As Nelson Mandela lays on his death bed his legacy as the godfather of
neo-Apartheid South Africa has been firmly established.
Today in South Africa life for many if not most is nearly as
precarious and undignified as when Mandela was first inaugurated as
President some 20 years ago. So the best way to describe ?modern?
South Africa is it is being oppressed by a new form of apartheid.
But wait a minute, didn?t Mandela?s becoming the first black president
of South Africa lead to the restoration of ownership of the land
stolen from the African population nearly a hundred years previously
by the racist colonial settler Apartheid regime? No, no real land
reform for the masses of land less Africans. ?But Mandela did make
sure that the international mining companies got whatever new land
they thought they might need.
And while plenty of the country?s staple food, maize(corn), is being
grown in South Africa today (South Africa is one of the leading maize
exporters in the world) the people of the country still struggle every
day to be able to buy enough maize to feed their families.
Speaking of the mining companies, which are the basis of the great
wealth of the country, didn?t Mandela at one time promise to
nationalize them and use their fabulous wealth to benefit the people
of South Africa?
Yes he did promise such and no he didn’t keep his promise. But he did
sweep aside all restrictions on the mine owners relocating their
headquarters outside the country the better NOT to pay taxes.
And the promise to provide adequate drinking water to ALL the people
of South Africa? No, that promise wasn?t kept either, though under his
governments leadership Mandela did allow the mining companies to
continue to poison the underground water aquifers in many parts of the
Didn?t Mandela promise to provide free universal public education to
his people? The answer to this question might best be found by asking
the miners who went on strike last year in part because they could not
afford the school fees for their children.
Isn?t life for South Africa?s people more prosperous, don?t they have
more money in their pocket and a better standard of living? According
to President Zuma, South Africa?s per capita GDP is 40% more today
than 20 years ago when the original Apartheid system was ended.
But the cost of living in the past 20 years has outstripped wage
increases ?resulting in an actual lowering of living standards for the
masses of people.
But what about life expectancy and health in general in the country,
aren?t South Africans living longer than ever before? No again, life
expectancy under Mandela and friends suffered a steep drop from which
it has yet to recover, thanks in part to the failure of Mandela and
his cronies failing to take the HIV/AIDS pandemic seriously. And today
the HIV clinics in South Africa stand empty of much needed medicines
due to the the ANC government cutting funding for such.
Once upon a time the liberation ballad sung by the ANC headed by
Mandela included the refrain ?One Settler, One Bullet?. Today some
suspect the toasts made in the board rooms of the multinationals
plundering South Africa are begun by declaring ??One Miner, One
Bullet? as the South Africa police at the behest of both the ANC and
mine owners have begun, once again, to open fire on striking miners.
So life is little better for most South Africans and the whites still
own the land and mines. ?Food, water, education and drugs to fight HIV
are all in short supply or completely lacking but one thing not
lacking at all is corruption, lots and lots of corruption throughout
the ANC lead government. It seems that ALL the top leaders in the ANC,
no matter the faction, stand accused of corruption, of lining their
own pockets at the expense of the people and the well worn path of
such runs directly to Mandela?s front door as well, though no
journalist or their editors has yet had the courage to open it and let
the truth be known to the world.
Twenty years ago Nelson Mandela was the Father of what became the
neo-Apartheid system in South Africa and today, while laying on his
death bed he has truly earned the title of Godfather of Neo-Apartheid,
for what else can you call what is officially the most unequal system
of social equality in the world today, modern, ?Post Apartheid? South
Thomas C. Mountain is the most widely distributed independent
journalist in Africa, living and reporting from Eritrea since 2006. He
can be reached at thomascmountain_at_yahoo_dot_