I WAS astounded by the attack on the public protector by religious leaders affiliated to African indigenous churches for exposing the rot and corruption in the SABC.
The church in the past used to be the voice of reason and stood for the poor against the immorality of the previous apartheid regime.
Post-1994 the voices of religious leaders diminished and were absorbed by the institution of government.
The vitriol against the office of the public protector is not challenging the merit of Thuli Madonsela’s findings of corruption within SABC, but the manner in which the public protector exposed the rot under the stewardship of its chief operating officer, Hlaudi Motsoeneng.
The unfortunate part of the whole fracas is the fact that the attack comes from people who are supposed to give moral guidance to the society.
This role of the church is to stand for the poor when their resources are embezzled by the likes of Motsoeneng. Instead of commending the sterling work of the public protector’s office in combating corruption in public institutions, they are taking the sides of those who have been found to be corrupt by the findings of the public protector.
The worst part is they are planning to hold a march to the offices of the public protector. The working class communities are on their own protesting for service delivery daily, because of corrupt and incompetent bureaucrats who are misusing public funds.
We do not hear urgent protests from these African religious churches against the action of these government officials. This action of these religious leaders clearly illustrates that the church is slowly losing the status of being the moral compass.
Through their response to the findings on the crisis at the SABC, these religious leaders are joining the chorus prevalent in government circles of discrediting the office of the public protector’s fight against corruption.
Mkhuseli Mtsila, Zwide, Port Elizabeth