Opinion

  • Are Women Who March Alongside Women Abusers Not The Problem In Fighting Gender Based Violence?

    THE month of August focuses our attention on the trials and tribulations women have undergone, their successes and challenges, but more importantly gender based violence, which is now spiralling out of control in our country. While we focus on this pandemic only in August, they live this life of rape, sexual harassment and die at the hands of their partners, everyday. And events such as the one to be attended by Deputy Minister Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, who will be among the speakers alongside the disgraced former ANC MP Mduduzi Manana, begs the question: are women not part of the problem in promoting patriarchy and insensitivities around gender based violence?

    Gender based violence is a human rights issue. It speaks to the question of whether we can have a just society when just over half of our population lives in fear of being attacked and their lives and capacity to contribute to the world is cut short by a man, who in most cases, is someone they know.

    Women in particular, are always the target, since time immemorial; be it in domestic settings or in war, they have always been the victim of a tradition of impunity. A father, an uncle, a brother, Yugoslavia, Rwanda, Iraq, Peru, Pakistan, Bosnia, liberation movements in Africa – everyone feels they are entitled to a woman’s body. It is true that men are also the target of rape, something which should also come to the spotlight.

    Violence against women in conflict situations assumes many forms; rape is often only one of the ways in which women are targeted. But while other abuses, such as murder and other forms of torture have long been denounced as war crimes, rape has been downplayed as an unfortunate but inevitable side effect of sending men to war. It thus is ignored as a human rights abuse. It is seen as private, as a sexual conduct when it is political in war and should be treated as a war crime.

    The capacity of girls and women to change the world for the better is curtailed by the intrusion of one man or men who disrupt their lives through the trauma that follows gender based violence. For some women, they bear the pain, trauma, humiliation and stigma and painstakingly try to go on with life. For many, however their lives are completely destroyed and some struggle to continue with life and opt to end their lives.

    We must as a society stop making excuses for rape and gender based violence against women. We must stop excusing the perpetrators and blaming the victims for the sins of the perpetrators. We must return to some of our African cultural teachings that are relevant today and taught young men and women the responsibilities of adulthood, contributing to a community as responsible adults.

    We must stop making excuses for the men who rape our children, girls and boys, and women. We must stop making excuses for the men who beat-up our girls and boys, and women.

    It is an absolute shame to see men in leadership positions, who have been convicted of abusing women still being paraded around by the ruling party on women’s marches and presenting women’s issues alongside their ANC women leaders.

    Is this not where the problems against women start? When women themselves condone and support men who have in law been found to be against the law? Manana is a convicted woman abuser. Why is the ANC tagging him along women’s events. He has, through his connections managed to evade the law, but why does he have to be the face of Gender Based Violence and label him as a legend!

  • A Letter To A Son About Consent

    YESTERDAY we woke up to news that yet another young person had committed suicide. Khensani Maseko, a third year student at Rhodes University had written several posts on rape on Twitter and later posted  on Instagram on the hours leading up to her death. This has led to speculation that she may have taken her life because she was raped.

    On her Twitter account she wrote: “When people ask for help please help”.

    Later she posted on Instagram: “No one deserves to be raped”. She then posted the two posters of her birth date and the date of her death. Her death comes at a time when South Africa celebrates Women’s month and gender based violence is under the spotlight.

    This letter from a mother to her son on consent is timeless. Please let’s teach our sons about consent.


    Dear D,

    I’m writing this letter after watching the parents in the Steubenville Rape Trial crying over their son as he was found guilty of rape. I’ll be completely honest with you; I can’t say that I found much pity in my heart for their pain. Instead I found myself thinking, ‘yes, you should be crying. Your son treated that girl like a toy, a rag, a nothing. You raised a boy that lacked even the most basic compassion for that girl as a fellow human being.’ I’m imagining your face right now, thinking ‘okay mom, not quite sure why you’re telling me this…’ Yep, brace yourself; mom’s got a bee in her bonnet. Just bear with me and carry on reading.

    You see, somehow this crying couple’s son and his friends were convinced they had a right to do as they pleased – either because they were brought up believing themselves to be above the rules, or because they were so lacking in common decency that they had no concept of how to treat other people. Whichever it was, the parents and coaches of Steubenville failed their sons and contributed to a culture where a girl was treated in the most heartless and disgraceful way for these boys amusement. The horrible truth is that as long as parents anywhere allow their boys to think that their wants are more important than other people’s rights this will continue to happen. I’m writing this letter to you because I don’t want to fail you in the same way. I love you too much to leave these things unsaid.

    I need you to know that writing this doesn’t mean that I think you would act like these boys did. Discussing the potential for bad behaviour doesn’t mean I think it’s inevitable, or even likely. It just means I need to know (for both our sakes) that I taught you what sexual freedoms and responsibilities really mean. Educating you about proper consent doesn’t mean I see you as a potential sexual predator, any more than my educating you about the safe use of matches presumed you were a potential arsonist. This is about safety; your safety and the safety of any potential sexual partner.

    I want you to consider a scenario. Imagine an average weekend when you’re staying at your mate’s house. You’ve had a good day laughing and joking with a group of people, some of whom you know and a couple of friends-of-friends. You’ve had a couple of drinks, laughed at stuff on the internet, played x-box for hours and then gradually drifted into various stages of getting comfortable, shedding some of your clothes and sleeping.

    Now imagine waking up to discover a man on top of you, having obviously had some kind of sex with you. I know that’s a shocking thought. Something you’ve probably never considered, even though male victims make up 8% of reported rapes. Imagine your shock, your disgust and your anger. Now imagine everyone telling you that it’s your fault.

    Would you feel that the fact that ‘you didn’t say no’ while it was happening made it okay? Or that the fact you were drunk or partly clothed or sleeping in public meant you’d put yourself at risk and were ‘asking for it? Would the fact that you’d spent some time together, been friendly, or accepted his offer of a drink, mean you were ‘sending out signals’ to him? Would the fact that you made a sexual joke earlier in the evening mean you were ‘up for it’? Would the fact that he heard you’d had sex with one of his friends, or relatives, be an acceptable reason? How about if you were walking home alone at night? Would you be actively putting yourself in danger and ‘partly responsible’ if a stranger dragged you into an alley and sexually assaulted you? If you accepted an invite to a friend’s house and he pinned you down on the sofa, would you be to blame for being alone with him?
    I’m convinced your answer to each of those would be a loud and vehement ‘no’ – quite rightly.

    So ask yourself this: if every single situation remained the same – except this time you’re female – does that make it acceptable? The answer, of course, is still no. No, nothing changes the lack of consent in these scenarios. Every one of those situations is sexual assault; no ifs, no buts, no maybes, and no excuses. Consent cannot be assumed, forced or taken. EVER. Consent is always, and only, something that is willingly given.

    So let’s be absolutely perfectly clear: Sexual acts that take place without consent are rape, and the only thing that means yes is the word yes.

    Not saying no does not mean yes.
    Not fighting you off does not mean yes.
    Not being awake does not mean yes.
    Not being sober does not mean yes.
    No type of clothing – or absence of clothing – means yes.
    No amount of previous partners means yes.

    Accepting a drink does not mean yes. Going out to dinner does not mean yes. Accepting a lift home in your car does not mean yes, and neither does an invitation in for coffee. Sitting next to you on the sofa does not mean yes. A gasp, sigh or returned caress does not mean yes. Erect flesh is not a yes – cold, fear, and even death can all cause the body to mimic the signs of sexual arousal. A yes to a kiss does not mean you can assume a yes to anything else. Never assume. Let me repeat that: NEVER ASSUME.

    Resist the dangerous temptation to hope a kiss will just drift into something more without talking about it. Understand that ‘trying it on’ or ‘pushing your luck’ or imagining you’re correctly ‘reading the signs’ are all just polite euphemisms for being willing to risk committing a sexual assault in the hope that your feelings are reciprocated. Seriously, don’t. Every single woman I know can reel off experiences with this. Don’t be that guy.

    The word yes is the only 100% unambiguous yes.

    So, how do you get to yes? You ask. Really, it’s that simple. Ask the question, hear the answer, and respond accordingly. Even if it’s not the answer you were hoping for. Especially if it’s not the answer you were hoping for. That’s the difference between two people enjoying sex together, and one person sexually assaulting the other. The only reliable invitations to sex are clear, unambiguous, and verbal. If asking and affirming seem too embarrassing to contemplate, then maybe you just aren’t ready for sex with another person.

    There’s only one person you should ever consider having unquestioning, silent sex with: yourself. That’s also the only person that might possibly ‘owe you’ an orgasm.

