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- A Stuijt
- Retired South African medical journalist, ex-Sunday Times of Johannesburg.
ANC youth leader Julius Malema: ‘the people should own the mines’…
6 July 2009 -- In opening the ANC Youth League’s Political School on July 1, 2009, writes ANC Youth League leader Julius Malema, he is calling for the nationalisation of all of South Africa’s mines (see speech).
South Africa is the world’s largest producer of extremely strategic minerals such as platinum, gold and the all-important chromium which is essential for the manufacture of steel. Chromium is produced in very few other countries in the world. South Africa also exports vast supplies of other raw minerals such as coal and uranium.
The primary beneficiaries of this mineral wealth are the United States of America: South Africa exports 11.9% of its GDP in raw minerals to the United States of America; to Japan 11.1%, Germany 8%, United Kingdom 7.7%, China 6.6% and the Netherlands 4.5%, according to the CIA world factbook for 2007. Foreign investments in South Africa amounted to US $99.61 billion according to the 2008 CIA estimate.
Malema re-emphasised his demand in a second statement on July 6 2009 that he ‘wasn’t shocked that certain people, particularly the representatives of big business are not happy.”
“ What surprises us though, it is those within our ranks who oppose the call for the nationalisation of mines, because this is a call of the Freedom Charter, which says unequivocally that "the mineral wealth beneath the soil, monopoly industries and banks shall be transferred to the ownership of the people as a whole".
‘The people as a whole is vividly distinguishable from State rentals of mineral wealth to big corporations who brutally exploit labour and unsustainably exploit mineral wealth to make big profits,’ he writes in an article on Politics Web. http://www.politicsweb.co.za/politicsweb/view/politicsweb/en/page71619?oid=135212&sn=Detail
He also issued a very clear warning: “the Freedom Charter is a the clearest expression of what the ANC and alliance partners seek to achieve in South Africa and any person who is against the Charter is against the aims of the ANC and the revolutionary alliance. Those who are tired of leading the African National Congress will dare oppose its ideals, because the declaration all members sign when joining the ANC commit all members to abide the aims and objectives of the Freedom Charter. As defenders of the revolution we will have a permanent problem with any member or leader of the ANC who opposes the Freedom Charter in an attempt to please the minority owners of Mines and mineral resources.”
“Our call for nationalisation of mines is in such a manner where the State will own mineral wealth and mines as a custodian of the entire South African population, and not a custodian of few big-businesses,” he writes.
“All South Africans should equitably benefit from State owned and controlled mines and we are not mistaken when we make the call for the nationalisation of Mines. We are vividly aware of the Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) which retains State control of all mineral rights, but what we are calling for is State ownership and control of both the mineral wealth beneath the soil, and the extraction and production of these mineral resources in Mines thereof.”
“Why is it that South Africa should be criminalised for nationalising our mineral wealth, whilst the big capitalists' states like the United States are nationalising their corporations in their countries?
- We should refuse to be controlled by imperialist forces whose interests will never converge with the interests of the South African population. Theirs is to make big profits at the expense of South Africans' labour and mineral resources, and this is historically the root of racial oppression. Racial oppression in South Africa is a direct consequence of colonialists' control of South Africa's mineral resources, and we have a responsibility to reverse such phenomenon.””
During the 2009 State of the Nation address, President Jacob Zuma said: "The creation of decent work will be at the centre of our economic policies and will influence our investment attraction and job-creation initiatives".
“ It is our firm belief that if job-creation is genuinely at the centre of economic policies, then the State should own and control mineral wealth and mines so as to attract labour absorptive industrialists who will beneficiate our minerals resources and diversify South Africa's economy. The beneficiation of the mineral resources and diversification of the economy will never happen if minerals and mines are still controlled by the current owners, because their interests are only confined with exporting South Africa's minerals to the bigger economies.”
