How seriously can South Africans be expected to take the ANC’s commitment to fighting corruption when it chooses someone like convicted fraudster Tony Yengeni to chair its working group on crime and corruption? asks the writer.
IT’S SO cold outside these days I actually saw a politician with his hands in his own pockets.

That will probably raise a giggle but should also speak volumes about how sceptical many South Africans are about our public representatives and their lack of commitment to root out corruption.

And who can blame them when President Cyril Ramaphosa’s much-vaunted anti-corruption campaign appears to be drifting listlessly?

Sure, it can’t be denied Ramaphosa has made some commendable changes by firing a few ministers. We also now have a commission of inquiry into state capture and a respected judge appointed to conduct the probe.

But while the process stutters along and the fight loses its momentum, the real skelms, like the Guptas and Duduzane Zuma, are totting up their ill-gotten gains in some safe haven. And their loyal foot soldiers are conspiring to contaminate evidence of their own nefarious roles to avoid prison.

Frankly, how seriously can South Africans be expected to take the ANC’s commitment to fighting corruption when it chooses someone like convicted fraudster Tony Yengeni to chair its working group on crime and corruption?

Even more perplexing was ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte’s attempt to defend Yengeni, saying his only sin was to have accepted a discount on a vehicle which he failed to disclose to Parliament. Why should he then be handed a “life sentence of hate” from people, she asks. Well, Ms Duarte, for the same reason you wouldn’t dare appoint a convicted, though rehabilitated, paedophile to run the parliamentary crèche.

Let’s get one thing straight. Corruption-busting is not for sissies. It calls for swift, decisive action against those guilty of, or complicit in, looting our taxes.

A constructive start can be made by replacing the compromised head of the Prosecuting Authority, Shaun Abrahams, who appears blind to corruption staring him in the face.

And when will the government corral those thieving scoundrels in Eskom, Denel and Transnet who worked hand in glove with the Guptas to milk our coffers?

With tax filing season having started this week, I need to know someone else isn’t putting their hands into my pocket.

[email protected]