The Politic of Human Dignity
presented by Lindela Figlan at the Anarchist Bookfair, London, 24 October 2012
The meaning of dignity is often misunderstood. Many people only think of dignity in relation to the economic status of those who are better off. This is understood to mean that a person with no money is taken as a person whose life and voice does not count and is therefore a person with no dignity. It is also understood that a person with money does count and is therefore a person with dignity. But no amount of money can buy dignity.
Money can buy many things. With money you can live in a house that will not be demolished without warning, that does not leak in the rain, that has water, toilets and electricity. With money you can even give your children their own rooms. With money you can buy your children education and know that if they fall sick or meet with an accident they well be well looked after.
Land is at the Heart of our Struggle
Yes I have to be bold and proud to be a South African. But I’m not proud because our lovely country belongs to the wrong hands. Our struggle began with the question of land and land remains at the centre of our struggle today.
In the old days the people in this country were so united. Even those who were not interested in politics they ended up in politics. This unity came from the fact that they were crying for the land of their forefathers that had been confiscated by those who thought the land was supposed to be under their authority. The people's land had been stolen, fenced and sold.
Lindela 'Mashumi' Figlan
Lindela Figlan was born on the 27th of December 1970 in J.B. Location in Flagstaff in Pondoland in what was then the Transkei bantustan.
His mother was from the Radebe family and she kept the home. His father was secretary of the congress that went into revolt on Ngquza Hill in 1960. More than 4 000 men occupied Ngquza Hill. They were determined to fight for their land and for their dignity. The apartheid state sent in the military and there was a massacre. The courage of the men on Ngquza Hill is always remembered in Pondoland today. The songs from that struggle, like 'Asiyifuni idompas', are still sung today. When Lindela was a young boy the police used to come to their home from time to time, kick in the door and kidnap his father. Sometimes they would take him to a place known as Betani where they would force him to dig potatoes with his hands saying that they did not want to risk damaging their tools. When he came home his fingernails would be red.
Our Aims Will Never Be the Same
by Lindela Figlan
People are born not the same and they will die not the same. Although people got united to achieve one goal, which is an equal and democratic society, the gap between the haves and the have nots is not fading away. In fact it is growing.
People got united and we thought that we had the same purpose and aim but for sure there are some for whom their intentions were to make sure that their own plans are achieved. Those with their own intentions are not here to sustain what is making the people to be together. But on the other hand some are working tirelessly without even noticing that there is a wolf that is also waiting tirelessly and patiently for good results so that it can seize the victories for itself. People pretended as if they were freedom fights while they were freedom robbers. They were wolves wearing the attire of the Freedom Charter and so we thought that they were lambs. But no where are they? Some come rushing past us in their blue light convoys. We see some of them in expensive hospitals and in places like Qalakabusha waiting to restart their plans to destroy this country.
Socialism Needs Those Who Really Need It - The Poor
Socialism is such a big word. It should belong to the people. It should be part of their living politics. But most times it belongs to those who want to define themselves as if they are the masters of everything. This is a serious problem because in socialism you can’t think that everything belongs to you. In socialism all the people need to be given a space. Socialism is not supposed to be like any other political movement. Socialism needs more participatory engagement. It does not need those who think that they can decide for the people on the ground. Socialism has no racial discrimination, no sexism and also no inequality. In socialism everybody is equal and no one is regarded as Mr., Mrs. or Miss know it all.
Where is the Freedom Charter?
Lindela S. Figlan
Before the government can use its muscle to pass the Protection of Information Bill, let me ask a question. It is a very good question and all those who are unhappy have got this question in their mind. Where is the Freedom Charter?
Comrades from the Right to Know Campaign at the AbM YL event, 16 June 2011, Motala Heights
Onogada Badinga Ukudibana Ukusuka Ezantsi Ukunyuka
Ibhalwe ngu Lindela 'Mashumi’ Figlan
Mhlawumbi kufanelekile ukuba kukhunjuzwe abantu ukuba apho kukho inkqubo yelizwe elawulwa yimali,amakapitali basoloko bexhaphaza abasebenzi ngaphezu kwento yonke onokuyicinga kule mihla apho izinga labangaphangeliyo liphezulu. Abantu bafolele ukuxhatshazwa. Kodwa kufuneka siqonde ukuba yinkqubo engaqhelekanga le. Asikho isizathu sokuba wonke umntu angabinasidima sakhe.
Ndisebenze njengonogada iminyaka eminizi. Ndandisoloko ndicinga ukuba lomsebenzi ulungileyo ngoba sisoloko sibabona onogada bencumile. Kukho imfuneko yokuba amagosa karhulumente abe nento ayenzayo ngomsebenzi wonogada. omnye wenkokheli zethu wathi urhulumente bekumele ayilungise lengxaki onogada bajongene nayo. uRhulumente bekumele aqinisekise ukuba lomsebenzi ube phansti kwemithetho karhulumente kwaye baqinisekise ukuba lomithetho ikwimfuno zabasebenzi. Kakade xa kubekwa etafileni imithetho nemimiqathango yalomsebenzi onke amakapitali asoloko ekhalaza ngoba bayoyika ukulahlekelwa yimali, ekugqibeleni kungabikho ogqiba ekuxhaseni urhulumente. Yindlela ekusetyenzwa ngayo le. Abantu banyula urhulumente ukuze urhulumente athobele abantu, kodwa urhulumente umamela amakapitali. Yiyolonto abantu kwamanye amazwe behlangana ukuze bakwazi ukuzama ukunyanzela urhulumente abamamele.
A Poor Man’s View on Freedom Day
Mostly South Africans celebrate freedom day. Some they feel free but some do not feel free. Some are told that they are free and get excited because they trust those who tell them that they are free. They still have hope that one day the politicians will recognise them. As hard as it is we all have to face up to the reality that this is a false hope. We have to face up to the need for a second struggle.
There are two kinds of freedom. One kind of freedom is the freedom that every person in the world has inside of themselves. This is the freedom to decide how to respond to the circumstance in which they find themselves. Even under apartheid we all had this freedom. Some people chose the path of courage. Some chose the path of cowardice. But Freedom Day is not about this kind of freedom that comes from inside of people.