REPORT ON ARAF’S COMMUNITY MOBILIZATION DIALOGUE ON RACISM AT CENTRAL WESTERN JABAVU, SOWETO ON 5 MARCH 2016

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ARAF held a community dialogue event at the Morris Isaacson High School in Central Western Jabavu, Soweto this  past Saturday, March 5, 2016. The subject of dialogue was, “Understanding Racism: Why FW de Klerk and Adrian Vlok should go to jail”. ARAF thanks the facilitator of the dialogue, Andile Mngxitama, for a job well done. The laying of charges by ARAF against FW de Klerk and Adrian Vlok for their apartheid crimes resulting in the murders of hundreds of blacks in the decade leading up to the 1994  democratic elections, has drawn attention to the question of “what is to be done”, regarding the root cause of the problem, with curious insistence. In this context the need for black unity as a precondition for the obliteration of white supremacy was canvassed. The fact that liberation movements are riddled with factionalism and to this end have been unable to forge any kind of principled unity between themselves was raised as a major concern. The approach suggested in the dialogue was to unite black people and their organizations in terms of a practical political programs and to this end imbue the people with political consciousness. In real terms, as ideas get tested via practice on the ground, the unity of the people and peoples’ movements are strengthened that much more. It must be stated that a dialectical approach to forging principled unity must be factored into the process.

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Another very important concern raised was: “So we get FW de Klerk and Adrian Vlok in jail, how does this help blacks?”  Here there was an understanding that this outcome will amount to a partial concession on the part of the anti black system since the root cause of the crimes against blacks is land dispossession via colonialism. This partial concession will remain empty for the people unless we extend it sufficiently to strike at the core of white power.

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The ARAF event was followed by community mobilization in the area which involved one on one engagements on the issue of racism and how to ultimately defeat it. The response of the community was overwhelmingly positive. Close to 100 people have indicated willingness to engage in ARAF’s campaign to end racism.  The people are clear: de Klerk and Vlok must go to jail, the land must be returned and racism must be defeated.

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The mobilisation team then formed up at the assembly point of the Morris Isaacson High School, raised their fists in Black Power salutes and gave full honors to Tsietsi Mashinini and Khotso Seatlholo. On June 16, 1976 at or about 8am Tsietsi Mashinini disrupted the assembly of this very school and consequently led the first contingent of students on the streets that started the Soweto uprising involving about 20 000 people. He worked closely with Khotso Seatlholo during this period.  We say long live the spirits of Tsietsi Mashinini, Khotso Seatlholo and the class of June16, 1976. The struggle for decolonization of education and of the whole country and indeed the world continues.

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ARAF will soon be convening an Anti-Racism Summit in Soweto where the main focuses will be on adopting an Anti Racism Manifesto as well as a People’s Law on what racism is.  Further details will soon follow. ARAF has since the beginning of February this year been  engaging in weekly community mobilization programs on what racism is and how to defeat it. We are also engaged in  educating our people  regarding inter alia the  dangers  of  the  “criminalisation of  racism”  within neocolonialism.

ARAF’s next Community Mobilisation Event will be held at the Tshwane University of Technology, Soshanguve (TUT, Soshanguve) ) on Saturday 12 March 2016 at 11h00. Do join us and please bring a friend. Details to follow.

BLACK POWER!
#BlacksCantBeRacist
#ReturnLandEndRacism

ISSUED BY ARAF STEERING COMMITTEE

DATE: Sunday, 6 March 2016

CONTACT DETAILS:

ARAF Coordinator and Spokesperson:  Zanele Lwana
Cell: +27 79 486 9087
Mail: zanelelwana@gmail.com

ARAF Coordinator and  Spokesperson:  Zandi Radebe
Cell: 0782438830
Email Address: zandiradebe@gmail.com

ARAF Coordinator and Spokesperson: Yerushka Chetty
Cell: +27 72 649 7555
Mail: yerushka@gmail.com

ARAF ON THE MOVE

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ARAF hosted a great event yesterday, 13 February 2016, at the Africa Freedom Station in Westdene. Thank you to the panelists Ziyana Lategan and Veli Mbele and all those who attended and participated in conversations to clarify this beast called racism.

