YCL backs government

Anna Majavu

Anna Majavu

The Young Communist League has come out in support of the government's decision to reject the Dalai Lama an entry visa, saying "if people do not trust their own ability to discuss peace issues without the Dalai Lama being present, that's a problem".

An unrepentant YCL leader Buti Manamela said: "It is quite sad what has been happening in Tibet, but a peace conference does not need to be called off."

Speaking from the campaign trail in the Free State, Manamela said most opposition parties were nothing more than "a splinter, or a splinter of a splinter".

"We are concerned that 45 parties are contesting the elections. We respect their right to do this, but there are just too many 'one-man shows'. The Minority Front is a one-man show, and the United Democratic Movement is also gradually becoming a one- man show."

He also accused the opposition of "devaluing politics".

"They rely on looking for scandals from the ANC. Look how desperate they were to pin the release of Schabir Shaik on Jacob Zuma without looking at the sensitivities of whether Shaik is walking dead or not."

Manamela added that his organisation would continue to campaign against the media's "Americanising" of politics.

The YCL also plans to increase its focus on setting up youth brigades to deal with community problems, he said.