churches against corruption

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Let's keep praying South Africa.
Joel 2
Even now —this is the LORD’s declaration —turn to Me with all your heart, with fasting, weeping, and mourning.
13 Tear your hearts, not just your clothes, and return to the LORD your God. For He is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger, rich in faithful love, and He relents from sending disaster.
14 Who knows? He may turn and relent and leave a blessing behind Him, so you can offer grain and wine to the LORD your God.
15 Blow the horn in Zion! Announce a sacred fast; proclaim an assembly.
16 Gather the people; sanctify the congregation; assemble the aged;[fn] gather the children, even those nursing at the breast. Let the groom leave his bedroom, and the bride her honeymoon chamber.
17 Let the priests, the LORD’s ministers, weep between the portico and the altar. Let them say: “Have pity on Your people, LORD, and do not make Your inheritance a disgrace, an object of scorn among the nations. Why should it be said among the peoples, ‘Where is their God? ’ ”
18 Then the LORD became jealous for His land and spared His people.
19 The LORD answered His people: Look, I am about to send you grain, new wine, and olive oil. You will be satiated with them, and I will no longer make you a disgrace among the nations.
20 I will drive the northerner far from you and banish him to a dry and desolate land, his front ranks into the Dead Sea, and his rear guard into the Mediterranean Sea. His stench will rise; yes, his rotten smell will rise, for he has done catastrophic things.
21 Don’t be afraid, land; rejoice and be glad, for the LORD has done great things.
22 Don’t be afraid, wild animals, for the wilderness pastures have turned green, the trees bear their fruit, and the fig tree and grapevine yield their riches.
23 Children of Zion, rejoice and be glad in the LORD your God, because He gives you the autumn rain for your vindication.[fn] He sends showers for you, both autumn and spring rain as before.
24 The threshing floors will be full of grain, and the vats will overflow with new wine and olive oil.
25 I will repay you for the years that the swarming locust ate, the young locust, the destroying locust, and the devouring locust —My great army that I sent against you.
26 You will have plenty to eat and be satisfied. You will praise the name of Yahweh your God, who has dealt wondrously with you. My people will never again be put to shame.
27 You will know that I am present in Israel and that I am Yahweh your God, and there is no other. My people will never again be put to shame.
28 [fn] After this I will pour out My Spirit on all humanity; then your sons and your daughters will prophesy, your old men will have dreams, and your young men will see visions.
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REPENT & PRAY

Lord, we have sinned against You, against each other and against our country. Forgive us, we turn our hearts to the right path in thought, word and deed. Your Kingdom come to South Africa.

Pray for families, community leaders, church leaders, the president and our nation.

Sing Nkosi sikelel’iAfrika as a prayer over South Africa.

COMMIT       

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EXPOSE

Report corruption to EXPOSE IT

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joshua hi contrast

Government fails to respond to anti-corruption memorandum

Summary:

  • Government ignored the deadline to respond to Unite Against Corruption (UAC) memorandum
  • UAC demands that leaders make an unambiguous pledge to root out corruption, and be open to public scrutiny and accountability
  • Citizens are aware of the scale of corruption and will mobilise to hold leaders accountable
  • Door remains open if government and business want to engage on specific anti-corruption targets

Government has failed to respond to a memorandum of demands submitted to it during nationwide protest marches by the Unite Against Corruption (UAC) coalition, in spite of a personal commitment by Minister in the Presidency Jeff Radebe to come up with a detailed reply.

UAC leaders today said they interpreted this non-response as either a denial of the seriousness of corruption, an absence of leadership or extreme arrogance.  However, the coalition said it was still prepared to engage, should government want to commit to specific targets against corruption.

During the marches on September 30 and October 14, the coalition of more than 300 trade unions, civil society and faith groups gave government and business two months to respond to its demands. The Cape Chamber of Commerce & Industry submitted its reply on October 19. Government has not responded at all.

During the past week, the UAC wrote to Radebe requesting a response before 9 December, so it could be published as part of International Anti-Corruption Day activities on December 9. According to Mr Zwelinzima Vavi, veteran trade unionist, former General Secretary of Cosatu and one of the UAC leaders, the coalition had received nothing – “no calls, no meetings, nothing.”

He is leading a march against corruption tomorrow (December 9) in Johannesburg with former Midrand workers.

No evidence of a turning tide

“There is no evidence that we are moving in the right direction,” Vavi said.

“We therefore plan to unite society around the issues that are being ignored. Leaders can expect to be held accountable to specific targets in 2016. Agency is moving back to ordinary people, who are refusing to pay bribes but demand services instead. We need more of these ordinary people around,” Vavi said.

Rev. Moss Ntlha, Secretary General of The Evangelical Alliance of Southern Africa (TEASA) said that, after the protest marches, “the ANC said all the right things, but there were no specific promises. And the promise they did make – namely to respond – was not kept. Next year, specifically around the 2016 local government elections, we will demand specific commitments and mobilise the public to keep leaders accountable.

“Government is methodically and systematically destroying public confidence, faith and hope. It is failing the leadership test.”

Ntlha called on government to restore hope by displaying good leadership.

“We believe things can still be turned around. We are all for building accountability and trust. We can tear each other apart or we can work together to re-build what has been broken.”

Business response insubstantial

In a 1-page response Cape Chamber of Commerce & Industry Chairperson Janine Myburgh called corruption a “cancer in our society (that) aggravates the unemployment situation.” She said allegations that business is equally involved in corruption, were “disturbing.” The letter then calls for transparency but without committing to specifics.

Mr Mark Heywood, Director of Section 27, described the business response as “welcome, but inadequate and insubstantial,” as it mostly points to government as the source of corruption.

NUMSA’s Head of Education and United Front member Mr Dinga Sikwebu said there is a growing understanding amongst the public that corruption is not limited to the public sphere.

“Our members appreciate that corruption is linked to job losses; that corruption is not just a bribe you pay to the police.”

A government out of touch

Mr Stephen Faulkner, interim convenor of the Nine Plus Unions, said Radebe missed a golden opportunity to engage with one of the largest coalitions of civil society in many years, and to show its identification with the concerns of ordinary South Africans.

“He has also missed his turn to put on record what government is actually prepared to do about corruption – especially in the light of the wastefulness highlighted in the latest Auditor General’s report. Corruption is resulting in poor people being denied even basic service delivery.”

The recent Global Corruption Barometer published by Transparency International, the Africa Survey 2015, found that 83% of South Africans believed corruption was increasing. This was 25% higher than that of 28 other surveyed countries in Sub-Saharan Africa. Also, 79% of South Africans felt government was performing poorly in its efforts to combat corruption.

Citing these figures, Mr David Lewis, Director of Corruption Watch, said “the public is obviously not out of touch with the seriousness of corruption.” He warned that unless government and business started acting against corruption, increasing distrust in formal democratic processes and key private sector institutions could be expected.

“This does not portend well for stability, economic growth or social cohesion. All of these are threatened by government’s non-responsiveness. People are becoming increasingly likely to make their voices heard by reporting corruption or by public demonstrations.”

A call for activism

Ms Oya Hazel Gumede, Director at public sector legal advisory company Ashira Legal Advisors said the messages from government and business can only be interpreted as an abdication of responsibility.

“However, this is merely the outcome of the lack of a sufficiently strong and concerted effort by the citizenry. Government and business can only abdicate their responsibility if the citizens themselves have not taken their responsibility of effectively exercising their power to hold the leadership accountable as seriously as they can and should.”

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