Archive for July, 2012

Image

“Year in and out, we commemorate this day but there is no improvement in our lives, as a victim of Boipatong Massacre we still need more from the government”, said Matsile Mirriam Molete (58) – one of the survivor.

Molete, lost her fiancé in the wee hours of June, 17 1992 when scores of Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) members armed with machine guns, spears, knob-kierries and sticks attacked the community of Boipatong.

“We were sleeping when we heard a big bang, upon investigating what was happening I saw a white man holding a panga, he hacked me on my left hand and stabbed me with a sharp object. He then proceeded to hack my daughter Mitta (who was three years at the time) on the head with a panga then they shot my fiancé three times in the heart and he died on the scene. They destroyed our shack.” explained Malete.

Mitta was wheel-chair bound. She added by saying she will be glad if the government can offer the children of the victims some opportunities like jobs. Molete is not working and survives on Mitta disability grant.

She said “we are struggling with my daughter as both of us are not working.” My daughter completed her tertiary studies but she can’t find a job.

During the attack about forty-five people were stabbed and hacked to death as scores of others lay injured on the pavement, they ransacked houses and after the attack some houses were destroyed and burned.

Maria Mbatha (38) who lost three family members said she can’t forget this day, every time the massacre approaches she feels heart-broken. Mbatha said at her home there are no elder people as they were gunned down by Inkatha Freedom Party members and police, she added. “At our home its cold as no-one is working, I urge Emfuleni Local Municipality and the Sedibeng District Municipality to offer one of my brothers a job because we are struggling; sometimes we sleep on empty stomach.”

Kwa-Madala hostel is a stone throw away from Arcellor Mittal and it was once a notorious strong-hold of IFP supporters, after the 1994 elections majority of its members left the hostel fearing a violence attack by Vaal residents.

The executive mayor of Sedibeng District Municipality Simon Mahole Mofokeng said as the Sedibeng government we promise to attend to the matter.

He said “It is true that each and every year we come here and make promises but we don’t fulfill them”. But we are busy with other projects as we are erecting a monument site in Boipatong and it is going to be a centre that will benefit the community of Boipatong and South Africa as a whole. Mofokeng concluded.

Boipatong local ward councilor Ronyuza Mabandla said he will be glad if the government could declare this day a holiday. He said most of the families have lost hope in the government. “I normally have talks with these families. What happened to the Kagiso Trust,” he asked.

According to him many people who witnessed the massacre are traumatized. Some of them are not traumatized as a result of being shot at but merely because they were part of this traumatic experience, he explained. He added by saying the new building of the monument bring hope to people of Sedibeng.        

Advertisements

Image

The West Rand Chairperson Mpho Nawa, delegation and ANC representatives arrived in Sedibeng on Monday night to hand over the ANC centenary flame to the Sedibeng regional chairperson Mahole Simon Mofokeng.

Scores of ANC supporters waited in anticipation outside the Vereeniging City Hall, singing and chanting ANC struggle songs. Mofokeng told scores of people that the ANC centenary flame is for who were affected by apartheid and played a role in the struggle. “I believe that people will be excited to see the torch in their area tomorrow. Many people are looking forward to see it in the next four days” he said.

He told the masses that it (flame) would spend some couple of days in Sedibeng after spending the weekend in the West Rand. After four days at Sedibeng, the flame will be handed to Ekurhuleni, Tshwane and from there to Limpopo province at the end of June.

It would also visit homes of people affected by the fight for the struggle of freedom and churches regardless of their political affiliation.

Early on Tuesday Mofokeng took it to the house of late struggle veteran comrade Sotsu and to the massacre memorial site. Then later they took it to veteran comrade Jacob Motaung. The centenary celebrations started in Mangaung in the Free State in January.

“This is not a torch but a flame, it has its spirituality because it’s a flame of unity whether we had differences” explained Nawa. He said the centenary flame would help them to come together. “I believe it reflect kindness and love because we need to tolerate people who disagree with us” he explained.

Sizakele Nkosi-Malebane, ANC PEC member said their aim is to serve community not tenders “the eye stories tenders must come to an end. It is important for us to use this opportunity, let’s stop criticizing each other; opposition parties spend time criticising and analysing us. At times we criticise the ANC to extend that what is a lie turn to be true. Let’s have integrity and selfless” she concluded.

Another ANC dignitary who attended was the event is Emfuleni mayor Greta Hlongwane.  

The recent past weeks displayed just how South Africa has been pretenders to the “rainbow nation” throne. Much as we’d like to fool ourselves into thinking that apartheid-era is long gone, the reality is that, it still is in existence and there is still a lot to be done and unfortunately there are some elements that won’t subscribe to change even if it was their last breath on this planet – earth.

First it was the models-wanna-be on social networks hurling insults towards other races then there were paintings, which went to prove just how some of our artists would go far into misinterpreting “freedom of speech”.

Goodman Gallery started all this commotion by displaying Brett Murray’s-artistic work depicting President Jacob Zuma’s genitalia. The gallery owner saw nothing wrong with that and cited “freedom of expression” as her reason. Unfortunately his didn’t go down with majority and caused division, two males were arrested and later granted bail after they both defaced the painting.

A few days later another drawing believed to be a response to ”the spear” named “the shield” by Nqobile Ndlovu surfaced in it appeared the owner of Goodman Gallery Liza Essers, Boer General Koos de la Rey, DA leader Helen Zille, Eugene Terre’Blanche and cartoonist Jonathan Shapiro (aka Zapiro) while an African inspect their naked bodies.

Our country is never short of drama – when the ruling party approached the High Court for the picture to be removed. The president’s lawyer, advocate Gcina Malindi broke down in tears as he tried to answer Judge Neels Claassen’s question on “what if it was FW de Klerk’s face on the painting and to what effect the request to remove the images on the website would have, as they had already been displayed everywhere”?

In a fit of rage and retaliation the ruling party urge its supporters to boycott a weekend newspaper; (personally, I believe this is abuse of power) and this saw the editor retracting her statement and later followed his paper by withdrawing the picture from their website.