Black Lives Matter protesters outside Parliament yesterday. Picture: Ian Landsberg/African News Agency (ANA)
Black Lives Matter protesters outside Parliament yesterday. Picture: Ian Landsberg/African News Agency (ANA)

ANC, alliance partners launch Black Friday anti-racism drive in solidarity with US protests

By Zintle Mahlati Time of article published Jun 4, 2020

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The ANC and its alliance partners will launch a campaign in solidarity with African-Americans who have been protesting over police brutality against black people in the US. 

The party and its alliance partners, the SA Communist Party and Cosatu, said they were concerned about the loss of lives at the hands of police and racism directed at black people. 

ANC deputy secretary-general Jessie Duarte said on Thursday during a virtual press briefing it was time for the party to join the worldwide protests in solidarity with African-Americans. 

The ANC plans to launch a “Black Friday” anti-racism campaign on Friday, which will be marked by an address by ANC President Cyril Ramaphosa and alliance leaders. 

The ANC’s campaign follows worldwide protests this week which saw thousands of people around the world protest in solidarity with American protesters who have demanded justice following the death of a black man, George Floyd, at the hands of a white police officer. 

“It will be the start of our Black Fridays, where henceforth we all are called upon to wear black on this day of the week. The alliance anti-racism campaign, to be launched tomorrow, will also highlight the racism in our own society and against police and security force brutality. 

"The deaths of citizens at the hands of security forces are of deep concern to the alliance. Security forces, as set out in our Constitution, must secure the safety of communities and act against crime. 

"They must be tough, but act in the spirit of the Constitution,” Duarte said. 

Duarte said racism was also a concern for the party particularly following racist threats against Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma. The minister has been facing criticism for the government’s decision to continue to ban the sale of tobacco products. 

“The alliance also notes that the demon of racism remains a blight on the soul of our nation. It reflects itself in institutionalised racism in apartheid geography, in the economy and in social spheres. 

"It also finds expression in the kind of blatant racism and misogyny in social media that we’ve seen against Minister of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma. 

"As a society, this must not be tolerated, and we will and must use the institutions set up to bring the perpetrators to book,” Duarte said. 

Political Bureau

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