Saturday, October 04, 2008

Lekota's open letter to Gwede Mantashe

Mosiuoa Lekota
03 October 2008

Statement by the former ANC chairman and Minister of Defence October 2 2008

Open letter to ANC Secretary General Comrade Gwede Mantashe

Dear Comrade Secretary General

I have decided to take the unusual step to write you an open letter because the unusual situation that has now arisen in the ANC and the tripartite alliance requires extraordinary steps.

I write to place on record the concerns I see as gnawing away at the ANC, with the hope that the leadership might wake up to the dangers our movement faces.

When I joined the ANC, I was attracted by its policies, political culture, values, history and its commitment to the interests of our people - black and white. I am still as fervently committed to this cause as when I first joined the organisation.

However, for some time now, I have lived with the growing sense that our leadership has veered the organisation away from the established policy priorities and customary democratic norms of the ANC.

(i) For instance, those who express views that are contrary to popular opinion in meetings and conferences of the organisation are later hounded out and purged from organisation and state structures. This is contrary to the ANC's democratic culture.

(ii) Sectoral and individual interests other than those flowing from the people's interests expressed in the Freedom Charter are elevated to levels of national priority. Thus we are expected to show up at criminal court cases or carry shoulder high individuals convicted of crimes unrelated to the demands in the Freedom Charter.

(iii) Instead of instilling respect for institutions of democracy, our leaders issue threats that if judicial proceedings do not result in outcomes they prefer, the country will be brought to a standstill.

(iv) Lately, the leadership has taken a direct and unadulterated departure from the Freedom Charter by calling for a political solution in the matter of the National Directorate of Public Prosecutions vs the President of the ANC. What happened to "There shall be equality before the law?". Or are we now to have political solutions to every citizen's criminal case?

(v) Blatant threats to kill for certain individuals if desires other than their own are not satisfied are made with impunity. When democracy-supporting institutions intervene to stop such delinquent behaviour, more of our leaders come out in loud support for threats to kill.

The lists of these excesses and the arrogance that accompanies them grows by the day. What resistance is put up by some in the ranks of members and leaders is harshly suppressed into tame acquiescence.

This state of affairs leaves me and many other comrades, no doubt, with a clear sense that our membership to the organisation is an endorsement of practices that are dangerous to the democracy that many people in our country struggled to bring into being.

I appeal to you to reply to my concerns in an open and frank manner so that everyone can be assured that the deduction that I and many other comrades have made, that the organisation is no longer pursuing the original policies of the ANC, is correct.

Yours sincerely,
Mosiuoa Lekota

Thursday, November 01, 2007

An overdue return

It's been a while since I last wrote anything on this blog. Well, I've been writing on other blogs. But another thing is that getting connected to the net is becoming a bit tricky. My computer is playing hardball. This started with a lightening strike destroying the modem. Another computer decided to shut its screen and there's nothing I could do about it. Now, I'm blogging from my mobile phone. Ag, 'askis' man, I don't mean to complain.

Friday, April 20, 2007

You are a false teacher, they said

With what do you allay somebody's fear that you are a false prophet or teacher about whom the Bible spoke? And how do you exactly handle that when it is somebody in your cngregation who says so in an open forum?

Well, let me give you a bit of background. You see, at our church, we decided to confront the problem of desertion of our cell groups head on. We held a conference the purpose of which was to re-present the vision and mission of the church, achievements and problems encountered and hear what our members experience as challenges that might be responsible for 'low morale'.

It was in one of the sessions where group leaders were reporting back on the experiences of their group members that 'a fear of my being a false teacher/prophet' was expressed as one of the contributing factors.

How did I respond to that? Well, I told them that I have no way of proving that I am or I am not. I indicated that I know that I love Jesus and desire to always follow him in my times without fetters of tradition. I further emphasized that it is their responsibility as individual Christians to watch lest they be misled even by me. Besides that, well, nothing! How about that?