BLACK First Land First (BLF) says government has failed to address the land issue since the dawn of democracy, something that has to be addressed urgently.
The organisation, which has made a clarion call for “Land or Death”, held a land imbizo over the weekend in Soweto where its president Andile Mngxitama told those attending that whites have failed for many years to return the land.
“The post-1994 government has failed to return our land for the past 23 years. That the ANC must apologise for this, ask for pardon and take action now. White people have not shown that they are sorry or that they acknowledge their sins for slavery, colonialism, apartheid and land theft,” said Mngxitama.
“White people have not acknowledged that the wealth, comfort and security that they enjoy today is from the direct oppression, exploitation and land dispossession of the black majority.”
He said whites have had 350 years to give back the land but they have failed to do so.
Mngxitama added that they have also failed to apologise in the 23 years of democracy.
“Now, we no longer want dialogue with whites – want our land back. The biggest and most evil corruption is land theft – this is the mother of all corruption. The crisis in the life of black people comes from historical land dispossession – we cannot heal if the land is not returned,” he said.
Mngxitama added that political squabbles taking place in the country are shifting attention from the problems affecting black people.
He said most of the political leaders speak one thing and do the opposite while being in the pockets of white monopoly capital.
“President Zuma has called for Land Expropriation without compensation – instead of supporting this call, the land question has been made into a political football in Parliament. White-owned media, the politicians captured by imperialism and white monopoly capital (both inside the ANC and the opposition) only pay lip service to the
question of land return. Politics are made to make blacks fight amongst themselves over nothing. All black politicians in parliament, irrespective of political party affiliation, are landless people like the rest of us,” he said.
Mngxitama maintained that land expropriation without compensation must be made policy before the end of 2017.
He called on white people to cooperate with blacks and return the land.
“White people are the direct beneficiaries of land theft from black people. Even those who today are not involved in mining or farming are direct beneficiaries of colonialism and apartheid. The schools they go to, the houses they live in, the wealth they have, all come from land theft and oppression of black people. Whites have a choice to continue
with arrogance or they can decide to cooperate with blacks and return the stolen land. Whites must meet in their own land imbizo and resolve by when the land shall be returned to its rightful owners. The white’s imbizo must happen before the end of 2017. We don’t want dialogue we want land,” said Mngxitama.