President Cyril Ramaphosa’s dreams that he told us about in his State of the Nation Address (SONA) are very far removed from the nightmares that the South African public face every day.
The President did make mention of one example: an elderly woman who has to sit and wait at a clinic all day long just to get her medication. Unfortunately, the two health care workers who were raped while on duty at the Pelonomi Hospital cannot share in the President’s dream. Nor can the pregnant women whose lives are put at risk due to an inadequate ambulance service.
For the families of Moolman Meyer from Ermelo, who was hacked to death with a panga last month, and Johan Pretorius from Nigel, who was burnt to death, both during farm attacks, it will be very hard to wake up from their nightmares to share in the President’s dream. The same is true for the victims and families of the other 180 farm attacks that took place this year.
The residents of Mangaung have been without water for four days, just like the residents of Johannesburg.
The President says that he is committed to service delivery, but in Mangaung there is a Metro Police Chief who has been earning a salary for a year and yet there is still no sign of a Metro Police Service.
How is it possible that many of the Free State municipalities under Section 139 administration are still being poorly managed? One example is Brandfort where water is often not available and, thus, the residents find it very hard to identify with the President’s dreams. As long as incompetent officials remain in key positions, the President’s dream will remain nothing more than a nightmare for the public.
Meanwhile, the Department of Public Works expects the private sector to get involved in building and maintaining infrastructure, just to hand that infrastructure that they have spent 20 years building and maintaining to the government on a silver platter.
All while the Department has basically admitted that it can no longer build or maintain infrastructure. The nightmare will continue as long as the government is unable to provide basic service delivery; for instance, in Mangaung R140 million was spent on a spatial planning project around the N8 corridor, but thus far there are no visible results.
What is even more important than the President’s dreams is that children must receive mother-tongue education so that they can read and write properly by the age of ten and that students have access to tertiary education in their own language in one of the President’s modern dream cities.
The FF Plus wants to help build a better dream for South Africa. But we first need to address the nightmares before we can realise any dreams.
Read the original article in Afrikaans by Armand Cloete on FF Plus
South Africa Today – South Africa News