VIDEO: Motsoaledi Concerned Residents (MCR) protest, Soweto, April 2009

This is a news report from a protest by the Motsoaledi Concerned Residents (MCR) in Soweto, April 2009. Motsoaledi was a squatter camp in Soweto behind Chris Hani-Baragwanath Hospital. Anarchists played an important role in Motsoaledi, and initiated the MCR, which joined the Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF). By 2009, the direct anarchist role in MCR was pretty much gone, but at least one Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front founder member was active in the protest, and is interviewed by the media in this report. More on anarchists at Motsoaledi here.


Photo: enduring anarchist, ZACF message at Motsoaledi squatter camp, Soweto, 2017

Ten years ago, comrades and friends of the Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front / Black Action Group / Phambili Motsoaledi Community Project, then active in Motsoaledi squatter camp in Soweto, painted a large mural for “Land and Freedom.”

Although ZACF is no longer active in the area, the mural endures, as a recent photo attests:


Philip Mzamani Nyalungu: “There’s no Truth”

Found here and dated 9 March 2010

“There’s no truth” by Philip Nyalungu

Elias Motsoaledi is one of the informal settlements. That started mushrooming prior the 1st 1994 democratic elections. Mostly named after the popular political leaders who fought against apartheid. Under Freedom Charter and the ANC manifesto’s auspices. That loudly stated “proper houses with electricity and water for all”.

Until this day nothing has come along from all these promises. The politicians’ only come back when the elections are around the corner. To do the same promises over and over again and forgetting about everyone, thereafter. Meaning in the eyes of these politicians we are their objects. That they use to get into power not as fellow human beings.

Move to occupy unused land. Especially here in Johannesburg was a respond after the then apartheid regime. In the 70’s denying migrant labors subsidized houses. By shifting the responsibility to the banks. Resulting in warren of backyard shacks and overcrowding. Since the banks were in favor of the up coming black middle classes. Because this is where profit was guaranteed through the bonds.

It is now 18 years since the people started to stay in Motsoaledi. In the early years people had to stay awake all night. Initially under the bias eye of the then armed state forces to the IFP faction. Fortunately in this community over 2/3rd of the population are ANC supporters and members and it’s not in the way with hostels. Where IFP members were in large numbers.

This community became a fiefdom to the bloodthirsty loose ANC-SANCO faction that was on daily orgies. In maintaining this habit. They extort money, rape women and dispossess the same people they purport to protect. Even with the new government into power. They would continue with their heinous deeds.

Earlier residents from time to time they recall those dreadful days. “During so and so meaning the ring leader/s, police wouldn’t dare come in this community” they said. As they carry on denouncing how these guys inflicted endless torture in their lives. “You who came after all these rampages are lucky especially the agitators. Your lives could have been at stake and cut-short long time ago”, ruefully looking at you…

Although one of the notorious ring leader was gunned down in the daylight. During the mass meeting everyone watching. Ironically the very ringleader was about to butcher one of his enemies. And he was the one who called the meeting to gather the support from the community. Unexpectedly the targeted enemy’s assassins ambushed him from behind.

Everyone in the community was relieved from fearing their lives. “That was the only time the police started to come to the community” they sigh…Probably just a couple is behind bars. But the fact that they were not alone remains hanging above people’s heads, especially the women. Even though these remnants started to live a normal lives.

The questions remained. Where was the army *if* the SAPS couldn’t enter this community to save the lives of the poor innocent people?

This morbid gloomy cloud is still hanging above this community!!!

Philip Mzamani Nyalungu: “Motsoaledi Concerned Residents”

Found here and dated 9 March 2010

“Motsoaledi Concerned Residents” by Philip Nyalungu

This structure was formed sometimes around 2005 amid overwhelming support from the community. After the local South African National Civil Organization (SANCO) has consistently suppressed anyone to question the government and ruling party. The people have realized that “they need an alternative”. Because the politicians and through their political parties consistently exploit people’s emotions. By making empty promises to win the votes. The meaning to life is nothing else but basic services. In our community there’s nothing like basic services. They take decisions in our expenses without our consent. Instead of building us houses. They are busy with malls while we are dying. It is as if we don’t belong in this planet and they are doing us a great favour. To at least allow us just stay. We are like refugees in our own country.