Malema also maintains that threats from overseas investors to withdraw their investments : ‘ are simply threats that cannot disorientate the South African economy. The investors need South Africa's economic resources, labour and expanding market as much as we appreciate their investments….”
“They are investing in South Africa because they want to benefit, not because they are doing us a favour. So the threats of disinvestment are really hollow. As we said before, nationalisation of mines will not please everyone, and the ANC government should appreciate that in a class divided society like South Africa, some decisions will not go well with certain sections of society.”
We should be decisive and mobilise the people to understand that we need to nationalise mines in order to benefit all South Africans. Those who are calling for an open debate around the whole issue are welcome, as this will assist the people to decide their destiny and concretely affirm that indeed the mineral wealth beneath the soil should benefit all the people. “
South Africa is the world’s largest producer of strategic minerals such as platinum, gold and the all-important chromium which is essential for the manufacture of steel. It also exports vast supplies of other raw minerals such as coal and uranium. Its primary export partners are the United States of America at 11.9% of its GDP, Japan 11.1%, Germany 8%, United Kingdom 7.7%, China 6.6% and the Netherlands 4.5%, according to the CIA world factbook for 2007.Foreign investments in South Africa amounted to US $99.61 billion according to the 2008 CIA estimate.
Statement issued by Julius Malema, ANC Youth League President, July 6 2009
South African mineral wealth, CIA World Factbook: https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/SF.html
Diepsloot, Jagersfontein, Piet Retief… the anti-ANC riots, which started last week in the town of Piet Retief, have also sprung up in Diepsloot and Jagersfontein. Thus far two people have died when angry township residents started torching municipal buildings. In all three events, the rioting was directly caused by people’s dismay that the ANC-government had failed to keep its election promises…
Diepsloot in May last year, also became infamous worldwide due to a horrendously violent campaign of xenophobic violence in which thousands of non-South African black Africans had been chased from the township by organised, armed gangs – which also torched several people in front of the international news cameras.
- view YouTube video by South African news team: www.youtube.com/watch?v=JwtS2-l1Cs8
This weekend, Diepsloot became the third town within just a week to plunge itself into well-organised rioting. The lights went out on Sunday night after citizens angrily objected to their planned forced removal to another squatter town in Brits, north-West of Pretoria. Roads were barricaded with burning tyres and furniture, large rocks littered the streets, and police fired rubber bullets at the unruly crowd. And there was massive looting of shops in all three riots. Last night, a Diepsloot shop-owner cried: "All my things are gone. They have taken everything."
- This protest, which started around 10am, was held to demonstrate dissatisfaction over the allocation of houses and the fact that some of the shack dwellers were once again being moved, this time to an informal settlement in Brits, north-west of Pretoria.The situation remained volatile as police continued to patrol several hotspots including the busy R511, where several cars passing by were stoned or had windows smashed by angry residents.Diepsloot came about when many shack dwellers were moved from Alexandra to a new area near Fourways, where they said they were promised that houses would be built for them. More than 10 years later, residents say they have yet to see the promised housing. Residents on Sunday said they were angered after they were informed that they were going to be moved again to make way for new developments."We'll only move out of shacks when we get new houses that we were promised," said Martina Matlaila.Another resident, Mpho Letsoalo, said the community had taken to the streets because the councillor would not address them on housing issues. "Some residents are asking for the government to prepare land around here and give them stands so that they can build their own houses but that, too, won't happen," Letsoalo said. "People here are fed up with empty promises by the government."
Jagersfontein – Free State: architectural gem torched by angry mob:
July 4 2009 – JAGERSFONTEIN, South Africa. Some 700 angry black people took to the streets of the southern Free State town of Jagersfontein and burnt down its historic municipal building – designed by famous British architect Sir Herbert Baker. The crowd was angry because the impoverished town can’t raise enough tax revenue to sustain its bulging budget. Some 500 municipal workers had to be laid off. The black residents also were angry because the ANC’s campaign promises of “free housing, free utilities and free schooling for all” simply cannot be met with the town’s shrinking budget.
