- NEHAWU Solidarity Statement With Cuban People
- NEHAWU Condemns Apartheid Israeli Continued Attacks On Gaza
- Ensure the safety of pro-democracy police officers and provide compensation
- SNAT President Mbongwa Dlamini demonstrated leadership, must be protected
- Matanzas fire disaster: Communist Party of Swaziland message of solidarity with the Cuban people
- SACP message of solidarity to the Cuban people following Matanzas Industrial Zone fire
- Personalities ask Biden to lift sanctions against Cuba
- PRESS STATEMENT: Hands Off Minister Naledi Pandor!
- Statement on latest Israeli aggression against Gaza
NEHAWU Solidarity Statement With Cuban People
Friday August 12, 2022
MEDIA STATEMENT – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
SOLIDARITY STATEMENT WITH CUBAN PEOPLE
The National Education, Health and Allied Workers’ Union [NEHAWU] expresses solidarity with the Republic of Cuba and deeply regrets the devastation caused following a tragic fire accident triggered by an electrical discharge that affected storage tanks in the Matanzas supertanker base.
We regret the loss of lives of several Cuban citizens during the accident. We convey our sincere condolences to the government of Cuba and to the families and friends of those affected. We express deep appreciation at those governments, especially in the region who stepped forward to assist, sending in material aid, firefighting personnel and provided other forms of support. These include Mexico, Venezuela, Russia, Nicaragua, Argentina and Chile amongst others.
We also commend the government of the Republic of Cuba for prioritizing the saving of lives and in doing everything to restore the operation of the facility and to limit the impact of the explosion on ordinary people.
This is a regrettable accident at whose root cause we believe is the 60 year old American blockade on Cuba. We all know that the American blockade denies Cuba the ability to trade and acquire much needed technical equipment amongst many necessary supplies, especially in the quest to upgrade Cuban infrastructure. The successive American administrations must therefore bear responsibility for such incidents due to their harmful policy of financial, economic and commercial blockade maintained for over 60 years. We reiterate the call for the lifting of the criminal blockade on Cuba.
We call on the South African government to render urgent support to the people of Cuba through medical and firefighting supplies including other material as well as financial support. No country has made the highest sacrifices in the liberation of South Africa than the people of Cuba amongst a few others, whose patriots selflessly laid down their lives for the freedom of South Africa from the yoke of apartheid colonial rule.
Furthermore Matanzas province was the home of the last SACP congress in exile, a province in which up to today, many of South African students from poor backgrounds are being trained as doctors and engineers to work in the most difficult and rural parts of our country, treating
On our part we will do everything to support the people of Cuba with solidarity and internationalism through the tragedy.
NEHAWU Condemns Apartheid Israeli Continued Attacks On Gaza
Friday August 12, 2022
MEDIA STATEMENT - FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
NEHAWU CONDEMNS APARTHEID ISRAELI CONTINUED ATTACKS ON GAZA
The National Education, Health and Allied Workers’ Union [NEHAWU] strongly condemns the continued violent attacks on Gaza by the Apartheid Israel military. The continued repression and genocide of innocent Palestinians must stop.
The Israeli government deployed attack drones over the Gaza Strip and continued to close major roads in the south following the arrest of the senior leader of Gaza. Israel sent artillery, infantry, armoured and combat engineering units as well as special force’s units to Gaza in order to intimidate and declare war on innocent people in Gaza.
At least 44 Palestinians, including 15 children were killed and over 300 injured because of the Israeli airstrikes and brutal attack on Gaza. It is not the first time that Israel has attacked Gaza. About 5,000 Palestinians have been killed by Israel in Gaza during the past 15 years. Between 1967 and 2005 Israel formally occupied Gaza. Soon after withdrawing, Israel imposed a blockade, which has restricted food and medicine entering the tiny coastal territory and has terrorised women, men and children living in Gaza. Today two million Palestinians live in a giant prison cut off from the world by the mighty Israeli military.
Even though a truce was agreed upon on, the world can no longer be silent about the continued genocide of Palestinians by the Apartheid Israeli government. The people of Gaza live in constant fear. We have to stop Israel by boycotting all that the Israeli government uses to fund these inhumane attacks on the Palestinian people. We call on all trade unionists, all friendly countries to Boycott, Divestment and Sanction apartheid Israel.
This complete disregard for human life and human rights by the Israeli government can no longer be tolerated and must be thoroughly nabbed before Israel kills every Palestinian.
