Black First Land First members (BLF26) returned to the Pretoria Regional Court today, 20 April 2017, at 9:00 am. At the instance of the former Public Protector, Advocate Thuli Madonsela, bogus charges of public violence, trespassing, kidnapping and intimidation were preferred against the BLF26 which, in turn, resulted in them being imprisoned for over a week in July last year.
The movement has since its inception in August 2015, been engaged in various activities including investigating and seeking justice for apartheid era white corruption and other economic crimes involving, amongst others, the theft of over R563 billion of which R26 billion is recoverable immediately. Moreover, BLF has been consistently opposing the onslaught on South Africa by Western imperialism in cohorts with white minority settler capitalism. To this end on 18 July 2016, BLF engaged in protest action at the Office of the former Public Protector and called on her to:
1. Investigate and report on the complaint lodged at her office in 2011 of R26 billion stolen from the South African Reserve Bank (SARB) constituted as follows: R3.2bn from Absa; R3bn to R6bn from Sanlam and Rembrandt; up to R5.5bn from Aerospatiale/Daimler-Chrysler; and R14.4 billion from Armscor.
2. Investigate and report on State Capture by white capital led by Johan Rupert and hatched in London by the likes of Lord Robin Renwick.
Advocate Madonsela subsequently vacated her office at the end of her tenure without addressing the above complaints meaningfully.
However, BLF has since been vindicated by the Competition Commission via its finding of price fixing and collusion against 18 banks (being Absa, Bank of America Merill Lynch International Limited and 16 others); and by the finding of the current Public Protector, Advocate Busisiwe Mkhwebane, that ABSA must pay back the amount of R3.2 billion that it had stolen.
To the latter end we have maintained that we shall not stop until the entire R26 billion is recovered and utilized towards the Fees Must Fall campaign and the empowerment of black unemployed youth.
It must be pointed out that the vindication of BLF absolves it of any unlawfulness relating to its activism including its protest action on 18 July 2016.
We call for the withdrawal of all charges against our members. The state does not have a case!
We repeat, BLF reserves its right, which it shall utilize to its optimal, to sue the former Public Protector for both defamation and wrongful prosecution.
The case against the #BLF26 has been postponed to May 30, 2017.
ISSUED BY THE NATIONAL COORDINATING COMMITTEE OF THE BLACK FIRST LAND FIRST MOVEMENT (BLF NCC)
20 April 2017
Contact Details Black First Land First Mail: [email protected]gmail.com
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