Mangaliso Sambo, a 24-year-old activist and secretary-general of the South African Destitute Ex-Miners Forum (SADEMF), held a guerilla Q&A session on Friday evening, 31 July 2020, to delve deeper into the principles that guide the collective.
The Jozi to Stellenbosch march
This follows after Sambo and 15 other activists marched by foot from Johannesburg to Stellenbosch to inspire change. The march was developed through an initiative by SADEMF, with Sambo saying that the Jozi to Stellenbosch march was a “manifestation of the 1976 movement in a post-democratic South Africa”.
“The Jozi2Stellenbosch collective out of sheer dedication, commitment and discipline uprightly rose to defend Azania together with her land, mineral resources and revolutionary gains on 16 June 2020”.
Now, 34 days since the launch of the campaign, Sambo and other activists are ready to go after their “immediate and most tangible systematic enemy,” located historically and currently in Stellenbosch: White monopoly capital.
The activists are now ready to take things to the next level after years of neglect, the lack of quality education and unemployment have forced the group to celebrate Youth Day a bit differently.
At the start of the march, Sambo said the activists are ready to take the fight “head on to the real engineer of suffering” in South Africa. “The hour of youth has struck, and we are forging forward”, he added.
Jozi to Stellenbosch Q&A session, 31 July 2020
The theme for this evening’s session addressed indoctrination. The Jozi to Stellenbosch activists look towards national heroes such as Veronica Sobukwe and Robert Sobukwe to advance the liberation protest of Black people in South Africa.
One of the activists reflected on Che Guevara’s conceptualisation of the different roles people play in a struggle. “Throughout this journey, we felt different intensities, those intensities were solidified today”, she added.
Another member said that even an ordinary person can be trained to fight indoctrination and added that the movement could be expanded by working with communities to raise awareness.
One of the members reflected on the movement by saying that it’s essential for a person to be physically fit as well as mentally liberated. She explained that without knowing why you’re in the struggle, a person could easily lose focus.
Watch: Jozi to Stellenbosch movement
The session host confirmed that now is the time to “confront the forces of oppression”, adding that the time for negotiation, protests, pickets and night vigils are over because there is no historical basis to prove those methods are effective.
It was also pointed out that society is indoctrinated, because “what you know, why you know it and how you knew it is informed by those who hold power in society”. Those things have been internalised over time. The movement said in a statement:
“In our lifetime, we have blatantly witnessed the brutality, killer instincts and greed-ridden white minority rule in our country led by a few families mainly Ruperts, Oppenheimer, Ackermans, Bekkers, le Rouxs, Bassons and Joostes, who collectively run their errands through companies like Remgro, Steinhoff, Anglo American, Shoprite, Pepkor, Naspers and Capitec that also share a majority in the JSE, controlled and uncontrolled mines, retail, food, fishing, essentials, medicine, tourism, manufacturing, media, investments, banking and farming.”
In addition, politicians, judges, accountants, NGOs and personalities have hidden millions offshore while South Africans and business suffer as a result of landlessness, exclusion, minority rule and servitude.
Questions were submitted via social media, and one user wanted to know what the movement’s take was on the corrupt government. One of the activists replied that the regime had proven over and over again that it does not operate for the people, but serve as an agent of white monopoly capital instead.
“To us, the government cannot be recognised until it is a government of the people. A government of the people is a government that won’t rest on political liberation, […] This government negotiated away the full liberation of the country through the Codesa negotiation.”
He explained that struggle activists pushed toward that moment for more than 40 years, yet when given the opportunity to change, the current government let the people of South Africa down. “It continues up to this day”, he added.
It is a continuous failure of the government to protect the people and the country’s resources. He added that the government still isn’t pushing for “compensation of land and the nationalisation of medical facilities owned by private monopolies”.
SA’s youth fully aware of its place in the fight for freedom
The movement calls on communities to continue with rapid land occupations across the country in the fight for better housing, better farming, better schools, access to water and electricity, mining and self-sustainability through Black power”.
In addition, the movement wants to point out that the youth today is “fully aware of its revolutionary place in society and its birthright patriotism”.
“The Jozi2Stellenbosch marchers are committed guerillas that have sworn at the grave of Tsietsi Mashinini, Lily Mthi, Kgotso Seathlolo, Hastings Ndlovu, Mangaliso and Veronica Sobukwe to fight side by side Black people and to never compromisingly turn back until the enemy retreats. We stand forward to charge the ruling white supremacists with subjecting Black people to concentration camps in the form of townships and exploitative labour extending across rural areas in the SADC region […] We the collective concluded that no amount of compensation, remuneration and grants will bring about justice, but only the conquering of white supremacist and racist minority rule and the reclaiming of our land and resources shall quench the everlasting thirst for justice by young guerillas.”