Reconciliation and #ZumaMustFall

Hi.┬áToday is the 16th of December, a day earmarked as the Day of Reconciliation in the Republic of South Africa. Its a public holiday with great history – and it also happens to be the day when marches around the #ZumaMustFall campaign have been organised and are ongoing through multiple cities. Here’s what I’ve observed:

Many seemingly-intelligent black South Africans constantly accuse white South Africans of a lack of participation in protest action, marches etc. The reality is, I and many others (including black and white South Africans) will not take a leave of absence from our respective workplaces to join a march or protest. Its as simple as that. Truly exceptional circumstances will suffice of course, but that’s a definition I’ll never discuss, at least not in public.

Now, marches were planned to take place during a public holiday, and unlike most marches (we have many in South Africa), there’s undeniable, visible participation of white South Africans. This is not going unnoticed. But suddenly,┬áthe march in its entirety is being labelled by the same seemingly-intelligent black South Africans as a front for racist anti-black government agendas – and this on the Day of Reconciliation. Why? Because white South Africans have added their voice, tweets, and feet to the campaign?

Sigh.

*picture from BBC Africa