We send our deepest condolences to those that have lost their families and reaffirm our solidarity with the people of Palestine against Apartheid Israel.
Ensure the safety of pro-democracy police officers and provide compensation
Friday, 12th August, 2022
By Zweli Martin Dlamini
The next democratic government must ensure the safety of pro-democracy police officers and give a clear directive regarding their role in the liberation movement.
Police officers were trained to take orders and in the midst of the political crisis, the pro-democracy movement must develop a clear framework stipulating the chain of command regarding the role of pro-democracy police officers during the looming mass protests.
It should be noted that most police officers have no alternative jobs and most of them need assurance about their future.
Political leaders must address this issue because some police officers were misled by their superiors into believing that in the new democratic government, all of them will lose their jobs.
Those who wish to side with the people and push the struggle must be assured of their job security in the new government or, alternatively, compensation for those who resign or get fired by this cruel and oppressive regime.
In this context, a secret official register of pro-democracy officers must be developed and their safety must be prioritised because some of them play a critical role in providing information to the movement.
This publication would not have reached this level of popularity without the assistance of police sources.
As a journalist, I would be failing in my job if I don’t talk about how to keep my sources safe, ensure and advocate for their job security.
Most security officers are frustrated and desire freedom so they can earn better salaries.
Those who aspire to lead this country must always address this issue and give the officers a picture of their economic freedom in the new Swaziland.
I do not condone the shooting and killing of police officers, but those responsible must come up with solutions to this conflict and tell the officers where they went wrong and what could be done to correct the atrocities.
Police officers are underpaid and some of them are only supporting King Mswati not because they took an oath, they lack alternative sources of income.
I am not saying the self-defense mechanism by the people against officers who killed civilians must stop, self-defense is a human right, and the power to stop this is vested upon the police officers.
They must down their firearms and behave like officers of the law, not Mswati’s henchmen or tinkabi.
Pro-democracy police officers can choose to use the least amount of force against other officers who kill civilians, arrest them to maintain peace, law and order.
This is because officers who keep shooting civilians contribute to a culture of violence that will affect all police officers.
Sources are the pillars of the independent media, and many officers assisted this publication in publishing exclusive and investigative stories that shaped the country’s political landscape.
It is, therefore, my responsibility to strike a balance between the welfare of police officers and the freedom of the citizens who are being oppressed by certain elements within the police force.
As stated earlier, police officers play a significant role in our society, they are not King Mswati’s property and we need to assist them to understand their significant mandate.
We urge officers to side with the people and promote democracy, this will liberate them from the slavery perpetrated by royal supremacy.
On the other hand, we urge those political leaders who aspire to lead this country to always show leadership that will also accommodate police officers since their role in the struggle for liberation is fundamental.
As the situation stands, the police force is headed by King Mswati, a Commander-in-Chief who, throughout his speech during the Police Day, failed to address the issue of low salaries for police officers but encouraged them to be loyal even on an empty stomach.
Indirectly, Mswati owns money-lending companies such as Select Management Services (SMS), he pays police officers low salaries and robs them through these companies.
Furthermore, the King demands a contribution to host a Police Day from these financially struggling officers, it is the government of the day that should be hosting and funding these events.
How can you deduct monies from police officers through Pay as You Earn(PAYE), rob them through money-lending companies and subsequently demand contributions for a Police Day where a multi-billionaire King would be a Guest Speaker?
The taxes deducted from the salaries of these police officers should be used to host a Police Day and further construct decent houses for these officers of the law.
We hope one day, police officers will recognize the fact that they are saluting or guarding a monster and once they do, they will attain freedom both politically, socially and economically.
Cops have lost their dignity even among the society, some no longer afford to take care and provide for their families because this government ensures that they remain broke so that they can be loyal.
In the midst of these challenges, police officers need to understand that their financial freedom is tied to the political mission to liberate our country.
SNAT President Mbongwa Dlamini demonstrated leadership, must be protected.
Thursday, 11th August, 2022
By Zweli Martin Dlamini
Mbongwa Dlamini, the President of the Swaziland National Association of Teachers (SNAT) exhibited leadership skills by advising teachers not to report to work on Monday and Tuesday amid State security threats.
On Wednesday, I was invited by the Executive Command of the Swaziland International Solidarity Forces(SISF) for an off-the record briefing and a decision to protect SNAT Mbongwa Dlamini was made.
I was also shown a picture of a soldier in charge of a State intelligence operation tasked with tracking down Mbongwa with an intention to kill him.