Undoubtedly this angry came after the present government failed to deliver basic services. With no electricity, sanitation and infrastructures. Our children have no recreational-resource facilities. It is 15 years since the ANC democratic government came in power. This has resulted in much destruction: Such as teenage pregnancy, violence, crime, illiteracy, diseases, unemployment and subsequently deaths.We all know that “the future is determined by the availability of resources”. That is why we voted in 1994/1999 and 2004 because we were promised all this things.

Where are we today? We are children, parents, grandparents and dead! All cramped in pain and dark! We all know and told the Apartheid government was the cause of our problems. We are staying in the squatter camps. It is out of question to compromise our lives for so long. After the highest law of the country (constitution) stated clear that “everyone has right to life”. The right to have a house of your own built where you are.Under this global economy, globalisation and global power. It is very important to have independent community structures like MCR. Which are within and controlled by the people. Making sure every need to the community is attended. Since the government only protects and advance the interest of the rich in our expenses. Giving a go-ahead to anyone who is thirsty for our blood. Equalling our lives to that of a life stock and poultry. As results many of our people are dying unnecessarily and no action is taken to prevent such.

Through these structures we can have an impartial understanding about our immediate environment. This will bring confidence within us to protect ourselves and advance our culture. Then we can come closer to challenge the enemy of our lives. Our enemy is not the Zulu, Xhosa, Shangani or Zimbabweans. It is the multi-national corporations and structures that protect and advance their interests. These corporations are responsible for civil wars across the continent and the world.

Lately the ANC leaders have decided to recall president Mbeki. With an impression that, “it is in the interest of the poor and majority of South Africa”. To a big surprise they keep on reminding the world that “the policies implemented under Mandela-Mbeki’s orders will never change”.This is a daily light brutal attack on the poor and majority of this country!! We are here suffering today because of the very same policies. It is very clear the ANC leadership is in this mess. Because they never had interest saving the people and they will never have. Always it’s only to their personal benefit.

Apartheid debt, Gear, Privatisation, Egoli 2002, Gautrain, 2010 and Asgisa. These are policies causing all problems in our country. They are implemented by the people who manage structures that protects and advance the interest of the rich and few. The political parties in the government have said nothing about the effects on the poor and majority of the country. Instead they send the police to arrest, shoot, and beat and kill us when we demonstrate. Within the 14 years the ANC in power. The ANC in parliament and their families and friends became very-very rich. While we on the ground who voted them into power have to suffer at all cost. In this regard the ANC under Mandela/ Mbeki/ Monthlante/Zuma/Malema is always the same ANC.

This battle is for all of us in the community. Until we come together and face this common goal. Nothing is going to happen without confronting and exposing the enemy. Our lives have been destroyed for so long. It was apartheid today is the government we voted in power. MCR is the community structure. Willing to work together with various community structures in the immediate community, across the country and globally.These structures must not compromise the lives of poor people to the rich. Since the global economy is destroying every poor people in the world. Through corrupt government officials and leaders from political parties. Every day has a meaning: To wait it simply means many death before our last breathe. It is even worse because they are going to relocate and divide people. So they can build more shopping malls and divisive residential and apartment to attract the middle class and rich people.

Photo: ZACF members in Swaziland 2004

The Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Federation (ZACF, later the Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front) in its early years had members in Swaziland; these members came to South Africa quite often, where they were involved in the ZACF collective called the Black Action Group (BAG), based in Motsoaledi, Soweto. Through BAG and ZACF they were also involved in the ZACF-linked Phambili Motsoaledi Community Project. This photo is from 2004. ZACF comrades on left and right, visitor from abroad centre.

ZACF Swaziland 2004  [blur]