William Saunderson-Meyer

Madonsela’s challenge: ‘So, are you feeling Lucky, punk?’

Lucky Montana, former chief executive of the Passenger Rail Agency of South Africa (Prasa), this week accused Public Protector Thuli Madonsela of having a tendency to “create drama”. He was responding to the findings of her inquiry into Prasa irregularities, which details more than R2 billion in misappropriated funds and lays responsibility at his door. Whether…

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The stifling death grip of a dysfunctional bureaucracy

There is rarely spontaneous public applause for the efficiency and responsiveness of state entities. As well as almost limitless access to taxpayer funds, the impunity that assured employment affords, makes for public servant arrogance, sloth and waste. Combine these corrosive institutional traits with an African National Congress government that believes it has a God-ordained mandate…

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SA journalism: No agenda required

Newspaper editors aren’t much given to introspection. Whatever their political hue, they tend to have a virtually unshakeable belief that their particular interpretation of reality is the correct one. It of course makes for spectacular miscalculations, such as when Peter Bruce, then Financial Mail editor, in 1999 urged voters to support the fledgling United Democratic…

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Time for Riah Phiyega to swallow the medicine she signed up for

Three years ago, with the massacre of 44 people at Marikana, Riah Phiyega proved that she lacked the mettle needed to head one of the most vital organs of state, the police. Last week, when in response to a personally damning Farlam Commission report she did not resign as national police commissioner but instead pleaded…

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Popular psychology for SA’s politically frustrated

Forget the Rorschach test. There’s no need to peer at inkblots to divine psychological conditions. The ANC government is a living breathing Petri dish, incubating almost every cognitive deviance to have graced a psychiatrist’s couch. Let’s start with multiple personality disorder. Or could it rather be mirrored-self misidentification, the delusion that the person in the…

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ILO mistakenly assumes that its old ANC pal is pragmatic

Voters elect politicians on the basis of their proclaimed ideology. However, it is not ideology that drives government effectiveness. Rather it is how ideology is adapted to resolving real-life problems. This week’s report by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) is a reminder to what extent, despite all evidence to the contrary, African National Congress (ANC)…

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The jewel of Africa needs to buff up its act

The situation has become unsustainable. The tipping point of an accelerated slide to failed state status is surely imminent. That means even worse economic disintegration than has already taken place over the past two decades. That means a more rapidly deteriorating security situation, with more street protests, violent wildcat strikes, burning, looting, and general lawlessness….

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Circumcision SA style – the unkindest cut of all

It demands a certain je ne sais quoi for someone of apparently sound mind to allow a man clad in animal skins to slice off their foreskin with a rusty assegai. And that in an isolated bush camp in the dead of winter, nogal. Especially since this rite of passage to manhood comes parcelled with…

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The Farlam Commission is being unfairly targeted

The final report of Farlam Commission of Inquiry into the events at Marikana, released last week, has been widely lambasted in the press. Equally scathing about commission’s “failure to get justice” for the 34 miners killed by the SA Police Service, has been the social media commentariat. The amount of criticism directed at Judge Ian…

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ANC is transmogrifying into Zanu-PF

The Zanufication of the African National Congress proceeds apace. With every week that passes our governing party more closely resembles its Zanu-PF counterpart in Zimbabwe. In an apparently co-ordinated campaign, opponents are vilified and delegitimised. It seems that at best they are unwitting dupes of imperialist Western interests, lacking appropriate revolutionary consciousness as decreed by…

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