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Letters to the editor: January 19 to 25

Cyril courts the corrupt

The article “Zuma’s failures drive Cyril’s rural campaign”, makes horrific reading on all levels to anyone who believes in democracy and natural law. The first thing Ramaphosa does is pander to the unelected despots who cost South Africa billions — the kings and queens who hold the lives of the poor, rural disempowered in a Catch-22 stranglehold.

The millions spent on a lavish lifestyle would be better spent relieving the poverty of their “subjects”, who are supposed to be living in a democratic country. The traditional leaders and their courts rule with impunity.

The idiocy of asking Queen Noloyiso Sandile to help with expropriation of land without compensation was missed. How much will she give up? Nothing, I bet.

The people of the area have no chance to possess the land that she claims. They are treated like peons in a mini-feudal state where democracy is never mentioned, nor practised. How could she help? No one knows.

Ramaphosa is following in Jacob Zuma’s footsteps because the ANC needs the votes of those who still do not realise that they have a choice. — Tom Morgan

■ The speech by Ramaphosa at the ANC’s celebrations in East London at the weekend was like a curate’s egg — good in parts but questionable in others.

Obviously he is expected to promote unity in the ANC, but to what extent he will succeed is questionable. The number of unsolved political killings, mostly in the ANC in KwaZulu-Natal, raises a question but does not provide an answer.

His undertaking to root out corruption is a noble desire but again it has become so entrenched in the political and administrative components at all levels of government that we need more than words.

One gets the impression that his undertaking to expropriate land was taken as a result of pressure from ANC members who have little knowledge of its effect on international confidence and the economy.

An ANC minister of agriculture has acknowledged in Parliament that 95% of productive land that was bought by the state and handed back has become unproductive. No wonder that Ramaphosa added the rider that expropriation should be based on continued sustainable food production. — VA Volker, Pietermaritzburg

Graduates can replenish SA’s dry water sector

As institutions of higher learning contend with floods of students eager to study in the wake of the announcement of fee-free education by President Jacob Zuma, a question that begs serious consideration is that of the career choices the prospective students are making.

Our youth are hungry for education and are keen to change their lives for the better. But the reality for many unemployed graduates shows that acquiring an education does not necessarily translate into them securing employment.

Lack of skills in the very important areas of the sciences and engineering is slowly pushing South Africa to the brink. To get the country on the right economic trajectory we need to fill the gaping hole of skills shortages in these and other areas.

South Africa desperately needs to produce an army of graduates with skills that will enable it to change its growth path for the better. The catalyst and the backbone for this envisaged growth remains water. However much we meticulously make plans for our prosperity, the truth is that without water we will never move an inch. Water is the be-all and end-all for job creation and the economic transformation agenda of the country.

It is for this reason that the department of water and sanitation is assisting young people to pursue careers in the water sector through a variety of programmes.

It is our hope that the youth flooding institutions of higher learning will consider the various careers available in the water sector. As other sectors are growing, the water sector’s skills base is decreasing and is in dire need of replenishment. The many prospective students are the only hope for our dream of building a nation with an abundance of skills that are relevant to the development of the country. — Hosia Sithole, department of water and sanitation, Gauteng region

Where are our wise leaders?

The recent acts of vandalism at H&M stores by members of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) made me intensely concerned about the poor leadership displayed in our country.

What also concerned me was how many people saw these violent acts as leadership. Most people are seeing this violence as an act against racism.

But is this the best solution a team of master’s and honours fellows could come up with?

Perhaps, in efforts to find solutions to life, we overlook one important thing, wisdom.

Wisdom is something a textbook can’t give you. It’s a combination of enlightenment of the soul, diversity of the mind, openness of the heart and depth of conscience.

One day, this will be how the EFF deals with every matter that annoys them or challenges their sense of rightness or wrongness. — Lesego Setou

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