Group exits as leader talks about Sobukwe

Kingdom Mabuza

Kingdom Mabuza

Only about 500 people pitched up.

Then half of them walked out when Pan Africanist Congress deputy president Themba Godi was halfway through his Sobukwe commemoration rally speech in Tembisa.

The crowd got up and left as Godi was explaining the need for blacks to show love for their country.

"Sobukwe said as blacks we need to love Africa, and the more we show love to her [the more] we will be able to face challenges that confront her," he said.

As Godi was about to elaborate on the need to display passion for the continent, the group simultaneously stood up and left. Godi folded his prepared speech and took his seat among the PAC leaders.

He told Sowetan that he was not offended by the mass exit.

"They have been here the whole day, and because of pressures of going to church and doing other things, they had to go," he said.

But Godi was contradicted by some members of the group.

They said they were duped by local PAC leaders into joining the rally.

The group are residents of the Winnie Mandela informal settlement.

They claim they have been robbed of their chance to take occupation of RDP houses which rightfully belong to them, and were looking for some answers from the PAC.

"We were told that leaders of the PAC are coming to Tembisa today to tell us about a way forward.

"We believed that but to our amazement we heard only about Sobukwe," said a resident, Mzobanzi Manzi.

Another resident, Putso Pholosho, said while they respected the contribution made by Sobukwe and other leaders, the realities confronting them needed less political rhetoric.

"We can sit here the whole day and listen to speeches but at night we have nowhere to sleep.

"We want to listen to leaders talking about our basic needs."