Home | 'khona Justice | THE POWER LIES IN YOU


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I remember as I was hitting my puberty stage, there was this song by kwaito star Sbu which lyrics went ‘abantu abazwani, omuny’ukhomb’ omuny’esweni omuny’uvikel’ isolakhe’.  

This song made a lot of sense to me then and even more so now, particularly regarding what is happening in this country - good and bad. In the same breath there’s another by the dearly departed Mandoza and his crew Chizkop which went ‘umnt’omnyam’ akafun’uk’bon’  omny’ umnt’omnyam’  aya phambili awu phezulu!  Awu phambili! Awu phezulu!! Mara why’!? And vice versa.


For purposes of word economy I will combine what these two songs meant - especially since kwaito is about our lives as black people and our struggles to make a living. Here these artists captured how as blacks we would rather see another suffer than work together to find solutions out of the poverty we do find ourselves in. When one of us works towards success it is easier for our kind to suspect muti - which is a highly rated commodity in our community regardless of its sources - or other foul play as the reason for their leaving poverty behind.


One of my favourite writers, Ndumiso Ngcobo, speaks so of our definition of leaving poverty behind: “Success in this country can be defined as ‘the extent to which an individual can extricate and insulate themselves from the ever expanding sea of poverty’. For those of us in the ‘black middle class’ this means... moving out of black townships (emakhaya) and the ‘black world’. It means escaping public hospitals, township (rural) government schools, the Toyota Quantum taxi... and everything associated with the ordinary black South African (liSwati).”

You see my friends and I were having a conversation while enjoying Swazi Gold about the recent splurge this country is witnessing; we gathered we had not seen such but then technology is much advanced these days and only going strong so we didn’t dwell much on this.

Where we separated the chiff from the chaff was when we said let us say each liSwati had a million bucks - besibekisa - who among us would respect another?  Better yet what would a million bucks buy if not a plot or two of which you still had to build a house, pay rates, marry a woman, send your children to school, pay for their university tuition and still afford to retire well and travel the world. With a million bucks everything but buying the land is impossible.
Worse yet we would lose all sense of respect, service delivery would be redundant, education would be worse off than what it is already, and a host of other problems would pop up.


We then agreed that the problem lies not in what is happening but rather in what we care to offer this country. If we are so well off then we might form alliances and open mines in this mineral-rich country, make our education unique, legalise Swazi Gold, appropriate indoor farming, and a whole lot more.
What this country needs is not a cut in spending but a wave of investment.

Imali yemaSwati idliwe maSwati.  Instead of pointing fingers at what should be, let us be the solution and bring change; maybe instead of complaining that a E1 million licence is too much, apply for one with a sound business plan and make E30 million a month - siyabekisa. Change begins with you.
Good luck.

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