Dear ANC delegate, Five years … By the time we get to 2027 the world will be facing even greater challenges and crises writes Mark Heywood

This weekend you will be debating and adopting policies that will guide the ANC and — depending on election outcomes — the government between 2023 and the ANC’s next congress at the end of 2027.

Five years … By the time we get to 2027 the world will be facing even greater challenges and crises than we do even during these very difficult times. In particular the climate crisis and global warming, which is already linked to 5-million deaths a year internationally, will be adversely influencing political stability, mass migrations, health and human rights — including here in SA. It’s going to be a rough world to be poor in.

We need to start to prepare for this new world reality now.

The ANC has always claimed to be a movement concerned about the poor and oppressed. That’s why it is important to put social justice at the centre of your debates — not self-interest or party-interest as has become the norm. I appeal to you not to be so consumed by factional leadership battles that you ignore the desperation and despair that faces so many people in SA, and the oven-ready, feasible and affordable interventions that could assist them.

Your factional battles, and the grand corruption that underlies them, have already caused many deaths and damaged countless lives. The billions that have been stolen could have contributed to a better life for many and moved us far away from an apartheid legacy that still haunts us, for example in the shocking pit toilets in many schools.

At your 55th Congress I appeal to you to stop building ideological sandcastles like the National Health Insurance (NHI) policy, when what is needed is the mobilisation of resources and skilled people to fix the health system on the ground. After Covid-19 the strains on the health system, and health workers, are greater than ever.

People who work in the health system can tell you exactly what needs to be done. Listen to them!

I appeal to you to do practical things like setting a time frame for introducing a Basic Income Grant, as recommended by the evidence and the vast majority of experts.

Take steps to make safe and nutritious food and water, both constitutional rights, affordable and available to the millions who are denied them. 

People across the world are desperately in need of the type of visionary, moral and ethical leadership the ANC was once respected for! It’s in your power to rise to the challenge again … or not.

By Mark Heywood, Maverick Citizen editor, social justice activist and co-founder of the TAC

Source: Business LIVE

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