DA and Solidarity plyaing dangerous political game - ANC

Office of the Chief Whip says union and party are formenting racial tensions


The so-called research conducted by the Trade Union Solidarity, which claims that over a million jobs currently held by coloureds in the Western Cape and 300 000 jobs held by Indians would be given to Africans as a result of the Employment Equity Bill, is a dangerous political game that is carefully designed to foment racial tensions ahead of local government elections.

We are however not surprised that the DA was quick to publicly express support for the union's inflammatory statement, whose mission is to drive a racial rift amongst Africans, Coloureds and Indians communities particularly in the Western Cape and KwaZulu-Natal. The party has always thrived on racial politics. It is reckless to play racial politics, and spread falsehoods and distortions, on something as important and very close to the hearts of ordinary South Africans, as the issue of employment.

The Employment Equity Bill seeks to increase the participation of the historically marginalised communities, which includes Africans, Coloureds and Indians, in the country's mainstream economy. Africans and Coloureds are amongst the country's economically underrepresented communities - an anomaly this Bill seeks to correct. It is unthinkable that the ANC, which for almost hundred years led the struggle for freedom from the shackles of apartheid and colonial oppression, can today seek to disadvantage the same people it liberated and seeks to empower.

As the governing party in the Western Cape, the DA should be working towards uniting the province's diverse communities, instead of dividing them along racial lines for narrow political gain. The Western Cape today remains the only racially divided province 17 years into democracy, largely because of these kinds of racially divisive campaigns and policies by the DA.

The ANC has historically worked for the unity of all South Africans. It is for this reason that we are gravely distressed by these kinds of immature and mindless pronouncements, which may potentially instigate racial hatred and mistrust amongst our country's black communities.

Statement issued by The Office of the ANC Chief Whip, ANC Parliamentary Caucus, February 22 2011

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