Good or bad news for South Africa after Nelson Mandela dies – you choose…
Perhaps this could have been a post for another day, or another time, as the whole nation, and the world, is currently on an edge about Nelson Mandela’s condition in hospital – especially that news is not coming consistently on his condition.
After a chat with a few friends about what would happen to South Africa if Mandela dies today, I just could not stop wondering. I know some of us are probably shouting, “How dare you?”
Frankly, I understand why many people dread or frown upon discussing Mandela’s death and the prospects after. The former president, mentor and international icon is deeply loved, not just by South Africans, but by the whole world.
Some have described him as the ‘glue that binds South Africa together’ and some as ‘the blanket that warms us all regardless of colour or creed.’
Still, as dearly as I revere him, Mandela is also 94 years old and I believe he is not immortal. Today or tomorrow, as a law of nature, he will unfortunately have to move onto another dimension.
Hence, I think accepting his death and thinking about life after he is gone is not bad behavior… So don’t shoot me yet!
Life after Madiba dies – the gloom
I don’t know if you are one of those that are already losing sleep or developing ulcers over your fate after the struggle hero passes on – as if Madiba is some sort of voodoo ‘happy’ charm that currently keeps the ‘white-haters’ at bay.
Yeah, just Google; ‘fear, Mandela and death’ or ‘what will happen in South Africa after Mandela dies’, you will be shocked!
There are thousands of websites – from interest groups to social networks and news sites, saying stuff like; ‘Blacks will massacre whites after Mandela’s death’, ‘Uhuru after Mandela’s death’ or ‘White genocide after Mandela’s death in SA?’
They promote a fear that after Madiba passes on ‘black’ South Africans will no longer have reason to hold back and will arm themselves with sjamboks, knives and guns and violently take back what they believe is owed to them.
‘White’ South Africans will be driven into the sea …
“I’ve been informed that payback is on it’s way after Mandela departs… I hope I’m wrong, but reality cannot be ignored, nor the high level of impoverishment/ dissatisfaction at grass roots level. Now with Malema and his ilk seeking a following, more fiery rhetoric will be expected, further exacerbating the potential for conflict,” wrote one forum user.
Another one wrote; “The poorest of the poor will use it as an excuse to loot, the stupidest of the stupid will use it as an excuse to murder. The ANC will run away, the US (already on their way) will use it as an excuse to ‘restore order’ and secure SA’s mineral resources for themselves. And then it’s going to hit the fan. Sing your praises about harmony and ubuntu if you like. See the number of violent service delivery protests as an example of the reigning mentality in this country. Be ready or be dead.”
In fact, some far-right organisations and websites warn ‘white’ people to be prepared to protect their families from these hordes of murderous ‘blacks’ that will take to the streets and destroy everything in their path – and they say it was the ANC government’s plan all along L.
Put in short, there are some prophets of doom claiming South Africa is set to burn!
Even the media seems like its feeding off these fears with reports that the SANDF has already been secretly placed on standby after Mandela took ill in a contingency plan – although we know anything as long as it sells the paper!
The facts – for now!
Perhaps I am a bit naïve and out of contact with what’s going on the ground but chatting with my friends we wondered where people get all this things – which often tend to be premised on “them vs us”.
Really, you should read some of these websites and ‘prophesies’ with a clear mind or you will end up dying of worry – perhaps the goal of these doomsdayers.
Facts being facts, I believe if the ‘black uhuru armies’ wanted to rise up between 1994 or last night, there was not much Madiba could do to stop them… I stand to be corrected, but Mandela is not some ‘magic peace’ charm that keeps or has kept ‘black’ South Africans from attacking ‘white’ South Africans over these years.
Fact is: when Madiba passes on, we will all feel a great sense of loss – and rightly so because of what he did so that we be here today. He came at the right time to teach all of us that we can live together in harmony – IF WE CHOOSE TO, and move forward in this great land we call South Africa.
And we all knew that he has been ‘borrowed’ to us for a season!
Like any other country, there are challenges to be overcome like getting rid of unemployment, eradicating poverty and disease, creating more economic opportunities for the previously marginalized and improving on service delivery. In my opinion, this is usually the root of discontent between the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’ in any society the world over – not just in South Africa.
What I think
I think issues of crime should be addressed as issues of crime and not used as evidence of a ‘black’ plot to kill all ‘whites’ – as some of these doomsday websites and organisations claim.
Having been mugged myself and having also read of ‘black’ citizens being robbed, murdered and raped, I believe there is no sinister racially-motive to crime. Crime is crime and must be viewed and dealt as such!
On the issue of Madiba and the future of South Africa as a nation, I would to agree with these guys who also wrote on one forum – Answerit.
One said; “I don’t think much is going to change for us when he eventually dies. So I am not going to lose sleep over that ne. I have other much more serious thing to worry about. However, I think most of them will just be very sad for a while. I know I will.”
The other wrote; “Mr Mandela, as he should rightly be called, did save us all, black and white alike, by his attitude of reconciliation and his vision of hope for the future. It is sad see, here, in Answerit, and elsewhere, that his vision for a united South Africa is fading as the ‘us vs. them’ attitude has crept back into the national psyche.
“Sad to see the so-called brighter folk on Answerit use the ‘us’ and the ‘them’ without even realising the enormity of the divide that they help create by giving further currency to its use. Hooray for those that didn’t. And when Mr. Mandela dies, a little bit of South Africa will die with him but there will be no uprising, no ridiculous Night of the Long Knives.”
In conclusion, I think lets all enjoy Madiba magic and appreciate him when we still have him and not worry about tomorrow for worry only makes us morbid!
And I wish Madiba a speedy recovery!
Note: In my posts, I always use ‘white’ or ‘black’ in quotes as only conformation to how most people write and speak. Personally, I believe we are all just South Africans – as Madiba showed us. Perhaps it is time we stop this ‘us’ and ‘them’ thing, we are all Africans. How many generations will it take for ‘whites’ to become ‘Africanised’? How many generations will it take for ‘blacks’ to accept the former settlers as part of the village? When we all come together as one people, that when Madiba’s legacy will shine!