In our environment of disease, wretched poverty, criminality, corruption and mass unemployment it is particularly galling to observe leading politicians from the current and former ranks of the DA and ANC indulging in doublespeak, back-stabbing, insensitive tweets and statements seemingly at odds with one another on internal party matters and even policy issues. Selfishly, they have got their priorities all wrong.

While in the case of the ANC the obvious fractures are dramatically widening, factions within the DA are becoming more apparent, albeit more subtle. Either way, the impact on our country is a lack of purposeful government and effective opposition and continuing political incapacity and economic stagnation.

The past and recent revelations about the deliberate or inadvertent misleading of colleagues and the public about educational levels, both in the public and private sector, is an example of how personal ambition and greed is getting in the way of integrity and loyalty.

While the quality of the individual is more important than his or her qualifications, we need, particularly in our political establishments, a far higher degree of competence, honesty, selflessness, and consistency and transparency of thought, principle and policy.

We have an ample supply of citizens with the necessary values, expertise and sense of duty, but they are needlessly fragmented across too many political parties or movements or choose to shun politics as a vocation.

While the business sector, NGOs and broad-based civil society and their campaigns will hopefully become more vocal and effective in righting the deep-seated wounds inflicted on our country by the ANC, the ultimate responsibility and accountability for a peaceful and prosperous SA can only lie with a new, strong, centrist governing party uncompromisingly committed to our constitutional democracy and the wellbeing of our nation at large, over and above the advantage of particular individuals and factional ambitions.

There has never been a stronger case for the emergence of such a party with a credible leader than now.

David Gant, Kenilworth

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