The March of Hatred in South Africa: One Bullet, One Indian
AFRICA, 9 Aug 2021
5 Aug 2021 – Today South Africa registered 13,263 new Covid19 cases, bringing the cumulative total to 2,484,009. A further 423 Covid19-related deaths were reported, taking total official deaths to 73,415. A total of 8,182,380 people have been vaccinated in a total, recorded, current population of South Africa is 59,991,819 based on projections of the latest United Nations data. The total population of People of Indian Origins is 1.45 million, as of 21st July 2021 as per data released by Statista Research Department. In 2019, it was reported that, 66.3 % of the population of South Africa is urban. According to 2020 estimated statistics, Gauteng continues to record the largest share of South Africa’s population, with approximately 15.5 million people (26,0%) living in this province. KwaZulu-Natal is the second largest population with approximately 11.5 million people, followed by Northern Cape maintained with 1.29 million people with the lowest population in the country. Against such a minority, of South Africans by birth, a profound racial hatred, which dates back to the 1949 Durban Riots, is resurfacing, during the pandemic.
ANC crimes with no punishment, point the way to a failed state. The day also marks the exposure of high-level criminal activities across senior levels of government, with no sector spared. While former President Jacob Zuma was moved to hospital under the care of military medical staff, from his incarceration in the Estcourt Prison on the 07th July, due to contempt of court, following his non-appearance at the corruption hearings at the Zondo Commission of Inquiry.
The day also marks the Registrar of the most senior regulatory body in South Africa, The Health Professionals Council of South Africa, whereby the Registrar was charged in court and arrested on financial irregularities, by the Special Investigative Unit, for corruption in connection with allegedly corrupt payments amounting to R8.7 million of public funds. The charges relate to Free State Department of Health tenders and contracts signed off between January 2011 and December 2015. This itself is a serious indictment on the credibility of the medical council of South Africa as well as the Health Care Workers, who are in positions of trust in terms of patient care. To further compound the high ethical standing of the medical profession in South Africa, today, the Minister of Health, officially resigned, while placed on suspension following financial irregularities committed by him while in Office with the Digital Vibes Scandal, in which the Minister of Health, a former Chancellor of the University of KwaZulu-Natal, was involved with corruption involving Personal Protection Equipment while the SARS-Cov-2 Pandemic is increasing rampantly across the country. It is also interesting to note that the Minister was placed on suspension, while the Special Investigative Units’ report was awaited, on full salary from the taxpayer’s money, and only resigned just before the President Cyril Ramaphosa announced a major national cabinet reshuffle in his address to the nation on National Television at 2100 hours last night. Similarly, there are other cases of unbridled corruption amongst the Black African government and a multitude of provincial officials, throughput the country. There are also reports of numerous registered Non-Profit Organisation and unregistered bodies misappropriating funds raised from abroad on the pretext of assisting the poorer communities, while these monies are directed into the pockets of the Chairs and Board members of these community organisations. The author himself exposed such an activity with national regulatory body in South Africa, receiving no response after 15 separate e-mails and an equal number of personal calls to the Head of such a regulatory body, to no avail. In fact, the civil servants who are supposed to be at work, are painting their nails, ignoring phone calls or if working from home during the various Covid Lockdowns, are having a wonderful time, as investigations have revealed. There is no service delivery, right across the various departments of civil service, ranging from hospital management to the law enforcement officers.
Nine law enforcement officers suspected of committing a series of crimes, including house robbery, extortion and corruption, in Gauteng were arrested by the police this week. Three of the suspects are attached to the Johannesburg Metropolitan Police Department (JMPD) and six are from the South African Police Service. “It is reported that on Saturday, 17th July 2021 at about 15:00, a house in Simunye, Bekkersdal area, was robbed by three males and one female where an undisclosed amount of cash and expensive liquor were taken,” said Masondo, the spokesperson.
The West Rand District Trio Task Team launched a manhunt for the suspects after the matter was reported to the police. During the course of the investigation, it was discovered that two vehicles – a white VW Polo and white double-cab Isuzu bakkie – were used by the suspects. The police ran the license plates through the relevant database and found that the Polo’s registration was false but the bakkie belonged to a JMPD K9 unit member based in Booysen, Johannesburg. A warrant of arrest was issued and two suspects, aged 38 and 41, were taken into custody. Both are members of the JMPD. The arrest happened on Thursday, 5th August. “Police are looking for other suspects and investigation is continuing to establish if they are linked to other crimes,” said Masondo.
