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Raw Deal For The Tsonga Nation

22 April 2014, 05:30
I was really taken aback by the remarks made by the Malamulele Demarcation Task Team in the wake of president Zuma’s booing in Malamulele recently.

The Task Team was quick to claim that  the booing of Zuma should be blamed on the people of Malamulele’s failure to understand the English language that Zuma used because they are Tsonga-speaking people. 

Not only did I feel insulted as a Tsonga-speaking person, but also shocked and disgusted with the level of stereotypes displayed by the Task Team. To assume that the people of Malamulele do not understand English is a violation of their human right to be treated with respect and dignity.

Everyone knows what the people of Malamulele want, which is their own municipality and that could be their only reason for the booing of president Zuma. 

On what grounds did this Task Team decide to shift focus, from what is really the issue in Malamulele and opted to use language as a scapegoat? We all know that Zuma was booed in full view of the whole world during Nelson Mandela’s memorial service at FNB Stadium, and the question is: were all those people Tsonga-speaking?

It is so unfair and unpatriotic to classify people into irreconcilable categories, in a country like South Africa, where diversity is our biggest strength. 

Or is the Task Team saying president Zuma even struggle to have a conversation with his comrades Collins Chabane, Tito Mboweni, Richard Baloyi and many others who are of Tsonga origin? It is so unfortunate and reckless to wrongly accuse people you don’t even know in person of not having a certain communication skill.

 Tsonga people have been constantly subjected to extreme discrimination for so long, that’s why even institutions and campaigns named in their language  are frequently misspelt, as it was evident in the word ‘Tirisano’ instead of ‘Ntirhisano.’ 

The Malamulele Demarcation Task Team owe the people of Malamulele and the Tsonga nation as a whole a very huge apology.

Their remarks were reckless and irresponsible and it is statements like this that fuels xenophobic attacks. 

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