Since it’s the open letter season, I thought I would pen a humble one to all unrepentant apartheid collaborators and benefactors who claim to love Madiba.

The love so widely professed for #Madiba by the former apartheid collaborators and benefactors should be shown in deeds. So many profess this undying love and admiration for #Madiba yet they continue to blissfully enjoy the fruits of the same ill that #Madiba so selflessly fought against without lifting a hand in the upliftment of the previously oppressed.

What Nelson #Mandela stands for is being deliberately twisted to suit certain sections of our society. #Madiba is now being touted as having sacrificed 67 years of his life for reconciliation. What a load of bull!

#Madiba sacrificed, fought and went to prison so there can be an end to apartheid, racism, injustice, economic exclusion and landlessness. The reconciliation comes as a result of an end to these things.

The hand of reconciliation that Madiba so generously extended is being undermined by a lack of commitment to transformation by the very same people who maintained, collaborated with and benefitted from apartheid. It’s now left only to Madiba’s party, the #ANC and the black society to bring about transformation to their own lives. Of course the #ANC as the ruling party has a huge responsibility to head up transformation, so are the formerly oppressed who need to rise from the ashes and be the change they want.

But above all, responsibility lies with those who perpetrated and/or benefitted from apartheid, to head the fight to erase the apartheid legacy.

Instead, they have become loud and critical bystanders who seem to revel in the failure of the #ANC to lead transformation while doing nothing to transform society themselves. They expect the #ANC to go it alone. This can’t be right.

It’s like invading a person’s home, striping it bare and burning it down. Bezixebulela umkhoma. All the fittings from the stripped home are distributed among yourselves to build your own homes. You exile, jail, kill and enslave the occupants of the home. When they finally rise up against you a settlement is negotiated.

Part of the settlement was that the occupants of the home need to be assisted, under their own leadership into rebuilding their house and that you are guaranteed not to lose your own house built from what was stripped from their home.

But then their leadership seems to be failing to help them rebuild quick enough while you fold your hands and carry on with your own life. Here is the confusing part, you then blame their leadership and the occupants themselves for being homeless. Fair enough, they should take the blame for continuously electing an inadequate leadership. Their fault is failing to rebuild but you are still responsible for them being homeless in the first instance! You still share responsibility to be involved and participate in the rebuilding.

The sad fact is that when the formerly oppressed rise up against the slow pace of transformation you will also be in the firing line because you are ultimately responsible for and/or are still enjoying the fruits of their suffering at apartheid’s hands.

The general feeling is that while the current government is fraught with its own problems that impede transformation, you are also not playing your part as agreed at Codesa.

You jump at embracing the reconciliation side of #Madiba so as to ignore what he expects of you in return for that reconciliation.

What are you doing to help black people rebuild? Are you forgetting that they still remember that the house you live in is built from their own home fittings? Yakhelwe ngamaqubu abo!

The point I’m trying to make is you can’t claim you love #Mandela while you are not, personally doing your part in transforming society. #Mandela’s struggle didn’t start with the fight for reconciliation among South Africans. It started with the fight against apartheid, injustice, racism, economic exclusion and landless ness. #Mandela was not born in 1994.

#Mandela was the commander-in-chief of Robert McBride, Solomon Mahlangu and many other MK operatives that you fight so tirelessly against just to even get streets named after. He led the same MK you claim was a murderous outfit. How could they be murderous when they were fighting against the same ruthless apartheid you claim to also abhor? We’re the Allied forces murderous for fighting against Hitler?

#Mandela fought against the Pretoria you fight tooth and nail to keep. How are you committed to reconciliation while embracing the remnants of apartheid, some of whom are deeply offensive to the black population.

It is hypocritical and disgusting to profess undying love for Madiba while you spitting on his face by impeding or not assisting in achieving the kind of society he dreamt of.

If you believe #AA and #BEE are reverse racism, then you have no business visiting #Madiba’s hospital to lay flowers.

For land reform to happen, you need to lose some of the land taken from black people, for economic reform to happen you need to lose some of the directorships, management and ownership positions you hold to create space for black people. It can’t happen while you continue to build on the advantages you already have.

For black judiciary officers to be appointed, it means no white officers should be appointed! Why be against this if you love #Madiba and what he stands for?

Spare us your crocodile tears about #Madiba if you believe it’s time for black people to “get over it and move on” while you have never contributed personally to transformation.

We can only move on when all that #Madiba fought for has been achieved. And no, it’s not the responsibility of a black government only to do that. It’s a shared responsibility.

The reconciliation #Mandela preaches is a genuine show of Ubuntu from a person who believed you were also genuine about your agreements at Codesa!

The fact is that #ANC failures do not absolve you of your shared responsibility to erase the apartheid legacy.


  • Despite his full-time duty of being a father to two girls and one boy, Nco Dube spends ample time fulfilling his passion for reading and writing. He is not a journalist but he writes from the heart, from an ordinary "man on the street's" perspective. His views are shaped by what's in the public domain and his analysis informed by his extensive reading and interaction with other ordinary South Africans from all walks of life. Dube is a marketer by profession who runs an experiential marketing company and is also a freelance events producer. He went to Catholic schools including St Francis College in Marriannhill and studied at the University of KwaZulu-Natal and Unisa. You can follow him on twitter: @ncodube and on Facebook: Nco Dube


Nco Dube

Despite his full-time duty of being a father to two girls and one boy, Nco Dube spends ample time fulfilling his passion for reading and writing. He is not a journalist but he writes from the heart, from...

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