Further examples of extortion and thievery revolves around a Warrant Officer, four Sergeants and a Constable were arrested, along with a civilian, after allegedly extorting an individual they accused of dealing in diesel. The six officers and civilian reportedly arrived at the business in Putfontein, Ekhurleni on Tuesday, 3rd August, and asked to search the area as they claimed it was used to deal in diesel and store illegal firearms.
According to the JG Zuma Foundation, its patron’s lawyers have written to the unnamed foundations “who benefited from the arms deal” to lay bare details pertaining to how they benefited. “The legal team of former President Zuma has dispatched letters to prominent organisations and foundations who benefited from the arms deal to provide pertinent details of the relevant transactions,” said the foundation in a brief statement. “These details will be tabled in the trial in Pietermaritzburg, to set the record straight at the right time.” Foundation spokesperson Mzwanele Manyi refused to reveal which organisations and foundations were targeted. Zuma’s long-awaited trial starts next Tuesday, with his legal team expected to continue arguing for the removal of prosecutor Billy Downer from the case.
In his last appearance in May, Zuma told supporters he had nothing to do with the arms deal. Zuma is no stranger to threatening to spill the beans when he is cornered. Since his legal woes started in the mid-2000s, he has publicly threatened to expose those he viewed as his enemies. It remains to be seen which foundations he is threatening to expose for allegedly benefiting from the arms deal. Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF) supporters who have marched against alleged racism in the Phoenix area, north of Durban, have observed a moment of silence outside the local police station. They are justifiably calling for justice for those who were killed earlier in July in an act believed to be racially motivated. At least 36 people died in the looting, violence and vigilantism that hit the area. A number of people gathered in the town. These of course haven’t been without any incident. We saw a group of people stoning those who are watching on the side of the road, those peeping from the high gated walls here in Phoenix. Just a few incidents of stoning by some of the supporters of the EFF or those in the political attire of the EFF but police were quick to quell those tensions.” A number of businesses were forced to close along the route of the EFF march. Police asked taxis outside local malls to move off the road to allow the march to pass through.
History teaches each of us how to be brutally honest, forthright and transparent about a problem and yet, as “solutionistic primates”, be totally optimistic to strive for solutions. Hence this document meets an unfilled need to propose a solution to the challenges of our personal safety and that of our property, during these violent times of rampant looting, arson, murder and generalised anarchy. We, as insignificant minorities, in South Africa, a country which our forefathers have painstaking built, over centuries, already has been destroyed by politicians, miscreants and a “nation of thieves”.
South Africa achieved liberation from the discriminative and oppressive, White, Nationalist, apartheid government on 27th April 1994, when the African National Congress Government, under President Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela came into power. This was the first democratically elected, truly representative of the population demographics, government in South Africa.
Immediately, following the acquisition of liberation from the bondage of white supremacy, which commenced with the arrival of Jan van Riebeeck, in Table Bay, on 06th April 1652, from the present-day Netherlands, with the oppression, enslavement, and expropriation of indigenous land began, to officially end 342 long years, later. There was euphoria, with the Black South Africans thinking and led to believe that the Black Government of the ruling party will ensure freedom, equality, education, literacy, employment and a cohesive family unit, eradicating the migrant worker ideology. The Black people thought that the transformation to democracy, will result in the multitude of Black South Africans achieving eternal peace, joy and happiness. This expectation lasted a few years, post 1994.
However, to the sad and total disillusionment of the Black Africans in the country, they realised that a two-tiered, economic grouping of Africans have emerged in South Africa. Clearly, the stalwarts of anti-apartheid movement, returned home from exile abroad, after empowering themselves, educationally, economically, and socially. These members of the persecuted anti-apartheid force found themselves easily placed in parliament, where they began to enjoy privileges of the newly acquired affluence and position of power, over the 50 million odd population of South Africa. This group saw unlimited finance and opportunities to amass fortunes, ensuring them a luxurious lifestyle and sowed the seeds of corruption at the highest echelons of the new Black Government. The borders were opened to surrounding countries so that the comrades in the neighbouring countries could come into South Africa, unchecked. This was a time for payback to the countries which housed most of the anti-apartheid exiles, when they escaped from the brutal security forces, who also reportedly killed and fed the activists to crocodiles in the Operational Zone of the White South African Defence Force, during the struggle.
