On Saturday, September 22, 2012, Khulumani Support Group will be participating in a large delegation that will be meeting with community members in and around the mining operations at Marikana in North West Province to discuss and take forward constructive actions to address the crises that are affecting poor communities in Marikana and across South Africa. These crises include crises in accessing food, basic health care and education for children.
For Khulumani, its participation is an expression of the continuing struggles of the organisation and its membership since its founding in 1995 by survivor victims of gross violations associated with the political struggle in the country.
The founding mission of the organisation was to serve as a collective voice of the political activists who were harmed through apartheid repression. Its mission has become clarified as "working to contribute to the establishment of a just and inclusive society through restoring the dignity of all persons harmed by apartheid and faciltiating their transfromation from victims inot active citizens." Khulumani's activism has been sustained over some seventeen years as Khulumani members have continued to make stands for social justice as committed and active citizens - what they have expressed as being a "life commitment".
Khulumani memebrs deal with the problems of poor communities everyday. In the words of Khulumani National Capacity-Building Coordinator, Ms Nomarussia Bonase, "We are not afraid of being with the poor. We are carrying the issues of the community. We see the present conditions as being the after-effects of the past which have continued to affect us through and since the transition to democracy. We know that as people facing these conditions everyday, we have solutions. We are sad that government seems to wait until there is bloodshed before it begins to listen. Khulumani does not kill or break anything, even today. But government has not been listening to us. We are an organisation that has never stopped trying to deal with these unresolved issues. We know that the way forward is through dealing with the unresolved issues of South Africa. A nation made up of all our communities, will fall apart if it is built on a weak foundation."
Saturday's meeting will bring support to the Marikana community as we continue with our partners the struggle of transforming the living conditions of communities and community members who bore the brunt in the past of police brutality and repression and who have been faced recently with the reality of police brutality once again.