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Mandela Day received widespread support this past Wednesday. Citizens left their comfort zones to make a difference in communities outside of their own.
Much of the focus was on education, where we need to continue directing our energy and focus.
As much as we did some good for a day, we must strive to make every day a Mandela Day, in line with the LeadSA philosophy.
Let’s make a point of returning to the schools, where we put in 67 minutes last week, to develop them into facilities of excellence.
The philosophy and culture of community activism needs to be strengthened. But the government must also up its game.
It failed our children in Limpopo by not delivering textbooks on time. Politicians are now trying to pass the buck.
The Limpopo MEC for Education Dickson Masemola should have been fired a long time ago.
He has shifted the blame to the national Department of Basic Education.
And where is the premier of Limpopo, Cassel Mathale, in this fiasco?
He should also be given the boot.
The ruling party is failing our nation by protecting its inefficient politicians. This is a sad indictment on the ANC.
One wonders whether its inability to act is related to Mangaung.
Politicians should, however, be held accountable.
The government’s failure to act on bungling officials sends out the wrong message.
Questions have also been raised about the role of Basic Education Minister Angie Motshekga in the textbook fiasco.
It is absurd to suggest it’s not her job to ensure that textbooks are delivered on time. It is!
Motshekga is the political head of the department and must ensure that her officials deliver.
She should also be held accountable and “brought to book”.
Look at other government departments where we have competent ministers and see how they have improved.
The Home Affairs Department comes up repeatedly.
Since Nkosozana Dlamini-Zulu was appointed minister, there has been a massive improvement in service delivery.
With the minister leaving to take up a post at the AU, we hope that President Jacob Zuma will appoint someone who is capable of continuing her legacy.
We need an efficient minister with strong leadership skills.
There is speculation that Motshekga may be moved to Home Affairs. If this happens, we are heading for disaster.
The other name doing the rounds is that of Environment Affairs Minister Edna Molewa. She has a good track record, so moving her there may be a good move.
Gauteng Local Government and Housing MEC Humphrey Mmemezi resigned recently after he was exposed by Independent Newspapers for misusing his official credit card.
Questions were also raised about his abuse of power during his previous job at Mogale City municipality.
Mmemezi did the right thing by resigning.
There is, however, speculation that he was forced to resign after Premier Nomvula Mokonyane threatened to fire him.
The ethics committee subsequently presented a report finding him guilty. And yet Mmemezi remains a member of the provincial legislature earning more than R800 000 a year.
This is another example of how the ANC tolerates and condones wrongdoing.
Why was he not removed?
No one should be above the law.
The public expects clean governance and failure to act on politicians and officials is an insult to the electorate.
In many countries, politicians do the honourable thing and resign immediately, but in SA it rarely happens. Zuma should flex his muscle and act decisively as he did with former ministers Sicelo Shiceka and Gwen Mahlangu-Nkabinde as well as former national police commissioner Bheki Cele.
The ANC should fire the likes of Masemola and remove Mmemezi from the post of an MPL with immediate effect.
We need action and we need it now.
l Yusuf Abramjee is head of current affairs at Primedia.