By Sthembiso KaShandu
This article was submitted for the Think For Yourself competition.
The question, who is the enemy of black liberation in South Africa between Jacob Zuma , the Guptas and/or White Monopoly Capital/those who stole land of blacks is tricky but rather we must seek to understand who is the enemy of the people without being made to choose amongst the three.
There is a growing tendency by narrow black nationalists who use race as a yardstick to approve who must be supported or rejected. They make a mistake of thinking that everyone one who is black is holy and deserves support of black people and anyone who is white is evil and an enemy, this tendency is very misleading.
Just like in the current West vs East capitalists war in South Africa we have seen a group of people in defense of Pravin Gordhan in this case who represent the West and those who are in defense of President Zuma in this case who represent the East, with South Africans or civilians used as weapons in this war.
We have black nationalists up in arms defending Zuma saying he is being attacked by whites because they want to protect their interest, as if going to sleep with the East is going to benefit the poor and the working class. In the meantime, you have opposition parties jumping high defending Pravin Gordhan and against the move to the East, for they know very well that they have less to benefit if the regime change is skewed to the East, the pretense being that opposition parties are having valuable relationship with the West’s big companies and banks.
We know the Democratic Alliance (DA) relationship with Western banks, we know Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) relationship with London, we know the longtime relationship of Inkatha Freedom Party (IFP) with the Oppenheimer family. All these opposition parties don’t want to see any regime change for it will mean a loss to them.
Moving to the East is not beneficial to South Africans but will benefit Zuma and his cabal. There is no good relationship if China exports to South Africa more than we export goods to China. There is no good relationship if in South Africa we have China malls but in China we don’t see South African malls. It can’t be correct that in South Africa Chinese are classified as blacks and benefit from government affirmative action policies like BEE, but in China South Africans remain foreigners. Then we must ask ourselves what kind of relationship is this?
There is nothing good coming with the East. The East want to colonize Africa economically and do the same of what the West countries did to us. They are here to take our resources away, South Africa and Africa must never remain tenants of its economy.
Our economy must benefit us. We must reject both these factions and strive to see a South Africa that is on her own. We need to draft our own economic terms.
Then, who is the enemy?
Our enemy is all those in the league with imperialism, bureaucrats, warlords and/or comprador class. Whoever sides with imperialism, bureaucrat-capitalism, those who exploits our people through cheap labor.
If you exploit our people and cause harm to humanity then you are our enemy.
Amilca Cabral put it nicely when he said “We are fighting so that insults may no longer rule our countries, martyred and scorned for centuries, so that our peoples may never more be exploited by imperialists not only by people with white skin, because we do not confuse exploitation or exploiters with the color of men’s skins; we do not want any exploitation in our countries, not even by black people.”
If we agree to continue on the dream of Nelson Mandela, who is forever referred to as the father of our nation, then we must continue with a task which is not merely to usher in Black rule replacing white faces with black ones; but a project of non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and prosperous country.
If we follow this narrow black nationalism, we will end up defending capitalists and exploiters simply because they are black.
We want radical economic transformation but we won’t achieve it by shouting slogans and including it on our political speeches. This is a policy issue, if Zuma or the ruling party want to bring back the land to the owners this could have happened long time ago without Zuma blowing the whistle. We can’t be fooled by people who pretend to speak our language just to garner support for themselves. The enemy is everyone who is anti-progress of black people, either black or white, West or East. Our people must be careful and refuse to be used by capitalists as weapons, capitalism must fall.
We want socio-economic freedom for all now.