By Thys Khiba
Johannesburg – The Tripartite Alliance, African National Congress (ANC); South African Communist Party (SACP) and Congress Of South African Trade Unions (COSATU) were united in the name of and celebrating the former SACP secretary-general Chris Hani. This is after 28 years since Hani was gunned down outside his home in Dawn Park, Ekurhuleni, in 1993.
According to the ANC president, Cyril Ramaphosa, the late struggle stalwart, Chris Hani, was amongst the most admired leaders of the country’s revolution.
While delivering his keynote address at the 28th Annual Chris Hani Commemoration in Boksburg East of Johannesburg, Ramaphosa said Hani was a giant of their struggle. “..we say so because this was rightfully earned. It earned him his place among the most outstanding leaders of our movements. That is why we say when we think of his life, today gives us that opportunity, it is about reflecting and thinking about one of our own who dedicated his life to the struggle of people.”
Meanwhile, the SACP secretary-general, Blade Nzimande and COSATU deputy president, Louise Thipe used the event to also address the burning political issues in the tripartite alliance. The Cosatu’s second deputy president, Thipe said the union federation supported the 2017 Nasrec conference resolutions to have those in leadership implicated in corruption step aside from their positions immediately.
The SACP general secretary, Blade Nzimande used his keynote address to send a message to those who are using the name of uMkhonto weSizwe to bring about divisions in the ANC.
“We condemn very strongly the factionalist abuse of the name of Umkhonto we Sizwe. MK would never mobilise in support of some leaders against other leaders of the ANC or the alliance … were it not because of the MK commanders and commissars, and some of the MK soldiers who helped us to build self defence units, we would not be having a free SA today”
But the wife of the late Chris Hani, Dimpho Hani was not impressed by the fact that the two leaders used the event to address the factional battles. “I normally do not want to remark on speeches of people who spoke before me but I feel very strong about a statement made here about the step-aside (resolution). I am of the strong view that we are standing here and Chris was a unifier.”
“I would suggest, let’s not bring the discussions from the NEC to this function. That’s my plea. Here we are united because we are all ANC. We should not have factions. Now if you bring NEC discussions when you are not part of the NEC, I think you are dividing us more.”
At the time of his assassination on April 10, 1993, Hani was the SACP’s General Secretary, a member of the ANC’s National Executive Committee and among the ranks of the uMkhonto weSizwe liberation army.