It is not my responsibility to warn people not to touch Mbongwa, I have been raising awareness, urging police officers to refrain from killing citizens.
Perhaps, the soldier tracing Mbongwa is aware that he is being followed as well and is prepared to face the consequences of persecuting Mbongwa Dlamini, a highly regarded unionist.
After the off-the-record meeting yesterday (Wednesday), I received a call from Rise FM, a South African radio station, and I was requested to analyse the political situation in eSwatini, I did mention live on air that I had just returned from a meeting with the Solidarity Forces.
As a journalist, I have always maintained that I would meet or talk to all sources without any fear of being proscribed or declared a terrorist.
But, since I was advised not to reveal the identity of the soldier, I shall abide by the ethics of journalism and the legal framework regulating the protection of sources.
It is interesting to note that in this country, we now have another ‘military’ institution that protects civilians.
Even those who were instructed to facilitate the dismissal of the SNAT President for ensuring the safety of teachers are fully aware that it’s no longer safe to do so.
Mbongwa Dlamini is a great leader who prioritizes the safety of the teachers who elected him.
The SNAT President communicates with almost all journalists in the country without any prejudice, and he sometimes agrees to be interviewed by emerging online publications because he understands the importance of accountability of power.
For these reasons, as the independent media, we can assure him of our full support and safety, after all, one of our duties is to expose injustice.
We will investigate and expose the threats around his life because we believe he represents a good cause, and by advising teachers not to report for duty, he was not communicating that directive in his personal capacity.
Matanzas fire disaster: Communist Party of Swaziland message of solidarity with the Cuban people
12 August 2022
Communist Party of Swaziland
The people of Cuba have braved very difficult conditions to bring under control unprecedented flames which erupted in the Matanzas province of Cuba on Friday 5 August 2022.
On Friday, a fuel tank at the Supertanker Depot in the Matanzas Industrial Zone erupted into flames after being hit by lightning. Consequently, hundreds have been injured. The flames also took the life of one firefighter. About 14 people have been reported missing.
Against adversity, against the weather and the wind, firefighters together with the Cuban people have bravely fought against the flames.
First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba and President of the Socialist Republic of Cuba, Comrade Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, has also courageously brought the people together as they united to douse the fires and keep the country’s economy going.
The Communist Party of Swaziland (CPS) conveys its solidarity with the Cuban people. The CPS also sends its message of condolences for the life lost and also sends great wishes for speedy recovery of all those injured as a result of the blast.
The CPS also conveys its message of solidarity with the Communist Party of Cuba in this difficult period.
The Cuban people, who have for over six decades gallantly fought against the illegal and unilateral US embargo, are united more than ever even at this difficult stage where the imperialist US regime has imposed more illegal economic sanctions on their country. As the Cuban people defended their country in 1961 against the Bay of Pigs invasion by the imperialist US regime and against continuous acts of imperialist aggression, they have once again united to fight against the flames. They have done this while at one and the same time defending Cuba’s national sovereignty.
The United Nations has since 1992 overwhelmingly voted against the US-imposed embargo on Cuba. On 23 June 2021, 184 countries voted in favour of a United Nations resolution to demand the end of the US economic blockade of Cuba. This was for the 29th year in a row. Only the US and its apartheid ally, Israel, voted against the resolution.
The CPS calls for worldwide practical solidarity with the people of Cuba in the fight to contain the disaster and recover their economy. In this regard, the CPS also reiterates its demand for the end of the embargo to allow the Cuban people to acquire crucial supplies to rebuild their country’s infrastructure and economy.
Issued by the Communist Party of Swaziland
SACP message of solidarity to the Cuban people following Matanzas Industrial Zone fire
12 August 2022
South African Communist Party
The South African Communist Party (SACP) conveys its message of solidarity to the Cuban people following the fire which erupted from a fuel tank at the Supertanker Depot in the Cuban province of Matanzas on Friday, 5 August 2022, after it was struck by lightning.
"On behalf of the SACP, I convey our heartfelt condolences to the family of the firefighter who died during the gallant efforts to extinguish the flame. I wish speedy recovery to those who have suffered injuries", said Solly Mapaila, the SACP General Secretary on Thursday, 11 August 2022 in Johannesburg.
The SACP salutes the firefighters who have worked tirelessly to bring the situation under control. As is the case when the country faces disaster, the Cuban people from far and wide came out in their numbers to contribute to extinguishing the fire and prevent loss of life. Their bravery continues to inspire the working-class across the world on the meaning of defending one’s country and building socialism.
