Interest groups are ever-present to advance certain agendas in any social discourse.
Whether the item advanced is for the benefit of humanity is always subject to which side of the fence a person stands.
They form to advance and protect rights of others, like the protection of women and children lobby groups.
Others seek to oppress certain groups and ideologies to advance their own – the US Christian right movement comes to mind.
There’s a third with membership of henchmen, snake oil salespersons and charlatans who seek to ensure the election of a certain persona to line their pockets by looting state resources.
This group is most prevalent in any African state and any grouping formed by these governments.
Take the removal of former Zimbabwean president Robert Mugabe from office by the army as an example.
What did SADC do?
It held a meeting that resolved to hold another meeting, which will discuss the status quo in that country. You can’t help but laugh! This is a toothless organisation accused of failing to challenge member states on their human atrocities.
It is viewed as a cabal that protects former revolutionaries turned to be despots.
Our own South African president, who couldn’t even get a deputy minister from his bloated cabinet to attend the inauguration of the next president of Zimbabwe on his behalf, cemented this view.
Going back to Zimbabwe, it’s some days since interim president Emmerson Mnangagwa was sworn into office.
Already there are murmurs of his hand behind certain atrocities in that country and that he kept the former president in power by using the army to quash any form of dissent.
Will he be his own person leading that country without the army looking on to ensure he doesn’t deviate from the script?
No one can deny that the armed forces of Zimbabwe in future will want to play a crucial role to ensure certain policy positions are for their benefit.
This institution, instead of protecting citizens per its mandate, has become an interest group in the political discourse of that country.
Coming closer to home, most citizenry curses the groups that ensured the ascension of Jacob Zuma to the first office of the land.
He disposed of them with alacrity when they had served their purpose, for the purpose of surrounding himself with jesters masquerading as an interest group.
Going to the ANC conference in a few days, I can’t help but be alarmed by certain groups within this organisation each pushing its own candidate for leadership, professing to be the only one to save the ANC from itself.
History seems to be repeating itself!