- President Cyril Ramaphosa has hit out at those who continue to criticise Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, even after her death
- He said there were those trying to demonise Winnie’s legacy by claiming she used excessive force during her fight against apartheid
- Ramaphosa said Winnie hated corruption and state capture, but had renewed faith in the ANC before her death
President Cyril Ramaphosa has condemned those who continue to criticise Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, even after her death. He said some people were trying to demonise the fallen icon’s legacy by overstating her excessive use of force during her fight to liberate South Africa from apartheid.
Ramaphosa spoke at the Mphuthumi Mafumbata Stadium in Mbizana in the Eastern Cape on Tuesday. He said Winnie hated corruption and the demon which had infiltrated the ANC called state capture.
“If there was anything Winnie hated‚ it was corruption and this demon that has come into our midst now called state corruption … and state capture,” he said. Ramaphosa added that shortly before her death, Winnie had renewed faith in the ANC.
Briefly.co.za discovered that Ramaphosa said Winnie’s lifelong task was to renew the ANC. The late struggle icon had become highly critical of the ANC losing its soul in recent years, but she had faith the new ANC leadership could restore the ANC to its former values.
Ramaphosa said urged all South Africans to show some of the great courage possessed by Winnie.
He said: “As Winnie served our people‚ she did not serve her own family. She did not serve any other interests. She only knew to serve the people of South Africa and that is what she was committed to.”
Ramaphosa said he was committed to uniting the ANC, which he called her glorious movement.
The president also reaffirmed the ANC’s commitment to land reform in South Africa, which he said would correct the original sin of violent land disposition.
“Winnie will only rest in peace if we restore the dignity of our people by ensuring that they have an equal claim to the land of the forebears and their birth. I want to ensure all that this we will not retreat from.” Ramaphosa said.
Ramaphosa noted that throughout her life Winnie did not conform to social or political norms and did not see women as being inferior to men by any measure.
He said Winnie not only survived the brutality the apartheid government inflicted on her, but actually emerged out of it stronger and more determined.
Ramaphosa said Winnie earned the title of Mother of the Nation on the streets and in the trenches and that the title was not gifted to her in a boardroom or a meeting.
He noted that Winnie identified more with radicalism and impetuousness of youth than with the conservative views others of her age have.
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