These ‘protestors’ also form part of the countrywide mob which with depressing regularly throws such violence-driven temper tantrums over most weekends.
Piet Retief too
Similar scenes also played in Piet Retief, where a mob, armed with petrol bombs, pangas, pitchforks, knobkerries and axes, laid into government buildings and possessions, setting fire to clinics, libraries, community halls and vehicles belonging to the municipality. They burned tyres, barricaded roads with rocks and metal scraps, blocked the N2 highway and destroyed the railway line.Then, their anger still not assuaged, they turned on the Pakistani shopkeepers — before taking aim at the mayor whose house they ransacked and set alight. In the melee, Phuphu Mthethwa, 29, and Christopher Jele, 21, died.
White taxpayers have become poor whites – and tax budgets are shrinking countrywide
Jagersfontein’s former taxpaying population, i.e. the whites who mainly worked in the local mining industries and kept the tax-coffers filled, have become unemployable because of the ANC’s own anti-white labour laws.
The few remaining whites, with the exception of the undertaker, now are dirt-poor and barely able to eke out a living. The municipal budget now simply doesn’t get enough taxes from these former ratepayers– and thus cannot fulfill the ruling ANC party’s constant campaign promises to give ‘free water, free housing, free schooling and free electricity to all’. Countrywide, a full one-third of the entire Afrikaner nation -- one-million often top-educated taxpayers and employers of millions of black workers -- have now become homeless, unemployable due to anti-white labour laws and so destitute that they need daily food-handouts from the Helping Hand charity of Solidarity trade union for their existence.
South Africa’s ruling party is indeed facing a serious, often violent revolt in all its poorest black communities - even resulting in no-go areas for its members. ANC-councillors are beaten, shot and burned out of their homes. Party meetings have been ambushed. Local branches have disbanded or gone to ground. A breakaway party had to be crushed with a heavy hand during the latest election, which could only be won by Jacob Zuma’s overwhelming charm and promises, promises, promises….
- Fifteen years after the end of apartheid, some 12-million people live in tin shacks or makeshift housing -- a quarter of the official South African population, reports the Guardian newspaper... And that’s a whole lot worse than the housing was provided by the apartheid-government -- in fact the current shantytown population has soared by 50% over the past decade…
- Yet eighty percent of all these many tens of millions of shacks also are connected to the national electricity grid and 68% of all these many millions of poor people also receive free daily water rations.
Back in Jagersfontein this week, the local school principal De Wet Holtzhausen says that the crowd has torched ‘an invaluable memorial’ to the town’s unique history. Indeed: this unassuming municipal building – like most of the old buildings in this historic mining-town -- was designed by famous UK architect Sir Herbert Baker. He was the dominant force in South African architecture for two decades, 1892–1912.
Jagersfontein was built in the former Boer republic of the Orange Free State. It is the world’s oldest diamond-mining town: the very first place on the planet where diamonds were discovered in its motherstone or blue ground, or as it’s now known, Kimberlite. The farm where the diamonds were first found -- once the property of a Griqua farmer, Jacobus Jagers, became the town of Jagersfontein, founded in 1871. Jagers sold the farm in 1854 – long before the diamond rush started from 1870 when farmer J J de Klerk found a 50 carat (10 g) diamond. This was about three years before diamonds were discovered 130 km away at Kimberley.
Jagersfontein thrived. In 1892, Baker designed its municipal buildings. It also was the first town in the independent Boer- Republic of the Orange Free State to have electricity and a piped water supply. Sir Herbert Baker designed many other buildings in Jagersfontein too -- amongst which are the Dutch Reformed Church, these shops on the left & the bank. Jagersfontein has since fallen into sad disappear, described by 2005 as a ‘ghost town where the dreams of poor white people go to die.’ The few white people who remain eke out a living any way they can. They are poor and without any future, and all say Jagersfontein has become a ghost town ‘where the whites are eking out a living and the blacks are thriving’...
