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Wednesday, May 25, 2022

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Memorial service for Nokuthula Mabasa, murdered Shack Dwellers’ Movement activist. ‘Her name will live on in our struggle’

Nokuthula Mabaso has been hailed a hero who fought for the dignity of the poor. Photo: Facebook.

Nokuthula Mabaso has been hailed a hero who fought for the dignity of the poor. Photo: Facebook.

Published May 12, 2022

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Durban – Abahlali baseMjondolo will gather today, to honour and remember their leader and activist who was murdered last week in front of her children.

Nokuthula Mabaso, was shot and killed while her children watched outside her home in eKhenana informal settlement in Cato Manor. She suffered five gunshot wounds and died in the hands of women who had rushed to her side.

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Abahlali leadership speculated the motive for the murder was to prevent Mabaso from testifying against the man who killed one of their own, Ayanda Ngila, in early March.

Mabaso had been prepared to go on the stand should the matter go on trial.

The movement has accused police of dragging their feet in bringing perpetrators to book saying the legal system only benefited those with deep pockets and since Mabaso lived among the poorest, there was no hope of killers being jailed.

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Thapelo Mohapi, general secretary of Abahlali baseMjondolo, described Mabaso as a militant who served the poor and their struggle for land and dignity.

“She was a brave woman , she did not only become one of the leaders who led the establishment of the occupation; she also was a key figure in the development of the occupation into a commune and its projects. She played an important role in the communal garden, the poultry project, the communal kitchen and the communal shop.

“These communal projects have ensured that no family goes to sleep without food and that no child goes to school on an empty stomach.”

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Preparations for her funeral are also under way and she will be laid to rest in Esidumbini near Tongaat on Saturday.

“Her crime is that she was part of the strong poor, the poor who work to build an autonomous politics from below, the poor who insist that the full and equal recognition of our dignity is non-negotiable, the poor who struggle to occupy land, produce food and build democracy and community from below,” Mohapi said.

“She will join the roll of honour of all those who have fallen in our movement, Nqobile Nzuza, Thuli Ndlovu, Nkululeko Gwala, Sifiso Ngcobo, Ayanda Ngila and many others. Her name will live in our struggle and in new songs, new occupations and new communal projects.”

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Mabaso memorial service will take place today at eKhenana Commune from 10am.

SUNDAY TRIBUNE

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