    I know, all this sounds like such a list of rules and obligations for something that’s meant to be ‘natural’. Too much effort, even – well that’s tough. The world should not be treated like a sexual all-you-can-eat buffet where you can just help yourself. That’s exactly the attitude that has those boys (quite rightly) sitting in a cell. Sex that involves anyone beyond yourself is never just about your desire. If you imagine that your desires ever allow you to coerce another person into fulfilling your sexual need, then you have to ask yourself if you are willing to personally face the consequences of that view. We’re right back to that scenario where some stranger decides to use your body to fulfill their sexual desires, regardless of your feelings. Or you end up in a cell. Think about what that mindset means for the female relatives that you love. Should they be ‘fair game’ to any person attracted to them – like some commodity? That’s the rape-culture mindset, right there. It’s why I’m taking the time to put my thoughts on to paper; because the best lesson I can teach you is the ability to recognise that your choices have consequences, for you and the people you involve in your decisions.

    So far, so negative… but there are real personal benefits to consent. Consensual sex is glorious. Verbal communication is hot. Listening to your partner and verbalising what you want will make you better in bed, and more responsive to each other’s needs. Talking about your desires and fantasies is far more likely to lead to them happening than hoping you’re dating a psychic. I’m sure your cringing at me now, but if you got this far there’s chocolate in the fridge, help yourself to it. Yes, this is a test.

    You might not think it now, but making sure the sex you are involved in always involves complete consent will be the best gift you can give your future self. You’ll never look at yourself in the mirror and wonder if you pushed someone to doing something they weren’t ready for. You’ll never be the hypocrite that lectures their child while hiding a guilty secret. You won’t be burdened with regret at the harm you personally caused someone. You’ll never look a woman who has been abused in the face and know you’re a part of what caused her hurt. Most of all, you’ll be a leader not a follower. You’ll never be that boy in court; instead you’ll be part of a better consciousness that will make the world a safer place for everyone.

    You’ll be the man I already see in you.

    With love, always, Mum xxx

    Rape Crisis https://rapecrisis.org.za/rape-in-south-africa/

    https://www.nacosa.org.za

    This article was first published in https://someviewsfromabroad.blogspot.co.za/2013/03/a-letter-to-my-son-about-consent.html

     

  • Continuous Learning Creates A Quest For More Learning

    “People’s actions are strongly influenced by their knowledge base. People act on their beliefs. You can manipulate a person’s actions by corrupting their knowledge base, warping historical truth, or ignoring it completely. Knowledge can make for independence if it helps people meet their world more confidently and realistically. Those who have wanted others to remain dependent have always recognized this fact and have opposed the spread of knowledge”.

    Is this not what has happened and is happening in South Africa? Do you realise where Anton Lembede, Robert Sobukwe, Zeph Mothopeng, Steve Biko and Onkgopotse Tiro come in? There are others outside the borders of South Africa but I want to focus on local leaders. ANC leaders used to be hostile towards Biko but they recently appeared to have changed tack, it’s not clear why. It’s not a change of heart. We know what they have said in the past about Biko. If they had a change of heart they must publicly recant their previous utterances and admit they were wrong.

    Countrymen and women, have you heard of “The Society of the Elect” and its outer circle known as “The Association of Helpers” during your history lessons or political science course, if not ask your Professors, academic Doctors, senior and junior lecturers why they don’t form part of your curriculum? The Society of the Elect and The Association of Helpers is one group. Members of these secret societies were Cecil Rhodes, William T. Stead, Reginald Baliol Brett, and Alfred Milner. Why should you learn or know about this group?

    It plotted the Jameson Raid of 1895; it caused the Boer War of 1899-1902; it set up and controls the Rhodes Trust; it created the Union of South Africa in 1906-1910; it established the South African periodical The State in 1908; it founded the British Empire periodical The Round Table in 1910, and this remains the mouthpiece of the Group; it has been the most powerful single influence in All Souls, Balliol, and New Colleges at Oxford for more than a generation; it has controlled The Times for more than fifty years, with the exception of the three years 1919-1922; it publicised the idea of and the name “British Commonwealth of Nations” in the period 1908-1918; it was the chief influence in Lloyd George’s war administration in 1917-1919 and dominated the British delegation to the Peace Conference of 1919; it had a great deal to do with the formation and management of the League of Nations and of the system of mandates; it founded the Royal Institute of International Affairs in 1919 and still controls it; it was one of the chief influences on British policy toward Ireland, Palestine, and India in the period 1917-1945; it was a very important influence on the policy of appeasement of Germany during the years 1920-1940; and it controlled and still controls, to a very considerable extent, the sources and writing of the history of British Imperial and Foreign Policy since the Boer War.

    Have you heard about the South African Institute of International Affairs (SAIIA), its genesis, what its role is and who is associated with it? It is a Cecil John Rhodes created organisation just like Britain’s Royal Institute of International Affairs (RIIA) whose equivalent in the US is the Council on Foreign Relations. These organisations were formed around the same time, RIIA in 1919 and the CFR in 1921. Moeletsi Mbeki is a member of the SAIIIA and is unashamed about it the same way Julius Malema sees nothing wrong addressing RIIA let alone under the Chatham House rule. The media never asks them about this because SAIIA controls public opinion in South Africa and has been controlling South Africa for more than a hundred years. Does it now make sense why Moeletsi Mbeki and Malema harangued former Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe on repossession of land and clinging to power? Mugabe did nothing to South Africans, Moeletsi Mbeki and Julius Malema should focus on and expend their energies in fighting against British imperialism, white supremacy, neo-colonialism and capitalism which are the major problems in South Africa.

    A document titled who runs South Africa and draws heavily on the works of Professor Carroll Quigley’s Tragedy and Hope and The Anglo-American Establishment reveals that:

    “Conspicuously absent from the history books is mention of a small secret society of men who played a significant role in the sponsorship of the historical events. The secret society would conquer South Africa. They would use the money they plundered and techniques and methods learned to grow into a world-wide organization that continues to shape world history to this day. Between 1910-1915 the Secret Society evolved into an international group of co-conspirators called Round Table Groups set up in seven nations: Britain, South Africa, Canada, New Zealand, Australia, India, and the United States.

     “The American and British branches of the Secret Society were formally established at a meeting held at the Hotel Majestic on 30 May 1919. The men who attended the meeting were British and American Secret Society members who were members of the British and American delegations to the Paris Peace Conference. The meeting resulted in the establishment of the Institute of International Affairs. The British Branch became the Royal Institute of International Affairs, and the American branch became the Council on Foreign Relations. Branches in other nations are usually called Institutes of International Affairs (Britain, Canadian, New Zealand, Australian South African,. Indian and Netherlands) or Institutes of Pacific Relations (Japanese, Chinese, and Russian).The branch organizations have headquarters and membership lists”.

    Would it not be appropriate for the media to raise these issues and schools and universities to include them in the curriculum; how South Africa was conquered and who conquered it and if the status quo ante has been established instead of harping on the insipid narrative of miracles, icons and rainbows?

    As we learn we realise that we barely scratched the surface. If any person predicts the outbreak of a war or a disease you must smell a rat. There is a person who predicted World War 1, World War 11 and World War 111 and his name is Albert Pike. He died in April 1891 but those wars broke out as he “predicted” them except the Third World War.

    Albert Pike was born in the US on 29 December 1809 and was a member of the Ancient and Accepted Scottish Rite of Freemasonry, a secret society. He is also the founder of the white supremacist organisation the Ku Klux Klan (KKK).

    In a letter written in 1871, Pike wrote, “The First World War must be brought about in order to permit the Illuminati to overthrow the power of the Czars in Russia and making that country a fortress of atheistic Communism. The divergences caused by the “agentur” (agents of the Illuminati between the British and Germanic Empires will be used to foment this war. Communism will be built and used in order to destroy the other governments and in order to weaken the religions.

    “The Second World War must be fomented by taking advantage of the differences between the Fascists and the political Zionists. This war must be brought about so that Nazism is destroyed and that the political Zionism be strong enough to institute a sovereign state of Israel in Palestine. During the Second World War, International Communism must become strong enough in order to balance Christendom, which would be then restrained and held in check until the time when we would need it for the final social cataclysm.

    “The Third World War must be fomented by taking advantage of the differences caused by the “agentur” of the “Illuminati” between political Zionists and the leaders of Islamic World. The war must be conducted in such a way that Islam and political Zionism mutually destroy each other. Meanwhile the other nations, once more divided on this issue will be constrained to fight to the point of complete physical, moral, spiritual and economical exhaustion.

    “We shall unleash the Nihilists and the atheists, and we shall provoke a formidable social cataclysm which all in its horror will show clearly to the nations the effect of absolute atheism, origin of savagery and of the most bloody turmoil.”

    Four paragraphs would suffice, I can’t quote the whole letter because of space considerations. However, the gist of what Pike communicated is loud and clear. This is basically what secret societies are all about. Their members are heartless and ruthless. What Pike wrote in 1871 has happened and is happening. The events that are unfolding in Palestine right now are in sync with what Pike revealed. Members of secret societies’ loyalty is to their secret societies not their countries. If there is anybody you know who belongs to one or more of these organisation you must know their loyalty is to those organisations and not their countries and they take an oath of secrecy.