During this transition, a new well-heeled group of Blacks emerged within South Africa. This group then proceeded to use their newly gained privileges and power, to effectively put into practice the philosophy of “His Masters’ Voice” of superiority against the very people, of their own kind, whom they liberated and gave them freedom. The two afore mentioned groups within the citizenry, were firstly, the ruling class who were hyper-rich and secondly the have-nots, who became even poorer, than they were previously. The hyper-rich became the “tenderpreneurs”, acquiring great wealth, by using the nefarious process of grafting and usurping public funds by all means possible. Funding meant for school feeding schemes, health and wellbeing of fellow South Africans education, as well as Black industries, were misappropriated, under different guises. Border guards, became totally corrupt, accepting bribes and sex favours for entry into South Africa. The South African Police Services became progressively corrupt, protecting the drug lords, irregular dealings, arranging disappearance of crime files, for a fee. This resulted in the law enforcement working for their personal gain, rather than for the protection of the voiceless and upholding law and order. The massive and easy access to foreigners into South Africa, created tensions between the locals, who were out of employment, to the benefit of the lowly paid foreigners. This created xenophobia and recurrent attacks on foreign businesses which became the envy of locals. There was no service delivery, because the officials made off with the funds, earmarked for specific projects. The country was rocked by scandals involving pension and social benefits. Large contracts involving billions of rands, and compromised heath care service delivery progress were the order of the day. Healthcare professionals were stealing anti-retroviral medication and selling them to drug dealers to create a potent, highly addictive, street drug called Whoonga. The communities became despondent, as massive unemployment, disruption to educational access, lowering of standards in tertiary education, including medicine and an increase in violent crime, including murders, while the elite Black community became richer by irregular means, even in the ruling party.
In the past few months even the Health Ministry members were not excluded from high level corruption, resulting in the recent suspension of the health minister. The final straw, to this unbridled corruption was the Sate Capture Scandal orchestrated by The Gupta Family, from India, in association with the former president, Jacob Zuma. Under the Chair of Deputy Chief Judge Zondo, the corruption enquiry exposed irregularities within the state-owned enterprises, leading to the call for President Zuma been summoned to the hearings of the commission, which he did not attend. This was considered contempt of court and the former president was sentenced to 15 months in prison. This was not acceptable to the comrades and members of the ruling part, leading to a division within the African National Congress. The ruling party is subdivided into the Zuma Camp and non-Zuma Camp. Mr Zuma’s incarceration was the catalyst which triggered off the riots.
The violence commenced on Friday, 09th July, causing widespread destruction of property by arson, looting, closure of interprovincial, national roads and irreparable damage to businesses. The main features of these riots are attacks on Indian owned businesses and racially motivated murders. Subsequently, the minorities of White and Indians, formed self-protection groups to protect their businesses and homes, remembering what transpired in the 1949 Durban Riots as well as the 1985 Riots in the Indian township of Phoenix, where Indians were mercilessly killed, houses burnt with occupants inside, rape and butchering of children by African mobs, on a dedicated and concentrated mission of rampage against the Indians to whom the Black community attributes all their miseries and shortcomings.
Under such a historical background, the Indian Community of South Africa have endured hardships over the years and have continued to support the disadvantaged Blacks, as well as provide employment to millions of Africans in their companies and businesses. A week after the commencement of the riots, which were mainly concentrated on the Indian townships of Phoenix, Chatsworth, Merebank, Pietermaritzburg, Newlands, Avoca and Overport suburbs, the result was a complete razing to ground of Indian owned establishments. According to the media, the pro Zuma Camp has issued a direct threat, of unparalleled violence, if Mr Zuma is not released in 15 days from the 16th of July. It is also to be noted that the police were incompetent in protecting the minority citizenry, as well as the belated deployment of the SANDF to major trouble spots in KwaZulu-Natal and Gauteng, by the government who did not assist an economically significant sector of the community. Therefore, it has become incumbent upon the minorities, to unite and form strategies to protect themselves, from further intended attacks on their businesses, residences and existence as a community, which is looked upon as exploiters of the Black People.
