Category Archives: Raymond Suttner

ANC legacies? Retrieving and deploying emancipatory values today

Raymond Suttner, The Daily Maverick

For many decades and for many people, the name “ANC” conjured up selflessness, sacrifice in the service of the oppressed people of South Africa and the meaning of freedom itself. People bent every effort to link themselves with the message of the ANC. They risked police attention and possible arrest by listening to the ANC broadcasts on Radio Freedom, beamed from Lusaka and other African states in the period of illegality. They read any scrap of paper or document or listened to any message broadcast from the ANC in exile, for the organisation represented their hope for freedom. It enjoyed great legitimacy and authority in the imagination of very many South Africans. Continue reading

Daily Maverick: Illegal Durban evictions, and the meaning of emancipatory politics

Illegal Durban evictions, and the meaning of emancipatory politics

The elections of 1994 inaugurated a rights-based society, with an inclusive democratic constitution, subject to oversight of a Constitutional court. But if the ANC’s respect for constitutionalism is now open to question, where should we be looking for defence of the law, the Constitution and the rights it enshrines? The issue is raised sharply in attacks on communities, which have been evicted in spite of court orders declaring these illegal. By RAYMOND SUTTNER.

Freedom, in its full meaning, is a continuous process of refining, redefining, engagement and contestation. In the 1980s those involved in the liberation struggle sometimes strategised with flip charts. A line would be drawn down the middle and on one side there would be ‘the People’ and the other ‘the Enemy’. We would then assess the strengths and weaknesses of our forces and those of the other side. While there were some political organisations or strata that did not fit easily into these categories, in general we were clear the ‘progressive forces’ were those who worked to end Apartheid and establish a democratic South Africa. It was also clear who constituted or was allied to ‘the regime’.

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