Political analyst, Ralph Mathekga has written an article saying it is almost impossible to have a decent debate in South Africa. Mathekga says the problem lies with the public space being stifled and muddied.
He says even before raising valid points, one is quickly located and classified within a particular camp, either the so-called white monopoly capital influence or the Gupta influence.
If you are someone who has no interest with either side it becomes difficult to strike a debate and discuss substantive issues.— Ralph Mathekga, political analyst
They allocate you time to speak they don't listen.— Ralph Mathekga, political analyst
Mathekga says he wishes conversations could be held without being labeled or accused of belonging to a certain faction. Mathekga asks why must people need to be chastised if and when they hold an unpopular opinion.
He uses Professor Christopher Malikane, adviser to Finance Minister, Malusi Gigaba as example. Mathekga says Malikane needs to be engaged on his remarks of radical economic transformation and nationalism instead of being dismissed.
I for one don't agree with him but i respect him.— Ralph Mathekga, political analyst
You can read Mathekga's opinion piece here.
Listen to the full interview in the audio below:
This article first appeared on 702 : On the state of debates in South Africa