Monday, 23 June 2008

Dear Jacob Zuma

Dear Jacob Zuma

I know you will never read this but I am writing it anyway (because I wanna).

You will be South Africa's next president, of this I am sure. I beg of you, if there is one thing you consider as president (I can think of many things worth considering, but this will do for now), it is to vastly improve the state of the AIDS campaign in South Africa.

Many of the people currently working as national and local health ministers seem intent on actively sabotaging treatment of AIDS victims. They are arrogant, cannot tolerate criticism, and put their egos before the lives of millions of their fellow people.

I understand why many people in South Africa are wary of all things Western, white, or scientific. These things have been cruel to Africa in the past. I acknowledge concerns over the toxicity of AZT. Many medicines are toxic in large doses, and in small doses kill off viruses. That is the nature of medicine. The trick is in the dose. Of course dosage mistakes can be made. But the benefits of administering ARV's outwiegh such risks.

We need people in charge of health that are humble, that can admit if they are wrong, that value the lives of other people at least a quarter of the amount that they value their own, and whose aim is to improve the health and lives of the people, not to push agendas.

It would be ideal if future health ministers held some sort of Biology degree. I studied Biology myself, and can point you in the direction of perfectly competent people of whichever race group you desire.

I am white, so I understand if you discount my opinion as one of those out to harm indigenous African people. I promise you, most people of all races in South Africa want the horror that is AIDS to be brought under control. We have no hidden racist agendas.

Many people have suffered more than they may have needed to. Whatever else you do or do not do in SA, make sure you choose the best health ministers available to you.

Over and out.



6000 said...

A fine idea.
Until you remember that Manto is actually a medical doctor.

And then.. y'know...? The biology degree doesn't seem to cut much ice.

po said...

That's true. A competent person with no ego and a degree?

ah, well, it was only an idle wish...