Opposition parties divided about Reconciliation Day

By Drum Digital
16 December 2016

The Economic Freedom Fighters believe the country still has a long way to achieve reconciliation, citing the incidences of racism that took place in the country as a deterrent to the goals of former president Nelson Mandela.

EFF spokesperson, Mbuyiseni Ndlozi says black people continue to be targets of racism, 22 years into South Africa’s democracy.

“Africans remain targets of despicable racism motivated by the fact of white racism. Black people remain a hated and despised people, dispossessed of land and any grounds to call this country their home,” he says.

“Nowhere is the evidence of hatred and despise evident than in the social media incidences like that of Penny Sparrow or in the coffin assault case. As blacks we remain a defeated people who live on their knees begging for existence from the white supremacist-driven capitalists.”

In a statement, Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane has acknowledged that vast racial differences have come to light this year, but says it is not a true reflection of South Africa.

“Despite our different races, cultures, religions, sexes and languages, the common vein that runs through us all is that we are South Africans,” he says.

“While 2016 has seen a greater focus on our differences, I do not think that it is a true reflection of South Africa and the work that has been done in building bridges over the last 22 years.”

The EFF says they believe the humanity of black people can only be achieved through the implementation of land expropriation.

“Any conception of humanity that is not based on material access to the means of subsistence is false and demonic. The dominant idea of reconciliation that has been in function since 1994 is complicit with the dehumanisation of blacks because it does not demand the return of the land,” says Ndlozi.

Maimane believes South Africa should look to the constitution for answers  so that there can be a healing of the divisions of South Africa’s past, and rather establish a society based on democratic values, social justice and human rights.

Today President Zuma will be commemorating Reconciliation Day in Zeerust, North West.

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