Feature

Patriotism is about country,not party

We do not owe the African National Congress blind obedience because it fought against apartheid, said Khaya Dlanga in<em> The Mail &amp; Guardian.</em>

Khaya DlangaThe Mail & Guardian

The African National Congress has lost its sense of perspective, said Khaya Dlanga. Faced with a long-overdue split in which some prominent party members defected to form a new party, ANC loyalists have resorted to vicious name-calling. They say the new Congress of the People party, or COPE, is “stealing our history.” They say anyone who defies the ANC dishonors the memory of those who fought for freedom. This is nonsense. “When Nelson Mandela and others languished in prison for so many years, it was not just for members of the ANC but for all South Africans.” It’s true that the ANC was the main liberation movement during the days of apartheid. But the ANC did not give South Africans freedom. It was simply “a vehicle that the people used to bring themselves to freedom.” We do not, therefore, owe it blind obedience. “Correct me if I’m wrong, but does the history of the struggle for freedom not belong to all South Africans?”

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