Cape Town urged to join march against corruption

| Pharie Sefali
Photo by Aboubakar Shaboodien

Speakers at a meeting in Salt River last night urged Capetonians to join the march against corruption on 19 August in the city.

The march on parliament is supported by several organisations including SECTION27, Treatment Action Campaign, Equal Education, Right2Know, Sonke Gender Justice, Corruption Watch, Food and Allied Workers’ Union and the National Union of Metalworkers (NUMSA).

Speakers on last night’s panel were Vuyo Lufele from NUMSA, Wafaa Abdurahman from the United Front, Dr Rashid Omar from the Claremont Mosque, Ntuthuzo Ndzomo from Equal Education and Achmad Kassiem from the Islamic Unity Convention.

Speakers said corruption affected all South Africans, especially those from the poorest communities.

Several speakers blamed corruption on capitalism.

Kassiem said that corruption was a global issue and capitalism was its root cause.

Abdurahman said capitalism made poor people poorer. People from poor communities with no job and no education did whatever they needed to do to survive and much of the time this involved corruption, she said.

“The system makes sure that the poor go out to make money by any means.”

Corruption has nothing to do with race, she said. “If you are in greed, then you will be corrupt.”

Vuyo Lufefe also blamed capitalism for corruption. He said Black Economic Empowerment often involved putting “a black face in the forefront”.

Most of the leaders in government had tenders, he said.

Ntuntuzo Ndzomo gave an example of corruption in KwaZulu-Natal and said that people had to pay a certain amount of money to get a post of a school principal.

A member of the audience said Marikana was a good example how capitalism and corruption destroyed the poor. “The government worked with capitalists and they did not think of the poor, they only thought of businesses and profit, not of another person’s life,” he said.

Another speaker, from Manenberg, said that the failure of the authorities to deal with crime in her area was corruption.

She said everyday she woke up to bullets, and children were scared to go to school and do everyday activities because her neighborhood was run by thugs.

“Taking a stand and uniting against corruption is long overdue. It’s time for people to realise the power they have. People have to be educated on corruption, and have the power to overthrow the government that is not working for us.”

“We are the government and people in parliament are not the government,” she said, urging people to take a stand to be “treated as humans”. “Because where I came from we are not, and the government is not helping,” she said.

Khululwa Mpongo from Franschhoek said that today’s corrupt system was “worse than the dompas system” and she is grateful that such meetings were held, but disappointed that police corruption was not properly dealt with.

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TOPICS:  Human Rights

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