Friday, February 27, 2009



Thursday, 26th February, 2009
By Cyprian Musoke

FIRST Lady Janet Museveni was yesterday approved as state minister for Karamoja after a one hour vetting session by the parliamentary appointments committee.

The committee also approved Asuman Kiyingi for the post of state minister for lands, and three new Uganda Human Rights commissioners.

A source said Janet was asked whether as a politician she did not see it as awkward to be appointed a minister, when her husband is the President.

Others reportedly asked her whether she would be able to balance her duties as a wife, mother and minister, on top of her projects as the First Lady.
Speaking to journalists after the vetting, Janet pledged to give her best, but said she would not relocate to Karamoja.

“I am married. I have a family and a constituency (Ruhaama). I cannot shift there (Karamoja),” she said.

Asked how the vetting was, she answered: “It was good, and it is necessary. I am a servant of the people and I know Karamoja is one area that requires services. I just want to work with them and to be available for them,” she said.

She said the ministry had been shunned in the past, adding that it was why she had accepted the position.

Kiyingi pledged to organise the lands registry and to complete the computerisation of the registry.
He also pledged to solve staffing problems.

On corruption, he promised to work with the anti-fraud squad and the Police to rout out corrupt staff.

The human rights commissioners vetted were proposed chairperson Meddie Kaggwa, commissioners Adrian Sibo, former Prisons boss Joseph Etima and Mariam Wangadya.



26th February, 2009
By Philip Stevens

THE pressure group, Oxfam, does not like the growing trend of aid donors using the private sector to deliver healthcare efficiently to the poorest parts of the world. According to its new report: “Blind Optimism,” state-provided healthcare is more efficient, more equitable and less corrupt than private healthcare.

The blind optimism, however, is Oxfam’s: Governments have been responsible for providing healthcare in most of Africa since independence and, despite being showered with aid for the last 50 years, the quality is still atrocious.

The current system in which rich governments hand over large sums of money to poor governments in the hope they will spend the money on health (instead of limousines and guns) has run its course. Aid for health has ballooned from S$2.5b in 2000 to $14b in 2006. In 12 sub-Saharan countries, more than 30% of total health expenditure comes from aid.

Despite this assistance, hospitals and clinics are dilapidated, medical staff are demoralised and about 60% of Africans have to pay for healthcare themselves. The majority of African countries are unlikely to meet the health-related Millennium Development Goals and many are going backwards.

As former World Bank official Prof. William Easterly put it in The White Man’s Burden: “The status quo — large international bureaucracies giving aid to large national government bureaucracies—is not getting money to the poor.” If anything was ever based on blind optimism, it is the current aid model.

This is especially true of health. Quality healthcare relies on specialised personnel, complicated technology and good logistics. Even a rich country like Britain fails to manage state health services efficiently. Most African health ministries struggle to provide enough computers for their staff.
Once donor money comes in, health ministries have trouble with the basics.

According to the World Health Organisation, most ministries lack even rudimentary data about how this money is spent, making management impossible.
This breeds corruption, from ministerial embezzlement to officials selling drugs. In December, The Lancet medical journal reported how dozens of less-developed countries lied about their vaccination rates to extract more funds from the UN. The kids did not get their shots but someone was getting rich.

A study by Maureen Lewis of the World Bank shows how corruption in the health sector of developing countries is so bad that it is severely undermining the effectiveness of aid.

For the time being, wealthy governments have committed themselves to keeping the aid taps open but the financial crisis means aid is unlikely to continue at these levels. We, therefore, need to rethink completely how this money is spent if we hope to help millions of people improve their lives.

According to International Finance Corporation and World Bank figures, between a third and half of the $16.7 b spent on health in sub-Saharan Africa in 2005 was spent in the private sector, often by the poorest people who cannot get government services. This huge capacity is ignored by donors, who for ideological reasons prefer to work directly with governments.

Donors should be embracing this massive capacity, offering competitive contracts for health services. Non-profit groups, government and, crucially, the private sector should all be competing. This competitive stimulus would give a powerful incentive to improve standards — as it has in a host of other vital sectors, from clothes to food.

This has already happened in Cambodia, where NGOs have competed since 1999 to provide health services to the rural poor. Coverage and standards improved so rapidly the government widened the programme to cover one in 10 Cambodians.

In 2005, The Lancet compared 10 different contracting programmes around the world and found the majority out-performed the government in cost, quality and coverage, finding “improvements can be rapid” in countries as diverse as Bangladesh, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Bolivia, Madagascar and Senegal.

This process works particularly well for the rural poor, who are frequently neglected by governments. Where they were once a headache for bureaucrats in health ministries, they can suddenly become a business opportunity.

These are times of great financial uncertainty. It is no longer an option for wealthier countries to chuck ever-increasing amounts of money at dysfunctional developing-country health ministries, in the hope that some of it will eventually end up in rural clinics and surgeries. We need to abandon Oxfam’s outdated ideology and do what works.

Philip Stevens is the director of policy at the International Policy Network, a development think-tank based in London



25th February, 2009
By Opio Oloya


Dear Mr. President Yoweri Museveni, if you have not yet read it, I would like to recommend the book: The Curse of the Black Gold: 50 Years of Oil in the Niger Delta by New York- based photojournalist Ed Kashi.

Using his camera lenses and crisp writing, Kashi chronicles the shocking impoverished lives of Nigerians living in the oil rich states, the incredible environmental degradation due to pollution from oil spills, the violence that awaits those attempting to change things peacefully, and the utter hopelessness amidst plenty.

The book provides a glimpse of what can go wrong when ruthless international interests teams up with local corruption to exploit a natural resource like oil without considering the welfare of the people or the condition of the environment.

As Uganda continues to be blessed with discoveries of potentially lucrative oil resources, the time is now, not later, for a very transparent discussion on how these resources will benefit the local people who live in the vicinities of the finds, the regional level and national level.

Secondly, there is need to spell out in clear unambiguous terms who is getting what and how much of the revenue that will someday start flowing from oil export. Finally, what are the environmental protection plans that are being designed to guard against oil spills, toxic fumes and other ills that come with big industrial production of oil?

Nigeria is a case study of what can go awfully wrong even amidst plenty. Currently, this populous country produces 1.6 million barrels of crude oil per day bringing in as much as $61m per day in revenue. In the past 50 years since it began producing commercial oil, Nigeria has garnered close to one trillion dollars in total oil revenue. Yet, in spite of this incredible fortune, the average Nigerian lives on less than a dollar a day. This unspeakable poverty is even more pronounced in those oil producing states in the Delta region. A 2006 World Wild Life report cited the Niger Delta areas among the worst polluted on the planet.

The crisis of equitable sharing of oil revenues between the local citizens who live within a stone-throw of the oil wells and the rapacious international oil companies that are supported by corrupt local and national governments have led to extreme violence in Nigeria. On November 10, 1995, the plight of the Ogoni people gained international attention with the hanging of the Ogoni 9, including writer Ken Saro Wiwa, whose only crimes were to peacefully ask that the environment and the health of the Ogoni be protected.

On May 28, 1998, three years after the hanging of Saro Wiwa, helicopters owned by American oil giant Chevron ferried the deadly Nigerian Navy forces to the Niger Delta state, where protesters had occupied one of Chevron’s platform at Parabe. The troops opened fire on unarmed civilians killing several and wounding scores more.

Last year, a San Francisco court began hearing the case brought by Nigerian plaintiffs against Chevron. Four years ago, on February 4, 2005, a protest at Chevron’s Escravos oil terminal on the coast of the western Niger Delta turned deadly when soldiers fired on protesters killing one and wounding many. Two weeks later, on February 19, 2005, 17 people were killed by troops in the town of Odioma on the coast of Bayelsa State in the centre of the Niger Delta region.

Trouble began brewing in Odioma when a piece of land bought by Shell Oil became disputed by neighbouring communities. There were some killings, and the suspects escaped. The shooting by troops was apparently in retaliation for the death of four local councillors who were seen as supporting the oil company. In a couple of days, almost all the homes in Odioma were razed to the ground. Odioma became a ghost town.

Mr. President, the above catalogue of woes from Nigeria’s oil producing states is not meant to alarm you, but to suggest an alternative way of dealing with the oil resources that are being discovered in Uganda.

For instance, there has been no new official information in the wake of recent news of oil discovery in Amuru district. The residents do not know how much was discovered, what is happening to it, who will gain from it, and what will happen when the oil begins flowing. Naturally, in the absence of accurate information from officials, and a transparent dialogue with locals, rumours are flying fast and furious. ‘The Government is about to start taking our oil. Most of the land where oil was discovered has been bought off by one person. More oil has been discovered, but the Government is sitting on the information. An underground pipeline is being built to siphon off the oil without anyone knowing.” These rumours are all over the internet and on the streets in Amuru and elsewhere in Uganda.

Mr. President, I cannot emphasise enough that Uganda has the opportunity to utilise these new riches for development of the health, education and agriculture infrastructure. However, a genuine step toward developing them into viable commercial products must begin with utmost transparency—let people see and know what exactly is going on, involve local leaders in the planning on environmental assessments, environmental protection, oil-revenue sharing, and attendant development for locals when the project begin to yield oil.

