Dear Mmusi Maimane

“No man who is resolved to make the most of himself can spare time for personal contention. Still less can he afford to take the consequences, including the vitiation of his temper and the loss of his self-control. Yield larger things to which you show no more than equal rights: and yield lesser ones though clearly your own. Better give your path to a dog than be bitten by him in contesting for the right. Even killing the dog would not cure the bite.”

Supposedly it was Abraham Lincoln who said those words. If you don’t yet understand how these words could possibly apply to you, it is very clear you are not the man we all hope you are. You see Mmusi Maimane, the whole world understands Julius Malema‘s bitterness towards Jacob Zuma and his ANC. In fact the world even understands Mosiuoa Lekota’s but it doesn’t understand yours.

I’m going to make a simple example in the hope that someone with your level of intellect and reasoning may actually understand. When a person makes a decision to murder another, the biggest damage and loss is suffered by the murderer. Don’t worry if you are a little lost, it takes a bigger person to have such a view on life.

Your hero, Barack Obama, was more than justified to exhibit ugliness from the onset but he knew better or maybe he was surrounded by people who knew better. Who were not afraid to tell him what makes an excellent leader. It would be naïve to believe that Barack Obama does not have the ugliness inside or that he was never tempted to let it out, the safe assumption would be that he was motivated by something greater than pettiness.

In all of human history countless leaders have come and gone. We have never even of heard of the majority of them. The question is, for those history won’t forget, what did they do right? I don’t mean the good guys but all of them including the worst of the worst. All these men and women had a vision that they put before everything else including the lack of affection for their opponents.

Wrangling against one’s opponents is a natural inclination that often always gets the best of us but it is by overcoming such that we rise above the rest including our opponents. Ultimately engaging in any form of confrontation with anyone, especially where very little or no progress at all can be achieved, speaks to one’s character and maturity.

The events that have marred the State of the Nation Address in recent times could and would never speak to the character of Jacob Zuma. It may appear so now because the media perpetuates it but the media is not history. The media will always move on to bigger and better stories of the day. The leaders who fall for this illusion will live to regret their gullibility.

You see, Mmusi Maimane, you may be right about Jacob Zuma and have mountains of documents, books, court judgements and rulings to support it but to the eyes of the the world – following the recent State of the Nation Address – you appear small, bitter and narrow minded. The tactics you have chosen to employ are wrong; they do not seek to rehabilitate Jacob Zuma or move South Africa forward.

The motion to have Jacob Zuma removed from office was defeated in parliament. If you are not satisfied go back to the drawing board and re-strategize. The State of the Nation Address should really be off limits. Take digs at Jacob Zuma anytime, embarrass him if it makes you feel good about yourself but allow him to address us – it is only once a year.

If you spent as much time on trying to solve this country’s problems as you do hating Jacob Zuma and his ANC, you would become one of the most important figures in South African politics. The behavior you exhibit only serve to support claims that you are a puppet placed in that position to lure black voters. As for you publicly stating that; “Two more of these SONAs. It’s going to be a nightmare,” seriously? Are you three years old?

All the damage that could be done to Jacob Zuma‘s reputation has been done. South Africa voted him into power twice, knowing exactly who he was. At this point you no longer damaging his reputation but yours. Dear Mmusi Maimane, please learn to yield lesser things though clearly your own.



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