OPINION

Turnaround in public attitude

The recent VPRC opinion poll revealed that the problems being addressed by the reforms the government is trying to push through are very real and of genuine concern to the public. Matters to which the public is very sensitive, such as privatizations and permanent posts within the public sector, are now being viewed in an entirely different light. Indeed, the majority of citizens back the privatization of major state enterprises, believe that civil servants should not hold permanent posts and support the establishment of a labor regime in public enterprises that is no different to that of the private sector. This turnaround does not appear to be unrelated to the general deterioration of the public sector that we have witnessed over the past few years, to a state that is despotic rather than supportive of its citizens, to public services that hassle rather than help, and a regime rife with corruption and under-the-table payments. The shift in the public attitude is also linked to the problematic state of our economy and increased unemployment. The bleak prospects of our current situation lead to a clear conclusion: that the current system does not work. It also explains the fact that a majority of citizens are calling for change to bring our country into a new era where the public sector is not a haven for troops of political cronies…