Soundz of the South: Elections Serve the System! from “They In On It”

Elections serve the system like chalk board and duster
Voting only allows you to choose a new master
To hide the ugly ugliness of government with the plaster
It’s a shame when you keep recycling these bastards
Bourgeoisie democracy is a mockery
We don’t want the loaf we want to run the bakery
Vote for any party expect treachery
You mandating them to feed of the common treasury
Open your eyes to truth is plain to see
Reality check from the Biko MC
Smash the TV
Smash the radio
Build community control of the media
Toyi-toyi can’t coexist with dictatorship
This art form defies all forms of censorship
The culture is Hiphop
Only self activity will set the people free

– Biko MC verse from They in on it, Freedom Warriors Vol 2

Comrade Mkhululi Sijora Obituary (1982-2016)


Comrade Mkhululi Sijora Obituary (1982-2016)

Posted on July 28, 2016

by Lwazi Ngqingo

khustaCde Kusta’s untimely demise is a great loss. It will be felt by all those who were lucky to cross paths with him and all those who got to hear his music. He never questioned or withdrew his commitment to the struggle for freedom and justice, for a world with less political, economic, and gender based oppression.

Comrade Mkhululi Sijora Obituary

Mkhululi Sijora was born on the 1st August 1982 in Cape Town, Western Cape. He was the only child from his mother. Popularly known as ‘Khusta’ a name he got from his peers in the streets of Makhaza where he grew up and did most of his activism work. During his high school years in Chris Hani High School he became a peer educator and through that he did a lot of community work and at the same time he was writing and performing music as a rapper in a group he formed with friends, the groups’ name was Triple G’s.

After acquiring his matric he enrolled at Cape Peninsula University of Technology (CPUT) for tertiary education studying Retail Marketing, this is where he was introduced to the world of politics. Khusta noted that before going to CPUT, he was not very interested in politics. After he was done with his studies he continued with making music performing at local hip hop sessions with his crew the Triple G’s and he continued working closely with Love Life: Ground Breakers.

Khusta was drawn in into SOS since 2010 first as a regular to the Struggle, hiphop and poetry in Lookout Hill, Khayelitsha. Quickly   he became one of the key members, he was then to join the inner circle meetings, and this is where his global politics were challenged, along with his perception of how much influence music has in changing the fabric of society. Cde Khusta gave all his time and life to defend the working class and all oppressed people. He was particularly critical of all bosses and political parties; he argued that the people themselves have the will and the power to rule themselves.

Within a space of a year he showed so much potential and became reliable comrade to take mandates from the organisation into other movements that we were interacting and building with.

Kusta didn’t separate his activism with his artistry. He was amongst the few artists that responded to the brutal murder of the Andries Tatane.

He didn’t hesitate to defend and demand justice for the Marikana mineworkers.

Kusekude engqinibeni

Sisese lucinizelweni

Ikude indle ebheka enkululekweni

Not yet Uhuru

Kodwa akuphethanga amabhulu

Umthetho esiphantsi kwawo ukhusela Oongxawankulu

Bavuka ngentseni bagoduke ngobusuku

Abasebenzi bezama ukwenza imali yoongxowa nkulu

Saqala uqhankqalaza  sadibana neembumbulu

45 people dead

Ezandleni zomthetho

I don’t care

Noba bafumene igani

Who gave them the right to take the people’s lives?

Bashayela umthetho

Babethane ngamaTender

Emva koko

Bavale umlomo

Ongathi ufna ukuthetha



Basibetha besibambile

Bafuna nje Amandla ethu

Basishiye silambile

Rest in peace to the Marikana Soldiers

We share the same struggle

Ukufa kwenu

Kuyoze kube nomvuzo nomvuka

Saxheleka imiphefumlo yophuka

Umvuzo wabasebenzi akenyuka

Inani lamaxhoba lenyuka

Kwanuka nje irhuluwa

– Kusta’s verse from the Bloodshed of the Innocent

He also put all his weight behind the #FeesMustFall.

Bagotywa besebatsha

is what we use to say

Apha baqotywa besebatsha

babotshelelwe ngechain

Ugutyungelwe ngomthetho

obaqweqwedisel’ ejele

Imfundo sisitixo

kodwa bona kumele bebhatele

Amatyala aqhekez’ ingqondo

ugqiba kwabo nje isgela

Ngamakhobok’ ebond

aphilel ubhatal’ ibank

The Fees must fall free education

Blade must go

As we March united in the struggle 

taking the streets

Like 76 we rise like they buried the seed

So raise up your fist and say it with me fees must fall

–Kusta’s verse from the fees must fall song

The comrade will be missed for his energy in protests as he was known for leading the struggle songs. He will be missed for his abilities in resolving conflicts with the movement, for he perpetually focused in building the unity of all people in struggle.

Cde Kusta’s untimely demise is a great loss. It will be felt by all those who were lucky to cross paths with him and all those who got to hear his music. He never questioned or withdrew his commitment to the struggle for freedom and justice, for a world with less political, economic, and gender based oppression.

WSF (1998): “PAC leader says ‘ban the trade unions'”

WSF (1998): “PAC leader says ‘ban the trade unions'”

From Workers Solidarity, magazine of the Workers Solidarity Federation, volume 4, number 1, first quarter 1998. Complete PDF is here

The PAC [Pan-Africanist Congress of Azania] is sometimes seen as a radical alternative to ANC.

