Govan Mbeki

THE QUESTION IS: DID NELSON MANDELA SELL OUT OR NOT?

The heading of this article reminds me of “to be or not to be” passage in Shakespeare’s Hamlet in which Hamlet is musing on the comparison between the pain of life which he sees as inevitable and the fear of the uncertainty of death and of possible damnation of suicide. Nelson Mandela has indeed caused us the pain of life to the extent that perhaps some people are contemplating suicide.

The gist of Youngster’s article (“How Mandela sold out Blacks”) in a recent edition of one of South Africa’s dailies, that Nelson Mandela sold us out, is true. Youngster should have written his name and not hide under the veil of anonymity. Mandela did not start negotiating with representatives of the Apartheid government in 1985 as some people seem to think. He was released from Robben Island in 1981 alone and taken to Pollsmore Prison where he was bought new shoes and a suit was cut for him. He was removed from other political prisoners including those he was close to like Walter Sisulu and other Rivonia treason trialists. It was in 1981 that the process of secret talks and negotiations started in smoke-filled rooms where there was horse-trading.

THE ROLE OF THE SACP IN USHERING SA’S NEOCOLONIAL STATE

The South African Communist Party (SACP) had a strong grip on the African National Congress (ANC) on questions of theory, strategy and tactics of the national liberation struggle and controlled the ANC. The SACP produced vast reading material such as the African Communist to exert its influence in the liberation struggle through the ANC. They contributed immensely in the drafting of the Freedom Charter which in turn shaped the political perspectives of the ANC.

As part of the drive to steer ANC in the direction of reformism, the SACP deployed its leadership crop and activists…advanced intellectuals… to serve in the ANC top leadership structures. These include Moses Mabida, Thabo Mbeki, Govan Mbeki, Mac Maharaj (who was the architect and executor of Operation Vulindlela), Jeremy Cronin, Joe Slovo (who was once MK Chief of Staff and formulator of the ‘Two Stage Theory’), amongst others. Chris Hani, also Chief of Staff of MK, like Joe Slovo, was influential across the alliance partners, namely, ANC, SACP and COSATU. These intellectuals together with the literature they produced were crucial in the strategy and policy development process of the ANC.

THE WEST CHOOSES HEROES FOR US TO FURTHER THEIR NEFARIOUS AGENDA

There is this crazy thing about the celebration of Nelson Mandela’s birthday and the exaggeration of his role in the South Africa’s struggle for liberation. There is also overemphasis on the issue of the 67 years he put in the struggle. Some of his fellow comrades, like Govan Mbeki and Walter Sisulu, who were incarcerated with him on Robben Island, put in more years than Mandela in serving humanity. Anton Lembede, Ashby Peter Mda, Zeph Mothopeng and Oliver Tambo were involved in the struggle for liberation long before Mandela. Now what is so significant about Mandela’s 67 years in the struggle? The Western media, UN and Mandela foundations and charities set up after his retirement in 1999, are in the forefront of promoting this Mandela Day. The Western media sets the agenda for us and also decides for us who our important heroes are – the hierarchisation of struggle heroes.

According to the Western media, UN and the Mandela foundations and charities we should all forget the imperialist brokered sellout deals Mandela clinched in secret with representatives of Apartheid regime. They also want us to be in a permanent state of amnesia concerning the accusation against Mandela by his former lawyer, Ismail Ayob, that Mandela did not pay tax from the proceeds of his books sold abroad. The South African Revenue Services did nothing about these tax defaults to this day. Ayob also suggested that there are other trusts for individual Mandela children. Ayob was a trustee of the Mandela trusts. When there was a fallout between Mandela and Ayob after it emerged that Ayob had allegedly cashed in on the Mandela name, the much vaunted reconciler was said to have told a number of friends that, “I want Ayob imprisoned”.

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.

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.

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