God, AIDS, Africa & HOPE

pensées of a Catholic priest

BEE

In the times of Covid-19, many faults and shortcomings in South Africa are coming to the forefront – forgotten or suppressed habits and emotions of the past surfaced again.
Looking at the tourism industry, it was noted that the national Minister of Tourism in South Africa insisted on applying BBBEE when assisting tourism and hospitality companies in crisis – and so leaving most of the white owned gust house, boutique hotels and travel companies out in the cold to cease business, consequently killing ten thousand of jobs especially in the Western Province.
A court confirmed the questioned practice to apply racial factors for dishing out help – and highlighted so again the controversial black economic empowerment scheme in South Africa, which splits society in those in favour and others finding it appalling to use race as criteria for quotes.

I guess this tweet from yesterday sums up the problem of BEE in the current format:
On the background of the abuse of BEE through politicians and the well-connected, it is almost impossible for a normal human being of this skin colour to be acknowledged for his or her efforts, skills and achievements. There is almost an automatism to assume that the person is in the position because of BEE preferences.
While assisting previous disadvantaged is a laudable cause; the way it was abused by so many in political power one or the other way to enrich oneself with money and/or power has jeopardised its meaning and purpose. Besides that, applying race as criteria confronts society with another problem:
Using this language prevents us simply from moving away from an artificial and hurtful past of injustices and disadvantages. Words create realities and if we want our future to be a non-racist, we have to stop this categorization for any future dealings.
It is a balancing act which almost requires the same amount of miracle like the peaceful transition 1994 into the new South Africa.
While the ruling party and other ideologists keep hanging on the past, using it for political gains and abusing it for own gains and justifications as well as cover up for failures South Africa will only have a chance to be a beacon of hope again when we get this balancing act right.
Once again the land around the Cape of Good Hope could be the shining light – showing the rest of the world that there is only one human race and that we acknowledge this in the way we talk, and we act.

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HIV, AIDS and HOPE – thoughts of a Catholic priest

Being a Roman - Catholic priest and working in the fields of HIV and AIDS in Africa is often a challenge. Living in Africa has also its challenges. On the other hand I feel very much blessed having all the three. So you will find stories and reflections about my work, about the church, South Africa and Africa and essential information and developments in the field of HIV and AIDS. And in between personal stories and thoughts. You are most welcome to leave a comment or to get in touch with me - blogs - "thinking loud" so to speak is a ways of communication and exchange of ideas.

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