However, in an interview in The Sowetan, PAC leader Bishop Stanley Mogoba said that South African workers are too lazy. He stated that the way to rebuild the economy and create “normal” conditions is to ban the trade unions for 3 years! Mogoba praised the Asian dictatorships like Singapore: while these countries are not democratic, they are “progressive” and have good “work ethics” !!

Workers! You are not beasts of burden- you are the majority! Who are these politicians to dare talk of banning your fighting unions?! Do not trust the politicians- they are part of the problem!

Reject the politicians! Only the workers can free the workers!

WSF (1998): “EDITORIAL: Unite the Workers’ Struggle!”

WSF (1998): “EDITORIAL: Unite the Workers’ Struggle!”

From Workers Solidarity, magazine of the Workers Solidarity Federation, volume 4, number 1, first quarter 1998. Complete PDF is here

From coast to coast, a greedy class of anti-worker fat cat bosses abuse and oppress us- the workers. Our masters want privatisation, free trade, mass retrenchments in the public sector, “flexible” labour (hire and fire at will), minimal union rights, and cuts in education and health spending. This is the “free market”.

In the so-called “Windhoek Declaration” signed by all southern African governments in SADC in October 1997 it is stated that “the private sector [is] the locomotive of economic development,” and that “business requires … a climate in which it can develop safely, freely and profitably“. SADC (the Southern African Development Community) includes Angola, Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mauritius, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland, Tanzania, Zambia and Zimbabwe.

These policies, sponsored by imperialism, and happily accepted by the local ruling classes, will give bosses big profits. But the workers and the poor will suffer.

In Zambia these policies have cost 100,000 jobs. In Zimbabwe they have led to education spending falling to the level of the colonial 1970s. In South Africa, jobs are at their lowest level in 16 years.

We need to unite the workers struggles in our region. We need to mobilise our unions in solidarity with each other, resisting the bosses’ onslaught.

Today the worker is treated as nothing while the boss is treated as a hero. After the revolution, the workers will be everything and the boss- nothing!!!



WSF 1998: “Why we say ‘Asifune GEAR’ (Why we oppose GEAR)”

WSF 1998: “Why we say ‘Asifune GEAR’ (Why we oppose GEAR)”

From Workers Solidarity, magazine of the Workers Solidarity Federation, volume 4, number 2, fourth quarter 1998. Complete PDF is here

In June 1996, the ANC-led government adopted the Growth, Employment and Redistribution plan (GEAR). This plan promotes policies, which blatantly serve the needs of bosses at the expense of workers and the poor. The government’s adoption of GEAR marked its commitment to “free market” policies.


GEAR is the ANC government’s strategy to promote social and economic development. It replaces the RDP. The government argues that the best way in which to “develop” South Africa is to promote “economic growth” (i.e. to increase bosses profit). In other words, there must be a “good investor climate” (things must be good for the bosses), and this will lead to better times. There will be more jobs, and more money to spend on services.

But if one takes a close look at GEAR’s policies it is clear that if government’s policies will ensure that bosses get fat while the poor and working class are condemned to poverty and hunger.

GEAR says: cut back government spending especially public sector wages and jobs, and social services (hospitals, schools, pensions).

* Education and free primary health care will mean very little if hospitals and schools are over crowded, have no money, have no resources (no beds or books) and are understaffed.

* Tertiary education will become much more expensive and bursaries will be cut. Thus making it impossible for workers’ families to attend university or technikon.

* Pensions will remain extremely low.

* There will be very little money for building houses for the homeless.

GEAR says: privatise state assets.

* With the privatisation of state assets, basic services will only be provided to those who can pay (e.g. electricity).

* Many workers will lose their jobs or be forced to accept wage restraint because the bosses and the government aim to cut costs and privatise government assets.

* Workers will have to pay more for services, such as transport

GEAR says: The tax on the bosses companies and personal income will be reduced. Taxes like VAT will increase.

* Instead of the rich and middle classes paying higher rates of tax than the poor, the poor will pay more tax than the rich will. This means that workers pay a disproportionate amount of tax and will shoulder the burden of supporting the government.

GEAR says: Drop exchange controls and trade barriers to open the economy to foreign imports.

* Workers will lose their jobs or be forced to accept low wages as bosses try to make their companies more competitive with cheap imports by cutting labour costs.

GEAR says: Workers to agree to wage restraint (workers must not demand higher wages), flexible labour markets (less regulations and protection) and increased productivity (workers must work harder).

* Less pay, harder work, worse conditions, less worker rights


It is clear that if workers and the poor want a better life we must not accept GEAR. But Trevor Manuel has stated that GEAR’s policies are non- negotiable and every one must accept it. COSATU leaders say that they will try to influence the government’s economic policy by talking to their allies in the alliance. We say, we cannot wait for negotiations and must resist GEAR now on the shopfloor. We must take up mass action and strike against the implementation of GEAR!


* An end to cutbacks in health, education, welfare, pensions, housing and infrastructure.

* An end to privatisation

* An end to increases in VAT, trade liberalisation and high interest and bank rates.

* A Living wage and an end to wage restraint.

* An end to retrenchment and unemployment. We demand more jobs.

* That COSATU be independent of all political parties so it can fight for the workers.