Mcebo Dlamini. Image credit: vocfm.co.za
By Andile Mngxitama
On Monday the Johannesburg Magistrates Court convicted student activist Mcebo Dlamini of public violence and sentenced him to a term of two years and six months imprisonment which was wholly suspended for five years on condition that he does not commit a similar offence during the period of suspension.
The fact that the Prosecution pilled up charges against Mcebo including violating a court order, assaulting a police officer, malicious injury to property, public violence, theft, and of course digging up stuff about his citizenship, shows that it was nothing but repression by the State.
The same thing is happening with the #BLF26. We were on trial for 2 years and then our matter was thrown out. Cyril Ramaphosa’s administration then assigned an Afrikaner prosecutor at the NPA to come up with anything against us. He consequently revived the case and using an apartheid law brought in completely different charges on the same facts. They asked us to plead guilty and upon conviction to pay a fine. We are back in court on 17 April.
The State is used to settling politcal scores. If they arrested Mcebo Dlamini for #FeesMustFall activities in furtherance of Free Education, how does citizenship factor in this?
The conviction and sentence received by Mcebo has effectively killed his aspirations of practising as an advocate. The black magistrates at the Joburg Magistrate Court speak kasie language and eat pap and skop but aren’t any different from their openly racist white colleagues. They appear to be for justice but yho… they are bad!
Andile Mngxitama is the President of Black First Land First (BLF), a radical black consciousness organization.