Johan Fourie's blog

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Thuma Mina

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Today is a good day to be South African. Cyril Ramaphosa, one day after being sworn in as South Africa’s fifth democratic president, delivered a State of the Nation address last night that reminded us who we can be. Over the last nine years, we had become conditioned to the mediocrity of Jacob Zuma, had set the bar so low that our optimism of a better tomorrow had withered away. With one speech, Ramaphosa allayed the melancholy. Rise, South Africa, he said, and rebuild the dream of a prosperous and just society.

It requires action, and he has many plans. A smaller and more efficient government, support for entrepreneurs, investment in innovation, welcoming tourists, broader ownership of agriculture. But success will not depend on him alone. It cannot. In what reminded me of Kennedy’s ‘ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country’, Ramaphosa told South Africans to take responsibility for the future they want: In the words of Hugh Masekela, thuma mina (Send Me).

We are at a moment in the history of our nation when the people, through their determination, have started to turn the country around.

We can envisage the triumph over poverty, we can see the end of the battle against AIDS.

Now is the time to lend a hand.

Now is the time for each of us to say ‘send me’.

Now is the time for all of us to work together, in honour of Nelson Mandela, to build a new, better South Africa for all.

Much work must be done. Not everything promised can surely be delivered. But the tide has turned. Today is a good day to be South African.


Written by Johan Fourie

February 17, 2018 at 10:01

4 Responses

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  1. The land redress issue is an urgent necessity. I am from a township. We have reached that stage where we have run out of patience.

    We cannot continue with what prof Terblanche terms white arrogance in the face of stark poverty.

    The gap between the rich and poor is too wide, we cannot live like this in harmony.

    Together we can make South Africa great, prosperous again.

    Itneeds a lot of necessary sacrifice, self searching on those who are rich, who have what belongs to the poor masses, the dispossessed.

    I am 100% behind unity, non racial Mzansi

    I enjoy your articles Johan, carry on the good work.


    February 20, 2018 at 07:21

  2. How is the threat of land expropriation amount to “smaller, more efficient government”?


    February 17, 2018 at 16:30

    • (“does,” not “is”)


      February 17, 2018 at 16:31

    • He mentioned the size of cabinet, and the efficiency of public servants. We don’t yet know what he plans for land expropriation, so cannot really comment on that. The government already owns a lot of land.

      Johan Fourie

      February 17, 2018 at 19:52

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