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Voices

Let Ramaphosa’s example of sound judgement prevail

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Martin Zagnoev, Johannesburg

Unfortunately, anti-Semitism has made many of us bitter and argumentative. It is almost as if we enjoy wallowing in negativity. Furthermore, we live in a society which is also full of complainants. It is hardly surprising, then, that we struggle with stress.

When our newly ordained President Cyril Ramaphosa was engaged in discussions with his predecessor, Jacob Zuma, regarding his exit from the presidency, there were demands that Ramaphosa act more decisively.

Rushing into conflict, or to arms, should be a last resort. It is better to be level-headed and consider the bigger picture instead.

After the ANC recalled former president Thabo Mbeki, it led to a split in that organisation and the formation of Cope. And when former ANC youth leader Julius Malema was expelled, it caused a bigger rift within both the ANC and greater society. Expelling Zuma ran the risk of greater splits and even a possible civil war.

Hot-headedness usually creates more problems than it solves. Rushing for the divorce courts or quickly firing people without resolving problems peacefully only increases instability.

The Talmud speaks of a man who is divorcing his wife with a view to marrying another woman. He thinks that the other woman will be better in all ways and there will be nothing about his first wife that he will miss. Regretfully, he discovers that he was mistaken.

Similarly, firing a competent and loyal employee during a moment of anger means having to employ and retrain an inexperienced person who may not be as good. Not only is this unfair, it will also negatively affect morale in an organisation.

Only once all diplomatic options have been exhausted would it make sense to stand firm and fight the good fight, but with wisdom this would hardly ever be required.

 

 

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