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Let’s curse darkness to remodel freedom in our lifetime

Ideas

Let’s curse darkness to remodel freedom in our lifetime

The recently launched EMA aims to bring SA people together to address problems of common interest

Pali Lehohla

The UN Committee of Experts on Public Administration (UN-CEPA) is chaired by former SA cabinet minister Dr Geraldine Fraser-Moleketi, who, among other portfolios, was minister of public service and administration. She was among luminaries at last week’s launch by former president Kgalema Motlanthe of the Economic Modelling Academy (EMA).

Who would have guessed that SA would continue to face an existential crisis 28 years into democracy? UN-CEPA was established in 2000 to address challenges raised by UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It raised 11 principles anchored in three areas — competence, sound policymaking and collaboration. These resonated with the important message former president Nelson Mandela captured in his letter from prison to Adelaide Tambo. He wrote: “Significant progress is always possible if we ourselves plan every detail and allow interventions of fate only on our own terms. Preparing a master plan and applying it are two different things.”

Mandela, after leaving prison, worried about the state’s capacity to deliver. In October 1998, in a speech of acceptance of the Census 96 results, he reiterated the cleavages the results displayed, particularly in education. He spoke at length on this, lamenting that black children survive under conditions that make learning and absorption of complex concepts highly improbable, if not impossible, and emphasised that these required an urgent solution...

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