Month: Feb 2010

32 YEARS AFTER SOBUKWE’S DEATH – A TRIBUTE TO A HERO!

The 27th February will mark the 32nd anniversary of the death of PAC founding President, Mangaliso Robert Sobukwe. Sobukwe was a brilliant student. Godfrey Pitje who graduated at Fort Hare in 1945 said “Sobukwe was towering over us, even those of us on the staff, intellectually, from whatever angle. We readily recognized that he was an exceptional chap”.

The second President of the ANCYL AP Mda said Sobukwe went on to develop his and Anton Lembede’s African Nationalist philosophy “to a higher level than that which we were”.

Sobukwe was also humble, a good listener who didn’t try to impose his ideas on other people. He had a profound love for the oppressed African people. Sobukwe was exemplary, a family man who upheld high moral standards. He was a committed and an uncompromising leader.

THE FOXES AND THE WOLVES OF THE 21ST CENTURY

“The wolf and the fox are both enemies of humanity; both are canine; both humiliate and mutilate their victims. Both have the same objectives, but differ only in methods.” – Malcolm X (el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz, Addis Ababa, July 17, 1964

The single most deadly calamity to have befallen black people throughout the globe in this 21st century can be found in the person of Barack Obama, that rhetorical and deadly fox in sheep’s clothing. Indeed, humanity as a whole is the unsuspecting prey of this current black-faced head of the bloody, avaricious, corporate U.S. Empire.

Long before the devastating physical earthquake struck the tiny black nation Haiti, the debilitating earthquake of slavery, colonization, and revised 21st century neo-colonization was unleashed upon the peoples of Haiti (and the world wide African Diaspora) by the United States, France, Canada, and its additional concomitant partners in deceit, greed, and economic, political, and social / cultural subjugation. It is this ongoing earthquake which we must forthrightly and uncompromisingly also address. It is this ongoing earthquake that is shattering the very psychological, physical, and political existence of black people around the world.

In less than a historical heart beat the very meaning of the word blackness has been distorted into definitively supporting the economic greed and bloodlust of the 1%of humankind that exploits the needs, hopes, and human rights of the rest of humanity. Nothing could be more despicable or dangerous to this planet collectively and black people in particular.

ZUMA‘S STATE OF THE NATION ADDRESS WAS A DISAPPOINTING REMIX OF THE SAME OLD SONG

Since South Africa’s inception as a “democracy” in 1994, there has always been a tinkering on the edges of the country’s socio-economic problems. There is a lot of playing around with words and repeating the same themes in all the state of the nation addresses without any substance or walking the talk. And there is this sycophantic cheering cohort some of whom are awakened by the clapping of hands and join in, while at the same time wiping off the drool on the sides of their mouths because they had been driveling. One wonders what they would be applauding. No head of state has ever tried to grab the bull by the horns. In his 11th February 2010 ‘state of the nation’ speech, President Jacob Zuma said the economy was turning the corner. I disagree. The appropriate phrase Zuma should have used is ‘cutting corners’. The reason why Zuma and all his predecessors failed is that “the discovery of general laws in the field of economics is made difficult by the circumstances that observed economic phenomena are often affected by many factors which are very hard to evaluate separately. In addition, the experience which has accumulated since the beginning of the so-called civilized period of human history has been largely influenced and limited by causes which are by no means exclusively economic by nature”. For example, we were conquered and owe our existence to conquest. Those who conquered us, some of whom Zuma praised in his speech, established themselves legally and economically as the privileged class of our conquered country.

WHAT IS THIS HULLABALOO ABOUT THE 20TH ANNIVERSARY OF THE RELEASE OF NELSON MANDELA?

There is this hullabaloo around the twentieth anniversary of the release of Nelson Mandela from prison which falls on the 11th February. The media, which created this hue and cry in the first place, is abuzz with the news of this anniversary.

The South African media’s portraying of Mandela as the only person who fought for our liberation and whose release from prison is the only occasion to be celebrated is fundamentally objectionable. And I equally disprove of the Pan Africanist Congress’s leadership, members and followers to let the South African media appropriate the glorious history of the PAC and bestow it on the ANC and Nelson Mandela and relegate Robert Sobukwe, Zeph Mothopeng and Japhta Masemola to the dust bin of history and to the margins of South Africa’s fight for liberation.

IN MEMORY OF DR. CHEIKH ANTA DIOP: THE FOREMOST AFRICAN CULTURAL BRAINPOWER

The 7th February marks the 24th anniversary of the death of world renowned multi-disciplinary scholar and Pan Africanist, Dr Cheikh Anta Diop. Diop was born on December 23, 1923, in Diourbel west of Senegal. His mother tongue is Wolof. He came from a Muslim peasant family and attended Koranic schools. Diourbel was the seat of a strong Muslim sect, the sect of the Mourides, the only Black African sect which succeed in acting independently from the rest of the Muslim world.

One of the scholars who knew him well, James Spady, wrote that Diop’s historical roots and intellectual climate of the area where Diop was born has a long and honourable tradition of griots behind him who served as worthy precursors of any historian. Diop completed his bachelor’s degree in Senegal and then went to the Sorbonne University in Paris in 1946 to do his graduate studies. Diop developed the concept of the cultural unity of African people as early as the mid-1940’s. In November 1948 he wrote an article in the review Le Musee Vivant titled “When do we speak of an African Renaissance?”

SHOOT TO KILL IS A CHEAP WAY TO FIX A DILAPIDATED CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM

Towards the end of last year South Africa introduced the ‘Shoo to Kill’ policy championed by the Deputy Minister of Police Fikile Mbalula.
Trigger-happy SAPS has been told by the Minister of Police to ‘Shoot to kill’

The Wild West movie-style crime ‘shoot to kill’ antic and the desire to lynch suspects or perpetrators, show government’s lack of understanding of the root causes of crime prevalence rate. Weak politicians, lazy bureaucrats and incompetent criminal justice system technocrats are running to populist sloganeering instead of facing the challenge head-on. This happens at the expense of proper structural inspection and analysis.

The behaviour of government leadership indicates that the high crime rate problem is not understood. High crime rate is a symptom of a failed society. The problem lies in the exclusion of African cultural ethos in the regulatory framework. At the core of this crisis is the collapse of previously resilient African culture. It is sparked by the big gap between the haves and have not’s, which is different from poverty. The problem is fueled by endemic corruption and sustained by inherent flaws in the criminal justice system.

There are three braches in the current system. The police with a mandate to prevent investigate crime and charging suspects. The courts have the responsibility to listen and decide on crime. The prisons have to hold and prepare criminals for reintegration to society. All this subsystems have failed in their mandate due inept management and
weak leadership. There are enough financial resources but crisis is lack of will and competency to combat crime effectively.

TIRO CONFRONT APARTHEID SETTLER COLONIALISM!

Mr. Chancellor, Mr. Vice Chancellor, ladies and gentlemen, allow me to start off by borrowing language from our former Prime Minister, Mr. Vorster. Addressing an Afrikaner Student Bond (A.S.B) Congress in June last year, Mr. Vorster said: “No Black man has landed in trouble for fighting for what is legally his”. Although I don’t know how far true this is, I make this statement my launch pad.

R.D. Briensmead, an American lay preacher says “he who withholds the truth or debars men from motives of its expediency, is either a coward, a criminal or both”. Therefore Mr. Chancellor, I will try as much as possible to say nothing else but the truth. And to me “truth” means “practical reality”.

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