Ban insulting songs – Western Cape Young Lions

2012-04-03 10:08

ANC Youth League members in Western Cape have asked the governing party to ban the singing of songs insulting ANC leaders by the Young Lions, unless songs critical of the current youth league leadership are also tolerated.

In a letter signed by 13 league members and sent to ANC secretary-general Gwede Mantashe last week, the members complained about being forcefully removed from a Khayelitsha meeting addressed by youth league leader Julius Malema on March 16.

They claim this happened because they sang songs supportive of President Jacob Zuma, including Awuleth’ Umshini Wami – “a song that our president used to sing”.

In the letter the members, who are critical of Malema and sympathetic to Zuma, said the youth league should also allow those into their meetings who sing songs supporting the ANC’s leadership.

They ask that the league’s national executive committee “publically provides clarity around if we are allowed to sing songs supporting ANC leadership”.

The members claim in the letter that they “were denied our right to express our political views within the youth structure of our beloved movement. We were of the opinion that since the ANCYL advocated for the right of youth to express themselves, we would therefore be allowed to express our views on our leadership”.

They said although the youth league members who removed them didn’t assault them, “we were greatly humiliated and ended up leaving the event before the main speaker arrived”.

They said although they were peaceful, they were victimised because they wore a T-shirt with Zuma’s face on it.

In the letter, they also said they wanted to get clarity from ANC Western Cape deputy chairperson Abe Bekeer on what he meant when he said: “If you take Polokwane and compare it to Mangaung, where we’ll be going later this year, Polokwane will look like a Sunday school picnic.”

They said “we are concerned that he (Bekeer) appears to be making a threat of some kind”.

Malema on Friday accused Zuma of having turned the ANC into a dictatorship, suppressing the voice of the voiceless.

ANC provincial secretary Songezo Mjongile said he hadn’t seen the letter and would have to process it before he could respond.

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