At all times, I encourage you to be mindful of the real potential for violence where people feel used, cheated and unfairly treated. The case of Nigeria’s oil-rich Delta region is ample proof of what can go wrong when people are marginalised from being part of the process of utilising a natural resource like oil.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009



By Jerry Okungu
Nairobi, Kenya
February 25, 2009

The Kriegler Report that nullified the Electoral Commission of Kenya was quite categorical; that Kenyans would never know who won the elections. In the report; which formed the basis of disbanding the ECK as we knew it; there are indications that there were massive riggings at all levels of the process. If over a million dead voters found their way to our polling booths on December 27, 2007, then there is no way any government in Kenya today can claim legitimacy. The process was rotten and faulty from beginning to the finish.

Let us not for a moment forget that this same controversial and maligned process was supervised by Kivuitu’s team. And since we have acknowledged that they failed us and sent them home; it would be hypocritical of us to claim that they were wrong while our members of Parliament together with councilors were elected properly!
It cannot be possible that the referee blunders in the field; chaos erupt while the teams continue to play the game and score goals then the same goals are accepted as valid!
The illegitimacy of this government has its origins in a fraudulent declaration of constituency and presidential results when even the then chairman of the ECK publicly acknowledged that he could not account for and neither knew the whereabouts of some of his returning officers. He went on to suggest that he suspected some of them were still cooking results!

More telling was the fact that a few days later, he confessed that he did not know who won the presidential elections because he was coerced into announcing the fraudulent results by PNU and ODM-K big wigs. This inability to know the real winner was corroborated by the Kriegler Report.

Be that as it may; the theory that the exit polls conducted by the International Republican Institute indicated that it was the ODM rather than the PNU presidential candidate that carried the day still goes to confirm that we have some people in government who should not be there. We have some people in Parliament who should not be there. The real winners are somewhere still nursing their wounds in the crowd irrespective of the government ya mseto!

It is on record that Kenyans fought each other to death following the announcement of fraudulent election results. It is true those who claimed victory had to eat humble pie and invite the losers to share in the government. However, with all due respect to both parties, this Grand Coalition could not and will not right the wrongs visited on Kenyans by our faulty political system.

The truth it; Kenyans voted on the basis of respective party manifestoes that they believed would respond to their hopes, expectations and needs. They did not vote for an amalgamation of party manifestoes that competed bitterly for their votes.
As it is now, there are so many Parliamentary Committees that are composed of the same scoundrels that stole our election in 2007. The same thieves are not over yet with us. Their eyes are already trained on the 2012 elections. They are the same wolves in sheep’s clothes working day and night to give Kenyans another set of election conmen in the Interim Electoral Commission.

This is the reason the selection process of the now stalled IIEC has been faulty right from the appointment of a reputable firm to short list candidates. That is why unknown candidates are popping up from the woodworks as experts to lead the process.
Because these scoundrels successfully manipulated the last ECK; they have the temerity to think they can pull a fast one on unsuspecting Kenyans again.

Another thing; let no ODM brigade be fooled into supporting a particular candidate who they think is likely to safeguard their interests. This is the wrong premise to start from. Because of ODM, Kivuiti had his contract renewed at the last minute when all indications were that Kibaki was set to get rid of him. The very ODM that supported Kivuitu lived to regret it.

What Kenyans need is a transparent process, a non-partisan process led by a reputable international recruitment agency; not a local partisan company prone to ethnic manipulation. I do not see why KP MG or Price Water House Coopers cannot be hired to lead the selection process. At least they have their international reputation to worry about.

Abdikadir’s Parliamentary committee as composed to day is likely to give us more of the same than anything else. You throw in a few PNU hardliners, ODM-K tricksters and ODM schemers and you have a proper recipe for disaster round two!



By Jerry Okungu
Nairobi, Kenya
February 25, 2009

I stand corrected but as far as I know, the invasion of Migingo Island is not the first invasion Kenya has experienced. Territorially, Western Kenya bordering Uganda in Karamojong and West Pokot have been for years the Ugandan soldiers’ shooting range!

How many times have Ugandan soldiers pursued “cattle-rustlers” deep into Kenya territory, terrorized villagers, raped a few women, killed a few men and made off with animals and food stuffs? How many times have we heard whimpering denials from the police force and the provincial administration about such raids? The same denials we are now receiving from a local DC in Nyatike, whose jurisdiction covers the disputed Migingo Island?

For years, Kenyan fishermen have been the subject of torture, arrests and intimidation by both Tanzanian and Ugandan soldiers whenever they have gone fishing on the common waters of Lake Victoria; never mind that the bulk of the rivers feeding Lake Victoria are from the Kenyan highlands!

On the Eastern and Northern borders, it has been common for Kenya to be raided by militias from Ethiopian and Somali borders leaving death and destruction in villages. Innocent Kenyans have lost their lives and property without either compensation from the government that is supposed to protect them or vigorous protests to the governments in our region. Yes, our peaceful nature has encouraged our hostile neighbors to assume, and rightly so, that we are incapable of defending our territorial integrity.

As things stand; should Somalia, Ethiopia and Sudan join Uganda in claiming bits and parcels of land from Kenyan territory; we will be a besieged nation because we have weaklings for leaders that cannot be decisive enough in the defense of our land.

This lackluster political leadership is what makes some of us miss Jomo Kenyatta the most. The old man could not tolerate any nonsense from foreigners playing with our sovereignty. When Idi Amin of Uganda and Shiftas in North Eastern Province threatened Kenyan territories, the old man was swift and devastating. Amin made a hasty retreat while the shiftas lived to regret claiming Northern Kenya on behalf of the Mogadishu regime.

Talking of sporadic invasion of Kenyan territory from time to time by soldiers and militias across our borders; what exactly is the work of a national army that has never seen combat in 50 years? Why do we have an army in the first place? How come they were swift and devastating when it came to Mt. Elgon civilian uprising against land grabbing? Why can’t these soldiers use the same force, helicopters, gun boats and all to defend Kenyan waters in Lake Victoria and off the Coast of Somalia where pirates are reigning supreme? How come when Ugandan soldiers invade West Pokot and Karamojong borders all our soldiers do is to continue lazing around in barracks? Whose responsibility is it to declare a state of emergency incase of a foreign invasion?

Where is the Kenyan National Defense Council? Where are the Army Chief of Staff and his commanders when a foreign flag is hoisted on Kenyan soil? Is this really the work of a helpless PC and his poorly armed and ill-trained polisi kanga?

But again, when you come to think of it, Kenyans have been invaded many times over by all sorts of mad armies all over. In fact we are constantly under siege and held hostage by thugs on our roads masquerading as public service vehicle drivers. The mayhem on our Nairobi’s Central Business District right in front of Traffic Policemen is a spectacle to behold. Lawlessness has taken over.

A so called City Bus can jump from the last lane on the right in front of GPO on Kenyatta Avenue and squeeze every motorist until it gets to the last lane on the left where it was supposed to be in the first place, quite oblivious of traffic rules and courtesy to other road users.

Big time conmen have also not been left behind in this invasion and plunder of Kenya resources. If Golden Berg architects are not doing their thing with the Central Bank loot, another group is siphoning billions of Kenyan public cash through Anglo Leasing International, a fictitious company owned by ghosts.

Just at about the time we are about to let the Anglo Leasing ghosts slip off our minds, another gang of real raiders visit our Kenya Pipe Line Company, cart away Ksh 8 Billion as others visit the National Maize and Produce and Cereals Board to off load a million bags of maize leaving 11 million Kenyans to face death by starvation.
Yes, Ugandan forces may be sitting pretty on Migingo Island flying their bendera there; but here too we have too many invaders occupying us full time.

When will we elect John Michuki president to bring sanity to this country and help us reclaim our country back?



By Jerry Okungu
Nairobi, Kenya
February 24, 2009

Now we know; the stupidity of our political leaders is beyond redemption in this part of Africa. Now we know; the talk of East African integration is a mere pipe dream if our leaders can be so silly as to bicker over a one acre piece of rock! Migingo Island in Lake Victoria is living testimony that we have a deranged political leadership in our countries.

I am a Kenyan from the Lake Region. I was born and brought up near Lake Victoria but I have never been to Migingo Island. However, all I know is that many poor and hardly literate Kenyan fishermen have born the brunt of Ugandan soldiers on that Island. They get arrested and detained from time to time for either living on the island or fishing around it “illegally.”

I would like to believe that these so called Ugandan soldiers are mere pirates out to extort whatever they can from these poor fishermen and that they are not there on orders from their Commander-in- Chief, President Yoweri Museveni! Should it turn out that indeed they are there with Museveni’s knowledge; it would be a most unfortunate thing for this region.

Now Kenya has finally raised its voice in its National Assembly to clearly state that Migingo Island, formerly known as Ogingo Island has been part of Kenyan territory since 1949. Ugandans, more specifically, Ugandan armed forces think otherwise.

So, what happens? Are the two countries that are members of the East African Community about to go to war over this one acre piece of earth? If this happens; if we can fight over land as small as this, how then will we implement the Common Market protocols that will guarantee East Africans settlement, business and homes anywhere in the region? If Ugandan soldiers are still obsessed with Migingo enclave, arresting Kenyan “foreigners” for trespassing at a time when negotiations for the Common Market are advancing, how will they handle an influx of Rwandese, Burundians and Tanzanians when the Common Market protocols are signed?

I do not have all the facts but this much I know; that Uganda can ill afford to go to war with Kenya over Migingo Island. It will be the most foolish thing to do; more foolish than Idi Amin’s buffoonery in the 1970s when he claimed parts of Kenyan and Tanzanian territories. When he tried to annex the Kagera salient, he stepped on Julius Nyerere’s sore toe and Mwalimu went ballistic. The dictator was sent packing in a matter of days.

