The ANC is appalled by “those forces opposed to the transformation of our country” and is asking US President Donald Trump to let South Africans resolve their own problems, ANC secretary general Ace Magashule says.
Magashule was speaking in Sebokeng on Monday at the commemoration of the 1984 Vaal uprising – a protest on the same day as the opening of the Tricameral Parliament on September 3, 1984 – which saw clashes with police in which 30 people died.
Magashule described the “heroic leadership role of the people of the Vaal” as a “foundational stone for the future victories of the struggles of our people”.
“The heroic contribution of the people of the area to our struggle, accelerated the passage of power from the hands of the apartheid white minority regime into the hands of the vast majority of the people of our country,” he said, according to a transcript of his speech provided by the ANC.
“The battle for the control and ownership of the wealth of our country, between the European colonial powers, culminated with the Treaty of Vereeniging, which saw the establishment of the whites only Union of South Africa in 1910.
“This was the beginning of the institutionalisation of apartheid white supremacy, which led to the marginalisation of the majority of the people of our country, from the political and economic mainstream.
Our people need land’
He said it is from this context that the ANC-led government was accelerating radical socio-economic transformation, aimed at resolving the centuries-old legacy of imperialism and apartheid-colonialism.
“The only way of achieving the objectives for the building of a non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and prosperous society, is to ensure that we expropriate the land without compensation and therefore empowering the majority of our people, the black people in general and the Africans in particular, into the ownership of the commanding heights of our economy.
“Our people need land to better their own living conditions.
“We therefore make an appeal to the international community and especially the President of the United States of America, Mr Donald Trump, to respect the territorial independence and integrity of our nation state and therefore give the people of our country the opportunity to resolve their own problems in line with the concrete realities of our own situation.
“We are appalled by the determination of those forces opposed to the transformation of our country to undermine our collective effort to resolve the socio-economic contradictions imposed on our people by centuries of apartheid colonial domination
Your vote is important’
He said the ANC was committed to “provide leadership” to ensure this “historic determination to appropriate land without compensation”.
“We make an appeal to all South Africans to be true ambassadors of our democratic republic. The horizons of our democracy have inspired all of us to work together with the common objectives of building a better future for all our people.”
There was also some introspection from Magashule.
“We have to be brutally honest and ask ourselves the pertinent question as to whether indeed our movement and the people are able to entrust the calibre of selfless and quality leadership we want.
“It is time that the ANC and the people of our country act decisively against the level of opportunism by those who seek to abuse their elected positions to serve their self-interests.”
He also made a special appeal to young people to register for next year’s national general elections.
“Your vote is important as it will contribute towards the development of our country and therefore guarantee your better future.