The conflagration in South Africa is just a microcosm of what is wrong with the African Continent. The news has been all abuzz with the chain of violence against immigrant workers and refugees in South Africa. I was going to not say anything about it until I saw this picture and read this article on Time.Com.
Saturday was different, and when the cops came, Bishop Paul Verryn was pleased to see them. For years, the arrival of the South African police at his doorstep had brought violence and fear – back during the 1980s, when he had been a leading anti-apartheid cleric, and even as recently as last January, when the force had raided his Central Methodist Church in downtown Johannesburg, wielding guns and clubs, kicking down doors and beating the terrified people sheltering behind them. (Read whole article here)
It just breaks my heart to see this picture. This is the picture of desperation; people who have become homeless because of political shenanigans in their country and who are become yet homeless again because of even more elaborate political gamboling.
Reading the article, I am left with questions, questions, questions.
How can wrong be used to right a wrong? Even without the refugees, will the lot of the poor South African be any different? I dare to say ‘NO’. I have heard many arguments in favour of ridding South Africa of these refugees but try as I may, I still cannot see things from that point of view.
A wrong can NEVER, never be used to right another wrong. Just ask the victims of the French and Russian revolutions – the poor man on the street. Did things become better for them after the revolution? Were they any warmer and were their bellies any fuller? History answers that for us.
Of course, when one stares microscopically into the matter, it boils down to no more than political maneuvering. It’s so sad! How can the blood of so many be sacrificed on the alter of solitary ambitions? It’s crazy! It’s Africa!
If, as announced by South African Intelligence Officials all this pointless killing has been deliberately orchestrated in pursuit of a political agenda, then I would have to answer Bishop Paul Verryn‘s question in the affirmative: we are losing our humanity. I use ‘we’ because as citizens of the world in general and of Africa in particular, we all have a collective responsibility to see that things like this do not happen.
In order to get to the bottom of this all, I will state a saying I heard where I cannot remember:
Where there is conflict, look for who has the most to benefit; there you would find your culprit.
Meanwhile, as we are searching for our culprit, let us take the example of Bishop Paul Verryn. All Africa needs is one ‘saviour’ in every region of the continent. Just one saviour and that saviour is you and I.