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We were summoned into dealing with the historical questions of where white supremacy is really located. We found it in land theft which is the basis from which all its other branches develop to institutionalise itself as a way of life. We found ourselves wrestling with the ANC urging them to not stand in the way of us getting to the real enemy, white supremacy. Against the backdrop inter alia of the charges ARAF has laid against FW De Klerk and Adrian Vlok for their apartheid crimes that has led to the murder of hundreds of blacks and against De Klerk for his continued acts of racism – it was clear that the real enemy is white supremacy. We must defeat it so that we can breathe. Furthermore the resolution of the race question is impossible without resolving the land question. Yes, we said the main contradiction is between white supremacy and black oppression and to resolve this contradiction we need BLACK SOLIDARITY to destroy white supremacy and hence racism.

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In our engagements the foĺlowing further questions were framed: What is racism? Can blacks be racist? What is structural racism? What is white supremacy? How do we identify racism in our day to day life? Why does violence on blacks have black faces? Are blacks racist because the ANC is a black government in power?

There was a loud acknowledgement to move ahead with a bloodied voice armed with the principles that the stolen land must be returned without payment to land thieves; blacks can’t be racist, and; the black struggle must be led by blacks only!

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ARAF is moving towards its anti racism summit on 30 April 2016. The weekly events we have been hosting since we launched two weeks ago has been twofold: firstly in furtherance of expediting self education programs through public meetings on what racism is and how to fight and end it, and; secondly to educate our people about the dangers of criminalising racism within neo colonialism. To this end we have been urging our people to defend black people against any acts of racism.

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Next week we go to the ground. We go to Soweto to have similar conversations and engagements with the community. Details will follow soon!

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#ArrestDeKlerk
#ArrestVlok
#HillbrowTrial
#BlacksCantBeRacist
#ReturnLandEndRacism

ISSUED BY THE ANTI-RACISM ACTION FORUM STEERING COMMITTEE

14 February 2016

CONTACT DETAILS:

ARAF Coordinator and Spokesperson:  Zanele Lwana
Cell: +27 79 486 9087
Mail: zanelelwana@gmail.com

ARAF Coordinator and  Spokesperson:  Zandi Radebe
Cell: 0782438830
Email Address: zandiradebe@gmail.com

ARAF Coordinator and Spokesperson: Yerushka Chetty
Cell: +27 72 649 7555
Mail: yerushka@gmail.com

Facebook Page: ANTI RACISM ACTION FORUM

Twitter: @ARAF_2016

MISSION STATEMENT – ANTI RACISM ACTION FORUM (ARAF)

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(ARAF) is a space that brings together black people and organizations which are committed to ending Racism by ending White Supremacy. We recognize that Racism affects all Black people irrespective of gender, age, language, educational levels, geographic location, class position, religious belief or political affiliation. In 1994 we were given false solutions because there was no understanding that White Supremacy is materially located in LAND THEFT from where it develops all its other branches to institutionalise itself as a way of life. White Supremacy is the cardinal enemy we must defeat to be able to breathe. We come together now because of the urgency to give direction to our people to avoid yet another false solution to racism.

 
After 20 years of continued Land dispossession sustained by deception, which we realise now, as Steve Biko has said, “the main contradiction in South Africa is “WHITE RACISM”. The only solution to RACISM is therefore “Black Solidarity” which must obliterate and end white racism. There is an urgency now to avoid the possible disastrous legislation contemplated by political parties in parliament to “criminalise racism”. If no action is taken to give context to the proposed law, Black people and our struggle against White Supremacy will be criminalized, and thus making our people criminally liable for wanting to breathe. ARAF recognizes that for progress to be made in the struggle against Racism, the following principles must be adhered to:

 
1. LAND RETURN AS THE ONLY CONDITION TOWARDS ENDING RACISM.

 
At the heart of Racism is the question of Land which was stolen from Black people and continues to be in the hands of white minority, twenty years into ‘Freedom’. Thus making present day South Africa a racist society; built and sustained on the historical injustice of LAND THEFT. Racism is born from Colonial conquest which saw the violent confiscation of all African Land and property, a situation that lead to Black subjugation, pain and suffering. Blacks lost their land and would live as slave in reserves like Soweto, Alex and Khayelitsha. White people constitute the minority of the population, yet claim the majority ownership of the Land. LAND THEFT would turn our parents and members of the Black community into ‘kitchen girls’ and ‘garden boys’. LAND THEFT would realize the vision of arch racists land thief and imperialist, Cecil John Rhodes and his predecessors who later perfected the ideology of apartheid that legitimised the protection of LAND THEFT under the Property Clause and Bill of Rights in the post 1994 Constitution. The legitimisation of LAND THEFT post the 1994 political expediency continued to force Black people into exploitative working conditions in mines like Marikana. Twenty years under the watch of the ANC led government; Black people are still treated like second class citizens in the continent of their origin.