Uganda needs Kenya as much as Kenya needs Uganda for basic economic survival. Uganda is one of Kenya’ biggest export markets while Kenya provides Uganda with an economic lifeline to the sea port of Mombasa.

It is true in the worst case scenario; especially in situations of war, Uganda would probably reroute her cargo to Dar es Salaam at probably a higher price.

But again, before that route becomes functional, many Ugandans, Rwandese, Burundians and Congolese will have suffered as a result of this reckless and unnecessary conflict. More than that; the moment there is a conflict between two member states of the EAC, the entire Community will be destabilized with dire consequences for everybody including Ugandans and Kenyans. In this scenario, the biggest casualty will be the fragile East African Community. It will die a second death with no prospect of resurrecting in a hundred years.

As the situation continues to deteriorate, word is in the air that there is a Kenyan delegation preparing to go to Uganda for talks. Is this really the wise thing to do? Don’t we have a Peace, Security and Conflict Resolution department within the East African Community to deal with this issue? How come we are not hearing any moves by the current EAC Chairman, Paul Kagame talking or convening an emergency Summit to resolve the issue? How come other heads of State like Jakaya Kikwete and his Burundian counterpart are silent? Are they waiting for the war to break out first before they intervene?

Any outright hostility between Kenya and Uganda will make thousands of innocent people doing business or working in both countries suffer unnecessarily. There will be an influx of refugees in all directions. Even countries not directly in conflict will get hit equally hard. The repurcations will be felt as far as Khartoum, Addis Ababa, Kivu, Kigali, Bujumbura and Dar es Salaam. It will be a human catastrophe. We ordinary East Africans must stop our reckless political leaders from driving us into this meaningless conflict!

Monday, February 23, 2009



By Ng'ang'a Mbugua
February 22 2009

Once, when Kenyatta was President, I heard it said that Ugandan soldiers attacked a border post with Kenya. According to this legend, Kenyatta ordered that soldiers be given police uniforms. Those were the days police wore khaki.

Dressed as police, the soldiers were quickly deployed to the troubled border post and fought the Uganda army, winning the encounter that must have put paid to Dictator Idi Amin’s imperialist plans.

At the time, Amin, who was trained as a soldier at the Lanet Barracks in Nakuru, 80km west of the capital Nairobi, used to claim that Uganda’s border with Kenya was at Naivasha. If he had won that battle, last-year’s post election violence would have rocked Uganda, not Kenya. Unfortunately, his soldiers were thoroughly humiliated, so goes the story.

After the victory, Kenyatta bragged that if “mere policemen” could humiliate the Ugandan army so, how much greater damage would proper soldiers inflict on “the Jewel of the Crown”?

But those were the good old days — when men were men. Now, Ugandan forces have invaded a small island in Kenya’s part of Lake Victoria. To tell the truth, not much has been said about the importance of Migingo island or whether that piece of earth — once described by a journalist as nothing but a rock — is worth fighting for. All that has been said is that the water around the island is rich with Nile Perch.

Considering that Kenya has the smallest of the Lake Victoria portions in East Africa, then the island gains in significance. It will be remembered that the average income earned from fish exports in the last two years has been about Sh6 billion a year.

Anyway, the island might be important economically, but the fact that Kenyan forces have allowed an occupying force to take over its island without firing a single bullet sets a bad precedent. It means that Sudan, Tanzania, Ethiopia or Somalia could decide to annex a part of Kenya — and get away with it.

I have not been to Migingo, but from Daily Nation reports, there are about 1,000 Kenyans living on the island. Many of them fled over the weekend following tension after Kenyan Administration Police officers were detained by Ugandan soldiers.

According to our reporters, the APs were detained because they had brought down the Ugandan flag and hoisted Kenya’s in its place. It is entirely possible that this is not the first island that Uganda has taken from Kenya.

In fact, if my memory serves me well, there was a time in 2007 when Uganda forces were accused of moving the beacons on some parts of the Kenyan border. What’s more, they even attacked Kenyan pastoralists, killing scores of people with bombs.

To Kenya’s credit then, it sent its soldiers there and they did a commendable job. Instead of bombing Ugandan territory, they dug wells, arguing that the cause of the conflict was the herders’ search for water. I considered that a brilliant thing to do as it went to the heart of the problem instead of addressing the symptom.

However, there comes a time, as Internal Security minister George Saitoti once said, when the nation is more important than an individual.

And that time has come for the Kenyan military to show that the principle of sovereignty is more important that President Museveni’s expansionist dreams. We know that he is keen to be the president of East Africa. The capture of Migingo shows he wants to do it an island at a time.

Considering that Kenya’s military has just imported 33 T72 battle tanks from Ukraine and wrested them from the hands of pirates, it now has an opportunity to demonstrate its might by shipping one of this to the island of Migingo just to show its teeth even if it does not bite.

On the other hand, it is entirely possible that the military has googled up the island and found that it is actually the property of Uganda. In which case, it should advise its commander-in-chief to make public this information and put to rest the fears of those who, like me, are wondering what our military is doing to stop the invasion of a Kenyan island by an occupying force.



Dear Mr Cecil Miller,

For a moment there, I thought that you were going to become the chairman of the new electoral commission. On behalf of my fellow journalists, I must apologise to you and the public if we created the impression that you had already won the job.

Little did we know that Parliament — and especially one nominated MP by the name of Milly Odhiambo — had other plans for you. I am told that MPs are not the only people who had other plans about who they wanted to chair the electoral body.

Even some of your learned friends had started asking questions. Too bad I never heard any of those questions, since I am not an officer of the court.

But never mind. What has happened to you shows that Kenya has become like America. Some candidates for public office have to be vetted by Parliament before they can be appointed by the President. You happened to be the first casualty.

Maybe, just maybe, another person will be proposed for the job tomorrow. He may not be as young as you are; he may not have a vision like yours but if he satisfies the nebulous criteria set by Parliament, he will be the man whose unenviable job it will be to register new voters, set up a new electoral team and convince IDPs to vote again at the risk of being killed or ejected from their homes again.

By the way, is it not a curious thing that you, Mr Miller, were rejected by Parliament on the week that debate about briefcase millers had caused such a storm in the House?

And then, when it was time for the MPs to vote, one Cecily, happened to have just walked out of Parliament, resulting in a tie that denied you a job? Not to worry though, Mr Miller. Let’s see who will get the thankless job, and we can keep our fingers crossed for her. She will need all the luck she can get.


Why tree cutting campaign deserves praise

Mr John Michuki has always been a man after my own heart. In fact, I still believe that he is the best president that Kenya will never have.

Only recently, he ordered farmers in his Kangema constituency in Murang’a to cut down eucalyptus trees from river banks, arguing that the species — imported from South Africa — was to blame for the drying up of rivers and wetlands in that area. I am told that rivers have been filling up again since Mr Michuki gave the order.

I must confess that I was among those mesmerised by the idea of planting the trees on the grounds that the Kenya Power and Lighting Company — which had embarked on a massive campaign to light up rural areas — was buying the posts at a handsome price.

Avoiding disaster

However, I have changed my position, because I believe that conserving Kenya’s water sources is more important than providing electricity posts. And this is the gospel that Mr Michuki has been preaching.

It has been said many times, but it bears repeating. If Kenya is to avoid an environmental disaster, it must urgently outlaw this species of eucalyptus trees. Otherwise, by 2030, we will have well lit villages whose rivers long dried up.

While on the subject of electricity, I have been reliably informed that street lights in Kileleshwa, Lavington and Riverside in Nairobi are always on during the day.

This means that the city council is wasting millions of shillings every month, not to mention precious electricity considering that rivers that sustain Nairobi are drying up and it is only a matter of time before electricity — like water — is rationed in “the regional economic hub”.



By Standard Team

Lugari MP Cyrus Jirongo has sensationally claimed that he organised night meetings between Justice Minister Martha Karua and her Agriculture counterpart William Ruto, leading to the Grand Question: Just who is telling the truth?

Mr Ruto was the first, two weeks ago, to come out and claim that Ms Karua had sent an emissary over the possibility of joining hands ahead of the 2012 General Election. Karua, who has declared her intention to run for president in 2012, responded at a Press conference where she hit out at Ruto, saying she would not want to go into an alliance with a politician whom she claimed has "a lot of baggage".

Ruto added more mystery to the spat when he claimed that the censure Motion against him over the maize scandal, and which was overwhelmingly rejected in Parliament, was a consequence of an alleged fall-out between him and Karua.

Ruto had then asked: "Why would a Minister of Justice use night meetings to sort out issues with suspects, when she has the whole justice system at her disposal?"

But it was Mr Jirongo’s claim on Sunday that he organised three meetings in his New Muthaiga House in Nairobi that is likely to draw more fire.

Jirongo claimed the two politicians discussed resettlement of internally displaced people and helping Ruto over a corruption case in court.

Jirongo distanced himself from attempts to rally support for Ruto or Karua who have their eyes trained on higher offices in 2012.

When asked if they discussed 2012 as alleged by Ruto, he said: "Hiyo ni uongo (That is a lie)."

He went ahead to claim that Ruto had shifted his political focus to a another politician from Central Province who, he claimed, was more powerful and had easier access to State House than Karua.

