When Hope Returns
In August 1985, P.W. Botha delivered what is known as the Rubicon speech. The world had high expectations that Botha would announce sweeping changes, including the release of Nelson Mandela and the end of Apartheid. None of these was forthcoming. Instead, Botha doubled down on a failed ideology.
Four years after the dark days of 1985, F.W. de Klerk became the leader of the National Party and president of South Africa in August 1989. De Klerk knew that everything had to change. Being open to change meant that de Klerk could usher in the reforms needed to end Apartheid. The rest, they say, is history.
In a recent presentation by R.W Johnson to the BizNews community, Johnson outlined the current state of South Africa. He described South Africa as a tragedy.
Johnson quoted several journalists who have written about how South Africa is in ruin because of the policies and ideology of the ANC.
Johnson describes how South Africa is in regression and is going backwards.
To support his argument, Johnson listed the following:
- Real GDP per capita has been shrinking since 2014, and in 2020 South Africans, on average, were 10% poorer than in 2014.
- One-third of the population lives below the poverty line because of increasing unemployment. This is contributing directly to the increase in crime in South Africa.
- In 1990 South Africa generated 40,000 MW of electricity, which increased to 45,000 MW. But South Africa will need another 50,000 MW in the next decade. Given the track record set during the development of Kusile and Medupi, this is highly unlikely.
- Sixty-three percent of the country’s water and sewerage works are in a critical or poor state.
- The decay of rural roads is as bad as the dirt tracks of the nineteenth century.
- The World Bank surveyed the world’s ports and rated Durban, Cape Town, and Port Elizabeth amongst the worst in the world.
- The Post Office is almost non-existent, and the passenger rail network has completely collapsed.
- Sixty-four percent of Grade 6 pupils cannot read for understanding in any language.
South Africa has been robbed and mismanaged into regression. All that is missing is a Rubicon type speech from Ramaphosa doubling down on the failed ideology of the ANC. Ramaphosa will be the dying kick of a horse that has dragged South Africa back into the nineteenth century.
Just like P.W. Botha, Ramaphosa can’t see the future; he is blinded by his incompetence and ideology. What comes after him will hopefully mark the return of hope.