Toespraak: Begrotingstem vir die Departement van Hoër Onderwys / Speech: Budget Vote for the Department of Higher Education

2017-05-16
Adv Anton Alberts

Chairperson,

Minister, as you would know by now, false promises are dangerous. We have witnessed how easily “Fees-Must-Fall” transformed into “Blade-Must-Fall” and the “ANC-Must-Fall”. We need to be careful about the commitments we make to each other in this country, especially the commitments government makes to South Africans. If you cannot deliver, do not make promises as they will come back to haunt you.

We have noted the Minister’s concerns about the direction this country is going and that replacing President Mbeki with President Zuma did not address the fundamental problems this country is facing. We agree with the Minister in this regard, but we wish to take it even further and advise that the self-reflection and intervention needed to halt and reverse the death-spiral of this country will require an impossible re-engineering feat of the ANC itself. For deeply ingrained in the ANC-Alliance’s DNA is the Soviet-inspired National Democratic Revolution, another revolution that has now turned in on its owner as service delivery implodes and promises evaporate. Yes, you have a people problem, but it is because you have a thinking problem. The inner ethos of the ANC-alliance requires centralization and micro-management of all spheres of life, including higher education, the suppression of diversity and the implementation of demographic representivity, while in reality it lacks the ability to even arrange a fight in a bar.

Die ANC-alliansie se denke en revolusie is in wese vêr van die realiteit verwyder. Daarom word universiteite en ander tersiêre instellings toegelaat om veeltaligheid uit te faseer en diversiteit te ondermyn terwyl dit presies is wat die land van die regering vra. Hoe moeilik is dit om veeltaligheid in elke hoër onderrig-instelling te verwesenlik? Ons het dan vertalingsdienste in die parlement! Ons het die tegnologie en die kundige mense, maar die werklike probleem is dat die politieke wil ontbreek.

Minister, as far as the provision of free education is concerned, the great irony is that if the ANC-Alliance was a better custodian of our economy since 1994 and suppressed the impulse to intervene and micro-manage at every turn, Treasury could already have afforded a broader scheme of study assistance some time ago. But it could never happen, for the essence of the problem that you are facing is nested in your thinking that a National Democratic Revolution can develop this country. But human-made political revolutions only destroy, they do not build. We see this in the slipping of our global university rankings, amongst others.

Die enigste wyse dus waarop die ANC-alliansie sy gebreke kan herstel, is om sy denke te verander. Daarvoor is self-insig nodig en erkenning dat hy ‘n probleem het. Hierdie proses kan die ANC-alliansie van homself bevry en alle sektore van die samelewing op ‘n groeipad plaas, insluitende hoër onderwys. Of die hoop sal beskaam sal net julle weet. En of julle sal oorleef sal ons in 2019 sien.

Dankie Voorsitter


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