One challenge, multiple solutions

No one denies the complexity of our political situation, but that cannot be allowed to overwhelm us. We must, without losing the material value of the situation, simplify it sufficiently enough for the public to appreciate where Mthwakazi stands politically. Only when we start to appreciate the complexity of Mthwakazi’s challenge, will we understand there can never be one solution.

Power surrendered is never given back for free, it must be taken. Regaining lost power is a challenge and Mthwakazi’s political priority. It is natural that we will perceive different solutions and believe in different strategies, thus we have many parties pursuing the same goal but disagreeing on how to go about it.

Holding different philosophies is no reason not to work together. All strands of political opinion must be heard and be subjected to objective scrutiny. This battle is not a popularity contest, but a quest for our very survival as a nation. The next stage in this political journey is the subtraction from our list of priorities or addition to it as required.    

We have a moral duty to take a step forward, even the smallest of steps will loosen the tight grip that fear is currently exercising on our people. The loosening of the grip, slight as it maybe for a start, will allow us to feel less of helpless victims and rid us of the debilitating sense of powerlessness.

A powerful nation like ours cannot die without a fight. This is not a time for Mthwakazi political parties to fight each other for pride’s sake but a time to chart the way forward together. It is an opportunity for parties to carve their names on hearts, not tombstones. This is an opportunity for legacies to be etched into people’s minds and captivating stories of heroism shared for generations to come.

With the complexity and uncertainty on the ground, the animosity among our people is understandable though inexcusable. Emotions are high, positions are entrenched but this is a time for introspection, a time for every party to quiz itself; ask the right questions not just the questions it is comfortable in.

How much do we understand our constituency’s needs? We can argue with a high degree of confidence that people do want change, but what kind of change do they want? Do they believe a pro-Mthwakazi political party is the only way their idea of change will be delivered or we are over-reaching our remit by imposing the agenda?

Research must be conducted to guide our policy. Time is of essence but waking up early will not cause the sun to rise any sooner. Investment in a scientific research is essential; results from such research will provide a more accurate picture of the scale and extent of our people’s needs, and enable more effective strategies.

We need to understand why there is a disconnection between politicians and the public. We may have grossly underestimated the difficulty of setting up and advancing a new political philosophy without an existing political infrastructure.  

In a complex political plain like Mthwakazi, we cannot continue with the simplistic political approach that paints a simple black and white world of good strategies and bad strategies. Things are not as straight forward as that, there are many grey areas that we will encounter in the journey between the problem and the solution.

Rejecting your rivals’ strategies is a political right that every party is entitled to but it has to be understood too that every party has a moral responsibility to the public to give authentic reasons for the position it chooses to adopt.

Ideological rigidity can be a hindrance to finding solutions. Rejecting suggestions from rivals simply on ideological grounds is unforgiveable political selfishness that serves the egos of political leaders without delivering the suffering masses from their hardship. Protective measures must be in place to ensure decisions being made have people at the centre not just the protection of political party ideological location or interests.

Promoting a culture of dogmatism is not our objective, but to make progress we need everyone to pull in the same direction. The more our parties are turned against each other, the less chance of them turning against the reigning dictatorship. Our parties must make considerable sacrifices, re-engage, manage differences maturely and come up with a coherent strategy.

Where the fight is against the oppressive system, there is no middle ground for moral choice and political decision because by being on a safe side one effectively takes sides with the aggressor and stands guilty of an abdication of their moral responsibilities.     

I doubt if our challenge would not find a happy solution if approached in the spirit of selflessness and mutual interest. There may be mutual dislike between different groups and parties but the reality is that we need each other with our different set of expertise.  

All strands of political opinion must be heard. Our parties have the right to choose different paths but that comes with a responsibility to foster a culture that makes it possible to live and work well together for the well-being of all. Ideology must never matter more than the people.

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Published by RESEARCH HUB

a political and policy research hub with interest in Mthwakazi human rights, safety and security.

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