Political parties divided over #BlackLivesMatter

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African Christian Democratic Party (ACDP) leader Kenneth Meshoe says his party does not support the Black Lives Matter (BLM) movement.

He says it’s a movement that promotes anarchy and lawlessness.

Meshoe was participating in the Debate of National Importance on “Solidarity with the Black Lives Matter Movement” during a hybrid sitting of the National Assembly on Tuesday.

The motion was brought by EFF Chief Whip Floyd Shivambu.

Calls for solidarity with the movement gained prominence following the brutal murder of an African-American man, George Floyd, at the hands of white police officers a few months ago.

Meshoe says, “Melina Abdullar who is a co-founder of BLM in Los Angeles says that it took her almost a year before she realised that #BlackLivesMatter was much more than a racial and social justice movement. At this core, she said it is a spiritual movement. Deputy Speaker this is one of the main reasons that the ACDP will never support a racist, divisive violent movement such as BLM that promotes anarchy and lawlessness in society.”

“Our values as believers, we believe in the Prince of Peace, the Lord Jesus Christ, are at odds with BLM’s liberal values that reportedly include appeasing the dead through rituals such as pouring libations in some of the meetings,” explains Meshoe.

But the IFP has come out in support of standing in solidarity with the #Black Lives Matter Movement, saying South Africa is no stranger to racism.

IFP MP Mkhuleko Hlengwa says, “The importance of this debate and the importance of our National Assembly in debating this matter and showing our solidarity to the American people, black people, the world over and then in our own continent, and the African Diaspora, cannot be stressed enough.”

“South Africa certainly has a role to play in sharing our lessons and in sharing our liberation victory over the racist tyranic apartheid regime. We were not alone in fighting individual and institution racism prior to 1994. South Africa is no stranger to racism and its long-lasting effects. Even in 2020, we are reminded that the legacy of apartheid has a long way from being erased in our society. Apartheid, a system of separation and oppression and racism, was a crime against humanity,” adds Hlengwa.

Meanwhile, the African Transformation Movement says racism is not a feeling or an attitude but powers to discriminate and subjugate.

ATM leader  Vuyo Zungula wants racism to be criminalised.

“Racism is neither feeling nor an attitude. It is a power to discriminate and subjugate. And in South Africa only whites have got that power due to the monopoly on land ownership as well economic resources. Therefore, ATM moves that racism must be criminalised.”

“The Competition Commission must be supported and given more powers to deal with banks and other companies that are systematically oppressing black people. Government must spend more than 70% of its trillion rand budget on SMMEs that are predominantly black-owned. The white financial system that is at the core of impugning the dignity of Black people must be dismantled,” adds Zungula.

But the DA’s Ghaleb Cachalia warned that the noble intentions of the Black Lives Movement have been hijacked for other reasons.

“Yes, we must be vigilant. But also alive to the efforts of the ANC and the EFF to echo the documented goals of the International Black Lives Matter to call as a cornerstone of their demands in curtailing of property rights and cutting off military budgets in half.

“The de-funding of the police, the disbanding of private schools, the abolition of private hospitals, the creation of government-funded sacred sites of black worshipers and extra tax rebates depending on how black you are. Look it up it’s there and it’s here. It diminishes the Mandela Project,” adds Cachalia.

The Freedom Front Plus has described the Black lives Matter Movement as Marxist with an anti-Western and Anti-white Agenda.

FF-Plus leader Pieter Groenewald says the founders of the movement have confirmed their Marxist’s ideology.

He says the FF-Plus does not support the BLM agenda, but is against all forms of racism.

“Honourable Deputy Speaker, there can be no doubt that the Black Lives Movement as a movement, is a post-modern radical left new Marxist organisation with anti-Western and anti-white agenda. We have heard in this debate,- that anti-white propaganda that has been uttered in this House. Yes, you look at the George Floyd incident in the United States of America.”

“But my question is,  what about the Collins Khoza case in South Africa where a Black person has been beaten to death by soldiers? Black soldiers, but I didn’t see the uproar. I didn’t see the rioting when it was about Collins Khoza. Is it because it was black on black violence? Chair, I want to put it very clearly, the Freedom Front-Plus are against all forms of racism and police brutality.”

ANC Member of Parliament Richard Dyantyi has likened the EFF to the late Eugene Terre’blanche’s rightwing organisation, the Afrikaner Weerstand Beweging (AWB).

Dyantyi criticised what he called politics of extremism and literalism.

“The EFF certainly wants to launder the extremism by using the plight of the people. In fact, their anti-White championing stance makes them a perfect Black version of the erstwhile Afrikaner Weerstand Beweging of Terre Blanche. That’s what it does. Is die selde ding [it is the same thing]. Verwoerd and Terreblache would be proud of their racist guys. They will be very happy with the role that the EFF [is playing].”

“The only difference between the two is their uniforms. One is wearing a dirty Khaki and one is wearing a dirty red overall. That’s the only difference. A party of single paradigm, literalism. They have one version of interpreting the egg. They have one boiled egg. When its a scramble egg its too complicated. As the ANC we refuse the relic of the past. We stand here to say we want to remain the template of the future as we have always done,” says Dyantyi.