- However clearly, the black population still isn’t satisfied. On July 2 2009, the municipal building – South Africa’s architectural gem dating back from its earliest mine-pioneering years -- was torched by a group of black residents who threw a temper tantrum over the fact that they still don’t get the free housing, the free piped water and the free electricity which had been promised them by the ANC-government during its last three election campaigns.
In an organised campaign this week, the township residents blocked access to the dusty Karoo town with burning barricades, demanding to speak to the Free State premier, Ace Magashule. When he failed to show up, they torched the municipal building. click here for link to above story
map and businesses in Jagersfontein:
Historic documentation of Sir Herbert Baker
Townships in revolt because of ANC’s failed campaign promises – The Guardian:
Anti-white labour laws and anti-white hatespeech sweeps across South Africa:
Obama’s advisor Johnnie Carson must be doing something right…
Harare – July 6 2009 - Johnnie Carson, the United States' most senior official dealing with Africa, has been labelled "an idiot" by Zimbabwean President Mugabe, following an angry exchange between the two in Libya last week. The US assistant secretary of state for African affairs had met Mugabe on the sidelines of the annual African Union summit in Sirte on Thursday last week. Diplomats in Harare reported that Mugabe stormed out of the meeting.
Picture: The Mugabes with Muammar Gadhafi July 1 2009 in Sirte comes from Mugabe’s publicity website at http://www.daylife.com/photo/010A9J05kn85q?q=Robert+Mugabe
The Zimbabwean state-controlled daily Herald quoted Mugabe as saying that he was angered by Carson's "condescending attitude", but the 85-year-old leader did not specify what remark by the highly-experienced US diplomat, who is considered one of the world’s top experts on Africa, had caused offence.
Lack of Western Aid is hurting Zimbabwe
Mugabe also said about his visit to Sirte that the West’s deliberate withholding of funding is hurting his economy very badly. “There is no funding with an investment capacity from the West that will enable us to move from primary agriculture to secondary stages of development. They do not want us, the West, to be that.They do not want us to be their equals, they enjoy being masters over us and this is what Zimbabwe rejects,” he said.
Reply by Mugabe: “No, you wouldn’t speak to an idiot of that nature. I was very angry with him, and he thinks he could dictate to us what to do and what not to do in the inclusive Government. We have the whole of SADC working with us, and you have the likes of little fellows like Carson, you see, wanting to say ‘you do this, you do that’. Who is he? I hope he was not speaking for Obama. I told him he was a shame, a great shame being an African-American, an Afro-American for that matter.” http://www1.herald.co.zw/inside.aspx?sectid=6935&cat=10
‘Little American girl trotting around the globe like a prostitute…’
The remarks are the latest in a string of insults Mugabe has hurled at critics. Last week he said Irene Khan, the Amnesty International secretary-general who visited Zimbabwe late last month, was "bewitched" – a dangerous accusation to make in Africa, as persons who are pointed out as ‘witches’ by leaders often are ordered to be killed.
He also called Jendayi Frazer, left, Carson's predecessor under the George W Bush's presidency, "that little American girl trotting around the globe like a prostitute." And Western critics of the government's crackdown on the opposition, which included several severe beatings received by Tshvangirai in jail, were told in no uncertain terms n 2007, to "go hang."
His lack of affinity with Carson contrasts with the apparently warm relationship struck up last month between Obama and Zimbabwe’s Prime Minister; the opposition party leader Morgan Tsvangirai. Mugabe's longtime rival formed a coalition government with Mugabe in February and has been feted worldwide ever since.