    Pike has mentioned the Illuminati. Have you come across or heard of the Illuminati before and Adam Weishaupt? Adam Weishaupt was born in Ingolstadt, Bavaria on 6 February 1748 and was the founder of a secret society known as the Illuminati on 1 May 1776. Karl Marx belonged to a sect of the Illuminati, according to Gary Kah (not his real name) in his book En Route to Global Occupation. Isn’t the title of that book foreboding?

    Have you realised that after each war that Pike “predicted” there was a global organisation formed ostensibly to prevent future outbreaks of war? After the 1914 – 1918 war, the League of Nations was formed by members of the secret society that met at Hotel Majestic in 1919? So was the United Nations after the 1939 – 1945 war. When the UN was formed in 1945 there were about forty five members of the CFR at the founding conference of the UN in San Francisco. Is it any wonder how the UN operates? The hands of the UN drips with the blood of Patrice Lumumba and Muammar Gaddafi. The UN is also known for being used to collect debts owed to the banks. Hence Canadian activist Glen Kealy referred to it as an organisation of banks by banks for banks.

    I was not surprised when they instituted a day dedicated to a discredited politician. In fact, I expected it since it would be unlike the UN if it didn’t because they are as discredited as that politician. Those who run the UN and their associates created this politician and they are now failing to sell him because he has passed his sell by date.

  • Dear Comrade Reader

    WE’ve been hard at work in the past few weeks putting together a blog that will hopefully be more user friendly. We’ve improved the format, so so as to ensure you find more easily what you are looking for. There’s a whole host of smaller but important changes, all to make your experience that much better for you.

    Those who visit the site regularly will have noticed that we expanded the categories to include food, travel, art and culture. We will be adding more categories in the future.

    We hope that you enjoy the fresh look-and-feel of our updated website and find that it serves as a useful resource for you. There are many small changes we still have to make on the blog and these will take time.

    As always, we welcome your feedback. Navigate the new UnCensored and tell us what you think. Email: uncensoredopinion1@gmail.com

     

  • Kallie Kriel, You’re Wrong & Deceitful – Apartheid Was A Crime Against Humanity

     

    Siyanda Madikane speaks to the remains of his grandfather’s brother Lennox Madikane who was hanged in 1963 and buried in a pauper grave. (Alex Nitchley, News24)

    HAVING returned from a trip to the US to garner support for land expropriation without compensation and its trumped-up story about “white genocide”, Afriforum CEO Kallie Kriel didnt waste time dominating newspapers headlines for yet another piece of misinformation.

    This time, he reportedly said he didnt believe apartheid was a crime against humanity but acknowledged it was wrong.

    Now, Kriel knows apartheid was a crime against humanity. He knows it was declared so by the United Nations, a body which he recognises because his racist outfit Afriforum has been to the UN, with now DA Joburg Mayor Herman Mashaba in tow, to protest against South Africa’s policy of affirmative action.

    His remarks prompted an outcry but it was the response from Madeleine Fullard, on her Twitter account, that summed up the chilling and broad strokes of the inhumanity of apartheid, which she and her team find hidden in mass graves and pauper graves.

    “Digging in former Transkei cemeteries, we find heartbreaking pauper graves filled with hundreds of babies who died of malnutrition due to migrant labour, forced removals to homelands. I guess Afriforum wont count those as apartheid deaths since not killed by security police”. 

    “To see tiny plastic parcels twisted closed like maize husks, with tiny babies’ bones inside, packed by the dozen into a single coffin, is to understand how the land policy, forced removals and the homeland system cut a deadly swathe through rural children for decades”.

    “In the urban cemeteries, you will find the bodies of mine workers and migrant workers packed into pauper graves sometimes three to a grave. Their families too impoverished to take their crushed bodies back to the homelands. Apartheid policies killed thousands”. 

    One Twitter account holder dared to question Fullard’s claims, to which she responded with the most chilling answer: “I dig the graves myself. I see them with my own eyes. Do you want me to post photos of the small skeletons so small they look like birds?”

    The Missing Persons Task Team is both an investigative and forensics unit made up of investigators and forensic anthropologists who specialise in the human skeleton.

    There are many cases which have not been resolved from the Truth & Reconciliation Commission (TRC).  To this day there are families coming forward with legitimate cases of political disappearances. There are two types of cases the department investigates; freedom fighters whose bodies were taken and buried where only the perpetrators knew. Many of these cases could only be solved by the testimony of apartheid death squads who operated from places like Vlakplaas – people like Eugene de Kock and other such operatives. 

    The other cases are simply those of people who were killed and left in public spaces, eventually found and taken to mortuaries and buried with no identities.

    So no Kallie Kriel, apartheid is a crime against humanity and it is for this reason that the mass scale atrocities of apartheid should never be forgotten to ensure that you Kallie Kriel and your ilk can never erase its brutal history.

    Related Reading.

    https://za.investing.com/news/politics-news/10-pac-members-to-be-exhumed-in-mamelodi-506302

    https://www.iol.co.za/the-star/discovery-of-cadres-bodies-brings-closure-34-years-later-1341681

     

  • CONTROL OF THE WORLD THROUGH FOOD SUPPLY, ENERGY AND MONEY

    By Sam Ditshego

    “Who controls the food supply controls the people; who controls the energy can control whole continents; who controls money can control the world”, Henry Kissinger.

    Kissinger is one of the bad guys who worked at the US State Department and belongs to sinister organisations and clubs that control the world. That foreboding quote is not said as a benevolent gesture to warn the people to beware of the nefarious intentions of those who control the world. That is what he and his fellow travellers who are proponents of “the new world order” are pursuing.

    These groups of globalists, in fact, control the world’s food supply through their companies that control the world’s food, beverages and agriculture production industry. They are:

    Associated British Foods

    Coca-Cola

    Groupe Danone

    General Mills (GIS)

    Kellogg (K)

    Mars

    Mondelez which came from Kraft Foods

    Nestle

    PepsiCo (PEP)

    Unilever Group

    This is what Oxfam said about this companies:

    “The agriculture and food production industry employed more than one billion people as of last year, or a third of the global workforce. While the industry is substantial, a relatively small number of companies wield an enormous amount of influence.

    “In its 2013 report, “Behind the Brands,” Oxfam International focused on 10 of the world’s biggest and most influential food and beverage companies. These corporations are so powerful that their policies can have a major impact on the diets and working conditions of people worldwide, as well as on the environment. Based on the report, these are the 10 companies that control the world’s food.

    “In an interview with 24/7 Wall St., Chris Jochnick, director of the private sector department atOxfam America, discussed the impact that these 10 companies have on the world. “If you look at the massive global food system, it’s hard to get your head around. Just a handful of companies can dictate food choices, supplier terms and consumer variety,” Jochnick said.

    Africa has massive land mass so why do we have to depend on Europe and America for our food supply to the extent of having to be forced to renew AGOA and import poisoned chicken which the American people themselves do not want to consume?

    Angola alone can supply Southern African countries with food if it can be completely demined. South Africa is also an agricultural country. Botswana is under-utilised in agricultural production, it relies heavily on diamonds. There is also Mozambique, Malawi, Namibia, Zambia and Zimbabwe. Southern Africa can be self-reliant. Why do we have to be fed GMO’s that have the potential to alter our genetic makeup?

    These western food, and agricultural companies employ 1 billion people. We have high unemployment rates but we do not take advantage of the food producing industry to create the most needed jobs in that sector and the skills that go with it. Agricultural colleges have been closed and high schools no longer offer Agriculture as a subject. Instead useless subjects have been introduced. The government tried to introduce Mandarin in schools about two years ago. Are we going to eat Mandarin?

    Electricity is too expensive in South Africa and Eskom is indebted to the World Bank. The ANC borrowed $850,000 before it even formed a government. I remember an article I wrote discouraging them from taking that loan. What is the rationale behind taking a loan when the country is rich in minerals and other resources? The price of petrol is crazy. Petrol and electricity are energy whose prices are controlled from abroad.

    “I care not what puppet is placed on the throne of England to rule the empire. The man who controls Britain’s money supply controls the British Empire and I control the British money supply”, Nathan Mayer Rothschild. This was said about two centuries ago.

    Those who own and control the South African Reserve Bank care not what puppet is placed on the throne of the Union Building. Those who control South Africa’s money supply control South Africa and the SARB controls South Africa’s money supply.

    I implore the reader to reread Henry Kissinger’s foreboding quote and Nathan Mayer Rothschild’s quote you will notice that that is what is happening in your own country yet opposition political parties in parliament have barely scratched the surface when it comes to European and American hegemony. Instead they focus on side issues and bark at one another like poodles.

    Anton Lembede died at the age of 33 and led the ANCYL at about 30. He was advocating Africanism and the liberation of the African continent. At the age of 24 at Fort Hare Robert Sobukwe’s message was clear. He was championing Pan Africanism and the liberation of Africa. Steve Biko was killed at the age of 30 and he spoke of mental liberation, unity and non-collaboration with the west before he was even 30. Onkgopotse Tiro shook the citadels of white supremacy from their very foundations, supported Pan Africanist ideas when he called for universal education and said, “Of what use will be your education (if it) is not linked with the entire continent of Africa (? It) is meaningless.

