By Prince Bill M. Kaping’a Political/social analyst
One of the main reasons why our communities and cities remain largely underdeveloped or look like landscapes straight from the Dark Ages, if we may put it more precisely, is that most individuals aspiring for offices of Councilors, Mayors, or Members of Parliament lack ambition and innovation!
Once they achieve their life’s time dream of securing such coveted positions; they immediately become obsessed with amassing wealth – driving fancy cars, turning out in their best outfits, moving into grand mansions, and sending their kids to expensive schools in town, instead of firing in all cylinders initiating developmental projects. Well at least we saw this happening during the last 10 years, we are not yet sure about the current crop of our leaders, only time will tell.
Our leaders can perhaps learn one or two lessons from Gayton McKenzie. According to Wikipedia, McKenzie is a former South African convicted criminal, bank robber, gangster, businessman, motivational speaker, author, and president of the Patriotic Alliance political party.
When he aspired to run for Mayor of the Central Karoo in the Western Cape Province, he pledged that he would not be mayor of people using bucket toilets. He further promised to change the face of the district within the first 100 days of being in office. And thanks to his grandiose dreams, today Central Karoo has literally been turned into a construction site – water-borne toilets are being put in place, and a bakery is fast coming up so that the locals can enjoy fresh bread as opposed to waiting for it to be transported 350km away from Worcester. A tar plant is also being put up to produce materials to fix the potholes and a local swimming pool is being refurbished for people to pass their leisure time. Plans are also afoot to open a personal protective equipment factory. This is intended to create 100 jobs for gogos (women) aged between 50 and 60 who otherwise have to depend on their husbands or children.
What development agenda is your MP implementing in your constituency apart from savouring buffet and whisky at Parliament Motel or cruising around in their impressive SUVs with tinted windows to hide away from the electorates? What about your Mayor or Council Chairman; are you appreciating their presence in such offices? All they seem to be good at is officiating at functions, giving boring winding speeches, and cutting ribbons! Councilors are even worse. The only ‘development’ they seem to understand is buying coffins and chicken during funerals!
How many of these so-called leaders can brag about having initiated Strategic Development Plans aimed at addressing critical issues such as garbage collection, improving water reticulation, lighting up our streets, giving public facilities a facelift, opening up libraries and sports centers, food production, and processing among others. The biggest problem is that we always want to wait for the central government to deliver development when we can partner with the local business, the Church, or NGOs to improve the livelihood of our people.
Always remember……time is fast running out, and the electorates will hold our leaders accountable when the day of reckoning comes!