"The meetings in my house were aimed at defusing tension between two communities in the Rift Valley following the clashes," he claimed.

Jirongo went on: "Ruto should not allege that the meeting in my house was aimed at marshaling support for the 2012 race.

"When I invited both to my homecoming party, I made them aware that they were going to meet. From then on, they ate and talked together when I hosted them. I cannot explain the reasons behind these hostilities."

Jirongo said Ruto avoided answering questions about notes he issued to help people acquire maize irregularly.

Looking for favours

It is understood this was the subject of ongoing Kenya Anti-Corruption Commission (Kacc) investigation, which targets 15 people, including MPs.

Last night, Ruto swiftly countered Jirongo’s claims, saying: "If I was looking for favours as they (Jirongo and Karua) purport, why wouldn’t I have been the one looking for them not the other way round?"

He went on: "We talked about 2012. Let them tell you because they know the schemes of what we wanted and discussed. The censure Motion against me was a product of the disagreement at the meeting. The public should now know the real sponsors of that censure Motion."

The minister asked: "Karua had denied she ever met me. Why is Jirongo betraying his soul mate?"

Karua confirmed last night "attending that meeting but it was about IDPs, not 2012".

It was not immediately clear the number of times Karua may have attended as she declined to comment further, saying she would have to first review what Jirongo had said.

Karua and Ruto have recently been in the news over their political differences after the Justice minister demanded that her Agriculture counterpart take political responsibility for the maize scandal. Grains worth millions of shillings were irregularly sold from the National Cereals and Produce Board.

Night meetings

Last week’s Cabinet meeting degenerated into chaos as the two bickered over the maize scam that has made flour prices shoot to an all-time high. The subsidised maize and flour promised by the Government is not available in stores.

But Ruto demanded concrete evidence linking him to the scandal before he could resign. He survived the censure Motion when 119 MPs supported him against a paltry 22 MPs who sought his resignation.

The Motion was preceded by night meetings drawing MPs from Central, Eastern, Central and Rift Valley provinces.

This was seen as a contest with succession undertones, as regional supremos threw their weight behind Ruto to suppress competition in their own backyards.

Apart from Karua, his internal security counterpart Prof George Saitoti has also declared his intention to run for presidency in 2012. Prime Minister Raila Odinga, Vice President Kalonzo Musyoka, Deputy Prime Ministers Musalia Mudavadi and Uhuru Kenyatta, and Ruto are also expected to stake a claim.



By Standard Team

The Parliamentary Select Committee on Constitution Review says it regrets the nomination of Mr Suleiman Buko as Coast Province representative.

Chairman Abdikadir Abdi said the committee was not aware Buko worked as a deputy returning officer in Garsen constituency.

Abdikadir Abdi

Speaking to The Standard, Mr Abdi challenged those with evidence challenging nomination of commissioners to forward them to the PSC.

At the same time, Prime Minister Raila Odinga now wants the PSC to nominate members to the proposed electoral body afresh.

The PM spoke as the PSC chairman hinted that the list of proposed IIEC members rejected by Parliament last week could be amended.

Raila urged members of the PSC to do their best to give Kenyans a commission that could be relied on.

"The electoral team we set up must comprise people of integrity and supportive to reforms, democracy and good governance. They should be men and women ready to pay any price to defend their integrity and that of their institutions," Raila said.

Meanwhile, there was intense lobbying for nominations to the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) ahead of today’s meeting of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Constitutional Review.

MPs said they wanted a credible team that would enjoy Kenyans’ confidence. Several MPs expressed disappointment with the nominations and last week’s disagreement among select committee members, saying they flouted parliamentary practice.

ODM Secretary-General and Medical Services Minister Anyang’ Nyong’o said coalition partners and parties in Parliament must agree on the list at a Kamukunji before it is tabled.

Ikolomani MP Bonny Khalwale supported the idea, saying: "We need three names for each position, which can be vetted ahead of tabling."

Imenti Central MP Gitobu Imanyara warned of a pending Motion seeking to disband the Abdikadir Abdi-led PSC and reconstitute a new one within seven says.

Nominated MP Musa Sirma said a flawed IIEC would court violence.

"We do not want election officials seconded by a few individuals forced on us. That was why we disbanded the Electoral Commission of Kenya. We must build consensus," said Sirma.

Nominated MP Musikari Kombo urged MPs to respect the work of committees created by Parliament.

"Kenyans are beginning to ask whether their taxes should finance Parliamentary committees, whose work is rubbished by the House," Kombo said.

Mr Imanyara said PSC have options of removing contentious names, replacing the entire list or returning it after seeking consensus. The PSC is mandated to nominate a chairman and eight commissioners from each province.

By David Ohito, Isaac Ongiri and Peter Orengo



"If the United States of America or Britain is having elections, they don't ask for observers from Africa or from Asia. But when we have elections, they want observers." —Nelson Mandela on Politics Government

"The power of imagination created the illusion that my vision went much farther than the naked eye could actually see." —Nelson Mandela on Vision

Article on Nelson Mandela:
Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela (born 18 July 1918) is a South African political activist, co-winner of Nobel Peace Prize with F.W. de Klerk in 1993, and in 1994 he became the first President of South Africa to be elected in fully-representative democratic elections. Mandela's inauguration brought together the largest number of Heads of State since the funeral of US President John F. Kennedy in 1963. After he retired the presidency in 1999, he went on to become an advocate for a variety of social and human rights organizations and greater international cooperation. He is one of the world's most visible figures regarding race relations and is a symbol to many people of the struggle for racial equality.

"There are many people who feel that it is useless and futile for us to continue talking peace and non-violence â" against a government whose only reply is savage attacks on an unarmed and defenceless people. And I think the time has come for us to consider, in the light of our experiences at this day at home, whether the methods which we have applied so far are adequate. Interview (1961)

Only free men can negotiate; prisoners cannot enter into contracts. Your freedom and mine cannot be separated.Refusing to bargain for freedom after 21 years in prison, as quoted in TIME (25 February 1985)

I stand here before you not as a prophet but as a humble servant of you, the people. Your tireless and heroic sacrifices have made it possible for me to be here today. I therefore place the remaining years of my life in your hands."
Speech on the day of his release, Cape Town (11 February 1990)

"I remember we adjourned for lunch and a friendly Afrikaner warder asked me the question, "Mandela, what do you think is going to happen to you in this case?" I said to him, "Agh, they are going to hang us." Now, I was really expecting some word of encouragement from him. And I thought he was going to say, "Agh man, that can never happen." But he became serious and then he said, "I think you are right, they are going to hang you." Interview segment on All Things Considered" (NPR) broadcast (27 April 2004)

"Let's hope that Ken Osterbroek will be the last person to die.
Spoken shortly after Inkatha announced that they would participate in the 1994 elections." (The Bang-Bang Club p. 168)

"The UN took a strong stand against apartheid; and over the years, an international consensus was built, which helped to bring an end to this iniquitous system. But we know too well that our freedom is incomplete without the freedom of the Palestinians." Address at The International Day of Solidarity with the Palestinian People[1]

First court statement (1962)
Statement on charges of inciting persons to strike illegally, and of leaving the country without a valid passport.

"In its proper meaning equality before the law means the right to participate in the making of the laws by which one is governed, a constitution which guarantees democratic rights to all sections of the population, the right to approach the court for protection or relief in the case of the violation of rights guaranteed in the constitution, and the right to take part in the administration of justice as judges, magistrates, attorneys-general, law advisers and similar positions.

"In the absence of these safeguards the phrase 'equality before the law', in so far as it is intended to apply to us, is meaningless and misleading. All the rights and privileges to which I have referred are monopolised by whites, and we enjoy none of them. The white man makes all the laws, he drags us before his courts and accuses us, and he sits in judgement over us.

"It is fit and proper to raise the question sharply, what is this rigid colour-bar in the administration of justice? Why is it that in this courtroom I face a white magistrate, am confronted by a white prosecutor, and escorted into the dock by a white orderly? Can anyone honestly and seriously suggest that in this type of atmosphere the scales of justice are evenly balanced?

"Why is it that no African in the history of this country has ever had the honour of being tried by his own kith and kin, by his own flesh and blood?

"I will tell Your Worship why: the real purpose of this rigid colour-bar is to ensure that the justice dispensed by the courts should conform to the policy of the country, however much that policy might be in conflict with the norms of justice accepted in judiciaries throughout the civilised world.

"I hate race discrimination most intensely and in all its manifestations. I have fought it all during my life; I fight it now, and will do so until the end of my days. Even although I now happen to be tried by one whose opinion I hold in high esteem, I detest most violently the set-up that surrounds me here. It makes me feel that I am a black man in a white man's court. This should not be."

I am Prepared to Die (1964)
Statement in the Rivonia Trial, Pretoria Supreme Court (20 April 1964)

"I must deal immediately and at some length with the question of violence. Some of the things so far told to the Court are true and some are untrue. I do not, however, deny that I planned sabotage. I did not plan it in a spirit of recklessness, nor because I have any love of violence. I planned it as a result of a calm and sober assessment of the political situation that had arisen after many years of tyranny, exploitation, and oppression of my people by the Whites.

"I have already mentioned that I was one of the persons who helped to form Umkhonto. I, and the others who started the organization, did so for two reasons. Firstly, we believed that as a result of Government policy, violence by the African people had become inevitable, and that unless responsible leadership was given to canalize and control the feelings of our people, there would be outbreaks of terrorism which would produce an intensity of bitterness and hostility between the various races of this country which is not produced even by war.

