By: Carl Niehaus
This past Sunday, the Sunday Times saw it fit to dedicate almost half of its main editorial to attacking and vilifying me. They saw fit to do so in defense of a traitor. Propaganda stories dating back from almost a decade and a half ago were once again dusted off and embellished in order to try to discredit and undermine the perfectly legitimate call that I made, on behalf of the Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA), that Mr. Derek Hanekom should be disciplined and expelled from the ANC for having conspired with opposition parties such as the EFF in order to undermine the ANC, and remove an incumbent ANC President. There are no two ways about it. What Hanekom had done was the work of a traitor: Nothing less.
In defense of Mr. Hanekom, the Sunday Times tried to portray me as an unelected loose canon. For the record, the facts are very different: I am an elected member of the NEC of MKMVA and the National Spokesperson of MKMVA. Whatever statements I issue on behalf of MKMVA, I do so officially and in that elected capacity.
The Sunday Times may not like it, but I am an elected member of the National Executive
Committee (NEC) of MKMVA and there is no denying of that fact. I have never purported to issue media statements in any other capacity, and I have never in the remotest way tried to encroach on the work of the Spokesperson of the ANC, comrade Pule Mabe. Efforts by some in the mainstream media to make me responsible for ANC Media statements issued by the Spokesperson of the ANC, when they do not like the contents of those statements, are blatant lies. They disingenuously try to give me powers way beyond what I have, and which I do not aspire to.
As for my employed in the Office of the Secretary-General (SGO) of the ANC: I am. employed as a Manger, with a legitimate and legally binding, full-time, employment contract. The Sunday Times complains that I am constantly seen together with the Secretary-General of the ANC, comrade Ace Magashule, (“joined by the hip”, they nag). When I am with the Secretary-General it is in the course of carrying out my duties, as an employee in his office. I have not heard the same Sunday Times complaining about employees in the Offices any of the other National Office Bearers (NOB’s) seen together with their principles when carrying out their duties. Somehow, this complaint is only
reserved for me. Why? Surely, what must be fit for the goose, must be fit for the gander …
Concerning the issues in my past, that the Sunday Times and their ilk keep on resuscitating and embellishing, I have dealt with those and the Sunday Times can do their damndest, I will not be dragged back there. Again for the record: I have never been charged with any crime, and I have no criminal record. Nor have I have never been charged for, nor found guilty of, any act of fraud. Thus, to call me a fraudster is a total misnomer and libelous.
However, I served 10 years of a 15-year prison sentence for so-called ‘High Treason’, for
membership of the ANC and Umkhonto we Sizwe (MK), and for having carried out operations as a member of MK. Obviously, this was not ‘criminal’, but political – and I am very proud of having been part of the liberation struggle. All of those who want to drag my name through the mud, can never – as much as they may try – deny my history as a liberation fighter, and I will never let them forget that!
I am an ANC veteran with 40 years of uninterrupted service and membership in good standing. I have not only been a member of the ANC in good times since the ANC is the ruling party, and in government, but when the ANC was a banned organization. I was detained, severely tortured and imprisoned because of being a member of the ANC. Those who work with me, and my close friends and comrades, know that I was tortured so badly that I lost most of my hearing, and that even with hearing aids I battle every day to overcome that inflicted disability.
Since I have joined the ANC at the age of 19, I have never conspired with anyone outside the ANC to undermine the ANC, nor betrayed any of my fellow comrades, not even after months of solitary confinement and torture. Those comrades who have been detained with me, among them comrade Obed Bapela (NEC member, and Deputy Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs [COGTA]), can attest to that. Throughout I have been loyal to the letter and spirit of the ANC Constitution and dedicated my whole adult life to the liberation struggle.
Now that MKMVA called for a traitor in our ranks – such as Derek Hanekom by his own admission is – the Sunday Times, in defense of that traitor, calls on President Ramaphosa to act against me, and the Secretary-General, comrade Ace Magashule, as part of an ‘unelected cabal’. One wonders, what they mean with ‘unelected’? Was comrade Ace Magashule not elected as the Secretary-General of the ANC, at the 54th National Conference of the ANC, and as I have stated above, was I not elected as an NEC member of MKMVA??
So according to the Sunday Times, President Ramaphosa must act against us in defense of a self-confessed traitor? Clearly, this is an aberration. The Sunday Times, and those who are with them and whose interests they serve do not have the best interests of the ANC, nor of President Ramaphosa as President of the ANC, at heart. President Ramaphosa has not solicited their dubious advice, and I have no doubt that the President knows that he will follow such advice at his own peril.
The Sunday Times, being their White Monopoly Capital (WMC) Master’s Voice wants me – and others like me – silenced. They hate my guts because having deployed every Stratcom fake news and propaganda trick against me, I am still standing and talking.
Let me make it clear to Mr. Bongani Siqoko, and the rest of his hacks, you can do your damnedest, I will not be silenced. I will continue to loyally serve the African National Congress, as I have done for the past 40 years. I will continue to carry out my duties as an elected member of the NEC of MKMVA, and the National Spokesperson of MKMVA. I will continue to do the job that I am employed to do in the Office of the Secretary-General of the ANC. I will continue to be loyal to the ideals of the Freedom Charter, and work for the full implementation of the pro-RET Resolutions of the 54th National Conference of the ANC, in order to secure the Second Phase of our National Democratic Revolution (NDR). My fellow comrades, and I, who are committed to these revolutionary ideals will continue to call for the removal of traitors and impimpis in our ranks, like Mr. Derek Hanekom and others.
We herewith give you notice: Whether you like it or not – we as the Radical Economic
Transformation Forces will continue to be right there in your faces, unbroken and unbreakable, challenging the counter-revolution that you are trying to advance within the ANC, and against the people of South Africa.