    Today’s politicians who enjoy fat cheques and perks in parliament have veered away from the liberation politics of these and other freedom fighters and Zeph Mothopeng expounded.

    Africans must through a concerted effort fight to get back their country and continent in order to determine their destiny as African people.

    As if that was not enough, there is this continuing petrol rip off.

    Petrol/gasoline prices are a rip off

    Petrol or gasoline is Dollar denominated – I don’t know why – and the average price per litre is $1.15. Maybe I’ll do the currency conversions later. The price of 95 Octane per litre in South Africa is R14.48. In Venezuela it’s $0.01. Think about it for a moment. They are an oil producing country like Angola, Nigeria and Saudi Arabia. In Angola the price of petrol per litre is $0.75, Nigeria $0.48, Iran $0.36 and Saudi Arabia $0.54. In the US it’s $0.75. In Sudan it is $0.34, Botswana $0.87, Namibia $0.99, Togo $0.94.

    Let’s look at European countries, Australia and New Zealand. Their mother UK it’s £1.21, France 1.57 Euro, Italy 1.56 Euro, Germany 1.37 Euro, Netherlands 1.57 Euro, Luxembourg 1.70 Euro, Liechtenstein $1.63, Switzerland 1.53 Swiss Francs, Canada 1.38 Canadian Dollars, Australia 1.38 Australian Dollars and New Zealand 2.14 New Zealand Dollar.

    In tax havens such as Switzerland, Liechtenstein and Luxembourg petrol is cheap. This is where the money from Africa and other regions of the world is stashed including the Vatican in Italy although it is a state within a state.

    In Asia we begin with China. 1litre of petrol is 7.26 Chinese Renminbi, Japan 140.52 Japanese Yen, South Korea 1.5556 South Korean Won, Malaysia 2.25 Malaysian Ringgit and in Singapore 2.12 Singaporean Dollar.

    If one looks at the petrol prices of some of these countries, especially Venezuela, one realises that they are sovereign states. Before the fall of Muammar Gaddafi, a gallon of petrol was about 18 cents or 5 cents a litre. I don’t know how much it is now since the figure are not available. In Europe there is uniformity of the prices. I don’t think the prices fluctuate as much as they do in this banana republic.

    The price of petrol in Botswana is half the price of petrol in South Africa but Botswana gets its petrol in this country. It sounds incredible or too good to be true but it is true. The storage facility from which Botswana petrol trucks collect the petrol are in Mogale City, I must know because I live in Mogale City and travel regularly to Botswana and always see these petrol trucks.

    These exorbitant petrol prices and the conditions of unemployment, skewed distribution of resources, unequal income distribution and poverty are indicative of capitalism in action. If anybody hasn’t understood Robert Sobukwe, Zeph Mothopeng and many other revolutionary intellectuals when they condemned capitalism they must be understanding them now. Onkgopotse Tiro condemned inequality especially in education and Steve Biko spoke in favour of the establishment of an egalitarian society. Does anybody see anything remotely resembling what these heroes gave their lives for?

    There is high unemployment in this country, unequal income distribution, skewed distribution of resources and poverty for petrol to be so expensive. In Venezuela an increase of a cent in the price of petrol sparks riots. Here in South Africa the people have become so docile that they give me the creeps. Political parties, social movements and non-governmental organisations don’t even care.

    As if that was not enough, there is this recurring petrol price hikes. In just three weeks’ time, the price of petrol has risen twice.

    The petrol cabal in South Africa is taking us for fools because the people of these country, political parties, trade unions and civil society organisations are doing nothing about it. There was an increase about two weeks ago and the Automobile Association of South Africa is complicit in this rip off by explaining away this patently exploitative price hikes. There are those who were implicated in squandering the fuel fund. Moreover, international currency conversions are also a rip off.

     Currency conversions

    If the following currency conversions are carefully studied, the reader would notice that there is something fundamentally flawed with the logic behind them. And it is obvious that the aim of these currency conversions is to exploit and get goods and services for nothing, especially from Africa and most of the countries of the south. It is not difficult to realise that countries that are allies of the West in general and the US in particular and those that stand their ground have better exchange rates or worse. CHF is Switzerland Franc. VEF is Venezuelan currency. However, the exchange rate figures are crazy. In South Africa we are able to tell the West that we fix our currency at one to one or go back to the gold standard and if they don’t like the idea then they can go to blazes. They need us more than we need them.

    $1 = R12.46

    1€ = $1.40

    1$ = CHF 0.96

    1Euro = $1.22

    1AUD = $0.76

    1NZD = $0.73

    1$ = CAD 1.27

    1$ = SGD 1.31

    1$ = MYR 3.90

    1$ = CNY 6.30

    1$ = South Korean Won 1.05

    1$ = North Korean Won 899.987

    1$ = United Arab Emirates Dirham 3.67

    1$ = Saudi Arabian Riyal 3.75

    1$ = Iranian Rial 37.80

    1$ = Sudanese Dinar 1.80

    1$ = VEF 49,550.00

     A look at the history of USD Rand exchange rate table below reveals the precipitous decline of the Rand as the end of the apartheid government rule was nigh and when the puppet black government had taken over. How does one explain this? We need answers because these are some of the issues that are arresting the development and advancement of the African people especially the youth. In 1974, for example, a gallon or five litres of petrol was about 70 cents.

     Rand vs the dollar: 1978 – 2016

    Year Rand vs Dollar

    1978 0.87 = $1

    1979 0.84 = $1

    1980 0.81 = $1

    1981 0.79 = $1

    1982 0.98 = $1

    1983 1.12 = $1

    1984 1.20 = $1

    1985 2.00 = $1

    1986 1.99 = $1

    1987 2.09 = $1

    1988 2.11 = $1

    1989 2.53 = $1

    1990 2.59 = $1

    1991 2.63 = $1

    1992 2.89 = $1

    1993 3.19 = $1

    1994 3.42 = $1

    1995 3.63 =$1

    1996 3.95 = $1

    1997 4.42 = $1

    1998 4.98 = $1

    1999 6.15 = $1

    2000 6.39 = $1

    2001 7.77 = $1

    2002 11.47 = $1

    2003 7.91 = $1

    2004 6.71 = $1

    2005 5.85 = $1

    2006 6.28 = $1

    2007 7.39 = $1

    2008 7.99 = $1

    2009 10.32 = $1

    2010 7.46 = $1

    2011 6.91 = $1

    2012 7.59 = $1

    2013 9.11 = $1

    2014 10.79 = $1

    2015 12.26 = $1

    2016 15.20 = $1

    2018 12.46 = $1

    How are exchange rates determined?

    One wonders if those who were installed in government by the west in 1994 are happy with this state of affairs. Don’t they see anything wrong with this currency manipulation? Do these puppets of the west know how exchange are determined and do they care? Can they explain what caused the Rand to deteriorate in value over the years and why was it valued more than all the currencies of the world during apartheid misrule and deteriorated when the African puppets were about to get in office through a rigged election?

    In the Sowetan’s sister newspaper, the now defunct New Nation of 16 August 1996, more than twenty years ago, when the exchange rate was R3.95: $1, I explained how currencies were manipulated through speculation. I mentioned an employee of Citi Bank bragging about how currency speculators were electronically trading in currency twenty four hours to determine and look and government policies the west does not like and force those governments to change them through capital flight to force those government to change their policies. He gave as an example, what he described as the socialist policies of France’s erstwhile Prime Minister Francois Mitterrand. This Citi Bank employee said currency speculators conduct what he called “a global plebiscite” on those governments through currency manipulation. In 1996 when I raised these issues and nobody in the ANC bothered and still today nobody bothers because they are impervious to advice especially if it does not come from one of their own. Or perhaps they do but there’s probably nothing they can do because they are stooges of the west. Only a revolt by the people will change these slave relations that obtain between South Africa and the west.

  • The PIC – Separating fact from fiction

    By ADRI SENEKAL DE WET via www.iol.co.za
    The Public Investment Corporation’s chief executive, Dr Daniel Matjila. File picture: Dean Hutton
    CAPE TOWN – Just last week, I wrote about speaking truth to power as an Afrikaner woman and editor, and about exposing hidden agendas and networks.
     
