it home. Because we see the potential in the country even though at the moment there isn’t a day going by when there are no rolling blackouts effecting the country and maybe we are naïve but Im sure that there are thousands of expats out there who think the same way. Of course, there are those who couldn’t think of anything worse, than moving back to South Africa, but so what that is their choice and it needs to be respected.
I watched a very interesting segment of the State of the Nation Address last night and I felt the hope, it peaked its tiny head through the door and I put my foot in it to stop it from closing! The DA parliamentary leader Mmusi Maimane stood up and said to our president “You are a broken man, presiding over a broken society. You are willing to break every democratic institution to try and fix the legal predicament you find yourself in. You are willing to break Parliament if it means escaping accountability for the wrongs you have done” Im not going to go into his full speech but he is so right. We are a broken society and only way to fix ourselves is if we stand together and take a stand because we have nothing to be ashamed of!