"Secondly, we felt that without violence there would be no way open to the African people to succeed in their struggle against the principle of white supremacy. All lawful modes of expressing opposition to this principle had been closed by legislation, and we were placed in a position in which we had either to accept a permanent state of inferiority, or to defy the Government. We chose to defy the law.
"We first broke the law in a way which avoided any recourse to violence; when this form was legislated against, and then the Government resorted to a show of force to crush opposition to its policies, only then did we decide to answer violence with violence.

"But the violence which we chose to adopt was not terrorism. We who formed Umkhonto were all members of the African National Congress, and had behind us the ANC tradition of non-violence and negotiation as a means of solving political disputes.

"We believe that South Africa belongs to all the people who live in it, and not to one group, be it black or white. We did not want an interracial war, and tried to avoid it to the last minute. If the Court is in doubt about this, it will be seen that the whole history of our organization bears out what I have said, and what I will subsequently say, when I describe the tactics which Umkhonto decided to adopt.

"During my lifetime I have dedicated myself to this struggle of the African people. I have fought against white domination, and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die.

Our March to Freedom is Irreversible (1990)

"Friends, Comrades and fellow South Africans. I greet you all in the name of peace, democracy and freedom for all. I stand here before you not as a prophet but as a humble servant of you, the people. Your tireless and heroic sacrifices have made it possible for me to be here today. I therefore place the remaining years of my life in your hands.

"The majority of South Africans, black and white, recognize that apartheid has no future. It has to be ended by our own decisive mass action in order to build peace and security. The mass campaign of defiance and other actions of our organization and people can only culminate in the establishment of democracy
There must be an end to white monopoly on political power, and a fundamental restructuring of our political and economic systems to ensure that the inequalities of apartheid are addressed and our society thoroughly democratized.

"Our march to freedom is irreversible. We must not allow fear to stand in our way. Universal suffrage on a common voters' roll in a united, democratic and non-racial South Africa is the only way to peace and racial harmony."

Nobel Prize acceptance speech (1993)
Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Address(10 December 1993)

"We speak here of the challenge of the dichotomies of war and peace, violence and non-violence, racism and human dignity, oppression and repression and liberty and human rights, poverty and freedom from want.

"We stand here today as nothing more than a representative of the millions of our people who dared to rise up against a social system whose very essence is war, violence, racism, oppression, repression and the impoverishment of an entire people.
I am also here today as a representative of the millions of people across the globe, the anti-apartheid movement, the governments and organisations that joined with us, not to fight against South Africa as a country or any of its peoples, but to oppose an inhuman system and sue for a speedy end to the apartheid crime against humanity.

"These countless human beings, both inside and outside our country, had the nobility of spirit to stand in the path of tyranny and injustice, without seeking selfish gain. They recognised that an injury to one is an injury to all and therefore acted together in defense of justice and a common human decency.

"Because of their courage and persistence for many years, we can, today, even set the dates when all humanity will join together to celebrate one of the outstanding human victories of our century.

"When that moment comes, we shall, together, rejoice in a common victory over racism, apartheid and white minority rule.

"That triumph will finally bring to a close a history of five hundred years of African colonisation that began with the establishment of the Portuguese empire.
Thus, it will mark a great step forward in history and also serve as a common pledge of the peoples of the world to fight racism, wherever it occurs and whatever guise it assumes.

"In front of this distinguished audience, we commit the new South Africa to the relentless pursuit of the purposes defined in the World Declaration on the Survival, Protection and Development of Children.

"The reward of which we have spoken will and must also be measured by the happiness and welfare of the mothers and fathers of these children, who must walk the earth without fear of being robbed, killed for political or material profit, or spat upon because they are beggars.

"They too must be relieved of the heavy burden of despair which they carry in their hearts, born of hunger, homelessness and unemployment.
The value of that gift to all who have suffered will and must be measured by the happiness and welfare of all the people of our country, who will have torn down the inhuman walls that divide them.

"These great masses will have turned their backs on the grave insult to human dignity which described some as masters and others as servants, and transformed each into a predator whose survival depended on the destruction of the other.
The value of our shared reward will and must be measured by the joyful peace which will triumph, because the common humanity that bonds both black and white into one human race, will have said to each one of us that we shall all live like the children of paradise.

"Thus shall we live, because we will have created a society which recognises that all people are born equal, with each entitled in equal measure to life, liberty, prosperity, human rights and good governance.

"Such a society should never allow again that there should be prisoners of conscience nor that any person's human right should be violated.

"In relation to these matters, we appeal to those who govern Burma that they release our fellow Nobel Peace Prize laureate, Aung San Suu Kyi, and engage her and those she represents in serious dialogue, for the benefit of all the people of Burma.

"We pray that those who have the power to do so will, without further delay, permit that she uses her talents and energies for the greater good of the people of her country and humanity as a whole.

"Far from the rough and tumble of the politics of our own country. I would like to take this opportunity to join the Norwegian Nobel Committee and pay tribute to my joint laureate. Mr. F.W. de Klerk.

"He had the courage to admit that a terrible wrong had been done to our country and people through the imposition of the system of apartheid.
He had the foresight to understand and accept that all the people of South Africa must through negotiations and as equal participants in the process, together determine what they want to make of their future.

We live with the hope that as she battles to remake herself, South Africa, will be like a microcosm of the new world that is striving to be born.
This must be a world of democracy and respect for human rights, a world freed from the horrors of poverty, hunger, deprivation and ignorance, relieved of the threat and the scourge of civil wars and external aggression and unburdened of the great tragedy of millions forced to become refugees.

We do not believe that this Nobel Peace Prize is intended as a commendation for matters that have happened and passed.
We hear the voices which say that it is an appeal from all those, throughout the universe, who sought an end to the system of apartheid.

We understand their call, that we devote what remains of our lives to the use of our country's unique and painful experience to demonstrate, in practice, that the normal condition for human existence is democracy, justice, peace, non-racism, non-sexism, prosperity for everybody, a healthy environment and equality and solidarity among the peoples.

Moved by that appeal and inspired by the eminence you have thrust upon us, we undertake that we too will do what we can to contribute to the renewal of our world so that none should, in future, be described as the "wretched of the earth".
Let it never be said by future generations that indifference, cynicism or selfishness made us fail to live up to the ideals of humanism which the Nobel Peace Prize encapsulates.

Let the strivings of us all, prove Martin Luther King Jr. to have been correct, when he said that humanity can no longer be tragically bound to the starless midnight of racism and war.

Let the efforts of us all, prove that he was not a mere dreamer when he spoke of the beauty of genuine brotherhood and peace being more precious than diamonds or silver or gold.
Let a new age dawn!"

Nelson Mandela stood up for what he believed in because he knew that the apartheid in South Africa was wrong. Not only did he talk about it and was about it. He gave everything he had to destroy all racism - Quote by WCC student

Victory speech (1994)
Announcing the ANC election victory, Johannesburg (2 May 1994)

"My fellow South Africans â" the people of South Africa:
This is indeed a joyous night. Although not yet final, we have received the provisional results of the election, and are delighted by the overwhelming support for the African National Congress.

To all those in the African National Congress and the democratic movement who worked so hard these last few days and through these many decades, I thank you and honour you. To the people of South Africa and the world who are watching: this a joyous night for the human spirit. This is your victory too. You helped end apartheid, you stood with us through the transition.

I watched, along with all of you, as the tens of thousands of our people stood patiently in long queues for many hours. Some sleeping on the open ground overnight waiting to cast this momentous vote.

This is one of the most important moments in the life of our country. I stand here before you filled with deep pride and joy: â" pride in the ordinary, humble people of this country. You have shown such a calm, patient determination to reclaim this country as your own, - and joy that we can loudly proclaim from the rooftops â" free at last!

Tomorrow, the entire ANC leadership and I will be back at our desks. We are rolling up our sleeves to begin tackling the problems our country faces. We ask you all to join us â" go back to your jobs in the morning. Let's get South Africa working.
For we must, together and without delay, begin to build a better life for all South Africans. This means creating jobs building houses, providing education and bringing peace and security for all.

The calm and tolerant atmosphere that prevailed during the elections depicts the type of South Africa we can build. It set the tone for the future. We might have our differences, but we are one people with a common destiny in our rich variety of culture, race and tradition.

People have voted for the party of their choice and we respect that. This is democracy.

I hold out a hand of friendship to the leaders of all parties and their members, and ask all of them to join us in working together to tackle the problems we face as a nation. An ANC government will serve all the people of South Africa, not just ANC members.

Now is the time for celebration, for South Africans to join together to celebrate the birth of democracy. I raise a glass to you all for working so hard to achieve what can only be called a small miracle. Let our celebrations be in keeping with the mood set in the elections, peaceful, respectful and disciplined, showing we are a people ready to assume the responsibilities of government.

I promise that I will do my best to be worthy of the faith and confidence you have placed in me and my organisation, the African National Congress. Let us build the future together, and toast a better life for all South Africans."

Inaugural speech (1994)
Cape Town, (9 May 1994)

"Today we are entering a new era for our country and its people. Today we celebrate not the victory of a party, but a victory for all the people of South Africa.
Our country has arrived at a decision. Among all the parties that contested the elections, the overwhelming majority of South Africans have mandated the African National Congress to lead our country into the future. The South Africa we have struggled for, in which all our people, be they African, Coloured, Indian or White, regard themselves as citizens of one nation is at hand.

