Black First Land First National Convenor, Andile Mngxitama. Photo: Madelene Cronje/M&G
By Zama Khumalo
We have failed as young black people to look at Mngxism as currently the only existing tool of setting free young South Africans from colonial bondage.
The father of Mngxism himself, Andile Mngxitama, is willingly opening his arms and inviting every black child to come learn black revolutionary and liberation politics, free of charge, which he, Mngxitama, possesses as a direct intellectual descendant of Steve Biko and developed it to its current phase of neo-Bikoism over the past 12 years as new Black Consciousness modules adding to the mainstream curriculum and tackling neo-colonialism in post-1994 South Africa.
Because now in South Africa the government is black, the ruling party is black and there is no more racist and violent Afrikaner politicians in Union Building, it becomes important to apply Mngxism as a branch of Black Consciousness dealing with neo-colonial post-1994 South Africa if we are going to win total freedom as black people because Black Consciousness intellectuals know that blacks are actually conquered in the mind, soul and body.
Bikoism, not neo-Bikoism or Mngxism, differs from neo-Bikoism or Mngxism in that it tackled the issues of blacks in colonial pre-1994 South Africa while Mngxism tackles neo-colonialism but this doesn’t mean Bikoism is now redundant. It simply means it is now impossible to stop it as its strong stem begins to grow various branches, among them Mngxism.
Mngxism, like its sister philosophy, Bikoism, is ideologically consistent as, while the Bikoists are prepared to “die for an idea that lives than live for an idea that dies,” the Mngxists are guided by a “Revolutionary Consciousness.”
In all of his work thus Mngxitama has remained the most responsible of all BC intellectuals in South Africa after Biko, with whites treating him the same way they treated Biko.
“His race-based demogogic tirades are unhelful,” former Deputy President Kgalema Motlanthe’s biographer Abraham Harvey in an article titled “Racist Rants Expose Mngxitama” with the Mail & Guardians said early this year.
Mngxitama’s “style are too crude, inflammatory and polarizing,” said the elite writer, adding that this is “the last thing we need in trying to understand the complexities of how race, racism and class are expressed and articulated”.
But Mngxitama on the other hand teaches us that that’s not true – because class”, as he puts it in ‘Class Theory Finally Decolonised’, “has been one of the most effective means to hide race oppression in racist and colonial societies.
“Class theory needs to be decolonised and subjected to anti-racist analysis if it’s going to serve black people. The hegemony of white thoughts has ensured the acceptance of class unquestionably.”
Anyway, Harvey was responding to the Mngxist position that the #ZumaMustFallCampaign was “a racist response by white people to perceived threats to their interests” considering that Jacob Zuma is in fact an incompetent puppet President of the neo-colony.
Harvey replied: “How on earth could he arrive at that crude generalisation about those whites who participated in that march?
“He is a vociferous black nationalist with”, Harvey argues, “increasingly apparent overtones in how he regards white people”.
Labelling the father of Mngxism in that traditional racist polemic that was meant to appear anti-racist as a someone who is “locked into a dogmatic, binary blindness”, Harvey said that the “significant class formation” in neo-colonial post-1994 South Africa “among blacks and an equally loss of economic power by whites makes references to homogenous black people or white people mythical, at best”. He then asked all blacks to reject Mngxitama before positioning himself as a working-class figure, saying the positions taken by the Mngxists “deflect attention from what it means to cultivate and build a genuinely non-racial and anti-racist ethos, and prevent us from confronting the social crisis afflicting the black, working-class majority”.
The proof shows that without Mngxism in particular and Black Consciousness in general the youths will suffer and end in wrong hands as potential criminals used as fodders in self-defeat projects in our society, butchering one another in service of anything that belongs to white people. There is no other ideology for Black Liberty other than Black Consciousness and Pan-Africanism but Mngxism remains more relevant now than ever as an introductory and preparatory work to the teachings of Biko and as a weapon of confronting the quiet wars waged by well-organised neo-colonial institutions in doing their permanent evil battles with us.
Mngxitama was a senior leader of the Economic Freedom Fighters, a stint he regrets, and then clashed with its leaders before a split, “a nasty split” Richard Poplak says was expected with the presence of a “genuine econoclast” inside EFF, because “any marriage between an unbending Bikoist and a supple political pragmatist” ends like that.