As the ANC resumes its governing role after the elections, it is important that governance machinery must be drastically improved, writes Benzi ka-Soko.
It is a political fait accompli that the ANC will emerge victorious in the general and provincial elections. This political fait accompli is informed by the fact that despite the opposition’s strides and inroads, the majority of the South African populace still has a sentimental affection for the ANC.
Many people in this country still believe that the ANC of Nelson Mandela and O.R.Tambo is the only political party that can bring about tangible change in their lives. Matter of factly, the older generation has been the backbone and bedrock of the ANC voting power-bloc since 1994.
It is this generation, electorally-speaking, that has remained unshakable in the consolidation of the ANC political hegemony in the body politic of South Africa. Whilst it is worth noting the political challenge presented by the Democratic Alliance in the opposition political bloc, it should be fearlessly mentioned that they cannot topple the ANC in the immediate future.
The DA still has a huge political baggage that they have to dispose of in order to be generally accepted as a genuine and credible political party for all South Africans. To many people, the DA is still socially and politically perceived as a party for whites and the privileges that they usurped and enjoyed during the apartheid epoch.
DA Leader Mmusi Maimane has made serious endeavours in changing these negative perceptions of the party, but he still faces an uphill political mountain to deconstruct, defeat and obliterate the philosophical foundations of these perceptions.
This point, though, does not take from the DA its achievements and successes attained to woo black voters as confirmed by the pollsters, which monitor the political psychology of the population in the country.
But, to effect the ANC regime change in the immediate future will definitely demand some Solomonic wisdom and Samsonic power. Winning the elections with a reduced majority, the ANC has been sounded a political warning shot.
The emergence of smaller political parties is posing some challenges for the ANC as a governing party, but their existence will only make an electoral dent to the power-grip that the ANC has been wielding since the dawn of the democratic dispensation.
It is, therefore, against this background that the ANC should not take the people for granted. The electoral achievement by the EFF is posing a serious challenge to the ANC as the red berets are presenting themselves as an alternative government-in-waiting.
The 2021 municipal elections will even be a more game-changer as confirmed by the May 8 general elections.
The electoral confidence that the ANC still enjoys should be reciprocated through the provision of quality service delivery to the people.
The service delivery challenges that continue to typify many ANC-led municipalities should be tackled head-on with more verve and zeal going-forward in order to improve the living conditions of the people.
The ANC should not drop the ball and compromise quality for purposes of political expediency and political correctness. For starters, the ANC should ensure that it appoints individuals that are fit-for-purpose to manage state organs and state institutions.
The ANC should ensure that it makes education fashionable to all and sundry by encouraging people to continually improve their educational competencies both theoretically and practically.
More emphasis should be made on the fortification and improvement of the TVET education system to bolster the need for a more technically-inclined workforce.
The ANC government should roll out a massive infrastructural maintenance programme aimed at addressing the challenges on our roads, sanitation, waste, water, energy and all service delivery red flags as it were.
The government should ensure that more of the workforce is on the ground where services must be delivered and less workforce in the offices.
The Batho Pele principles should be made a credo of all government institutions and their violations must be an affront to the values of the whole country.
The monitoring and evaluation of government programmes and institutional performance must be executed on a regular basis in order to achieve maximum outcomes.
The responsibility of changing the complexity of government performance should rest upon the shoulders of all government functionaries across all the spectrums.
This calls for the birth of the new cadreship of government which will turn the situation around for the better.
This calls for the adoption of the new work ethic posture that successful nations have been zealously implementing in their respective countries.
This calls for genuine business unusual and genuine politics unusual.
Benzi Ka-Soko is a political scientist