    I said that it might lose me many friends, especially in white circles. I was wrong. Overwhelmingly, white people have called to congratulate me and ask me to continue to speak truth to power.
    Well here I am again, except this time more disgusted and more concerned than ever, at some of my journalist colleagues who work for our competitors, who have thrown all objectivity out the window in their attempts to discredit Dr Iqbal Survé, Independent Media and Sekunjalo. Their target is the PIC, and therefore, I now unpack for readers the reality of the PIC investments and separate fact from fiction.
    The Public Investment Corporation (PIC) has come under scrutiny for its investment, or potential investment, in Independent Media, technology and platform companies Sagarmatha Technologies and AYO Technology Solutions, alongside companies in which Sekunjalo and Dr Survé, as a black entrepreneur, have invested significant risk capital over the last few years.
    Let me give credit where credit is due. The PIC under its current leadership of Dr Daniel Matjila, has grown its investment portfolio from R600 billion over the last decade, to approximately R2 trillion, putting it among the top asset managers globally. This is phenomenal growth and has resulted in a high return for its investors, including the GEPF.
    The PIC has had some notable successes, for example SAB Miller, Aspen and Naspers but, it has also suffered some setbacks such as Steinhoff. The PIC is the largest investor on the JSE with 12,5% (R1.6 trillion) of the market capitalization of all the companies listed on the JSE (R12 trillion) and one would argue, is the only investor that is capable of investing on a large scale for companies that have got ambitious plans to grow on the African continent. Some of those companies that require a capital injection are black-owned.
    The PIC has tried to assist black business largely through the private equity unlisted portfolios, but has not really had the opportunity to invest in many listed companies started by black entrepreneurs. (The PIC is also limited in how it approaches its investments set down by the mandate of the GEPF and other pension funds whose assets it manages).
    Recent reports have shown that the majority of asset management companies in South Africa remain mainly under white ownership and management, although there are exceptions.
    The bulk of assets under management are in companies such as Investec, Coronation, Absa, Sanlam, Allan Gray and others – many of these companies’ asset managers have built networks with predominantly white entrepreneurs, individuals and companies in South Africa.
    It is not just the technical valuations that prompt asset managers to invest in listed companies, but also the networks of these organisations that are developed over years, in many cases predating the new democracy, which give them social and economic currency.
    This network influences investment into JSE listed companies. Not all these investments in JSE listed companies are always successful and in some cases, many of the investments have failed spectacularly, but almost no one writes about these failures.
    As an example, household names, which failed to expand overseas (to Europe, America, Russia or Australia) and in the process, wiping off tens of billions in value to shareholders include: Standard Bank’s investment in Russia, Old Mutual’s investment in Skandia, Investec’s investment in the UK, Woolworths’ investment in Australia and so on.
    This loss of value of tens of billions of rands excludes the R200bn destruction of Steinhoff. Notwithstanding the above, there is a misconception that all these companies only have “successful” investment strategies.
    During the 2008 financial crisis, when the JSE stocks tumbled, in many cases it was the PIC that came to the rescue of many of these companies. Recently, with the resources slump, it is again the PIC that came to the rescue.
    Virtually in all instances, these companies are white owned and managed. The PIC did so in the national interest and to ensure jobs were protected and it did so with full cognisance of taking a long-term view of its investment strategy.
    Today, it is vindicated in this approach, in that most of these companies have recovered the values completely or partially, providing value to shareholders. Why then would the PIC’s decision to invest in two black-owned and managed companies instil such hostility and vindictive attitudes? What are the real issues at play here?
    The South African economy since 1994 has more than tripled to a GDP today of around R3.5 trln. This is evidenced with the ALSI index on the JSE, which in 1994 was in the region of 15 000 points and today, the All Share Index on the JSE approaches 60 000 points. This is a 400 percent increase in the value of the JSE ALSI.
    It is a fact that the PIC has provided the capital base for many of these companies that are listed on the JSE in the last few decades – pre and post-apartheid.
    Furthermore, the PIC continues to support many of these companies today, since the PIC with its R1.6trln makes up the bulk of the investments on the JSE (12.5 percent) and is the single largest investor on the local bourse.
    Who has benefited from all of this? Well, in the first instance the PIC and its pension funds. But in the second, it is also an array of individuals, corporate entities, family trusts, and consortia.
    A search into the founding controlling shareholders of the JSE listed companies shows that 99 percent of these beneficiaries happen to be white.
    It is correct to therefore conclude that the PIC’s money has been used in the last two to three decades, to create and further enhance white wealth in this country.
    As an example, prominent businessmen such as Stephen Saad, Johan Rupert, Christo Wiese, Jannie Mouton, Koos Bekker and many other family trusts have all gained significantly by the investments made by the PIC into their companies.
    Essentially these businessmen utilised the capital markets, including the capital of the PIC, to create family wealth for themselves. Now, there is nothing wrong with that, since that is how a capitalist market economy works and these businessmen were entrepreneurial (sometimes with a bit of help from the state, as with Naspers), hard working and took risks building their businesses over the years. They deserve the success they have now achieved and we acknowledge them for this.
     
    Conundrum
     
    Herein lies the current conundrum. Does the media highlight that they are very significant beneficiaries of the PIC’s investment into their companies? – NO.
    Rather than saying that the PIC has invested in supporting, for instance, the family trust of Koos Bekker, and the fact that their family trust controls these investments and are then seen to be unduly benefiting, they report on the company.
    I am compelled to ask why it is that when the PIC invests in companies on the JSE that are controlled by white families, individuals, entrepreneurs or corporates, it is okay to talk about the organisation, but when the PIC invests in companies where black entrepreneurs are in the driving seat, or that have black control, ownership and management, the PIC is interrogated and the personalities themselves are targeted and their motives questioned?
    This is a fact – the evidence is clear and incontrovertible, played out in the mainstream media many times over, and particularly in the past three weeks.
    People such as Patrice Motsepe and Dr Survé have built their businesses with entrepreneurship and hard work and have given exceptional returns to investors over the years.
    This criticism of black entrepreneurs is not just hypocritical, but has the tendency to lean towards strong racial overtones. As a citizen of South Africa – no matter my race, gender or age – I find this unacceptable and against the Constitution.
    Recent reporting – packaged as “news” – by Independent Media’s competitors, have failed to uphold the Constitution and also the media code of ethics, that talks to balanced and fair reporting.
    They have failed to tell their readers that the biggest beneficiaries – in terms of family trusts and entrepreneurs – of the PIC and of the JSE, remain white South Africans. Black entrepreneurs are only supported by the PIC to the tune of R24bn out of R12trln. This is manifestly unjust.
    However, this media bias is unlikely to be corrected any time soon – I mean since when has the story of the hunt ever been told by the hunted? What then is the real agenda and what are they really hunting? Could it be the assets of Independent Media as our journalists suggested earlier this week?
    I have to believe that if Dr Survé did not own and control Independent Media, which has influence and provides an alternative narrative to the other media houses, his investment strategies would have been welcomed and supported, not vilified as they are currently.
    The JSE may argue that many pension funds beneficiaries are black, and they should be included in the calculation of black ownership, but this does not justify the lack of black entrepreneurs and their companies listed on the JSE.
    This needs to be pointed out because, if you believe Sam Sole, you will believe that the PIC investments have only benefited black South Africans.
    The PIC, of course, is trying to invest in black South Africans and has created a private equity fund, Isibaya, to do this, but the monies allocated to this fund and the processes to receive funding from that fund for black entrepreneurs, is not easy and the fund is small compared to what the PIC has invested in listed entities.
    The “listed” environment has historically been the domain of white companies, individuals, family trusts and entrepreneurs as mentioned before.
    The point about all of this is that there are two standards, one for white South African entrepreneurs and one for black South African entrepreneurs. These standards do not talk to the innovativeness or creativity of the people or companies themselves. They speak to the racial prism or lens which is used to identify these entrepreneurs and their companies.
    Let’s for the moment take Sagarmatha Technologies Ltd or AYO Technology Solutions Ltd (AYO). Had the founding shareholder of Sagarmatha Technologies and AYO been a white entrepreneur, the listing would most probably have been welcomed and feted and the PIC investment would be applauded.
    Hypothetically, if it was a Koos Bekker, Stephen Saad or Jannie Mouton, non-financial journalists would hardly question its valuation.
    If they did question the valuation, the first port of call would be the management teams to try and understand the company. Instead, a 212-page PLS document was distilled to only a few points – out of context and factually incorrect as a result.
    It does not help that afterwards those that had erred, admitted in print, radio and online they had made mistakes, having misinterpreted the financials and admitting (post fact), that they are not experts in this field and had incomplete information. Too late she cried.
    Basic journalism is to ask the person or company being written about – specifically the board or the management – for their point of view and to check facts.
    It is not enough to say that the PLS was public and fail to mention that global experts specialising in the valuation of technology companies, provided an expert, fair and reasonable valuation asked for by the JSE as a stringent listing requirement.
    They further fail to point out that a range of local and international investors subscribed for R4.2bn worth of shares in Sagarmatha Technologies, one of the largest subscriptions in recent years on the JSE. Furthermore, Sagarmatha had seven dollar billionaires as part of its advisory board. Why would internationally successful businessmen lend their names to such a company if they did not believe its valuation?
    In the case of AYO, it was oversubscribed by more than R1.2bn. AYO’s PLS is very clear – all funds raised are to be used for organic growth and acquisitions and not dividends to shareholders.
    AYO’s management has set out the profit forecasts for the next few years. Why not wait and see if they achieve these forecast?Is this not the way other companies that have listed are treated? Why seek to cast doubt on the company less than six-months into its listing?
    Why is AYO and its independent board and management team not accorded the same benefit of the doubt, as others? What has any of this got do with Dr Survé or Sekunjalo who are not even direct investors in AYO?
     
