20 March 2017

South Africa: We Must Defend Our Priceless Democracy

analysis

The disruptions at the National Education Crisis Convention, convened by a group of civil society leaders led by Justice Dikgang Moseneke, show just how close to a social explosion we are in our country. Along with millions of South Africans, I harbour a horrible sense of déjà vu. I feel we're slipping back to the trenches of our past, standing at the edge of the precipice once again.

I see us living under siege, working in a volatile, fractured society. Because we are not listening. Because it is politically convenient. We stopped listening a long time ago. We cannot co-create success by hurling chairs and water bottles at each other. We all know that when we don't listen to each other, our universities will burn. Our country will burn. And we will again be guilty of betraying the many generations who follow us.

We talk past each other, instead of focusing on the real issues that face our people. Our education crisis robs millions of young people of hope and opportunity; its catastrophic consequences are such that one in three of our people will go to bed hungry tonight, unemployed.

It's time the political leaders of all parties take responsibility...

South Africa

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