 
We are of the belief that nothing will change in the lives of Black people without first restoring Land to its rightful owners. LAND THEFT has created what we call Structural racism or Constitutional racism; Alex, Soweto, Khayelitsha are symbols of structural racism. Black people who continue to deny the connection between Land theft and Racism will have themselves to blame as thousands of our people continue to live in hazardous oppressive conditions like shacks and other sub-human dwellings. LAND THEFT and the disproportionate claim of Afrikan Land by the white minority is RACISM!

 
2. BLACKS CANNOT BE RACISTS

 
What is racism? Racism is the subjugation of Black people: their Land, labor and way of life under White Supremacy. White Supremacy is the global power that has divided the world into white and comfort, at the expense of land, labour and cultural exploitation of Black and indigenous people of the world. Racism is the power that determines which bodies are reserved for state bullets, whose son goes to prison, whose daughter is raped, whose mother lives with unending fear, whose father or uncle is killed in a mine shaft, and whose grandparents have no burial ground when they die. Racism is power that protects white privilege while sustaining economic marginalization of Black people from accessing habitable property, affording exorbitant university fees and qualification in the white controlled job market that affords them promotion at little or no effort.

 
Black people are neither the beneficiaries of race based privilege nor are they responsible for the imposition of racial prejudice and RACISM. Our resistance to dispossession, exploitation and systematic dehumanization in response to the legitimization of White Supremacy cannot be racist. Our struggle to delegitimize White Supremacy is a struggle for truth, justice and freedom to self-determine. Black people can therefore not be racist for seeking to restore their human dignity and the right to Land and property they were dispossessed by force and deception. They cannot be faulted for retaliating against dispossession, exploitation and dehumanization in the face of Racist oppression and deception. Therefore not all Black people are patronized into complicity with white privilege that thrives on dispossession and exploitation. Lest whites want to continue to prescribe to Black people how they must respond to injustice and inhumane conditions that colonialist, apartheid and now ne-liberal regimes have legitimized. Not only have these regimes legitimized injustices. They maintained the protection of white privilege and its ill-gotten loot. Black people and Afrikans in particular, are neither the architects not the beneficiaries of the racism that permeates society. They can therefore not be racist for standing up against racism. Haikhona! #Blacks Can’t Be Racists!

 
3. ANTI-RACISM STRUGGLE TO BE LED ONLY BY BLACK PEOPLE.

 
In a racist country it is logical for black people to organise themselves around their blackness and do so in their own terms, free of white supervisors. It would be counterproductive for black people as victims of racism to entrust the struggle to end racism to perpetrators of racism. The presence of white bodies in our spaces translates into black silence and subsequent erasure. ARAF supports the empathetic calls by Steve Biko to reject fragmentation of our resistance thus maintain Black Solidarity. We seek to oppress no one, but will not dialogue with the forces who continue to perpetuate our suffering.

 
WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE?

 
1. Call and Anti-racism Summit for the 21 March 2016.
2. Expedite self-education programs through public meetings on what Racism is & how to fight and end it.
3. Educate the people about the dangers of the “criminalisation of Racism” within neocolonialism.
4. Defend black people against any acts of racism.
5. Support actions and organizations that do not contradict ARA principles.
ARAF shall be coordinated through a national steering committee, provincial and local chapters shall have autonomy as long as they subscribe to the three principles above.

 

Issued by ARAF National Steering Committee

DATE: Tuesday, 2 February 2016
CONTACT DETAILS:

ARAF Coordinator and  Spokesperson:  Zandi Radebe
Cell: 0782438830
Email Address: zandiradebe@gmail.com
ARAF Coordinator and Spokesperson:  Zanele Lwana
Cell: +27 79 486 9087
Mail: zanelelwana@gmail.com

ARAF Coordinator and Spokesperson: Yerushka Chetty
Cell: +27 72 649 7555
Mail: yerushka@gmail.com

Facebook Page: ANTI RACISM ACTION FORUM

Twitter: @ARAF_2016