Mar 08, 2009
Source: The Times
In Njabulo Ndebele’s imaginary interview, “A new breed of voters wants imaginative politics” (March 1), he manipulatively electioneers for the Congress of the People, depicting it as a “tide of change” for “real political choices”.
Ndebele should know that multiparty democracy is not, in itself, “imaginative politics”, and that COPE’s policies are a dull merging of the worst of the ANC and the Democratic Alliance.
Of what use is it to “let a thousand parties bloom and give renewed life to our constitution” when it protects illegitimate white wealth and fails to protect people’s rights against poverty, social misery, unemployment and landlessness?
Ndebele’s suggestion that an electoral system in which “local communities elect their representatives and president directly” will improve transparency and political accountability and empower the electorate, is unfounded.
The electoral system is neither the cause nor the solution to people’s problems.
That lies in the socioeconomic system, in which gender, race and class inequality are permitted by all political parties.
If the electoral system was magical, the US would not have ghettoes, brutal police, racial profiling and a perpetual underclass.
Even if inadvertent, Ndebele was condescending in his eulogy for places such as Soweto as well as in his directive that people must demystify parties and trade unions.
To Ndebele’s feigned elitist ignorance, communities have demystified politics and trade unionism for initiatives such as the Landless People’s Movement, Abahlali baseMjondolo (shack dwellers’ movement), the Anti-Privatisation Forum and the Anti-Eviction Campaign. Read the rest of this entry »