Remembering Robert Sobukwe

TEAM. Zondeni and Robert Sobukwe were both activists.

Robert Sobukwe never stood for reforms, he was an absolute  revolutionary, a Pan Africanist to the core. He never advocated for land expropriation, he stood for LAND repossession because he knew the correct history. We will continue to pursue the LAND repossession policy until we are heard.

While the world is experiencing the rapid rise of nationalism, we should at all times draw inspiration from Robert Sobukwe. It was Sobukwe who said “There is only one race, and that is human race”. The world is more divided than it was before World War I, we are seeing the emergence of Donald Trump, Julius Malema, Afri-Forum, we have also seen the victory of another nationalist leader in the Brazilian elections recently.

The tribute by M’Afrika Themba Godi was profound yesterday in parliament. We salute the parliament that during the Sobukwe Day (27 February 2018), they announced that they are committed to giving our people their land back, that was a befitting tribute by our parliament. We appreciate that on the eve of Sobukwe’s birthday, process was resumed to effect the changes to a liberal Constitution to enable the dispossessed to reclaim their pride.

Today marks 94 years since Dr Robert Mangaliso “Prof” Sobukwe was born. He was born in the small but old town of Graff-Reinett in 1924 – December – 05th, he was also buried in his historic hometown. The Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC) remembers and honours Robert Sobukwe in different ways everyday especially on the day he was born and the day he passed on. We are thankful for the legacy he left for his nation.

Robert Mangaliso Sobukwe was a prophet, he was a visionary who could foretell the future at his times. He is as relevant as he was in the 20th century. He fought for quality and socialist education during his student years. He went on to help militarise the LIBERAL ANC through his leadership in the then Congress Youth League which he helped to establish in 1944, the same year when the League of Nations (United Nations) was born.

“Prof” went on with his revolutionary peers to form what is now known as the Pan Africanist Congress of Azania (PAC) in 1959 after a very long ideological battle between the two groupings which were dubbed as the Africanists and Charterists.

The Africanists felt betrayed after the adoption of the 1955 Freedom Charter (ANC’s policy guide), this was a betrayal to the 1949 Programme of Action which was penned by Robert Sobukwe when he was the Secretary-General (SG) of the CYL, he was of course helped by the forgotten A.P Mda who was his political mentor at the time.

A group of Africanists led by Sobukwe, formed the PAC which ever since have been championing the agrarian question until to date. Sobukwe
talked about self-determination, we must be able to call our souls our own. The truth is that we have not been able to reclaim our political, economic and social independence. We find ourselves as pawns in the international relations, we continue to choose between West or East.

It was Kwame Nkrumah who warned us about the prominence and the growth of imperialism, advising us that it was more dangerous than the colonialism itself. We are now living in the world where European owned multinational companies (Microsoft, KFC, Coca-Cola, McDonald, Nike, Adidas, BMW, Toyota, Samsung etc) continue to rule our lives, we continue to enrich the already rich countries because we have failed to realise Sobukwe’s clarion call for self-determination.

Kenneth Mokgatlhe is the spokesperson for the Pan Africanist Congress (PAC).