Thursday, April 2, 2020

Our leaders lack principle

Governance is a noble exercise.

Accordingly, it calls for leaders with a sense of principle, high moral standing and exceptional conviction. It calls for leaders with strength of character, leaders replete with perseverance and determination.

Governance does not call for those who break under a zephyr, nor does it call for those who cannot bear the thought of making apologies when mistakes have been made, when temptations reigned supreme and when regulations and laws have been deliberately disrespected or when indignation has set in.

It calls for leaders who are ready to shed blood for their countries and for principle.

The question we need to ask of our leaders today is whether they are ready to sacrifice food, fame and name for principle.

Are they ready to shed blood for the greater good of the country?

If our leaders use public assets for their personal benefit, can they claim that principle prevails on those circumstances? Can we claim that the virtue of high-moral standing resides in such leaders? It is simple. Moreover, quite reasonable to assume that that incident is just one among many. The reality is, this conduct is custom. The temptation presented itself and became irresistible. They simply gave in. Public assets were victimized. Public trust victimized. Principle sacrificed. Simply for personal benefit. Yet we still have them in office. Yet we contemptuously believe we are going somewhere.
Undoubtedly, there is quite clearly a rain of political incapacity, incompetence, and dearth of moral fibre in such leaders. For our leaders persistently put pride and arrogance before everything; a simple apology to the public is at all times a complex task. They never cared to exhibit remorse for their selfishness. Never.

In what circumstances is it permissible for the Minister entrusted with the public wallet to fabricate economic figures?

In what circumstances is it excusable for a minister to hide the truth from the public? What of such a minister? It is not a leader with respect for the will of the people who displays these features. It obviously cannot be a leader with sharp moral fibres; it obviously cannot be a leader with total determination to his political office. It is again a scenario where principle is forfeited to save face.
Good governance puts to the rubbish bin such sinful leaders. Leaders who lack the spirit of truth and honesty. Treacherous leaders who cheat the same people who elected them. They are a public disgrace.

Similarly, a president whose decisions and actions paralyses and renders futile and worthless public institutions designed specifically to deal with public concerns is not a leader of principle and moral fibre. Was it difficult to follow principles that aim to flourish public interest and opinion instead of searching statutes and accidentally discovering a power? Was it difficult?

With these unpleasant incidents, the present chaos and pandemonium over whether parliament or the executive is supreme must not come as a surprise. For leaders lacking in principle and conviction, leaders pursuing personal interests can only act to locate power where there is none, create power where there is none, while trampling and undermining public will. It must not come as a surprise because the obvious motive is, as always, personal benefit as opposed to public benefit. Never wonder why they are flouting the Privatization Policy and appointing their brothers-in-law.

Everyday what Thomas Jefferson once said must oscillate in the minds of our leaders, Jefferson said, ‘The preeminence of representative government [is maintained] by showing that its foundations are laid in reason, in right, and in general good.”

Or else this privatization scheme will turn out to be a chocolate-factory for ministers, their sons, daughters, and their remote families. A scheme to make their greedy dreams come true.