Dear President Ramaphosa
On June 20 during your State of the Nation Address you told us, the people of South Africa, you have a dream. You dream of an “SA where an entirely new city built in the democratic era rises, with skyscrapers, schools, universities, hospitals and factories”. You dream of “a country where bullet trains connect megacities and the remotest areas if our country”.
In 1963 in Washington DC Martin Luther King jr told the American people about a dream he had had, and he confessed that not long after talking about that dream he started seeing it turn into a nightmare.
On December 24, 1967, in Atlanta, Georgia, he declared:
“I watched that dream turn into a nightmare as I moved through the ghettos of the nation and saw black brothers and sisters perishing on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of prosperity.
“I saw that dream turn into a nightmare as I watched my black brothers and sisters in the midst of anger and understandable outrage, in the midst of their hurt, in the midst of their disappointment, turn to misguided riots to try to solve that problem.”
Twenty-five years into our democracy, I watched the dream of our late president Nelson Mandela of democracy and a free society for all in which all people live in harmony and equal opportunity, turn into a nightmare as I saw racial intolerance and people denied equal opportunity.
I watched his dream of a better life for all turn into a nightmare as I saw so many of our people still entrenched in a sub-culture of poverty. I watched his dream turn into a nightmare as I saw the rich elite shamelessly looting government and financial institutions, while poor depositors were left waiting for their cash.
I watched that dream of the provision of basic services turn into a nightmare as I saw residents across the country going on the rampage over a lack of service delivery.
The people of our beloved country have become the victims of shattered and deferred dreams; of blasted hopes.
* Izak Mahali, Heathfield.
** The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Media.