Perhaps it was history that ordained that it be here, at the Cape of Good Hope that we should lay the foundation stone of our new nation. For it was here at this Cape, over three centuries ago, that there began the fateful convergence of the peoples of Africa, Europe and Asia on these shores.

The names of those who were incarcerated on Robben Island is a roll call of resistance fighters and democrats spanning over three centuries. If indeed this is a Cape of Good Hope, that hope owes much to the spirit of that legion of fighters and others of their calibre.

Ours has been a quest for a constitution freely adopted by the people of South Africa, reflecting their wishes and their aspirations. The struggle for democracy has never been a matter pursued by one race, class, religious community or gender among South Africans. In honouring those who fought to see this day arrive, we honour the best sons and daughters of all our people. We can count amongst them Africans, Coloureds, Whites, Indians, Muslims, Christians, Hindus, Jews â" all of them united by a common vision of a better life for the people of this country.

In 1980s the African National Congress was still setting the pace, being the first major political formation in South Africa to commit itself firmly to a Bill of Rights, which we published in November 1990. These milestones give concrete expression to what South Africa can become. They speak of a constitutional, democratic, political order in which, regardless of colour, gender, religion, political opinion or sexual orientation, the law will provide for the equal protection of all citizens.

They project a democracy in which the government, whomever that government may be, will be bound by a higher set of rules, embodied in a constitution, and will not be able govern the country as it pleases.

Democracy is based on the majority principle. This is especially true in a country such as ours where the vast majority have been systematically denied their rights. At the same time, democracy also requires that the rights of political and other minorities be safeguarded.

In the political order we have established there will regular, open and free elections, at all levels of government â" central, provincial and municipal. There shall also be a social order which respects completely the culture, language and religious rights of all sections of our society and the fundamental rights of the individual.

The task at hand on will not be easy. But you have mandated us to change South Africa from a country in which the majority lived with little hope, to one in which they can live and work with dignity, with a sense of self-esteem and confidence in the future. The cornerstone of building a better life of opportunity, freedom and prosperity is the Reconstruction and Development Programme.

This needs unity of purpose. It needs in action. It requires us all to work together to bring an end to division, an end to suspicion and build a nation united in our diversity.

The people of South Africa have spoken in these elections. They want change! And change is what they will get. Our plan is to create jobs, promote peace and reconciliation, and to guarantee freedom for all South Africans.

While we are and shall remain fully committed to the spirit of a government of national unity, we are determined to initiate and bring about the change that our mandate from the people demands.

We place our vision of a new constitutional order for South Africa on the table not as conquerors, prescribing to the conquered. We speak as fellow citizens to heal the wounds of the past with the intent of constructing a new order based on justice for all.

This is the challenge that faces all South Africans today, and it is one to which I am certain we will all rise."

Inaugural celebration address (1994)
Pretoria (10 May 1994)

"Your Majesties, Your Highnesses, Distinguished Guests, Comrades and Friends. Today, all of us do, by our presence here, and by our celebrations in other parts of our country and the world, confer glory and hope to newborn liberty. Out of the experience of an extraordinary human disaster that lasted too long, must be born a society of which all humanity will be proud.

Our daily deeds as ordinary South Africans must produce an actual South African reality that will reinforce humanity's belief in justice, strengthen its confidence in the nobility of the human soul and sustain all our hopes for a glorious life for all.

All this we owe both to ourselves and to the peoples of the world who are so well represented here today.

We thank all our distinguished international guests for having come to take possession with the people of our country of what is, after all, a common victory for justice, for peace, for human dignity. We trust that you will continue to stand by us as we tackle the challenges of building peace, prosperity, non-sexism, non-racialism and democracy.

The time for the healing of the wounds has come.
The moment to bridge the chasms that divide us has come.
The time to build is upon us.

We succeeded to take our last steps to freedom in conditions of relative peace. We commit ourselves to the construction of a complete, just and lasting peace.
We have triumphed in the effort to implant hope in the breasts of the millions of our people. We enter into a covenant that we shall build the society in which all South Africans, both black and white, will be able to walk tall, without any fear in their hearts, assured of their inalienable right to human dignity â" a rainbow nation at peace with itself and the world.

We dedicate this day to all the heroes and heroines in this country and the rest of the world who sacrificed in many ways and surrendered their lives so that we could be free.

Their dreams have become reality. Freedom is their reward.
We are both humbled and elevated by the honour and privilege that you, the people of South Africa, have bestowed on us, as the first President of a united, democratic, non-racial and non-sexist government.

We understand it still that there is no easy road to freedom
We know it well that none of us acting alone can achieve success.
We must therefore act together as a united people, for national reconciliation, for nation building, for the birth of a new world.

Let there be justice for all.
Let there be peace for all.
Never, never and never again shall it be that this beautiful land will again experience the oppression of one by another and suffer the indignity of being the skunk of the world.

Let freedom reign!
The sun shall never set on so glorious a human achievement!
God bless Africa!"

Long Walk to Freedom (1995)

"No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.

Education is the great engine of personal development. It is through education that the daughter of a peasant can become a doctor, that the son of a mineworker can become the head of the mine, that a child of farmworkers can become the president of a great nation. It is what we make out of what we have, not what we are given, that separates one person from another.

A good head and a good heart are always a formidable combination.
I learned that courage was not the absence of fear, but the triumph over it. The brave man is not he who does not feel afraid, but he who conquers that fear.
In my country we go to prison first and then become President.
No one truly knows a nation until one has been inside its jails. A nation should not be judged by how it treats its highest citizens but its lowest ones.

There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.
The greatest glory in living lies not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall.

You may succeed in delaying, but never in preventing the transition of South Africa to a democracy.

Any man that tries to rob me of my dignity will lose.
The victory of democracy in South Africa is the common achievement of all humanity.
The authorities liked to say that we received a balanced diet; it was indeed balanced â" between the unpalatable and the inedible.

Prison itself is a tremendous education in the need for patience and perseverance. It is above all a test of one's commitment.
I always knew that someday I would once again feel the grass under my feet and walk in the sunshine as a free man.

I have always believed that exercise is the key not only to physical health but to peace of mind.
There is no easy walk to freedom anywhere, and many of us will have to pass through the valley of the shadow of death again and again before we reach the mountaintop of our desires.

I detest racialism because I regard it as a barbaric thing, whether it comes from a black man or a white man.

A man does not become a freedom fighter in the hope of winning awards, but when I was notified that I had won the 1993 Nobel peace prize jointly with Mr. F.W. de Klerk, I was deeply moved. The Nobel Peace Prize had a special meaning for me because of its involvement with South Africa... The award was a tribute to all South Africans, and especially to those who fought in the struggle; I would accept it on their behalf.

I explained to the crowd that my voice was hoarse from a cold and that my physician had advised me not to attend. "I hope that you will not disclose to him that I have violated his instructions," I told them. I congratulated Mr. de Klerk for his strong showing. I thanked all those in the ANC and the democratic movement who had worked so hard for so long. Mrs. Coretta Scott King, the wife of the great freedom fighter Martin Luther King Jr., was on the podium that night, and I looked over to her as I made reference to her husband's immortal words.

"This is one of the most important moments in the life of our country. I stand here before you filled with deep pride and joy--pride in the ordinary, humble people of this country. You have shown such a calm, patient determination to reclaim this country as your own, and now the joy that we can loudly proclaim from the rooftops â" Free at last! Free at last! I stand before you humbled by your courage, with a heart full of love for all of you."

It was during those long and lonely years that my hunger for the freedom of my own people became a hunger for the freedom of all people, white and black. I knew as well as I knew anything that the oppressor must be liberated just as surely as the oppressed. A man who takes away another man's freedom is a prisoner of hatred, he is locked behind the bars of prejudice and narrow-mindedness. I am not truly free if I am taking away someone else's freedom, just as surely as I am not free when my freedom is taken from me. The oppressed and the oppressor alike are robbed of their humanity.

When I walked out of prison, that was my mission, to liberate the oppressed and the oppressor both. Some say that has now been achieved. But I know that that is not the case. The truth is that we are not yet free; we have merely achieved the freedom to be free, the right not to be oppressed. We have not taken the final step of our journey, but the first step on a longer and even more difficult road. For to be free is not merely to cast off one's chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others. The true test of our devotion to freedom is just beginning.

I have walked that long road to freedom. I have tried not to falter; I have made missteps along the way. But I have discovered the secret that after climbing a great hill, one only finds that there are many more hills to climb. I have taken a moment here to rest, to steal a view of the glorious vista that surrounds me, to look back on the distance I have come. But I can rest only for a moment, for with freedom comes responsibilities, and I dare not linger, for my long walk is not yet ended.
If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner."

The Sacred Warrior (2000)

"The Sacred Warrior" â" essay on Mohandas Gandhi in TIME magazine (3 January 2000)
India is Gandhi's country of birth; South Africa his country of adoption. He was both an Indian and a South African citizen. Both countries contributed to his intellectual and moral genius, and he shaped the liberatory movements in both colonial theaters.

He is the archetypal anticolonial revolutionary. His strategy of noncooperation, his assertion that we can be dominated only if we cooperate with our dominators, and his nonviolent resistance inspired anticolonial and antiracist movements internationally in our century.

