I DO not understand how some people’s minds work. I am consistently hearing people criticising former president Thabo Mbeki, saying that he was more focused on solving problems of Africa than he was on solving problems of South Africa.
These people’s inability to reason and lack of understanding of the ANC eludes me.
Firstly, anyone who understands the ANC would never make such an unreasonable argument for two reasons:
1. The ideology of the ANC is African nationalism, which in posture and orientation is geared towards a continental developmental agenda.
2. The backbone of the South African struggle was the solidarity we had from other African countries.
In the 1960s, the apartheid regime hunted down, jailed or killed multitudes of freedom fighters from across all national liberation movements.
All political parties were banned. This dealt a major blow to our struggle, having to go underground to train for an armed struggle following the Sharpeville Massacre of March 1960.
The ANC found a home and support across many African countries: Lesotho, Tanzania, Angola, Mozambique, Zambia and as far as Cuba and the USSR.
MK’s operations were financed by African countries.
Secondly, the philosophy of African nationalism rests on the foundation of not just a common identity, but on African unity. It is no accident of history that the ANC adopted this ideology, it was due to prevailing material conditions that necessitated a wave of Africanism against a continent bleeding from imperial devastation and settler colonialism.
It is because Mbeki understood this that he was focused on solving African problems.
It was in the best interests of both the entire continent and South Africa too.
Siviwe Kasi aka Svige, King William’s Town