Cope president Mosiua Lekota has stopped just short of calling President Cyril Ramaphosa a sellout during today’s state of the nation address (Sona) debate.
Lekota used day two of the debate to settle an old score, accusing Ramaphosa of distancing himself from the struggle against the apartheid regime.
Lekota initially refused to begin speaking for his allocated four minutes as Ramaphosa had briefly left the chamber.
Chairperson of the national council of provinces Thandi Modise issued a stern rebuke, telling Lekota that his “amnesia” was amazing given that he had sat in Parliament since 1994 and had seen presidents leave the chamber when they needed to.
Modise also refused a suggestion by Cope MP Deidre Carter who asked that an ANC MP speak until Ramaphosa’s return.
Upon his arrival, Lekota launched his scathing attack on the president.
“Last week the president was on this spot here when he invited me among others to join him. I don’t know to what trip. I do want to say to the president today that I was a bit puzzled that you introduced [Theodore] Roosevelt in all of that you spoke about. I would like to say we must come back to South Africa because I was never in the United States to struggle,” Lekota said, referring to Ramaphosa quoting Roosevelt’s “the man in the arena” during last week’s Sona.
“We struggled here and I want to say to you, Mr President, that we were invited on a trip of struggle by the pre-eminent student leader of our time, the late Steve Biko, who said to us that we must fight the struggle. We had to respond to that challenge; your invitation last week was late. The challenge we had to respond to was that time and you with us in detention.
“When it was difficult, you wrote to the Special Branch that we put communist ideas in your head. In doing so you condemned us. I say this to you because the Special Branch rewarded you as they always did with their victims; they sent you home. And we headed to Robben Island, you should have responded,” Lekota added.
“This invitation you issued on Friday, you should have issued it then. We should have travelled together to the island to serve years for the struggle of our people. I will not join you for the trip. I will not join you because you made your trip then. I made my choice.”
As his time drew to an end, EFF leader Julius Malema offered some of the EFFs time for the Cope president to continue, motivating that “this issue of selling out is very important”.
Without pointing to any specific points raised by Ramaphosa during his Sona last week, Lekota ended off by emphasising that he would not heed the president’s call.
“The only point I wanted to make was that that was the time the choices were made. I made my choice to go down with my people, you made your choice to go with them. Now you are inviting us to join in the corruption of Bosasa, the corruption of all of these things you have been doing with the others. I am sorry sir, I will stay with the people in Khayelitsha, Chiawelo in Soweto and so on. The day we leave there it will not be to go to the flash pads of Egypt, it will be to go with our people when freedom is there for everybody. I thank you. I am grateful you are a billionaire, keep the billionaires and thank you for them but we are not going to come with you. I am not joining that trip.”
Lekota was speaker number six on day two of the Sona debate. A total of 23 speakers are in line for the final day of the debate. Ramaphosa will respond tomorrow afternoon.
Source link : https://city-press.news24.com/News/you-condemned-us-lekota-launches-scathing-attack-on-ramaphosa-over-apartheid-struggle-20190213
Publish date : 2019-02-13 14:41:24