Zikalala’s Distorted View Of Africa’s History

One of the perks of being in power is to present propaganda as history, a task KZN  premier Sihle Zikalala carries out with panache (Mercury, May 25).

In his tribute to Africa Day, Zikalala predictably places the blame for Africa’s plight on the legacy of colonialism. The fact that colonialism ended 60 years ago and was replaced by despots like Nkrumah, Mugabe, Mengistu, Machel and a dozen others who plundered and waged war against their own people is peripheral to Zikalala’s view of history.

So it is risible for Zikalala to talk about a “vision of integration” as long as millions in Africa have refugee status because of the internecine warfare that has plagued this continent since the demise of colonialism.  Xenophobia which prevails in South Africa proves that the brotherhood of which Zikalala boasts is a figment of his imagination.

Africa has more failed states than any other continent, so for Zikalala to endorse the idea that “our fortunes are linked to those of our fellow African nations,” is rather disturbing if not something of a death wish for South Africa.

For sheer hypocrisy, it is hard to beat Zikalala’s invitation“for skilled workers from all over the world to ply their trade” here. Yet skilled workers who happen to be white, coloured and Indian in South Africa are denied the opportunity to ply their skills because Zikalala’s ideology practises racial discrimination. His celebration of the contribution of communists to South Africa’s history is also misplaced. It is the result of implementing their economics that South Africa’s economy has declined. The sad history of Zambia, Zimbabwe, Mozambique and  Tanzania, amongst others, stands in testimony to the failure of socialist economics.

Zikalala’s concluding appeal for Africa to “rise again” is another distortion of history. The only aspects of Africa that are in the ascendant are unemployment, poverty and debt all of which are flourishing under ANC rule of South Africa.

Sent into The Mercury and published, 26 May 2020.

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