Tag Archives: Freedom Charter

The particularity of race and the universality of being human: Derrida on Mandela

Judging by the seemingly never-ending spate of articles, debates, and to-and-fro accusations that reflect a veritable obsession with race in this country — an obsession one might have expected to abate somewhat at this point in time, almost 22 years after the demise of apartheid — it appears to me a timeous moment to return…

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When will apartheid victims be compensated?

June 26 is the anniversary of the signing of the Freedom Charter. It is also International Day in Support of Victims of Torture. The Freedom Charter is an aspirational document which focuses mainly on freedoms “to” and “of”. One subclause speaks directly to freedom “from”: “The privacy of the house from police raids shall be…

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School kids pay the cost of political schizophrenia

The African National Congress is inclined towards self-defeating behaviour. Nowhere has this political schizophrenia been as glaring as in the government’s inability to deliver a sound basic education. The right to education is a cornerstone of the Freedom Charter, the founding document of the modern ANC. Appropriately so, since there is a surfeit of research…

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Malema still holds us captive

Laura Fitzpatrick in a Time Magazine article explained the phenomenon commonly known as “the Stockholm syndrome”. She explained that the syndrome is ”the phenomenon in which victims display compassion for and even loyalty to their captors”. Sound familiar? It’s been over a year since our unrelenting saviour put Julius Malema’s political career to rest. Even…

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Let the miners eat cake, too

Ask any person if they’d like to see an end to rampant corruption and inequality and I bet that if they’re sane and moral they’d answer a resounding “yes!” Corruption has been rated as the biggest scourge afflicting our fledgling democracy. What I don’t understand is why economic inequality is not treated with the same…

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Marikana: Political or economic unrest?

No one can argue that South Africa will never be the same again after the Marikana massacre. What remains arguable, however, is how the country moves forward in the aftermath of the incident. For business, the sooner everything dies down and workers go back to work the better. For workers, in sharp contrast, this is…

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Of Marxist wastelands and aborted transitions

On the occasion of the African National Congress’s 100th anniversary early this year, there was a literary text that kept playing inside my subconscious mind every time I watched or read about this momentous event – one of the most significant of our time. It is a passage from Chinua Achebe’s Anthills of the Savannah:…

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Is SA the next Zimbabwe?

The simple answer is, no. I’ve attempted to answer this question once before, in 2009. My argument at the time was that South Africa had a strong Constitution, which ensured the country stayed on democratic course. Unlike Zimbabwe, post-apartheid South Africa has endeavoured to consolidate democracy by empowering independent institutions such as the judiciary. Soon…

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