Disruption of Ahmed Kathrada’s Memorial: The African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) in KwaZulu-Natal has reiterated that it will not apologize for disrupting Ahmed Kathrada’s memorial in Durban.
The league rather asserted that it has written to the organizers of the event, requesting to talk over the matter with them.
ANCYL KwaZulu-Natal spokesperson Mandla Shange explained that the league would not apologize because its members did nothing wrong during the service.
“Apologising would mean we’re admitting that we are guilty. We are waiting for them [ACM] to get back to us so we can meet and come up with an amicable solution,” said Shange.
The organizers – Active Citizens Movement (ACM) – through their lawyer Viren Singh, had written to the ruling party’s youth wing after the event, telling them to publicly apologize for violating a court order and disrupting the service.
The league was given until Saturday, April 15, to apologize for the behavior of its members or the ACM would return to the KwaZulu-Natal High Court in Durban to seek a contempt of court order.
Prior to the event, Judge Rashid Vahed had granted the ANC’s young wing permission to attend the memorial service, held on April 9, on one condition – that they should not cause any disruption at the gathering.
ACM is a forum initiated by anti-apartheid activists aimed at strengthening democracy and the values enshrined in the Constitution.
But the league defied the court order preventing them from harassing or intimidating anyone who attended or spoke at the service, as they booed former Finance Pravin Gordhan after he entered the hall and drowned out Mkhize by singing pro-Zuma songs.
As Gordhan, who was a keynote speaker at the event took to the podium, the ANCYL started singing: “Wenzeni uZuma? Awuphendule” – meaning “What did Zuma do? tell us.”
— EWN Reporter (@ewnreporter) April 9, 2017
His speech was further drowned by the restless youths after he said that “Unity cannot be based on the brown bags that are leaving the country”.
The former finance minister did, however, manage to wrap up his address swiftly saying, “We need to unite because if we don’t we, are doomed in 2019”, adding that he also wants radical economic transformation but it must not be for the hands of a few.
ANC Member of Parliament Makhosi Khoza, who weighed in, said the disruption at Kathrada’s memorial by members of the ANC Youth League left her ashamed.
She expressed worry that similar behavior might break out during the ANC’s elective conference in December.