In 1994 South Africa held its first national election. Today, 20 years later, South Africa has the second biggest economy in Africa and yet it has been described as one of the most unequal societies in the world.
One of the values that the democratic state of South Africa is founded on is universal adult suffrage, the right to vote. Accompanying that right is a responsibility on every South African to elect representatives who are committed to establishing the kind of nation that the Constitution envisions.
Throughout scripture, we are reminded that leaders must rule justly and the demand that leaders be held accountable for how they exercise their power is both constitutional and biblical. But scripture goes even further, giving every person (not just the government) a mandate of social justice:
“If you do away with the yoke of oppression, with the pointing finger and malicious talk, and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the oppressed Then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday.
The LORD will guide you always;
he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.
Your people will rebuild the ancient ruins and will raise up the age-old foundations; you will be called Repairer of Broken Walls,Restorer of Streets with Dwellings.”
Isaiah 58: 9b-12
Today, my prayer is that the empowered would exercise their power not just to vote, but also to heal the sick, feed the hungry and clothe the naked. My hope is that South Africa would rise and take its place in our great continent.
God bless Africa,
Let her horn be lifted high.