DA Mpumalanga Celebrating 21 years of Freedom (@JamesMasango)

By: James Masango MP DA Mpumalanga Provincial Leader I am delighted to celebrate Freedom Day in Doornkop today. This is one of the places where I grew up. It is also the place from which we were forcibly removed by the apartheid regime. In my younger years, I witnessed three forced removals, two of which indirectly affected me. One was at the end of 1971 when residents of Botshabelo, was removed and taken to Motetema. I was attending school there and I had to move to Doornkop Combine School the following year. The second was in 1974 when the Sepedi speaking nation was forcefully removed from Doornkop in the middle of the year and they were taken to Mosterlus. I was left with no school to attend in Doornkop, and I had to go to Middelburg for a Sepedi school as there was no Sepedi medium school in Doornkop. The third and last forced removal, which affected me and my family, was in 1975 when all the Ndebele speaking people were moved to Siyabuswa in KwaNdebele. My family lives there to date. It is therefore very special for me to be celebrating freedom day here in Doornkop as I can reflect back on the past. It is important to celebrate this day, to remind ourselves and our children where we have come from. South Africans from all walks of life fought for this freedom. Different people, different means and methods brought about the freedom of South Africa. No one person or party owns the fight for freedom. We should not make a mistake of not honouring the heroes and heroines who sacrificed their lives, families and careers for the freedom we have. While we have to reflect on the past, it is crucial to visualise, how we can unite every citizen of this country as we move forward to becoming one nation with one future. Those who died for our freedom did so, with one objective, a non-racial, non-sexist South Africa that sees all its citizens being treated equally. In 1994 when we voted, we were putting an end to an era where you were discriminated upon based on colour of your skin, gender and all other forms of discrimination. But it is surprising that the very same ANC that claims to have fought racism is today dividing our nation through racism in a desperate effort to hold onto power. When they have nothing to defend their failures, they invoke racism to push us apart. The EFF has followed the ANC’s strategy, but have taken it a step further by sowing seeds of hatred wherever they go. This is not helping South Africa; it flies in the face of the freedom we fought so hard for. As we speak today, South Africa is experiencing tragic xenophobia. We condemn all acts of xenophobia and the DA has called for our country’s leaders to calm tensions, and speak out against those irresponsible people who incited this xenophobic rage. Those who invite xenophobia have blood on their hands. The killing of a human being cannot be condoned. Every person has a right to life. Killing cannot be a solution to any problem. We are in a new South Africa, guided by our constitution and the laws of this country. While we do understand people’s frustrations and sympathize with them, these acts of criminality will never solve any problems, will not reduce poverty, it will not close the gap of inequalities and it will not bring better service delivery. Only your vote will bring the changes you want. The are many factors that contribute to foreign nationals flocking to South Africa illegally or legally from neighbouring countries, some of which include; * The porous borders of South Africa; * Corruption at Home Affairs; * Unstable political conditions in other African states; * Dictatorship by some African leaders; * Unpopular economic policies; * Ignorance of the rule of law by those in power. As The DA we believe that South Africans can overcome this, all of us should stand up against racism and xenophobia. Regardless of the political parties that we represent we must all condemn Xenophobia. But our government needs to ensure that: * Our borders function properly and are policed; * Corruption within government is eradicated; * Our economy grows; * Opportunities for decent employment are created; * The youth wage subsidy is implemented; * Police arrest the criminals and for all justice system to run its course. Freedom has not come easy, some here still not tasted the fruits of freedom, we see the richer keep getting rich while the poor continue to live in abject poverty. What is freedom without a roof over your head? What is freedom without employment? What is freedom without food on the table? Right here in Doornkop, the questions are the same: What is freedom without water? What is freedom without electricity? What is freedom if you don’t know whether the stand your house is built on is yours or not? What is freedom if you have no proper roads infrastructure? More than twenty years into our democracy, people are still protesting for the same reasons they protested twenty years ago; basic services delivery like toilets, rubbish removals, proper housing and the things that make freedom real. I have no doubt that we all have the same vision for South Africa, a prosperous and safe country, where we all can have employment, we are given equal opportunities, we see and treat each other as human being and we love one another as brothers and sisters. We can achieve all of this, as long as we have the same mindset, of one nation, one future. Amandla! [END] ##################################################################################### Scanned by MailMarshal – M86 Security’s comprehensive email content security solution. Download a free evaluation of MailMarshal at www.m86security.com #####################################################################################