Obama described Tsvangirai as "a hero of democracy" during Tsvangirai's visit to Washington last month. The US embassy refrained from commenting on the encounter between Mugabe and Carson on July 1. One Western diplomat said he assumed Carson had been impressing on Mugabe the need for progress in the area of human rights and the rule of law. The US and many other Western donors are holding back on funding the cash-strapped Zimbabwean government until seeing significant reform in these areas. http://www.earthtimes.org/articles/show/276278,mugabe-obamas-top-expert-on-africa-is-an-idiot.html
Johnnie Carson’s testimony on African matters:
Johnnie Carson joined the NIC as National Intelligence Officer for Africa in September 2006 after a 37-year career in Foreign Service. Prior to this appointment, Carson served as the Senior Vice President of the National Defense University in Washington D.C. (2003-2006). Carson's Foreign Service career includes ambassadorships to Kenya (1999-2003), Zimbabwe (1995-1997), and Uganda (1991-1994); and Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for the Bureau of African Affairs (1997-1999). Earlier in his career he had assignments in Portugal (1982-1986), Botswana (1986-1990), Mozambique (1975-1878), and Nigeria (1969-1971). He has also served as desk officer in the Africa section at State's Bureau of Intelligence and Research (1971-1974); Staff Officer for the Secretary of State (1978-1979), and Staff Director for the Africa Subcommittee of the US House of Representatives (1979-1982). Before joining the Foreign Service, Ambassador Carson was a Peace Corps volunteer in Tanzania from 1965-1968. He has a Bachelor of Arts in History and Political Science from Drake University and a Master of Arts in International Relations from the School of Oriental and Africa Studies at the University of London. source: National Intelligence Council-
view the video on www.youtube.com/watch?v=22Clv_BwQlY
July 6 2009 – DOKKUM, The Netherlands. When I heard about the ecologically-recyclable toiletpaper which was developed by a company in Limburg province here in The Netherlands this year, I was very sceptical.
I am all too aware that most of the commercial toilet paper available in supermarkets today, does not break down in nature at all.
Indeed when swimming in the ocean off Cape Town where I used to live and work, I used to often encounter these clouds of toiletpaper which clearly do not break down in nature, but are choking all sea-life at the city's sewerage outlets.
However, the company had received a 'Cradle-To-Cradle" certificate from one of the top eco-organisations in the United States. So I decided to also field-test this biodegradable toiletpaper to test the manufacturer's claims. I asked them to send me a few rolls of this eco-toiletpaper, which now is only available to the hospitality industry in Europe.
It's not available on supermarket shelves at all.
I tested the eco-toiletpaper by inserting folded up sheets in water and placing them in direct sunlight. I also did the same with 'ordinary' Kimberley-Clark "Page" toiletpaper to compare it with, as "Page" is Europe's top-seller in toiletpaper.
- I also put snippets of the eco-toiletpaper in the soil to see how it would break down in this environment - and did the same with Page.I started testing from June 12 2009.
Today, July 6 2009, I can report that the eco-toiletpaper has broken down into tiny, brown mini-pellets and that the water itself is actively attacked by algae. This indicates that the chemicals used in its manufacturing process do not affect the environment, i.e. the water, it was immersed in.By comparison, the Kimberley-Clarke toiletpaper is still in one piece and the water is crystal-clear - proving that the chemicals in this paper are interacting very negatively with the H2O.
I also added bits of eco-toilet paper to garden-soil. I discovered that they disappeared overnight: and found that these bits of paper were not only turning green from algae growth, but also were consumed by soil-dwellers, such as earth-worms.
It's obvious after three weeks of testing the eco-toilet paper of the Van Houtum company in Limburg, that it is indeed 100% biodegradable.I hope that the Van Houtum company will soon make it available in the supermarkets.
I have written to Kimberley-Clarke, asking them to make their toiletpaper 100% biodegradable. I’ve also written to my local municipality in Dokkum, asking them to start purchasing this eco-toiletpaper and thus show that they are serious about saving our precious water environment.
see my reports on:
also: Rotterdam harbour water very safe for endangered frogs: