mk VET lauds Zuma

Kingdom Mabuza

Kingdom Mabuza

ANC president Jacob Zuma's admission that his party has neglected former freedom fighters has earned him the respect of MK veteran Samson Hadebe.

Hadebe, 47, who was in the MK camps for 16 years after he fled in 1976, said when he returned to the country in 1992 he had high hopes of beginning a productive life.

Hadebe, whose code name while in exile was "Steven Dliwayo"- was a camp commissar in Angola's northern region of Kibashe.

"Comrade president Zuma said what could have been said by Oliver Tambo today. I was there when Zuma spoke in Bloemfontein and his words were an honour to us veterans.

"Some of us were beginning to think our leaders thought we are dead. JZ is recognising our contribution."

Hadebe, who was divorced from his Zimbabwean wife in 1995, stays with his three brothers, two sisters and their four children in White City, Soweto. "It is hard, I rely on a state pension and good neighbours."

"My comrades are also very helpful, we have not lost touch with each other and there are some who were lucky to get decent jobs."

He said the media was deliberately distorting Zuma's call to MK veterans and party members to defend the ANC.

"It is not a call to take up arms. As ANC members our duty is to defend the movement against elements that go around and lie.

"We are going to fight a political battle and win it to defend the revolution. We will defend the revolution by mobilising our people to keep the ANC in power."