Are we turning the tide in a country beset by corruption?
It seems so.
It wasn’t so long ago when we could barely keep up with all the stories of theft, corruption and millions disappearing.
Now I can barely keep up with all the stories of court cases, arrests and imprisonments.
Like I said previously, when there’s rot and moral deficit at the very top, then it’s easy for those below to line their own pockets.
But now it seems that between President Cyril Ramaphosa and our chief prosecutor Shamila Batohi, there is a refreshing new political, judicial and bureaucratic will to see these criminals behind bars.
While the Gupta’s international bank records are about to be laid bare, thanks to a ruling by an American court, back home the chickens are coming home to roost for many former high flyers.
Former Crime Intelligence boss Richard Mdluli is off to prison for five years on charges of kidnapping and assault that happened in 1998.
This despite him telling the court that he is too old and sickly to be imprisoned.
In the Eastern Cape, the former ANC youth league deputy president Andile Lungisa is fighting tooth and nail to stay out of the tjoekie for having assaulted a fellow councillor.
He is now appealing to the Constitutional Court, after the Supreme Court upheld his two-year prison sentence.
In line with the ANC’s decision to side-line members suspected of certain crimes, a top party official from Mpumalanga has been suspended from the party and his government position, while defending charges of raping his own young daughters.
The resolution – spearheaded by Ramaphosa – is long overdue and something his predecessor Jacob Zuma never would have considered in a million years.
In fact, Zuma is refusing to continue his testimony before the Zondo Commission of Inquiry, until Judge Zondo recuses himself for his apparent bias against the former number one.
It was testimony before this very Zondo Commission that led to the raft of corruption arrests last week.
The former and current government officials are all allegedly responsible for skimming R200 million off a 2014 Free State tender.
These were the first arrests resulting from the testimony before Judge Zondo, but considering everything we’ve heard over the past few months, dozens more may be on the way.
These arrests are a great deterrent, but I reckon what the state needs to consider, is a permanent lifestyle audit team.
These must be investigators who are able to look into the details of how some politicians live, travel and holiday, especially abroad.
How many cars do they drive, which schools do their kids go to and where do they buy their groceries?
It’s very easy to hide illicit income these days and often belongings are registered under the names of relatives, so it requires diligence and persistence to find them out.
If their freedom, their reputations and their illicit gains are all under threat, maybe others will resist the same temptation to steal the taxes we all work so hard for.