18 May 2017
SADTU is not surprised by the attack by the Democratic Alliance directed at Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa following his address at SADTU KZN Gala Dinner over the weekend. The DA only accepts any opinion which favours its bigoted views. For the DA, an opinion of the Deputy President about SADTU should not hold water because the DA does not share such a view.
SADTU believes that the attack on the Deputy President has its roots in the racist character of the DA. This is amply demonstrated by the fact that the DA is prepared to swiftly take disciplinary action against its black member and leader Mbali Ntuli for simply liking a post on social media suggesting that Helen Zille is racist. This must be seen in contrast with the elaborate process the DA followed to avoid taking to task Zille who praised the dreaded system of colonialism which caused much untold misery to African people including black members of the DA.
This exemplifies the extent to which the DA believes black people should not form and hold opinions of their own. It should not be surprising that the DA has extended this to the Deputy President of the Republic.
The DA’s views about SADTU are a matter of public record and the inherent hatred the DA has for the progressive movement generally dates back to its predecessors. The DA and its predecessors including the Nationalist Party have tried everything in their power to delegitimise the struggle for quality public education. Very recently, the DA wanted South Africa to believe that SADTU is the problem in our ailing education system. The very DA has been silent when courts issued various orders directing that various steps be taken to realise the rights of children to education. These court orders range from the provision of teachers, the timeous payment of the salaries of teachers, infrastructure, chairs and desks, toilets etc. It took a court order to prevent the DA Western Cape Government from violating the rights of children to education. These are black children. In all these the DA has been silent for obvious reasons that these court orders advance the attainment of our struggle objectives.
The DA will never give SADTU the credit it deserves for standing up against inequality. It will never like SADTU for championing the cause of equal education and human rights of children and educators as enshrined in the Constitution.
The Deputy President has a right to hold an opinion and to express it. Let the DA provide objective facts rather than advance a racist agenda which suggests that black people cannot have an opinion on matters.
We urge our members to continue to soldier on despite the adverse conditions under which we work. Our victory will be the realisation of a quality public education system.
Issued by Nomusa Cembi, Media Officer, SADTU, 18 May 2017