The Minister of Police, General Bheki Cele says people were hacked and died of gunshot wounds in Phoenix, as racial tensions intensified in the area this week. Minister Cele visited the area for the second time this week, to address the issue. A dedicated team of 10 detectives has been tasked with investigating the 20 murders that were reported since, the civil unrest began in South Africa. Julius Malema, the leader of the EFF party has repeatedly stated that the land in South Africa belongs to the indigenous people and as such, there should be expropriation of land without compensation, resulting in an equitable distribution. Since the minority groups owns the majority of the land, there is a great threat of attacks against the minority’s residential areas and businesses in South Africa. It must also be remembered, that during the civil unrest in 1985, even the historical Mahatma Gandhi settlement in Phoenix, north of Durban, was destroyed, together with unparalleled acrimony and violence directed against the Indian community.
Noting the previous violence and atrocities, the minorities need to unite, forget our sectarianism, religious and cultural differences, against the looters to protect our properties which our forefathers have worked extremely hard to ensure our present position of relative affluence. Indians fought against White supremacy, and our great anti-apartheid icons, in the former Natal Indian Congress, gave their lives to secure our future. The threat is presently greater, because of anarchy and the deep-seated hatred against minorities. The challenges are greater than anything the elders have seen in the community, previously. The situation for minorities in South Africa is akin to the plight of the Ugandan Asians, during the brutal regime of Idi Amin, at the time. Presently, more than 330 Black people have died during the Durban July Riots following the rampant looting and arson, in support of former President Zuma, who was imprisoned on the 07th July 2021. The revenge and “sincere hatred” against minorities, especially people of Indian origins, is clearly pervasive in the air.
The Bottom Line is that the disempowered group of Africans, who voted for the ruling party of African National Congress into power, are disillusioned with the government and have defected to the radical left, which is the Economic Freedom Fighters, party led by Mr Julius Malema. The ANC is no longer the liberations fighters, with high moral standing, as espoused by Madiba. It is presently split, and factions emerged with divided loyalties expressing support for the former President Zuma. There is no cohesion and thievery is rampant. President Cyril Ramaphosa, a good an honest leader, amongst the miscreants, is performing a fine balancing act between his political career and removing the non-performing ministers from his cabinet. President Ramaphosa has indeed reshuffled his first cabinet and the sacred, untouchables, remain, in different guises. Whether the President, really achieved accountability for the July unprecedented unrest, or just re-arranged the deckchairs on the Titanic, remains to be seen. Nothing of significance has transpired in the government, post riots. The condecenders and panderers of the system are still blaming the legacy of apartheid, to justify the looting, arson and anarchy, 27 years, since the emergence of the born free generation in South Africa.
The present branding of the ruling party will be remembered by a legacy of corruption, lack of service delivery and moral degeneration of deeply entrenched values of ubuntu as well as mutual respect for all of the Lord’s creations, for which the old guard under President Mandela fought for and most of them lost their lives, in the process. In South Africa, presently, in the race to amass materialism, by any possible means, in the shortest possible time, by a few elite, Africans, the poor have become poorer and the EFF is using the abject poverty, exacerbated by SARS Cov-2 pandemic, as an opportunity to stir up nationalistic fervour, to eradicate the Indian population of South Africa. The stark reality is that he will succeed.
Professor G. Hoosen M. Vawda (Bsc; MBChB; PhD.Wits):
Director: Glastonbury Medical Research Centre; Community Health and Indigent Programme Services; Body Donor Foundation SA.
Principal Investigator: Multinational Clinical Trials
Consultant: Medical and General Research Ethics; Internal Medicine and Clinical Psychiatry:UKZN, Nelson R. Mandela School of Medicine
Executive Member: Inter Religious Council KZN SA
Public Liaison: Medical Misadventures
Activism: Justice for All
Tags: Africa, Corruption, Jacob Zuma, Nelson Mandela, South Africa
This article originally appeared on Transcend Media Service (TMS) on 9 Aug 2021.
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