A Reason to be Optimistic?
I like to think of myself as an optimist, or rather what they call an eternal optimist. I believe that light comes after darkness, that rain brings sunshine, that pain gives birth to joy and that everything happens for a 'good' reason. I am a man who believes that if you can't find love, love will find you.So, when I was asked if I'm optimistic about South Afrika I did not have to scratch my head but to simply say 'YES and NO'.
This was a day after it was reported that new Transport Minister Sbu Mndebele has been given a R1 million plus Mercedes Benz S500, two cows, crockery and cutlery and other freebies as a thank you by businesspeople who have benefitted from a grand government road construction and maintenance scheme meant to benefit black contractors.This robbed me of my optimism because I asked myself if the honourable minister really had to wait for the Democratic Alliance to tell him that such a gift is wrong and can not be accepted.
I asked myself if the minister, in his wisdom didn't see that he can not accept such a gift. I mean the whole exercise has got corruption and conflict of interest written all over it. Then his party went silent and suddenly such was not corruption but what Gwede Mantashe called 'facilitating'. So, I discussed it with one of my friends and I swore to him that 'corruption' will have to be redefined to suit the situation.
But to him I really raised an issue suddenly the whole thing might be sweeped under the carpet because the whistleblower is the DA and you might have people shouting 'Zille must leave Sbu alone and focus on disabling his cabinet'. However the gentleman he is Sbu called a press conference and announced that he was handing back the car.I felt pessimistic when it was revealed that the Presidency (of JZ) adviced him to keep the car if he wanted it since there was nothing wrong with the gift. I mean from 16000 kilometres away my brother could see something wrong but the Presidency which is occupied by a man who is fresh from a botched corruption case says, 'ride on brother'.
It worries me.Then as if to add insult to injury Sbu goes on to announce that he might buy a car of the same make from the vehicle finance scheme available to him and other government executives. Now talk about bad timing; what will stop the same bunch of businesspeople from converting the car to cash and depositing it into his account? Also, why didn't Sbu just take the car, hand it over to an orphanage to sell and use the money since the businesspeople obviously didn't have anything to do with the gifts?
Makes me think. I'm optimistic that JZ and his people in the Presidency will learn the real definition of corruption and fraud. Makes me see the glass as being half empty and not full.