The ANC caucus in the Western Cape Provincial Legislature adds its voice to those of the millions of South Africans and people across the globe who have congratulated our ANC national government in successfully taking the apartheid state of Israel to the International Court of Justice (ICJ).
The interim judgment made it loud and clear, and the ANC certainly hopes that Premier Alan Winde and his cabinet listened carefully to the interim judgment.
Israel has a case of genocide to answer.
In the wake of this judgment, the DA leaders, especially in the Western Cape, have been falling over their feet to try to play catch-up as far as the atrocities in Gaza are concerned.
After months of harassment of pro-Palestinian protesters, the banning of the painting of the Palestinian flag as well as the complete refusal for the Western Cape Government to stand in solidarity with the people of Palestine, finally the City of Cape Town is making available the Athlone Stadium for a football match between the Palestinian and South African teams.
This is not enough. It is too little too late.
The ANC in the legislature has consistently called on the speaker to light up 7 Wale Street, the seat of the legislature, with the colours of the Palestinian flag as they did with the Ukrainian. Hitherto, he has refused.
The ANC caucus has consistently called for the atrocities in Gaza and the West Bank to be debated and discussed in the legislature, given that the conflict of Ukraine has been discussed and debated so many times at the insistence of the DA, in our house. Hitherto, the speaker has refused to allow such a debate.
In fact, even a staff member of the legislature was targeted when she wore a keffiyeh.
Schoolchildren at public schools in the Western Cape, when asked to colour in a flag, were instructed not to use the Palestinian colours. No comment. No action taken by the DA.
The ANC has called upon Premier Alan Winde and his cabinet to condemn Israel, now accused of genocide in the ICJ, as he consistently condemned Russia. They have yet to release a statement condemning Israel.
The ANC caucus has called on Premier Winde and his cabinet to distance themselves from local Zionists and not host Zionist fund-raising events at Leeuwenhof.
He has refused to do so.
But let us be clear: we are not anti-Semitic. Our ANC leadership met last year with the Western Cape Chapter of the Jewish Board of Deputies. We work closely with SA Jews for a Free Palestine.
While Premier Winde may host Jewish organisations, he is yet to host Muslim and Hindu organisations, and we are specifically condemning him for hosting Zionist events.
We demanded that he meet with Palestinian representatives as he met with representatives from the Ukraine. His response in the house was to commit to meeting with them if there was an international court finding. Well, there clearly is now.
Yet the premier will not meet with Palestinians and we know why. He will not meet with their local supporters and condemn Israel.
Because unlike Palestinians, the Ukrainians are European, blonde and have blue eyes .
He will not condemn Israel because it is an apartheid state and through, among others, the provincial budget and the provincial powers bill, he wants to implement apartheid under the guise of devolution here in the Western Cape.
The people of the Western Cape cannot and must not allow this.
The ANC will continue to call on the speaker to light up the legislature with the colours of the Palestinian flag and, even if foreign policy is a national competency, call for a discussion in the house on Palestine.
The ANC will continue to expose the cosy relationship between the DA and local Zionists and their aim to make an apartheid state of the Western Cape.
The words of Nelson Mandela will continue to ring true in our ears:
“We will not be free until the Palestinians and Palestine is free.”
* Cameron Dugmore is the ANC Leader of the Opposition in the Western Cape Provincial Legislature.
** The views expressed here are not necessarily those of Independent Media.