Rewriting our history is not easy

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Image: Halden Krog © The Times

History will never be objective, that is be free of objectivity because it is not my story or our story - 'The Story'. That is why the issues of colonialism and apartheid become a heated discourse or taboo subject.

There are those who benefitted from the systems (whites) and those who were at the receiving end of the systems (blacks).

In between the extremes, there are those who were not affected, the indifferent such as Bantustan leaders, cultural leaders and blacks born from favourable environment.

That is why rewriting 'The Story' of SA is not so easy.

Imagine our pre-1994 South African story written by chief Mangosuthu Buthelezi, King Goodwill Zulu, homeland leaders, religious leaders, ANC, PAC or Azapo. Even today, we are still wrestling with 'The Story' of post-1994.

This period is marred by greed and corruption in which few blacks joined the previously advantaged whites while the majority languish in lack. These neo-blacks, sometimes referred to as black diamonds, rose up wrongfully out of their own grievous faults and greed or rightfully due to favourable conditions.

From this class a different story can be narrated of the status quo. And another story can be written by those left at the lowest rung of adversity.

There is truth in the scriptures when it is said that if you break one law of the ten commandments, you have broken them all.

Similarly, if you were white who didn't get involved in the atrocious activities of apartheid, but you voted the national party into power, you are guilty of all the evils of apartheid.

Equally so, if you are black and voted the ANC into power on May 8, you are guilty of state capture, intra-party killings and conflicts as well as greed and corruption.

Thami Zwane


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