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"Zuma is enemy of blacks and whites"

Those who have been through crisis points in their lives know that the first step to recovery is
admitting there is problem, that the situation is unmanageable. The paradox is that only after such
utter surrender can the solutions begin. There are reminders everywhere. I had a couple this week
that the Zuma Administration is some way from grasping reality. One was a passionate soccer
administrator who tried to explain away the $10m bribe SA paid FIFA officials to host the 2010
World Cup. Another is recently appointed Eskom chief Brian Molefes emotive defence of the
indefensible Russian nuclear power project that threatens to bankrupt SA (but enrich the already
enriched). RW Johnsons explains in some detail in his classic How Long Can SA Survive that the end
of Apartheid was engineered abroad. Hopefully international pressure will play a similar,
desperately required job of sobering those who desperately need it. Heres a precis of what the
British are reading about South Africa in the influential Times of London this morning. Alec Hogg

Picture: twitter
The Times of London, one of Europes most influential newspapers, carries a hard-hitting report this
morning by Jenni Russell, one of its star columnists. She pens a scathing attack on the current state
of South Africa headlined Zuma is enemy of blacks and whiteswhere the writer shares first-hand
experiences, concluding that she fears for the countrys future.
Russell is a powerful voice in the UK media where she is a well known broadcaster and columnist for
The Times, The Sunday Timesand the Evening Standard. She is respected in Whitehall, serving as a
member of the independent expert panel advising the UK Government on the initiation and
publication of Serious Case Reviews. In 2011 she won the Orwell Prize for political journalism.

Her column today kicks off with a description of Saturday afternoons suspiciousarmed robberyat the
Sandton Fire station: Social media has many pictures of smiling children sitting on firefighters
knees, next to elaborate fireman-themed cakes. Families felt safe there. No longer. Distraught,
suspicious parents report that all the firemen had left before the robbery happened, that the CCTV
was unaccountably dead, and that the robbers had plenty of time to leave before the police turned
up.
Although the robbery did receive some media coverage, this kind of incident appears to have
become so commonplace in SA that victims, concerned that their experience would be repeated,
took to Facebook.
One of them wrote: We feel so violated and aggrieved at the fact that we were at our most
vulnerable with our children. We were a gathering of about 35 children and 40 adults and we feel
that we were intentionally targeted. We have contacted the fire station to arrange a meeting with
the commander as we have a number of questions to be addressed; namely that; the perpetrators
knew there was a party at the station despite no signage/balloons in front, no fireman were on site,
the cctv cameras were not working, the lady at the call room claims she didnt have the police phone
number, airtime or a siren/panic button to notify anyone, they seemed to know all areas of the
station and was it coincidental that the robbers left just in time to avoid the fire department, police
and security. We feel obliged to make this a public notice so that it will not happen to someone else.
The Sandton fire department is fully booked for the month of November and we must ensure that
our incident becomes public knowledge.

Russell uses the robbery to highlight the


reality of life in the country and expands
by telling her readers: From top to bottom,
South Africas institutions are quietly
crumbling, disintegrating under the
weight of inefficiency, indifference,
underfunding and corruption. In the same
weekend 2,000 angry, frightened residents
of a black township in the Cape protested
outside a courtroom in support of a
community leader accused of murder.
Residents say they have been forced into
carrying out half a dozen vigilante killings
of suspected rapists, murderers and drug
dealers because there is no police station and no policemen for the 40,000 residents, despite years
of pleading.
She shares a chilling personal experience: In the Cape village where I was staying this week, a
village of both Cape Coloureds and whites, the same problem is emerging. Two drug-dealers have
moved in, selling highly addictive crystal meth. Everyone knows who they are and what they are
doing. Everyone is frightened that this peaceful rural settlement will be wrecked by the
consequences: desperate addicts, robbery, crime.
Six weeks ago dozens of people marched down the main street begging the police to act. But the
local policemen are too scared to respond. They fear retaliation from urban gangs. The villagers are
being abandoned. This country is already one of the worst in the world for serious crime, and now it

is going backwards. The basic functions of any democratic state keeping order, dispensing justice,
responding to peoples needs cant be counted on.
There is no doubt in Russells mind nor those of the 230 year old newspapers millions of readers
where the blame lies. She maintains: In the past six years, since the election of the known bribetaker President Jacob Zuma, progress has spun into reverse. South Africa has become, in the words
of a leading trade unionist, a predator state, rather than one that serves its people. A tiny minority of
black politicians and businessmen have misused their positions to become extraordinarily rich;
extreme inequality has scarcely budged.
Zuma, his allies and the ANC hierarchy are unembarrassed by their plunder. The president has faced
several charges of corruption and one of rape. A parliamentary investigation has found him guilty of
diverting millions of rands in public money to his own residence. Zuma mocks these accusations
while destroying or neutralising institutions that dare challenge him. The elite anti-corruption police
unit that investigated him has been disbanded. The public protector, who investigates
maladministration in the government, has been accused of being a CIA spy. Zumas allies have been
installed to run the tax office and the prosecuting system to ensure he and his cronies will escape
jail, whatever their crimes.
With robber barons in charge, incompetence and irresponsibility is becoming the norm. The
government buys off opposition with money it doesnt have. This year civil servants got a 7 per cent
pay rise, even though growth was less than 2 per cent. Paying for it used up the countrys entire
contingency reserve. Last week, after student riots, the government agreed to freeze or cut fees,
blowing a vast hole in university budgets and causing the currency to fall almost 5 per cent.
Unemployment, at one in four, is the eighth worst in the world, growth keeps falling, only a quarter
of the countrys schools are judged to be functional, and female teachers in one province have been
forced to have sex with union bosses to get jobs.
If no one in power is prepared to recognise the growing crisis, I fear for the countrys future.
Zuma is on his way to Germany at the invitation of Chancellor Angela Merkel, one of only three other
global leaders who receive a higher remuneration that Zumas R2.75m official annual salary (the US
and Canadian Presidents are the others according to a recent CNN survey).
German companies are big investors and employ well north of 100 000 people in SA. They have been
among foreign investors expressing disquiet in similar terms to Russell. Maybe this visit to the
persuasive Merkel, will help the penny drop.