    JSE records
     
    It needs to be stressed that the Survé family are NOT direct investors in AYO and have only invested via AEEI, which only owns 49 percent of AYO.
    I have checked the JSE records and I can’t see that Sekunjalo has ever sold any shares in AEEI in 20 years and they have reinvested all profits to grow the company and create jobs.
    The Sekunjalo Group has invested in more than 200 other investments and I doubt that the company needs dividends from AEEI or AYO, other than in the normal course of business.
    For any journalist reporting on this to omit these facts is dishonest and is misrepresentation.
    There is a further problem here. We can argue whether the “attack” on Dr Survé has merit or not, but the fact is that Dr Survé’s family trust is a shareholder in Sagarmatha, AEEI and through AEEI, into AYO – not directly.
    He is not part of the management or on the board. Therefore, to ask a single shareholder their views or to provide answers to questions, is somewhat disingenuous.
    It also undermines the integrity of those management and boards – some have proven their success in the numbers they are posting and others are yet to be given the opportunity to provide the results.
    But if we are to focus on one person, what has been conveniently disregarded is the fact that Dr Survé is a shareholder and board member participating in 12 multinationals in Africa, serving on many of the World Economic Forum boards, serving in Task Teams of the G20, and in numerous multinational organisations, including as chairperson of the Brics Business Council.
    He has also been the recipient of several business excellence awards, including being the first black businessman to receive the “Afrikaanse Handelsinstituut Sakeleier Van Die Jaar”.
    It seems strange that outside of the borders of this country he is highly regarded – professionally and personally – yet at home he is regarded with deep suspicion, because of his connections and success.
    I thought we always enjoyed a rags-to-riches story. Oppression to succession. But it appears that champion acknowledgement is selective. Dr Survé came from a humble background, is a self-made entrepreneur who has never had access to established networks.
    He is a medical doctor with South African and American qualifications (three degrees, an alumnus of Harvard and UCT and, has won many prestigious business awards for his acumen and success).
    He should be applauded for his innovation, hard work and for taking the entrepreneurial risk to get to the top, rather than being castigated because the PIC took a decision to invest in some of his companies.
    Aside from this, Dr Survé is often taken to task for his networking. He has long-standing relationships with many individuals, institutions and unions, who all have the common goal of creating a sustainable economic democracy.
    South Africa actually needs more of such socio-economic constructs (between business and the unions and civil society), not less.
    Over the years there have been numerous attempts to discredit him, particularly around the time of the Independent Media deal. The attempted listing of Sagarmatha Technologies has stirred things up again. There has been an attempt to portray Dr Survé and his family as self-enriching. Nothing could be further from the truth.
    Yes, if the management performs and the investments grow, Dr Survé as an investor, would benefit, as would all other shareholders, including the PIC.
    To infer otherwise, is mind boggling. In fact, it is quite the contrary. Dr Survé through his various companies and his family Trust, has invested his own capital into the likes of Independent Media and a number of other companies in which he has shareholding. In so doing, has increased the ‘value’ of these companies. In addition, Dr Survé is known to be a significant philanthropist of seven foundations. (Just last week, he was the recipient of a global award for his commitment to philanthropy from Queen Sylvia of Sweden, who hosted the World’s Children’s Prize for the Rights of the Child).
    One explanation for the media’s current almost unhealthy obsession to paint Dr Survé and the various businesses in which he has a stake in a poor light, is held in the idea of this being an intimidation campaign.
    It has a clear agenda designed to stop the PIC from supporting black businessmen today and in the future. The message is simple, cut off access to the capital markets.
    By denying black businessmen and entrepreneurs (or only allowing those that meet media approval), access to the PIC or to similar capital markets, you force them to come with a begging bowl to the “establishment” and then, South Africa repeats the cycle of the first 20 years of black economic empowerment, where black companies don’t really benefit meaningfully, since the “Golden Rule applies, in that those who have the gold make all the rules”.
    In this case, it is still predominantly white-owned companies that make the rules for any black company’s participation in the economy.
    The current narrative being peddled seems to infer that black-owned and run companies will only be permitted access to meaningful capital to scale, at the behest and grace of the majority white-controlled capital.
    This doesn’t seem equitable or fair, but then I guess, business rarely is. So, is it a case of those who shout the loudest will remain at the top?
     
    Strategies
     
    The “noise” around the PIC and its investment strategies could be easily mistaken for an attempt to subvert economic and social justice redress in South Africa.
     
    That being the case, I urge the PIC to resist such attempts and to invest in black-owned companies. We do not need fewer investments in companies such as Sagarmatha Technologies and AYO, we need more investments with black entrepreneurs.
    At present though, this seems like a pipe dream, as when black companies go directly to the source of capital for the capital markets such as the PIC, whose policies actually include transformation, they are criticised.
    This access has to be disallowed by the establishment, because if it allows black companies to have access to the capital markets, it permits black people to shape their own independent future in South Africa.
    Economic independence is a dangerous concept for those who wish to monopolise economic power, as it would mean they would no longer have leverage. No leverage means no economic participation and a dilution of control.
    Today, the intimidation is against Dr Survé and the companies he is involved in such as Sagarmatha Technologies and AYO. Tomorrow it will conceivably target other black companies supported by the PIC.
    Corporate bullying, economic thuggery, crude racism, monopolistic agendas – are they aimed at denying access to capital to black companies in the listed capital markets? You decide.
    We need more black entrepreneurs to have the conviction to list their companies on the JSE. The way in which the media has treated Sagarmatha, AYO and others can be described as a means to shatter the confidence of black companies so that they will never think of listing on the JSE.
    This dichotomy is what is dividing this country and it must stop.
  • Has SA Buried The Use Of “Kaffir” In Public?

    By Pinky Khoabane

    620x349

    Vicky Momberg sentenced to three years for calling a cop a kaffir 

    WRITING in the Sunday Independent four years ago, I asked why South Africa didnt follow in the footsteps of other countries like Britain and prosecute racists. I recounted the story of my failed attempts to have a group of young men, Kenneth Sinclair and friends, held accountable for one of the most racist vitriol I’d read on social media. At the time, I argued that the Chapter 9 institutions set up to address racism in South Africa were completely useless.

    In the two years I had attempted to have these racist brats even appear before some hearing, I had gone to every institution that was meant to do something. The South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC), Equality Court, South African Police Services and when they did nothing, I reported them to the Public Protectors Office. It was only then that the SAHRC held a hearing with a little slap on the wrist as punishment. Sinclair had to do some community service but till this day the SAHRC would not tell me how long it would be and what exactly it entailed. I was at least able to put enough pressure on the technical college where these boys studied to have them suspended. They apparently didnt return as a result of the backlash of their racism.

    Today, in a first for South Africa, a court sentenced Vicky Momberg to three years in prison with one year suspension for hurling racist insults at Constable Clement Mkhondo and swearing at other police officers and a 10111 operator after she was a victim of a smash-and-grab incident. She called them Kaffir 48 times.

    “Respect for one another is sacrosanct, we are all human beings,” said Magistrate Pravina Raghoonandan, while handing over her sentence.

    “This case has become public interest, some may think the sentence is harsh … It must send out a clear message for people who use the k-word.”

    Despite the sentence we must never delude ourselves that racism which plays itself out in public spaces is gone. We live in a racist society and Momberg is just a symptom of a bigger problem in our society. However, racists have been emboldened and more brazen in their aggression and insults in recent months, with a spike in racial incidents in which Black people are beaten at night clubs, pubs and restaurants. The sentence will go a long way in sending a message to racists that the South Africa where you could simply hurl racist slurs and get away with it is gone.

    Why Do We Not Prosecute Racists – The Article I wrote on Kenneth Sinclair 

    Afriforum chief executive Kallie Kriel addresses the media outside the Johannesburg High Court after Judge Colin Lamont ruled against the singing of the struggle song Dubul iBhunu by Julius Malema, in favour of Afriforum. The author charges Afriforum with being selective in its objections to hate speech. Photo: Antoine de Ras

    This country seems unable to deal with hate speech and demeaning comments, writes Pinky Khoabane.

     

    When South Africans go to the polls on May 7, it will be exactly two years and four days since Kenneth Sinclair unleashed his hateful vitriol against black South Africans on Facebook – and was able to get away it.

    His utterances, and the resultant response of Chapter 9 institutions, bring sharp scrutiny on this country’s inability to deal with racism.

    Unlike England, for example, where racism is criminalised and those who dare to rant publicly are dealt with speedily and with efficiency, South Africa – as with almost everything it negotiated during Codesa – has accommodated racists by developing institutions which neither have the will nor the inclination to deal harshly with those who inflict the pain of racism and undermine the dignity of others in the process.

    On May 3, 2012, Sinclair, a student at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology, opened his tirade thus: “Seriously, seriously, seriously had enough of the blacks in this country. Arrogant f****** swines, and I will make it my Facebook status because I want THEM ALL to know. You are all f*** all without whites, you would still be in your little mud huts…”

    He didn’t stop there, making his hatred against blacks very evident on a platform which would allow him the reach: “If you aren’t a racist, go spend a day at Cape Tech, in town, you will wanna join the KKK when you are done. F****** brain dead monkeys.”

