BLF welcomes VhaVenda king’s decision to pay back the money

BLF welcomes VhaVenda king’s decision to pay back the money

Black First Land First (BLF) welcomes the news that King Toni Mphephu Ramabulana of the VhaVenda people has decided to pay back the R17 million that he was found by the forensic investigation on the VBS Mutual Bank (VBS) to have received. This is good exemplary leadership from the King. BLF calls on all those who are implicated in the VBS heist to follow the example of the king and pay back the money. Surely if the king can pay the money back, so must everyone else who has benefitted from the looting of VBS.

BLF particularly calls on the Deputy President of the Economic Freedom Fighters (EFF), Mr Floyd Shivambu, to assist in ensuring that the money taken by his younger brother Brian Shivambu on his behalf from VBS is returned. BLF will be laying criminal charges – including that of fraud, corruption, theft and money laundering – against those like Floyd Shivambu who are not taking responsibility.

Its time to pay back the money. The people have suffered enough!

Issued by the National Coordinating Committee of Black First Land First (BLF NCC)
15 October 2018

Contact details

Black First Land First Email:[email protected]
Facebook: Black First Land First
Twitter: @black1stland1st
Website: www.blf.org.za

Deputy President: Zanele Lwana
Cell: +27799867225

National Spokesperson: Lindsay Maasdorp
Cell: +27 79 915 2957

Head of Media & Communications: Brian Tloubatla
Cell: +27 82 216 7664

BLF follows in Sankara’s footsteps

BLF follows in Sankara’s footsteps

Black First Land First (BLF) calls on everyone, especially those engaging in revolutionary struggle and aspiring for political office to follow the example of the great Burkina Faso leader, Thomas Sankara.

In 1983 through a revolutionary coup and various campaigns like ‘Homeland or Death’ and changing the country’s name that advocated self reliance, return of the land and economy, as well as anti corruption, Thomas Sankara rose to power in what was then known at the Upper Volta. Upon becoming President, Sankara rechristened the country ‘Burkina Faso’ which means ‘Land of Honest People’ which in turn captures what being a Burkinabé is – proud, free, honest, and hard-working. Also renaming the country fostered national unity by combining ‘Burkina’ which is the Mooré word for ‘honest’, with ‘Faso’ being the Jula word for ‘homeland’.

In a space of four years Sankara made profound changes including facilitating women’s liberation via land return, ending polygamy, and banning forced marriages and other harmful practices against women; making the cheapest car at that time, the Renault 5, the official vehicle for ministers; reducing his salary as well as that of all government officials; ending the use of chauffeurs and first class airline seats; achieving food security; and democratising power to facilitate more participatory governance. His visionary project was brought to an abrupt end by a pro-imperialist assassination led by Blaise Compaoré who replaced him in office and reversed all the revolutionary gains under him.

Thirty one years after his death there’s one movement that has become restive and revitalized Sankara’s spirit − BLF. When BLF says “Land or Death” we mean as Sankara did “Homeland or Death, We will Overcome”. BLF has boldly incorporated the Sankarist leadership ethos. To this end we say in our constitution that ‘[a]ny BLF member who has been elected into office as a public representative and who is subsequently found to have been conducting herself/himself contrary to what is required of her/him in terms of “The Thomas Sankara Oath” shall be recalled from such office.’

True to our Sankara pledge, BLF intends to live up to the greatest revolutionary standards of incorruptibility. We reinforce this commitment in the face of politicians currently using the state apparatus to enrich themselves.  As Sankarist practitioners, BLF has undertaken to end the practice of using state power and access for personal gain. Also like Sankara we are in internationalist solidarity with the oppressed people and nations of the world as we seek to end centuries of colonial, apartheid and neo-colonial rule.

In this context, BLF’s ‘Thomas Sankara Oath’ outlines the cultural dictates and political commitments binding politicians and public servants. In accordance with this BLF members taking Public Office commit themselves to serving the public through providing high quality services and developing an efficient public service system that guarantees the dignity and equality of all. The Sankara Oath ends with this profound battlecry:

“I THEREFORE declare that it is a criminal offence to use private services for myself, my family and my dependents, including but not limited to: education, healthcare, housing and transport. I’m committed to public service therefore; I use the services I provide.”