The Gandhian influence dominated freedom struggles on the African continent right up to the 1960s because of the power it generated and the unity it forged among the apparently powerless. Nonviolence was the official stance of all major African coalitions, and the South African A.N.C. remained implacably opposed to violence for most of its existence.

Gandhi remained committed to nonviolence; I followed the Gandhian strategy for as long as I could, but then there came a point in our struggle when the brute force of the oppressor could no longer be countered through passive resistance alone. We founded Umkhonto we Sizwe and added a military dimension to our struggle. Even then, we chose sabotage because it did not involve the loss of life, and it offered the best hope for future race relations. Militant action became part of the African agenda officially supported by the Organization of African Unity (O.A.U.) following my address to the Pan-African Freedom Movement of East and Central Africa (PAFMECA) in 1962, in which I stated, "Force is the only language the imperialists can hear, and no country became free without some sort of violence."

Gandhi himself never ruled out violence absolutely and unreservedly. He conceded the necessity of arms in certain situations. He said, "Where choice is set between cowardice and violence, I would advise violence... I prefer to use arms in defense of honor rather than remain the vile witness of dishonor ..."

Gandhi arrived in South Africa in 1893 at the age of 23. Within a week he collided head on with racism. His immediate response was to flee the country that so degraded people of color, but then his inner resilience overpowered him with a sense of mission, and he stayed to redeem the dignity of the racially exploited, to pave the way for the liberation of the colonized the world over and to develop a blueprint for a new social order.

He left 21 years later, a near maha atma (great soul). There is no doubt in my mind that by the time he was violently removed from our world, he had transited into that state.

He was no ordinary leader. There are those who believe he was divinely inspired, and it is difficult not to believe with them. He dared to exhort nonviolence in a time when the violence of Hiroshima and Nagasaki had exploded on us; he exhorted morality when science, technology and the capitalist order had made it redundant; he replaced self-interest with group interest without minimizing the importance of self. In fact, the interdependence of the social and the personal is at the heart of his philosophy. He seeks the simultaneous and interactive development of the moral person and the moral society.

His philosophy of Satyagraha is both a personal and a social struggle to realize the Truth, which he identifies as God, the Absolute Morality. He seeks this Truth, not in isolation, self-centeredly, but with the people. He said, "I want to find God, and because I want to find God, I have to find God along with other people. I don't believe I can find God alone. If I did, I would be running to the Himalayas to find God in some cave there. But since I believe that nobody can find God alone, I have to work with people. I have to take them with me. Alone I can't come to Him."

The sight of wounded and whipped Zulus, mercilessly abandoned by their British persecutors, so appalled him that he turned full circle from his admiration for all things British to celebrating the indigenous and ethnic. He resuscitated the culture of the colonized and the fullness of Indian resistance against the British; he revived Indian handicrafts and made these into an economic weapon against the colonizer in his call for swadeshi â" the use of one's own and the boycott of the oppressor's products, which deprive the people of their skills and their capital.

A great measure of world poverty today and African poverty in particular is due to the continuing dependence on foreign markets for manufactured goods, which undermines domestic production and dams up domestic skills, apart from piling up unmanageable foreign debts. Gandhi's insistence on self-sufficiency is a basic economic principle that, if followed today, could contribute significantly to alleviating Third World poverty and stimulating development.

Gandhi rejects the Adam Smith notion of human nature as motivated by self-interest and brute needs and returns us to our spiritual dimension with its impulses for nonviolence, justice and equality.

He exposes the fallacy of the claim that everyone can be rich and successful provided they work hard. He points to the millions who work themselves to the bone and still remain hungry.
He stepped down from his comfortable life to join the masses on their level to seek equality with them. "I can't hope to bring about economic equality... I have to reduce myself to the level of the poorest of the poor."

From his understanding of wealth and poverty came his understanding of labor and capital, which led him to the solution of trusteeship based on the belief that there is no private ownership of capital; it is given in trust for redistribution and equalization. Similarly, while recognizing differential aptitudes and talents, he holds that these are gifts from God to be used for the collective good.

He seeks an economic order, alternative to the capitalist and communist, and finds this in sarvodaya based on nonviolence (ahimsa).
He rejects Darwin's survival of the fittest, Adam Smith's laissez-faire and Karl Marx's thesis of a natural antagonism between capital and labor, and focuses on the interdependence between the two.

He believes in the human capacity to change and wages Satyagraha against the oppressor, not to destroy him but to transform him, that he cease his oppression and join the oppressed in the pursuit of Truth.
We in South Africa brought about our new democracy relatively peacefully on the foundations of such thinking, regardless of whether we were directly influenced by Gandhi or not.

As we find ourselves in jobless economies, societies in which small minorities consume while the masses starve, we find ourselves forced to rethink the rationale of our current globalization and to ponder the Gandhian alternative.
At a time when Freud was liberating sex, Gandhi was reining it in; when Marx was pitting worker against capitalist, Gandhi was reconciling them; when the dominant European thought had dropped God and soul out of the social reckoning, he was centralizing society in God and soul; at a time when the colonized had ceased to think and control, he dared to think and control; and when the ideologies of the colonized had virtually disappeared, he revived them and empowered them with a potency that liberated and redeemed."

Newsweek interview (2002)
"Nelson Mandela: The United States of America is a threat to world peace" Newsweek (10 September 2002)

"If I am asked, by credible organizations, to mediate, I will consider that very seriously. But a situation of this nature does not need an individual, it needs an organization like the United Nations to mediate.

We must understand the seriousness of this situation. The United States has made serious mistakes in the conduct of its foreign affairs, which have had unfortunate repercussions long after the decisions were taken.

You will notice that France, Germany Russia, China are against this decision. It is clearly a decision that is motivated by George W. Bush's desire to please the arms and oil industries in the United States of America. If you look at those factors, you'll see that an individual like myself, a man who has lost power and influence, can never be a suitable mediator.

Neither Bush nor Tony Blair has provided any evidence that such weapons exist. But what we know is that Israel has weapons of mass destruction. Nobody talks about that. Why should there be one standard for one country, especially because it is black, and another one for another country, Israel, that is white. ... Many people say quietly, but they don't have the courage to stand up and say publicly, that when there were white secretary generals you didn't find this question of the United States and Britain going out of the United Nations. But now that you've had black secretary generals like Boutros Boutros Ghali, like Kofi Annan, they do not respect the United Nations. They have contempt for it. This is not my view, but that is what is being said by many people.

There is one compromise and one only, and that is the United Nations. If the United States and Britain go to the United Nations and the United Nations says we have concrete evidence of the existence of these weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and we feel that we must do something about it, we would all support it. ... There is no doubt that the United States now feels that they are the only superpower in the world and they can do what they like. And of course we must consider the men and the women around the president. Gen. Colin Powell commanded the United States army in peacetime and in wartime during the Gulf war. He knows the disastrous effect of international tension and war, when innocent people are going to die, young men are going to die. He knows and he showed this after September 11 last year. He went around briefing the allies of the United States of America and asking for their support for the war in Afghanistan. Dick Cheney, Rumsfeld, they are people who are unfortunately misleading the president. Because my impression of the president is that this is a man with whom you can do business. But it is the men who around him who are dinosaurs, who do not want him to belong to the modern age.

I really wanted to retire and rest and spend more time with my children, my grandchildren and of course with my wife. But the problems are such that for anybody with a conscience who can use whatever influence he may have to try to bring about peace, it's difficult to say no."

On why he continues to be active in social and political issues.

Iraq War speech (2003)
Speech held by Mandela at the International Women's Forum in Johannesburg, January 29, 2003, prior to the 2003 invasion of Iraq. [2][3]

"It's a tragedy what is happening, what Bush is doing. All Bush wants is Iraqi oil. There is no doubt that the U.S. is behaving badly. Why are they not seeking to confiscate weapons of mass destruction from their ally Israel? This is just an excuse to get Iraqâs oil.

Bush is now undermining the United Nations. He is acting outside it, not withstanding the fact that the United Nations was the idea of President Roosevelt and Winston Churchill. Both Bush, as well as Tony Blair, are undermining an idea which was sponsored by their predecessors. They do not care. Is it because the secretary-general of the United Nations [Ghanaian Kofi Annan] is now a black man? They never did that when secretary-generals were white.

If there is a country that has committed unspeakable atrocities in the world, it is the United States of America. They don't care for human beings.
What I am condemning is that one power, with a president [George W. Bush] who has no foresight, who cannot think properly, is now wanting to plunge the world into a holocaust."


"I have fought against white domination and I have fought against black domination. I have cherished the ideal of a democratic and free society in which all persons live together in harmony and with equal opportunities. It is an ideal which I hope to live for and to achieve. But if needs be, it is an ideal for which I am prepared to die."

"Israel should withdraw from all the areas which it won from the Arabs in 1967, and in particular Israel should withdraw completely from the Golan Heights, from south Lebanon and from the West Bank. [5]
I cannot concieve of Israel withdrawing if the Arab states do not recognize Israel, within secure borders. [6]
I salute the South African Communist Party for its sterling contribution to the struggle for democracy. You have survived 40 years of unrelenting persecution. The memory of great communists like Moses Kotane, Yusuf Dadoo, Bram Fischer and Moses Mabhida will be cherished for generations to come.
I went to Cuba in July 1991, and I drove through the streets with Fidel Castro. There were a great deal of cheers. And I also waved back believing that these cheers were for me. Fidel was very humble; he smiled but he never said a word. But when I reached the square where I had to make some remarks to the crowd, then I realized that these cheers were not meant for me, they were meant for Fidel Castro. Because everybody forgot about me, and was really aroused by Fidel Castro. Then I realized that here was a man of the masses.