    Sinclair’s reference to the Ku Klux Klan – a far-right extremist group that advocates white supremacy and has historically expressed its views through terror attacks on and the murder of black people in the US – stood to incite violence against blacks and constitutes hate speech.

    In fact one of those responding to Sinclair’s update, a certain Michael Kallis, responded: “Sometimes I just wanna pull out a f****** pump- action shot gun and do the deed. F***.”

    It will also be two years and a few months since members of the extremist far-right Afrikaner Weerstandsbeweging chanted “Bobbejaan klim die berg” at blacks who were outside court during the murder trial of the organisation’s leader, Eugene Terreblanche.

    This was a few months after Judge Colin Lamont had ruled against the singing of the struggle song, Dubul’ iBhunu (Shoot the boer), in favour of Afriforum, another racist formation that masquerades as a civil rights movement.

    Interestingly, the same Afriforum didn’t lodge a complaint against AWB, even though in an e-mail to me, Kallie Kriel, its leader, confirmed that the chants were racist.

    The DA, which had also been vocal and had previously lodged hate speech complaints against ANC representatives, was unsurprisingly quiet.

    A question I lodged on their website, asking whether they would be laying a complaint against the AWB, was not even answered.

    I lodged complaints of hate speech against the AWB and Sinclair with the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) and the Equality Court.

    I also lodged a case of crimen injuria against Sinclair with the SAPS.

    I’ll deal with the case of Sinclair first, to indicate the ineptitude of the Chapter 9 institutions tasked with addressing this evil crime.

    As in all cases lodged with the SAHRC, I was requested to provide the evidence and motivate why the utterances fitted the crime of hate speech.

    Now, let’s for a minute think of an illiterate person who was a victim of racism and his or her ability to posit such an argument.

    The requirements necessary for SAHRC to deal with the matter immediately rule out this person. I needed the assistance of attorneys to postulate an argument that showed hate speech.

    On June 27, 2012, the SAHRC invited me to a meeting with “two respondents”.

    Their names were withheld and the venue was not given.

    I heard from the SAHRC Western Cape region only when I complained to the commission’s chief executive, Kayum Ahmed.

    The SAHRC referred me to a media statement on the matter and informed me that Sinclair had “to date not come forward to engage with the commission”.

    The letter referred me to the provincial manager and chief executive if I wasn’t happy with the response.

    The press statement spoke of two respondents who had shown remorse, and their penalty was community service.

    I was the complainant in the matter and I had not been given this information before the press statement.

    In my response to the letter, I asked for details of this community service – what it entailed and for how long. Those details were not forthcoming.

    The commission has failed to date to expand on the community service.

    A year later, Sinclair racially attacked an elderly lady.

    I wrote to the SAHRC commending them for their wonderful work in dealing with Sinclair and his racism.

    Only then did I learn that Sinclair had finally come forward and the commission had imposed community service, the details of which were not forthcoming.

    Once again, I was told to appeal this decision if I wasn’t happy by engaging with another process of the SAHRC.

    It is important to note that I had until that moment not been informed of any of the processes against this racist, a requirement of the commission.

    The Western Cape region of the SAHRC promised to send me an official letter and this has not happened.

    In the Equality Court in Randburg, the court initially complained that it could not serve the complaint on the accused because I was in Johannesburg and he was in the Western Cape.

    I offered to pay for the courier service, but this did not compel the court manager, Natasha Naidoo, to send the complaint. Naidoo ignored my e-mails and telephone messages until I turned to the Constitutional Court.

    There I spoke to advocate Holland Xolisani Holland. Within hours of receiving an e-mail from the Concourt requesting an explanation, Naidoo told me that she had sent the complaint to the Western Cape’s Equality Court.

    She assured Holland she would do a follow-up and revert back with feedback.

    A year later, having ignored the public protector to whom I turned when my correspondence to the Concourt, the Department of Justice and Naidoo went unheeded,

    Naidoo now says she is not dealing with this matter because the SAHRC is dealing with it.

    Didn’t Naidoo initially say she had sent the complaint to the Western Cape?

    The public protector’s Zingisa Zenani, who had since October last year not bothered to give me feedback on the matter, suddenly informed me of this new development from Naidoo this week.

    The SAPS has not bothered to take up the matter either.

    In the matter of the AWB, the SAHRC had initially demanded proof which comprised the media statements, which I duly submitted.

    Six months later, having complained to chief executive Ahmed, they attributed the delay to a complaint lodged by another right-wing group which was supposedly similar, but was against blacks.

    Two years later, the proof required from me has shifted to the ridiculous. I was given 14 days to provide names of court officials, among others, the failure of which led to the closure of the case.

    And in the usual dismissive approach of the SAHRC, if I’m not happy, I can appeal.

    Sinclair’s statements are unlawful, hateful, hurtful and propagate the belief that his race is superior to Africans, all of which is clearly in violation of sections of the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act 4 of 2000.

    The AWB’s racist chants are hate speech, as demonstrated by Judge Lamont’s judgment against the then ANC Youth League leader, Julius Malema.

    In another country, where racism is criminalised, these racists would have served time behind bars.

    Not in South Africa, of course, where despite the history of institutionalised racism, racists are allowed to roam freely.

    * Khoabane is a writer, author and columnist.

    ** The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Newspapers.

    Sunday Independent

     

  • Can The ANC Cleanse Itself?

    By Pinky Khoabane

    AS the African National Congress (ANC) discusses the much talked about renewal of the party, there are calls from many platforms, shared by its leaders, to look deep within and cleanse itself from the systemic entrenchment of corruption from its ranks.

    In an interview with Spanish daily newspaper El Pais, former President Thabo Mbeki joined the chorus of former and current ANC leaders who are speaking-out against corruption. Mbeki spoke of a “Zuma phenomenon” in which  corruption became endemic within government and society at large.  He said this phenomenon was now called state capture in which “a particular business family had become so important that it took decisions on behalf of government”.

    The “Zuma phenomenon” he said started from as far back as the advent of democracy whereby people had joined the ANC or even old members stayed in the ANC to get into government and use their positions for self enrichment.

    This problem of the corruption of members of the ANC has accumulated over a period of time. He said the ANC had to look at itself and say; “who are genuine members and who are people here simply to steal….the crooks…”

    At a Nelson Mandela Lecture in Tembisa yesterday, Regional Secretary Teliswa Mgweba delivered a hard hitting speech calling on members of the party to speak-out against corrupt leaders. She said the ANC was the leader of society and yet the corrupt practices of its leaders had condemned many members of society to despair. She said this was a “leadership of selfish, self-serving people” who joined the ANC for self enrichment. “You can’t keep quiet about corruption,” Mgweba advised the crowd of ANC faithful, who together with the South African Communist Party (SACP), had organised the event. The ANC regional secretary in Ekurhuleni lambasted those who looted state coffers saying their actions impacted on service delivery and resulted in the high rates of rape and murder, among many other ills that confronted the country. “We have normalised corruption…we are messing up the revolution..” a scathing Mgweba said.

    Speaker after speaker, the message was the same – “address the rampant corruption sweeping through the corridors of power which, when questioned, leads to intimidation of whistleblowers both physically and through the legal courts”.

     

    There’s a general view that the ANC ought to look within and cleanse itself of the corrupt element in the party. But can the ANC rid itself of the influence of business in a capitalist state, which ultimately creates an environment which opens it up to corruption? This debate has been ensuing for many decades within the party with very little results.

    In the document, “Revolutionary morality: The ANC and Business”, the party reflected on “the impact of aberrations such as careerism, personal enrichment and corruption on the revolutionary morality of the ANC has also been observed and debated”. The call for a New Cadre by the 2000 National General Council held in Port Elizabeth was the first comprehensive political response to the challenge posed by the erosion of the moral values of ANC members. Reflecting on this matter in the May 2006 issue of Umrabulo, the NEC Political Education Committee argued that the ANC “should forge a cadreship through programmes that relate to actual challenges that these members face in their daily lives”.

    There have over the years been many efforts meant to “provide political and moral guidelines to the ANC as a whole, particularly the leadership, on the issue of involvement in business”. http://www.anc.org.za/content/revolutionary-morality-anc-and-business

    But the rampant corruption which has taken hold of the party and government shows that the ANC has failed to stop the corrupt influence of business people on its cadres. We know the power of money in determining the outcome of elections or the ability to sway the minds of the people through powerful media outlets which are owned by business people. With the ANC seeking to stay in power come 2019, what will be its response to the donors who as we know, donate for nothing else but to sway policies and government tenders in their favour?

     

  • SOLIDARITY WITH THE PEOPLE OF PALESTINE

    Screen Shot 2018-03-19 at 07.58.04

    By Dr Lehlohonolo Kennedy Mahlatsi

    Each year, Israeli Apartheid Week takes place across the world. It aims to raise awareness about Israel’s ongoing settler-colonial project, Israel’s apartheid policies, and to build support for the growing campaign of Boycott, Divestment, and Sanctions (BDS) against Israel.