Thus following Thomas Sankara’s footsteps, BLF shall facilitate the restoration of our people’s dignity.

#PoliticiansMustUsePublicServices
#BeLikeSankara

Issued by the National Coordinating Committee of Black First Land First (BLF NCC)
15 October 2018

Contact details

Black First Land First Email:[email protected]
Facebook: Black First Land First
Twitter: @black1stland1st
Website: www.blf.org.za

Deputy President: Zanele Lwana
Cell: +27799867225

National Spokesperson: Lindsay Maasdorp
Cell: +27 79 915 2957

Head of Media & Communications: Brian Tloubatla
Cell: +27 82 216 7664

BLF pays tribute to Che Guevara

BLF pays tribute to Che Guevara

“[I]t is in this field, in the field of ideas, in the field of sentiments, in the field of revolutionary virtues, in the field of intelligence, aside from his military virtues, that we feel the tremendous loss for the revolutionary movement, because Che, in his extraordinary personality, had virtues which rarely appear together. He was outstanding as an incomparable man of action. Che was not only an incomparable man of action, but a man of profound intellect, of visionary intelligence, a man of profound culture. I mean to say he was a man of ideas and a man of action.” extract from Fidel Castro’s eulogy for Che Guevara

Ernesto Che Guevara was killed in Bolivia on 9 October 1967 by a CIA operative upon his guerrilla fighters being defeated during combat. His immortal contributions spans crucial questions including the economic significance of imperialism; struggle against the bureaucracy; the military tactics of guerilla warfare, and the role of the party and cadres in the building of socialism. His elaboration of the anti imperialist struggle was towards national sovereignty, universal citizenship and participatory democracy.

It is now 51 years since Che Guevara’s death and its appropriate on this occasion to heed the many lessons of his revolutionary legacy. Che’s call for principled unity to defeat imperialism, colonialism, and capitalism towards building a radically new world and internationalist outlook, is most significant in this regard. He argued that “unity is necessary because disunity goes in favor of the U.S., which is our enemy, and everything that goes in favor of the enemy must be eliminated”.

Che’s wisdom is timeless. He painstakingly taught us how to be practitioners of revolution. In this context he demonstrated many lessons including that freedom cannot be won without struggle; losing does not mean that victory was impossible; the oppressed liberate themselves; view everything from the perspective of the truth; high doses of passion and audacity are required for revolution; consulting the people is a prerequisite for governing; life must be spent overcoming defeats not celebrating victories; being realistic means demanding the impossible; words must be melded with deeds; and “a true revolutionary is guided by great feelings of love”.

Black a First Land First (BLF) honors the legacy of Che Guevara by calling on all to emulate his revolutionary virtues – in words and in deeds!

Long live Che Guevara!

Issued by the National Coordinating Committee of Black First Land First (BLF NCC)

10 October 2018

Contact details

Black First Land First Email:[email protected]
Facebook: Black First Land First
Twitter: @black1stland1st
Website: www.blf.org.za

International Relations Secretary: Shantha Balakrishna
Cell number: +27 72 114 3670

Deputy President: Zanele Lwana
Cell: +27799867225

National Spokesperson: Lindsay Maasdorp
Cell: +27 79 915 2957

Head of Media & Communications: Brian Tloubatla
Cell: +27 82 216 7664

BLF wishes Brazil’s Workers’ Party well in the 2018 general elections

BLF wishes Brazil’s Workers’ Party well in the 2018 general elections
Black First Land First (BLF) wishes Brazil’s Workers’ Party (PT) of the imprisoned people’s president, Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva, well in the forthcoming general elections starting on 7 October 2018. Under the leadership of Lula da Silva and Dilma Rousseff, Brazil had come under intense assault from United States (US) led imperialism, specifically for its pro-poor and pro-BRICS policies. This has resulted in the Rousseff being unconstitutionally removed via a coup and replaced by the imperialist puppet Michel Temer, and Lula being imprisoned to prevent him from speaking to the media as well as contesting the presidential elections.

