SA drifting from its Constitution, says Prof Ndebele

PROFESSOR Njabulo Ndebele, a former University of Cape Town vice-chancellor and author, has portrayed South Africa as a country lost in a frenzy of self-enrichment and drifting far from its constitutional objectives.

Delivering a memorial lecture for Sister Aidan Quinlan on the 60th anniversary of her death at the East London City Hall on Friday, Ndebele called on people to rise above party politics and not be used by politicians who wanted to remain in power at the communities' expense.

"Have we turned into instruments of other people? There is a danger of putting ourselves in their hands.

"It is national suicide. We kill ourselves out of blind loyalty," Ndebele said.

He said agreeing to be used by politicians was similar to what was done by people who participated in the killing of Sister Quinlan in that they knew what they were doing was wrong but did not want to be seen as being against it.

The Irish nun and medical doctor who was a pillar of the St Peter Claver Convent Catholic Church, was burned to death in her car after being attacked by an angry mob in Duncan Village in 1952.

Some rogue elements in the community turned on her during anti-apartheid unrest.