    The protracted occupation of Palestine must be located within the context of expansion which is at the heart of capitalism and is the imperative for the accumulation of capital. The role of imperialism has always been, inter alia; -to preserve the interests of the American, British and French oil millionaires; to overthrow progressive governments, to secure the territorial aggrandisement of Israel and the return to colonialism-or ruthless expropriation of Arab populations.

    In the 1950s and 1960s the imperialist powers, particularly the USA and West Germany, launched a new assault on the national liberation struggle. The renewed imperialist penetration into Africa required large infusions of capital, but because of the general distrust towards the US and West Germany, who were thoroughly discredited in Africa, Israel was employed as a conduit or intermediary for such penetration. Many Israeli firms have been doing business in Africa, many of them financed by US and Western European corporations.

    The existing ‘non-Jewish communities’ were the Palestinians. They constituted 94% of the population and were not consulted when their land was given away. This was a typically colonial British act of the time. Balfour declaration has laid a foundation for the establishment of apartheid Israel. The two-state solution which was endorsed for the past 30 years has become increasingly impossible with every passing day. As long as the state of Israel continues to be celebrated and rewarded, rather than held accountable to universal standards for its continued violation of international law, it will have no incentive to end the occupation.

    Every year Palestinians mark the Nakba when in 1948 around 750,000 Palestinians were forcibly expelled from their homes during the creation of the state of Israel. Five-hundred villages were destroyed in a premeditated campaign, and their inhabitants never allowed to return. Zionist militias, who later became the “Israel Defence Forces” (IDF), committed massacres in the villages of Deir Yassin, Lydda, Tantura and dozens of other Palestinian communities.

    The Nakba (Arabic for ‘catastrophe’) refers to the ethnic cleansing of Palestinians and destruction of Palestinian communities that took place with the establishment of the State of Israel on 15 May 1948. The Nakba came just thirty years after the Balfour Declaration. The overriding reason for the evacuation of hundreds of Palestinian villages in 1947-’48 was a combination of force and fear, something long maintained by Palestinian historians. Massacres by Zionist forces – of which there were at least two dozen – played a key role in fomenting terror amongst Palestinians. Deir Yassin, where 100-120 villagers were killed on April 9, 1948, is the most famous atrocity, but there were many others in al-Dawamiya, in October 1948, more than 100 villagers – men, women, and children – were killed.

    There is no formal definition of ethnic cleansing in international humanitarian law. The long-term goal of a “policy of ethnic cleansing” can be defined as “the creation of living conditions that make the return of the displaced community impossible.” The first formal move towards the recognition of a right of return was in UN General Assembly Resolution 194 passed on 11 December 1948 which provided (Article 11):

    “Resolves that the refugees wishing to return to their homes and live at peace with their neighbours should be permitted to do so at the earliest practicable date, and that compensation should be paid for the property of those choosing not to return and for loss of or damage to property which, under principles of international law or in equity, should be made good by the Governments or authorities responsible.”

    Palestinians also refer to an ‘ongoing Nakba’, in the sense that Israeli policies of forced displacement and colonization have continued, and even expanded, over the decades. During the 1967 Israeli conquest of the Gaza Strip and West Bank, for example, some 300,000 Palestinians fled or were expelled. Of those who left the West Bank, less than 8 per cent were allowed by Israel to return. It is in the psyche of every Palestinian that the Right of Return is a sacred right and that there can be no peace without it. It is also a basic right derived from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and all international and regional covenants. It is an individual right derived from the Principle of Self-Determination. It has no statute of limitation and cannot be extinguished by a treaty or the establishment of a state.

    UN Resolution 194 has been repeatedly confirmed by the international community in the last 50 years. The Palestinian Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions National Committee (BNC) calls on people of conscience the world over to further intensify Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaigns to end academic, cultural, sports, military and economic links of complicity with Israel’s regime of occupation, settle-colonialism and apartheid. This is the most effective means of standing with the Palestinian people in pursuing their inherent and UN-stipulated rights, and nonviolently resisting the ongoing, intensifying Nakba.

    It is important to understand the similarities between the Apartheid Israel and Apartheid South Africa. In May 1948, the state of “Israel” was formed. The establishment of Israel required the destruction of Palestine. The majority of the Palestine people were forcefully expelled from their land by the fascist forces of Zionism. Geographically, the small country of Palestine was broken into pieces, the largest of which became Israel, or rather Occupied Palestine. The Palestine masses have since been involved in a struggle to assert their self-respect and basic human dignity as a people, and to return to their homeland.

    One of the founders of racism described it as a movement of “a people without land” in search of “a land without people”. Like their settler colonialist counterparts that came to South Africa, Zionists also claimed that they found the land unrehabilitated. Despite the many differences in the nature of these two societies, their histories and their economies, factors binding apartheid regimes of South Africa and Israel together were no secret. The minority governments of both countries found a common purpose in the suppression of the dispossessed majority. In Israel, it was the Palestinians who had been the majority until driven from their land, when most were herded into territorial enclaves or into neighbouring territories.

    They were confined to refugee camps, without security, and without meaningful existence. In South Africa the discrimination on grounds of ethnicity was more blatant and more complex. The Africans, indigenous to the country; the Coloureds, mostly the offspring of settlers; and the Indians, who had been brought into the country as indentured labourers, were all stripped of political rights — their political organizations mostly banned — and herded into urban or rural ghettoes. The brutal massacre of the unarmed Palestine children is not different from the brutal murder of innocent children in Soweto in 1976 and many parts of our country.

    The struggle for national liberation in the Middle East and Southern Africa have so much in common that it is only natural for the peoples waging these struggles to join their hands in their efforts. The commonness of these struggles derives not only from the identity of the principles they fight to assert, but also from the similarities, in character, of the regimes they were ranged against – Zionist Israel and apartheid South Africa.

    Like the apartheid regime in South Africa, the origins of the Zionist state of Israel is linked to the British imperial history of colonial expansion. In the early part of the 20th century, Britain was interested in securing the two principal routes of access to its domains in the Far East. It was however impossible to do this without controlling the two strategic points along these routes; the Cape of Good Hope at the southern tip of the African continent and the Suez Canal and other routes in the Arab East. It was thus not a coincidence that Britain later became the ruling colonial power in these regions.

    General Jan Smuts, then a member of the British Imperial cabinet and Prime Minister of South Africa, played a significant role in the formulation of both the South Africa Union Act and the Balfour Declaration, At the United Nations, Smuts argued very strongly for the partition of Palestine and the establishment of a “Jewish homeland,” It was thus not surprising that South Africa was among the first countries to recognise the state of Israel in 1948.

    There have always been the links between the counter-revolutionary and anti-communist efforts of Israel and the United States in Africa. A similar arrangement existed between the US and South Africa. South Africa and Israel by virtue of their geo-political positions, played similar roles, within their respective regions, in the world imperialist strategy. Both had a fair share in the military and intelligence activities against revolutionaries and progressive countries. In fulfilment of its surrogate role, South Africa has carried out subversive activities aimed at destabilising established governments in Southern Africa. It has intervened in various ways, including military actions in the affairs of these states. However, despite the difficulties which they have had to bear as a result of these barbarous invasions, the Angolan people and their government were as hard as a rock in their resolve to support the struggle for national liberation in South Africa and Namibia.

    Last year the United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (ESCWA), issued a report documenting Israel’s apartheid policies towards the Palestinian people and encouraging support for the grassroots boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement for Palestinian rights and freedom. It is the first time any UN agency has established through a scrupulous and rigorous study that Israel has imposed an apartheid regime against the entire Palestinian people. Instead of engaging the report, US and Israeli resorted to their bullying tactics and pressurised the UN Secretary General to disown the report. This prompted Dr. Rima Khalaf of ESCWA to resign rather than succumbing to bullying by US-Israel axis stating: “I resigned because it is my duty not to conceal a clear crime, and I stand by all the conclusions of the report.” Israel and its apologists seek to deny the historical record, obfuscate what is happening on the ground today, and undermine strategies for change. By contrast, understanding events in Palestine, past and present, as a form of anachronic settler colonialism and apartheid, brings context, clarity, and a course of action.

    One of the most disturbing aspects of the chauvinist Zionist attitude is its complete disregard, in its sick national egocentrism, not only for the Arab populations of North Africa and West Asia, but also for the whole of the rest of humanity and the cause of world peace. The International Solidarity with the struggling masses of Palestine is gaining momentum. This struggle must be intensified until the people of Palestine are free. South Africa has experienced the demon of apartheid and colonialism. We must play a leading role in pledging solidarity with the oppressed masses of Palestine. The downgrading of Israel embassy by our government is long overdue. Our freedom, in the words of Cde Nelson Mandela, is meaningless without the liberation of Palestine.

    Dr Lehlohonolo Kennedy Mahlatsi is an SACP Free State PEC Member and ANC Member. He writes in a personal capacity

     

Close
Close