Long live the Cuban Revolution. Long live comrade Fidel Castro... Cuban internationalists have done so much for African independence, freedom, and justice. We admire the sacrifices of the Cuban people in maintaining their independence and sovereignty in the face of a vicious imperialist campaign designed to destroy the advances of the Cuban revolution. We too want to control our destiny... There can be no surrender. It is a case of freedom or death. The Cuban revolution has been a source of inspiration to all freedom-loving people.

Sometimes it falls upon a generation to be great. You can be that great generation.
That was one of the things that worried me â" to be raised to the position of a semi-god â" because then you are no longer a human being. I wanted to be known as Mandela, a man with weaknesses, some of which are fundamental, and a man who is committed, but, nevertheless, sometimes fails to live up to expectations.

We identify with the PLO because, just like ourselves, they are fighting for the right of self-determination. I support Israel's right to exist, but that doesn't mean that Israel has the right to retain the territories they conquered from the Arab world. It will be a grave mistake for us to consider our attitude towards [Yasser] Arafat on the basis of the Jewish community. We sympathise with the struggles of the Jewish people and their persecution, down the years. In fact, we have been very much influenced by the lack of racism among the Jewish communities. Arafat is a comrade in arms, and we treat him as such."

"We consider ourselves to be comrades in arms to the Palestinian Arabs in their struggle for the liberation of Palestine. There is not a single citizen in South Africa who is not ready to stand by his Palestinian brothers in their legitimate fight against the Zionist racists.
This appears at

"Our greatest fear is not that we are inadequate, but that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness, that frightens us. We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, handsome, talented, and fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won't feel insecure around you. We were born to make manifest the glory of God within us. It is not just in some; it is in everyone. And, as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our fear, our presence automatically liberates others."



By Reader
Feb 23, 2009

THE Carl Niehaus saga must be placed squarely where it belongs — at the feet of Gwede Mantashe, the CEO of the ANC, otherwise known as its secretary-general, and the culture of corruption and abuse of power and authority so endemic in the ruling party. — Moses Matsimbi, Garsfontein

When the scandal broke, Mantashe assured all that there is no dustbin for cadres of the movement — the ANC would help Niehaus to surmount the challenges he is facing and redeploy him within the organisation. A few days later, a young lady, also from the ANC, tells the same ostensibly gullible public of South Africa that Niehaus has resigned and the ANC has accepted his resignation because he had not disclosed everything about himself when he joined the ANC as an employee.

The practice and culture of patronage, nepotism, crony capitalism and so-called cadre deployment so dutifully executed by Mantashe and his national executive committee have spawned a climate and environment within the ANC in which greed, corruption and abuse of power and authority are rewarded instead of punished.

Comrades like Niehaus and Jacob Zuma are only some in a long line of characters of dishonorable repute in the corruption stakes. Poor Carl could only thrive in such an environment.

Still, it is taking South Africans for granted to expect them to return the ANC to power with an even bigger majority than in 2004. The sooner South Africans realise that the ruling party has lost all moral and ethical basis to govern, the better it will be.



By Brendan Boyle, Chandré Prince and Mpumelelo Mkhabela
Feb 22, 2009

‘Shame, the old man doesn’t deserve this kind of nonsense’

Winnie Madikizela-Mandela and his daughter, Zindzi, were ‘livid’ about the way he had been press-ganged into a political endorsement of Zuma and the ANC

Nelson Mandela’s grandson, chief Mandla Mandela, and a group of Jacob Zuma supporters broke almost every rule in the book last week to whisk the ailing 90-year-old icon from his home to the ANC’s Eastern Cape heartland to shore up support.

Mandela, Zuma to address ANC rally

The Sunday Times has established that Mandela was fetched from his Houghton home early on Sunday by his grandson and former ANC Youth League leader Fikile Mbalula, who now heads the party’s campaign for the April 22 election.

Against all precedent, he was flown without proper security arrangements from Lanseria airport to Mthatha in a private aircraft that belongs to an unidentified businessman.

Senior police officers, who were in the convoy that escorted Mandela from Mthatha to Idutywa, said his aircraft made three attempts to land in very bad weather before touching down at 11am, an hour behind schedule.

Sources familiar with the day’s events said Mandela, who usually starts preparing for bed around 4pm, was only brought home well after dark. “It really was very bad and irresponsible treatment of the old man,” said one confidant. A family friend added: “Shame, the old man really doesn’t deserve this kind of nonsense at this time of his life. It’s a very sorry story. ”

The Nelson Mandela Foundation, which has managed his travel arrangements since he stepped down as president in 1999, was unaware of the visit until late the day before, and was not allowed to help, to make plans or asked for advice.

“In fact, we were not aware that he was going until almost the last minute. We were taken as much by surprise as many other people,” foundation chairman Jakes Gerwel told the Sunday Times yesterday.

He said the trip had been made with none of the usual consideration for Mandela’s security or physical comfort. “It has been consistently the practice over the years since he left the president’s office that we (the foundation) have been involved. I can’t remember a case where we were not involved,” Gerwel said.

VIP commander Senior Superintendent Jabulani Magwa said his office was notified about Mandela’s arrival late on Saturday, February 14, and instructed to dispatch security for the following day.

A senior official said they would normally be advised a few days in advance of Mandela’s arrival in the province.

Among violations of the usual protocols that protect South Africa’s most famous citizen were:

Mandela’s presidential protection unit team is usually given time to assess the travel plan and to have a team waiting for him on arrival at his destination. This was not done;

His personal security team should check the overland route he will take days in advance. This was also not done. Instead, it was delegated to Zuma’s team, which violated the rule that each team must manage only its own principal;

Mandela usually flies in specific air force jets known to be able to accommodate his physical needs. Again, this was not done. The aircraft he flew in was privately owned, its security was not checked and it was not suited to his needs;

If he is flying in any other plane it has to be security vetted and checked for his specification ---not done

Mandela rarely uses secondary airports for security reasons and the risk of being mobbed. When he does, special arrangements are made for his arrival and departure. This was not done;

Madiba’s staff always check venues to ensure he can safely negotiate paths and stairs and can be comfortably seated. It was not done and he had to be virtually lifted onto the stage;

Mandela usually has a pre-flight medical and flies with a personal physician. It was not done;

Special arrangements are usually made with the nearest hospital to ensure that a suitable team is on hand and familiar with his medical file. It was not done; and

A helicopter is usually on stand-by within short flying distance to airlift him to the nearest big urban centre in an emergency. It was not arranged.

Immediately after landing, Mandela and his entourage travelled to Idutywa, where the ANC was holding its election rally. The police officers said Mandela, accompanied by his grandson, his daughter, Makaziwe, and his granddaughter, Ndileka, left for his Qunu home after the rally at about 2pm.

They were later joined by Zuma, Mbalula, ANC Youth League president Julius Malema and a few other Eastern Cape ANC leaders for lunch.

“I’m not sure if Malema sat at the lunch table, but he was also there,” said one officer.

Shortly thereafter, Mandela and Zuma headed to the Mthatha airport in separate convoys, flying off at about 5pm in different aircraft. One officer said Mandela appeared “relaxed”.

Many ANC veterans and members of the current leadership were shocked to see Mandela at the rally, because he has said repeatedly through his staff that he does not want to be involved in the election campaign.

“He made the point to me a number of times: ‘I don’t want to be involved and I don’t want to do any electioneering.’ It’s not something we made up, it comes from him,” Gerwel said.

Supporters of Zuma’s bid for the presidency have been piling on the pressure for a Mandela endorsement in the face of COPE, the breakaway party led by Terror Lekota and Mbhazima Shilowa.

Sources close to the family said Mandla took Zuma and Mbalula to see Mandela at his home two weeks ago. It is not known what was discussed there.

The sources said Mandla often takes visitors to the Houghton home, thereby avoiding any control by the foundation.

Close associates said Mandela’s former wife, Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, and his daughter, Zindzi, were “livid” about the way he had been press-ganged into a political endorsement of Zuma and the ANC.

A family friend pointed out that Mandla and his aunt, Makaziwe, had only recently taken an interest in ANC politics after being essentially apolitical for years.

ANC spokesman Lindiwe Zulu said yesterday the foundation was not responsible for Mandela’s travel. “This has absolutely nothing to do with the foundation. Mandela’s political life — in the ANC — has nothing to do with the foundation. Maybe we need to check what are the responsibilities of the foundation and of the political party and its members. These are two separate things. What the foundation does is for anti-Aids, his social responsibility. It absolutely has nothing to do with his political work,” she said.

But Gerwel said the former president had given the task to the foundation years ago.

“The foundation has been charged by Madiba to be what the Americans would call his “post-presidential office”, so his security, which includes his health, has been entrusted to our care. He was not necessarily put at risk — it’s just that it was outside of the normal practice of logistical arrangements.”

Responding to the suggestion that Mandela deserved better than to be dragged around the country to help the ANC overcome its mistakes, Zulu said it was his responsibility to do that.

“Mandela still has (his) full senses. .. He won’t do what he does not want to do. If anyone has the issue, it’s their issue, it’s now our issue. As far as we are concerned, Mandela is still a political person,” she said.

People who have visited Mandela recently said he showed little interest in recent developments within the party.