Publicado em 20 de janeiro de 2006
Traduções disponíveis em: français . Español .

View on key concepts

por John STEWART

Temas largos ligados: Governança . Philosophy .

On governance : it is more useful to talk about whether a government and a state is responsible or irresponsible, rather than whether it is strong or weak. What is important is whether whatever power it holds is exercised in a responsible manner or not. In this sense [true or good] leadership is ‘the responsible exercise of power’. But as has been commented many times, in Africa we have rulers but not leaders.

On the key African concept of Ubuntu : setting itself against the Cartesian syllogism of “I think therefore I am”, the philosophical foundation and moral concept of Ubuntu – a South African word but a broadly Bantu concept – can be stated as follows:
“I am because you are; you are, therefore we are”.
The central value of this concept for our work on responsibility is that it underlines the importance of mutuality, or recognition, of respect; that being is based in and determined by (and enriched and given value by) relationships and the interaction between people.

On the theme for the community publication on responsibility Calming the Storm is our view of the best name as it was chosen in light of the horrendous manipulation, harassment and violence used against citizens of Zimbabwe by the ruling ‘authorities’ (by some, it is called the “ruining party”).
Thus responsibility is the measured, nonviolent, unhurried, radically peaceful, peacefully radical approach – attitude – to dealing in a deep and caring, compassionate and determined, humble and strong way, with all that is negative, destructive, selfish, oppressive…


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