We note that the PT’s presidential candidate, Fernando Haddad, comes up against Jair Bolsonaro. In this respect, unlike Haddad as well as Lula and Rousseff, Bolsonaro is openly anti-women, homophobic, racist, and has made little secret of his pro-western and pro-capitalist position.

At this juncture the Brazilian people owe it to themselves to reflect on the gains of the PT governments of Lula and Rousseff before they vote to either return the PT to power or maintain the imperialist puppet government of the US.

While Lula was still a trade union leader in the steel industry in 2003 he waged a struggle against Brazil’s unjust system in particular against hunger. He led a campaign known as “Bolsa Familia” (family allowance). This served as the basis for the development and implementation of policies by the successive PT governments towards direct social benefits for the people. Hence fifty million Brazilians were taken out of poverty.

The ‘Bolsa Familia’ is a revolutionary project that serves to supplement income through monthly stipends to women to address gender inequality and women’s financial dependency on their partners. The program was successful due to the fact that the country’s income utilized for social policies was increased. The current President Temer reversed this increase via a constitutional amendment that limits spending on social programs.

Under the “Mais Medicos” (more doctors) program, initiated by Rousseff’s government, about 20,000 medical professionals rendered health care to about 63 million Brazilian people. Women received increased access to health in 2011 andaim 2014. To this end via the ‘Rede Cegonha’ (Stork Network), access to health care for pregnant women as well as for newly born children and their mothers was increased.

‘Minha Casa Minha Vida’ (MCMV) meaning, ‘My House, My Life’ was a program that was initiated in 2009 under Lula. It brought housing to millions. Under Rousseff the program was subsequently developed to give autonomy to women who to this end were favored as the title deed owners of the houses they received.

In the period between 2005 to 2013 and during Lula’s term in office, Haddad served as Minister of Education. In that time the ‘Fund for Maintenance and Development of Basic Education and Valuation of Education Professionals (Fundeb)’ and the ‘Programa Universidade Para Todos (University for All Program)’ were created to build more schools and campuses, and to get more children and adults educated. The high numbers of people that studied in higher education institutions in Brazil during Lula’s tenure was unprecedented.

The fact that at least 70% of the food in Brazil is being produced within the country in family farms is all thanks to the PT governments. Furthermore, legislating a minimum wage and hiking the employment rate to an unprecedented high are other hallmarks of the the PT governments and contrary to imperialist propaganda these gains were achieved without undermining the economy. To this end Brazil took 6th place in the world’s economies in terms of importance in 2011. Moreover it ranked 7th in the world in terms of its GDP when measured in terms of the ‘Purchase Power Parity’. Also from 2005 to 2012 due to its social policies Brazil’s economy grew by 30% and on an average of 2.6% per annum.

It is therefore not surprising that the PT governments have been consistently attacked by the enemy in cahoots with its neoliberal agents to further their regime change agenda. The enemy knows that the PT is favored by the millions of people who benefited from the social programs implemented by the PT governments and unless the PT is undermined, the people will return it to power.

BLF calls on the Brazilian people to never forget the benefits you received under the PT governments of Rousseff and Lula. We say #VotePT, #VoteHaddad, #FightImperialism and #TakeBackTheEconomy.

Issued by the National Coordinating Committee of Black First Land First (BLF NCC)

6 October 2018

Contact details

Black First Land First Email:[email protected]
Facebook: Black First Land First

Twitter: @black1stland1st
Website: www.blf.org.za

International Relations Secretary: Shantha Balakrishna
Cell number: +27 72 114 3670

Deputy President: Zanele Lwana
Cell: +27799867225

National Spokesperson: Lindsay Maasdorp
Cell: +27 79 915 2957

Head of Media & Communications: Brian Tloubatla
Cell: +27 82 216 7664