Tony Leon Columnist

Late on Tuesday evening last week, President Cyril Ramaphosa’s "new dawn" morphed into a red twilight as night fell on two hugely instrumental documents, of which he was, by dint of bitter irony and in more hopeful times, a key architect. In his ill-prepared announcement that section 25 of the constitution will be amended, without thought about its content or consequence, he has become the first president since democracy to declare that the Bill of Rights is up for grabs. This is quite a feat, and its provenance is extraordinary. I was one of many delighted citizens who less than eight months ago exulted that the country had been wrenched from the kleptocratic grasp of an ignorant and uncaring first citizen. But, in a further incongruity, it was the ill-starred constitutional delinquent, Jacob Zuma, who had proclaimed back in 2009 just before his presidency began, "In 15 years that the ANC has been in power, the ANC has never used its electoral mandate to change the constitution and...

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