TEXT: Sipho Pityana speech at Stofile funeral

2016-08-26 15:08
Makhenkesi Stofile (File)

Makhenkesi Stofile (File)

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East London - President Jacob Zuma was heavily criticised at the funeral of the late Reverend Makhenkesi Stofile in the Eastern Cape on Thursday.

Stofile died on August 15. He was 71. He was South Africa’s ambassador to Germany.

High-ranking members of the ANC including former president Kgalema Motlante, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan, Sports and Recreation Minister Fikile Mbalula and former finance minister Trevor Manuel, joined mourners who packed the Fort Hare University Sports Complex to honour the former sports minister.

Speaker Sipho Pityana, a businessman and former public servant, did not hide his anger at the current leadership of the ANC.

Here is the text of his speech

"Rev Stofile is a revolutionary who died with his boots on... When we all sloganeer and cry "amandla" we all look the same. When we sing and chant, our commitment and zeal for the revolution seem to be similar but in our movement as in everywhere else, there are different cadres. There are peacetime revolutionaries and there are true cadres, zemk' iinkomo magwala ndini.

"Ukufa kusembizeni maqabane, our setbacks are self inflicted. We have ceded our moral high ground to the opponents. The president of our country takes every opportunity to show disdain and contempt for our constitution. We attack and show disdain for Chapter 9 institutions.

"By the way I need to remind you that as OR Tambo suffered a stroke, one of the chapters he wrote as a precursor to this country, was a conceptualisation of the notion of the Chapter 9 institutions. If you didn't know that go and read the Harare Declaration. Who are these leaders today who don't have an understanding of that history.

"We are an ANC that can rightly claim that we are champions of human rights and not because it's a western concept. We were amongst the first to adopt the African and people's rights, no one asked us to, that's why you have a bill of rights in the Constitution. But it must be a great shame that under our own government, we kill in cold blood with horrific brutality, workers for going on strike.

"We say we are against corruption yet at every turn we are falling over each other trying to steal from the poor. When you drove here you drove past the village of Ngqele. When Rev Stofile was in office he did not give it special treatment. He did not build a palace worth over R200 million amidst a sea of poverty.

"Accountability is an important measure of the respect you have for the people and for public office. You don't when you're called to account, plunge Parliament into chaos. When the Constitutional Court makes a finding that you broke your oath of office, it means you're honourable no longer, it means you are untrustworthy. Qhwabani, zemk' iinkomo magwala ndini.

"Zemk' iinkomo magwala ndini because today we call ourselves comrade without distinction. Cadres of Stof's ilk were sidelined in favour of a different kind of cadre. A new cadre who sees in the ANC, an opportunity to get the benefit because it is rewarding to be associated with the ANC these days and the queue of the people who want to join is long, you don't have to work hard. The fight for leadership positions is not for giving but for proximity to resources for yourself, your family and your cronies.

"We must ask a question, do we have leaders of a revolution or do we have full time thieves and looters. The balance of forces has changed to the faces of corruption, SIGUTYUNGELWE NGAMASELA NABARHWAPHILIZI. Our movement is captured and consequently our state is captured. Our revolutionary project is under threat.

"Unless drastic actions are taken, in 2019 we will be at less than 40% when it comes to elections.


"The next battle cannot be lead by a leader who has undermined everything we represent. Comrade SG, I appreciate your presence, collective responsibility is not enough, a person who takes responsibility falls on their sword. I pray we find younger leaders. Those like us who are aged must play with their grandchildren. Those who have left to COPE, EFF, United Front and did not vote, please come back, this battle is not over.


-       Sipho Pityana

Read more on:    anc  |  makhenkesi stofile  |  sipho pityana  |  jacob zuma  |  corruption  |  politics

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