I was leaving for America. I had my bags packed, my tickets ready and my family there waiting for me. Then one morning I woke up and thought ‘what am I doing?’ I love South Africa. I love my country and its people. There are things here that only a South African could ever understand, such as 300 days of sunshine every year, biltong, putupap, boerewors, chakalaka, sosaties, koeksusters and peppermint fridge tart, not to mention shopping at robots for anything from cooldrinks to coat hangers.
Most South Africans are passionately, defiantly and overtly proud to live in this country. We might sometimes live in fear, but we live with everything we have; there’s little room to be lazy with one’s life.
The country is stunning in every way – by this I mean that I have lived here my entire life and I still haven’t seen everything that South Africa has to offer.
No one can deny that during 11 June–11 July 2010 South Africa was a wonderful place to be. During the hosting of the Soccer World Cup the whole world watched in awe as a united South Africa opened up its hearts to the world. Aside from the minority of criminals, South Africa has more spirit and energy than any other country I know.
I have come to realise that emigrating is not about escaping crime, it’s not about the political state of the nation, it’s not about power cuts or anything other than the way one looks at things. If you’re running away, trust me, your problems will follow you.
Africa is the final untouched market; people are scrambling for it globally, and South Africa remains the gateway to Africa. A lot has been done already in first world countries. Here, there is room for growth, experimentation and the ability to learn from the mistakes of the world.
South Africans are also natural inventors, giving the world those breakwater dolosse and the automatic pool cleaner. South Africa’s Dr Percy Amolis invented the Retinal Cryoprobe used successfully on former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher to repair a detached retina. He also removed a cataract from Nelson Mandela’s eye that enabled the former president to read a speech without glasses for the first time.
We also came up with the first, largest and most viable oil-from-coal refinery (which supplies 40% of our petrol); and did you know that a South African physicist co-developed the CAT-scan, that South Africa makes the seats for Concorde, and also designs and creates the flight control technology for Britain’s fighter jets?
In the words of Nelson Mandela: ‘It is in our hands to create a better world for all who live in it’. With an ubuntu attitude, it’s up to each one of us to be part of the solution to our country’s problems, and the media organisation that started the Lead SA campaign has practical suggestions on how we can become the catalysts for change.
Our Employee Wellbeing Programme (EWP) is available 24 hours a day if you want to know more about a positive attitude. Call us on the EWP number or email us at
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