Tshwane bishop condemns No-vote campaign

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iol news pic Ronnie Kasrils suit INDEPENDENT NEWSPAPERS Former intelligence minister Ronnie Kasrils has defended his involvement in the decision not to charge Jacob Zuma ahead of the 2007 ANC Polokwane conference. File picture: Graeme Hosken

 

The Bishop of Tshwane on Wednesday condemned the “vote no” campaign started by some ANC veterans.

“In the past 20 years of our hard-earned freedom, I have never felt as failed as I am today by the stance taken by former intelligence minister Ronnie Kasrils and former deputy minister of health Nozizwe Madlala-Routledge, of mobilising people to spoil their votes rather than vote for the ANC,” the Right Reverend Abraham Thamsanqa Sibiya said in a statement.

Both of them would be unknown had it not been for the ANC, he said.

The “Sidikiwe! Vukani! No-vote!” campaign calls on South Africans to either vote for a minority party, or spoil their ballots.

“If the ANC were to lose three, four percent in this election they'll still be in power, nothing will stop that,” Kasrils told reporters at the campaign's launch at Wits University, Johannesburg, on Tuesday.

“But what that signals... is that, my God you guys (ANC) better wake up... you're not going to last for five years, you're losing more and more respect.”

Sibiya said former African National Congress leaders such as Nelson Mandela, Oliver Tambo, Walter Sisulu, and Chris Hani would turn in their graves at the mere suggestion that people should spoil their vote rather than vote for the ruling party.

“I call upon all the Christians and all the people of South Africa, to totally ignore the call of Ronnie Kasrils and his company.

“The vote we are exercising we fought for and many even paid the ultimate sacrifice,” he said.

The Catholic Church urged people to vote as responsible citizens.

“You will do this by voting and supporting those parties and organisations which work for the good of all our citizens,” the Southern African Bishops' Conference said in a statement.

“Vote for political parties whose policies truly serve all our people, especially the poor and vulnerable.” - Sapa



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