Very often, we tend to think of our country as the worst when it comes to corruption, fraud and–not to mention the almost forgotten term–state capture. Perhaps the reason for this is because we live in our country and because the main news we see and hear of is about our country. And just in case you think I’m going light on our country, I’m not. What I want to show you today is what happens when leadership in a nation and their ‘accomplices’ lack integrity. Thinking of good leadership, leadershipexpert.co.uk says:
The world is full of aspiring political leaders but sadly, very few live up to the leadership ideals. In fact, many political leaders seem to severely lack some of the most important leadership qualities, such as integrity and accountability. It is no coincidence that for many people, the word “politician” has such negative connotations! … Ironically, those who make good political leaders are often those who least want the position in the first place! These are individuals who do not seek power but who have authority conferred upon them by others who value their judgement. So what makes a good political leader? A good political leader is: someone who serves as an example of integrity and loyalty to the people they represent, both to the public and to other political leaders … regardless of political party or opinion, to achieve the greatest good for the general population and someone who can resist the various temptations and lures of the political arena. [Edited]
This is true of business leaders too! This morning, the Hawks arrested a senior Nelson Mandela Bay official and businesswoman for fraud. They accepted a R900,000 bribe from a contractor in exchange for a housing tender. Another report today states that almost 40 Gauteng-based companies linked to the looting of COVID-19 funds will have their accounts frozen. The Special Investigating Units’ (SIU) special tribunal has granted an order freezing almost R38.7 million from several bank accounts of these companies involved in tender irregularities. SIU spokesperson Kaizer Kganyago says, “We took the matter to court for an order to freeze those bank accounts due to the fact that some time earlier in the month, we were made aware of an amount of about R38.7 million that was put into an account. We followed the money and then froze all those account.”
The Daily Maverick reports:
As a top adviser to Trump’s presidential campaign who later served as White House chief strategist, Bannon helped articulate the “America First” right-wing populism and fierce opposition to immigration that have been hallmarks of Trump’s 3-1/2 years in office. Trump fired Bannon from his White House post in August 2017. Bannon, 66, was among four people arrested and charged by federal prosecutors in Manhattan with conspiracy to commit wire fraud and conspiracy to commit money laundering. They each face up to 40 years in prison if convicted, but likely would get much shorter sentences.
Prosecutors accused the defendants of defrauding hundreds of thousands of donors through a $25 million crowdfunding campaign called “We Build the Wall.” Bannon used hundreds of thousands of dollars of that money to cover personal expenses, according to the charges. Bannon is the eighth close Trump associate to be arrested or convicted of a crime, a list that also includes former campaign chairman Paul Manafort, longtime friend and adviser Roger Stone, former national security adviser Michael Flynn and former personal lawyer Michael Cohen. [Edited]
Recently, Seretse Khama Ian Khama, a Motswana politician and former military officer who served as the fourth President of the Republic of Botswana from 1 April 2008 to 1 April 2018, was accused of corruption. He was found not guilty.
Look at this Proverb:
Pr 29:4 By justice a king gives a country stability, but one who is greedy for bribes tears it down.
We live in a world where you might have the best laws in a country, but what will these laws be worth if they are not administered properly? Where there is partiality and injustice, fraud and corruption, good laws are rendered useless. There is a great tension between the fame and glamour of being a politician or being politically connected and self-interest! Often. the missing link in this scenario is integrity and moral courage to stand against temptation. There are Biblical examples of leaders (politicians) failing, causing the country to suffer. Take as an example the leadership of Samuel in 1 Samuel 7. The land was established on justice … but:
1Sa 8:3 But his sons did not walk in his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice.
And the land was overthrown! The same was true with king David.
The extremely sad reality today is that one of the reasons for poverty in a country is the plague of unchecked, uncontrolled and unrestrained bribery, practiced by business and political leaders and their accomplices at all levels of state and society. Anyone can see how this works … the few become wealthy at the expense of the majority! I am sure you have noticed that very, very few leaders, be it in business or politics, face the law and are brought to justice. Few have their dirty laundry and greed exposed to the world. Some do want their day in court, but fight fiercely to prevent it ever happening. Most shockingly, bribery might even pervert court justice and bring about continued instability in the police (Hawks, etc.) bringing about justice. Might I also add at this point that sometimes this is true in the Church of Jesus Christ as well!
Dear God, You who sees, hears and knows everything that happens throughout Your creation, have mercy upon our country, its political, business and church leaders. Please hold back the arm of corruption by inspiring true pastor teachers to proclaim Your Word and Gospel powerfully and provocatively that many who do bribes and corruption might be convicted and cease their wickedness for the benefit of the greater population. Amen.