ANC stalwart Matthews Phosa says he is tempted to cynically say that South Africa has four centres of power – the fourth being the Guptas.
Delivering the key note address at the OR Tambo lecture at the Kuyga Community Hall in Port Elizabeth on Sunday‚ Phosa said in terms of the separation of powers the country had three clear centres of power‚ namely that of the executive (cabinet)‚ the legislature (the National Assembly) and the judiciary (of which the apex court was the Constitutional Court).
“I am‚ however‚ tempted to cynically add that we now have a fourth‚ that of the privileged and protected Saxonwold plunderers of the resources of our land‚” he said.
As things stood‚ the only one of the three centres of constitutional power that was functioning properly was the judiciary‚ he added.
“Our executive‚ under the Presidents’ leadership‚ has long ceased to illustrate that they have a sworn duty to uplift and protect the lives of the poorest of the poor. When I use the term executive‚ or cabinet‚ I do not exclude a single member‚ whether he or she is a minister‚ or deputy minister‚ or part of the executive Presidency.”
Phosa said he stood by his words in the past that President Jacob Zuma had raped the economy.
“I stand by those words and want to add today: He‚ and all the public representatives and executive appointees must take collective responsibility for not only the destroying the economy‚ but also for condemning the poor to a life of misery.
“Let me be clear: Not a single member of Cabinet is blameless in the deterioration of our economy. Whether you are pilot or co-pilot of this plane‚ you‚ and us as the ANC‚ have failed our people‚” Phosa stated.
As the birthday of the country’s most revered political icon‚ Nelson Mandela‚ approached‚ South Africa was in dire need of dramatic political and economic changes‚ he added.
“At the very least we need a new political leadership‚ decisive direction in our economic policy‚ urgent changes to our education system‚ and consensus between all stakeholders on how we revive the rainbow spirit of reconciliation in our nation.”