MK veterans insulted by food parcels

2010-11-15 19:13

Johannesburg - Military veterans expressed indignation on Monday over a recent food parcel distribution by the defence force to former liberation fighters, saying it contained expired goods.

"This was indeed an insult to the history of our struggle and that of the ANC for we are not street kids, neither are we a dumping bay where all secondary and expired commodities are recycled," Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans' Association (MKMVA) member Mthunzi Gumede said in a statement.

On November 8 the defence ministry and cellphone operator MTN donated food hampers to former liberation armies, which included the MKMVA and the Azanian People's Liberation Army.

"The ANC-led government, by implication, continues to undermine our historical role as the pillar of the South African revolution in which we constructively participated when it was not fashionable to do so," Gumede said.

The association's goal was to find a permanent solution for former freedom fighters to sustain themselves.

Positive feedback

Ntime Skhosana, spokesperson for the department's Deputy Minister Thabang Makwetla, said the MKMVA's comments were "unfortunate".

"We find the reported remarks very unfortunate. If their statement is accurate, it's a very unusual way of engaging with our stakeholders through the media because we have channels through which we interact."

He said this was a nationwide programme that had been rolled out to four provinces thus far, targeting the most destitute military veterans.

"It was successful and will be concluded in all the nine provinces before the first week of December. We have never experienced such a response in any of the provinces we have been to.

"Even the beneficiaries involved in the KZN function reported back positively."

He said MTN's gesture needed to be commended and supported because it formed part of public partnerships to help people.

MTN spokesperson Pearl Majola was not immediately available to comment.

Against nepotism

Gumede said the organisation was "appreciative" of President Jacob Zuma's Cabinet reshuffle, as it replaced those who did not implement the mandate of their respective ministries.

The reshuffle saw seven ministers axed in October, and additional appointments of deputy ministers to some ministries.

The association said it was against nepotism and urged the African National Congress to listen to the people.

"We discourage the appointment of girlfriends/boyfriends, relatives and patronage in the appointment of the leaders of our people," said Gumede.

"The ANC is the only people’s organisation and it must listen to the people, for it was born of the people, otherwise what is the use of all these years of struggle if the ANC becomes something else."

It was also against "tendencies" seeking to destroy the alliance partners, the SA Communist Party and the Congress of SA Trade Unions.

  • threezero - 2010-11-15 19:47

    Expired food for expired "soldiers".

  • Vlooi - 2010-11-15 20:53

    Two things in this article shouting for comment. 1 - Why the hell are MTN handing out foodparcels to former "liberation fighters? 2 - Perhaps somebody should tell bra Mthunzi Gumede that MK did NOT play so big a role in the "revolution" as he thinks. Quit frankly, chasing girls in some camp with broomstick rifles does not make you a soldier. He is welcome of course to name a few battles or achievements to change my mind.

      colafantacervezabeer - 2010-11-15 22:09

      They did make quite a big difference in the life of the average white man, making them scared of bombs in the schools their kids go. Amazing what a difference people can make that do not hesitate to kill woman and children to fight for "freedom". But most of these veterans were on "training" in other countries, and only came back after the "revolutionary war" was over, and now want something for their hard work. But this does not mean the ANC will share their piece of pie with these honorable people, nope, they after all were the real revolutionaries, even the youth claim to be the true fighters and the MK is just a memory of 100 years ago.....

  • franssmith100 - 2010-11-15 21:52

    ANC, what you reap, you shall sow - in this case, you created this sh!@T, you live with it! birds of a feather...

  • Mordred - 2010-11-16 00:42

    Who are they and what did they do that was so memorable? All I know is that these "ma-kakkers" spent most of the time in other questionable countries being trained - who knows for what. All they have ever wanted since the so-called "revolution" is everything for free which the ANC will not do. The only true heroes in any war which SA fought, was the border war which everybody seems to have conveniently forgotten about. Young white soldiers were sent to the border to protect SA from countries like the Congo and many thousands died. The ANC, as far as I am concerned, have done nothing to remember these soldiers but we have to have these mediocre ma-kakkers remembered at every turn who never fought a day's war in their lives. Please don't insult the word "soldiers" by conferring it onto a few raggedy men who were playing at war. I and many thousands of South Africans will never forget how these young men gave their lives for our country only to have the ANC now treat these countries they fought against as long lost pals. It really sickens me.

      Salmon - 2010-11-16 09:20

      dis tyd dat die "ma-kakkers" 'n besef wat freedom is. dit beteken jy kan nie op jou gat sit en niks doen nie. ek is as 2 jaar dienspligtige dan seker ook geregtig om die titel "war veteran" agter my naam te skryf en "rat packs" te demand. (sorry, vir die wat nie verstaan nie. rat packs is die kak wat ons gevoer is in die bos) sorry war vets, get a job, get a life, read the dictionary and look up the word'"freedom". as die oud sadf soldate nie 'n soortgelyke kopskuif gemaak het nie, sou julle nie nou so rustig in jul bedtjies geslaap het nie.

  • Kevin Rack - 2010-11-16 04:59

    MK war veterans are gaining greater say in South African politics. This tool is used by ZANU-PF to apply pressure and used as a threat of violence to intimidate. MK vets need to look after themsleves and not become a ANC political tool like the poor in South Africa, who are used to protest and toi toi at any oppurtunity to futher the ANC agendas and not thiers. MK vets the WAR IS OVER!!!!!

      Rumncoke - 2010-11-16 08:06

      You say "vets"-Vets of what...?

      Druss - 2010-11-16 08:58

      @Rumnoke "Vets" and American abbreviation of war veteran from the many wars fought over the last few years.

  • Francois - 2010-11-16 11:14

    wmaahahahaha what war??? You did nothing for the country the only thing you did was in a couple of cases kill and hurt innocent people, and the reason for that was you want to fight like sissy`s. Maybe if you had a war and fought like men and not like "slapgatte" you would have had some respect from every body, but you did not so the only use for you is to be called on when the ANC need votes! Be a man and get a job......

  • GV - 2010-11-16 11:31

    1.I'm sure MTN could chose a more appropriate organisation to support. There are millions of starving people who would only be too grateful for any food, expired or not.

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