The latest insult from the ANC national working committee seems to have left multitudes of South Africans – especially the poor – without any doubt that the current “ANC” no longer cares if we vote for them or not.
In fact, they have told us before that they don’t need our dirty votes. The ANC NWC meeting and the subsequent events that transpired at Germiston Stadium where Water Affairs Minister Nomvula Mokonyane vowed to “fight fire with fire” were a clear challenge by the ANC rogue elite to principled general members in the ANC: toe the corrupt line, or ship out.
As the rogue elite that has successfully captured the ANC, they will stop at nothing to protect their pernicious interests.
In fact, the poor masses appear to now be viewed as an inconvenient irritation, underlings to be abused ruthlessly and dismissed with contempt if needy or demanding.
Indeed, the general ANC membership and millions of poor in this country have been reduced to disposable commodities, used to serve the economic interests of the rogue elite.
As a politically disempowered voting base that should be grateful for grants from the ANC government, the poor is expected to accept the insults and condescending statements of ANC leaders without question.
There is a term for what the poor have become: voting fodder, to be abused at will, for they owe their liberation and social grants to the mighty ANC.
To the rogue elite, the poor are just an instrument with which to lay claim to and abuse the resources of the state.
The struggle ideal of the people sharing the country’s wealth has been forsaken. Instead, there is wholesale looting. Something which we should expect to see escalate now that the gatekeepers of the Treasury of been fired.
Meanwhile, the interests of the ANC rogue elite are being arrogantly and forcefully presented to us all as if they were the interests of the poor.
Even international PR companies with extremely dodgy histories are being roped in and used in an attempt to disguise the intentions and actions of the rogue elite.
In this context, the state and other underhanded propaganda machinery is being untilised to distract or even coerce anyone questioning the agenda of the ANC rogue elite.
Meanwhile, in order to legitimise the interests of the leadership, the poor are expected to repay and repay and repay their debt of gratitude to the party of liberation by pretending and professing that the interests of the ANC rogue elite are indeed their interests.
Consequently and instead of advocating for their interests, the poor is mobilised (as happened at Germiston stadium this week) to defend the continual scandals borne of the interests of a wayward leadership.
Through official state ceremonies and other questionable platforms, our rulers pontificate, making patronising speeches to the poor, seeking to demonise those of us who are alert to their nefarious agenda.
We have now reached a defining moment in our nation, one where a ANC rogue elite is prepared to dismantle the very democratic project that is South Africa.
The seismic events of the past few days are a pointed indication that the battle lines are drawn between those who are on the side of democracy, the constitution and the poor people of this country; and those diametrically opposed to these values and people, armed with an agenda of corruption, lawlessness and dictatorship.
The attacks on Wednesday night of members of the Save SA campaign in Church Square, Pretoria, was a clear signal that the sponsored militia are being used to silence the ever louder growing voices of discontent about our status.
As the citizens of a constitutional democracy, we should be extremely concerned when an Ethekwini mayor and Umkhonto weSizwe Military Veterans in KwaZulu-Natal start issuing threats of state and para-state violence against protests planned to call for Zuma to resign.
The threats by the ANC Youth League to unleash violence against DA supporters planning to march in the Johannesburg CBD demanding Zuma’s resignation should make all of us realise that the identity as a democracy is at stake.
These actions are not isolated or coincidental but seem to be part of a carefully planned counter-offensive strategy directed at those calling for Zuma’s resignation or recall.
It reveals a level of desperation that could tip the nation into a bloodbath.
The warning about the possibility of another Marikana was surely part of such a counter-offensive strategy.
This is all being done in defence of a rogue elite within the ANC.
This should of necessity be the fundamental reason to galvanise, organise and act in unity against a corrupt elite which seeks to subjugate the citizens of our constitutional democracy for their crass, corrupt interests.
When the ANC fails at every turn to demonstrate that it is listening to our voices as ordinary citizens and members, then they should also be aware that many of us are now at the stage where we are prepared to dump the ANC at the next polls.
They should know that as the ANC support base we are fast becoming a fluid voting market for other political parties that will have the decency to listen to us.
The undeniable truth is that the ANC has now lost its overarching, coherent organisational structure that should define it as an organisation. It has imploded, becoming a loose and incongruent structure that cannot hold anyone or anything to account.
There are no consequences for the political delinquency of its members deployed in parliament and/or government; and there is no recourse for aggrieved, stand-up ANC members.
Any living organisation would at least have a functional mechanism to ensure consequences and recourses for its members as a fundamental ingredient of its existence, lack thereof signifies its demise.
That is why the ANC as an organisation is now no longer in full control of the government it purports to lead.
The ANC officials have been reduced to issuing contradictory statements and kowtowing apologies in defence of the rot that has engulfed the government.
We now seem to have a rogue conglomerate of the politico-business axis running the government for their own interests.
This conglomerate is accountable to no one but itself. It despises all the institutional mechanisms designed to ensure a clean and accountable government, hence we have seen a sustained attack on these mechanisms.
In conclusion and unlike any other time before, the ANC is now faced with a real threat that we, the members and supporters of the ANC, are not going to vote for it in the coming elections should it continue protecting a rogue elite and rogue elements in its midst.
I have spent more than half of my life in the ANC, but will not spend the rest of it being part of an organisation that protects the worst elements at the expense of itself and the revolution.
By Mzukisi Makatse
Mzukisi Makatse is a soon-to-be former member of the ANC. He writes in his personal capacity.