The SACP is inspired by the leadership role played by First Secretary of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Cuba and President of the Cuban Republic, Comrade Miguel Díaz-Canel Bermúdez, in uniting the people for a common cause under this difficult period.
This disaster takes place when the Cuban people are enduring the worst consequences of the illegal, unilateral and extraterritorial blockade imposed by the imperialist regime of the United States which has been overwhelmingly condemned by the United Nations for 29 years in a row. The over six decades old criminal blockade has had negative results for Cuba’s economy, but the people of Cuba have more and more united against the imperialist bully and defended their freedom.
The SACP calls for more international solidarity and will strengthen its own efforts and humanitarian work in solidarity with the people of Cuba. To help the Cuban people recover quickly from the disaster, the SACP calls for our government to extend its solidarity with the Cuban people through every means possible.
Personalities ask Biden to lift sanctions against Cuba
Open letter to Biden signed by Roger Waters, Cornel West, Judith Butler, Noam Chomsky, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, Jeremy Corbyn, Rev. Liz Theoaris, Seun Kuti, Vijay Prashad and others.
Dear President Joe Biden,
August 9, 2022 Now more than ever, it’s time to write a new page in U.S.-Cuban relations. We are making an urgent, public appeal to you to reject the cruel policies put into place by the Trump White House that have already created so much suffering among the Cuban people.
On Friday, August 5th, a major oil storage facility in Matanzas, Cuba, 65 miles east of Havana, was hit by lightning. Since then, an enormous fire has been raging. This tremendous explosion and hard-to-control fire have left several people missing (including firefighters), many injured with severe burns, and hundreds evacuated from their homes.
This fire, the largest in Cuban history, comes when Cuba is undergoing an energy crisis due to soaring global fuel costs and aging infrastructure. This oil tank fire will undoubtedly only further exacerbate the electricity outages that Cubans suffer during this hot summer. The resources that the government will be forced to put into disaster response will also have a negative impact on the general well-being of Cubans amid sanctions imposed by the Trump administration and continued under your administration.
Despite the words of condolence and the offer of technical advice, the U.S. government has done very little to aid the people of Cuba in their greatest moment of need. Unfortunately, U.S. sanctions fuel the fires that rage in Cuba! Despite assurances by the U.S. Embassy in Havana that the law authorizes U.S. entities and organizations to provide disaster relief and response, Trump’s 243 sanctions continue to prevent urgently needed aid from arriving in Cuba.
When your neighbor’s house is on fire, the normal human reaction is to rush next door to help. To save lives. To extinguish the flames. Cuba is our neighbor.! It is unconscionable, especially during a tragic accident, to block remittances and Cuba’s use of global financial institutions, given that access to dollars is necessary to import food and medicine.
Time is of the essence. The administration should lift all sanctions that prevent Cuba, directly or indirectly, from receiving essential medical, humanitarian, and environmental relief or receiving financial and other assistance from other nations or organizations in the U.S. This includes removing Cuba from the State Sponsors of Terrorism List. We also urge you to coordinate immediately with relevant U.S. agencies to provide the direct and urgent assistance that Cuba requests.
Sincerely, Brian Becker, Cindy Weisner, Claudia De la Cruz, Cornel West, David Adler, David Harvey, Gabriel Rockhill, Gail Walker, Gerald Horne, Gina Belafonte, Helen Yaffe, Jennifer Ponce De Leon, Jeremy Corbyn, Jia Hong, Jodie Evans, Judith Butler, Rev. Liz Theoharis, Manolo De Los Santos, Manu Karuka, Noam Chomsky, Phillip Agnew, Robin D.G. Kelly, Roger Waters, Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, Ruth Wilson Gilmore, Salvatore Engel-Di Mauro, Seun Kuti, Vijay Prashad, Yasemin Zahra,
PRESS STATEMENT: Hands Off Minister Naledi Pandor!
August 9, 2022
The human rights NGO, Africa4Palestine, condemns the recent attacks against South Africa’s Minister of International Relations, Minister Naledi Pandor, by members of the Israeli lobby. We, and our fellow South Africans, have simply grown tired of the endless insults by the SA Zionist Federation, the SA Jewish Board of Deputies (SAJBD) and other members of the Israeli lobby against our South African government, our President and Ministers for their support of the Palestinian people.
We, together with South Africans, South African civil society organisations, NGOS, trade unions, churches, mosques and other faith bodies welcome the strong and firm stance by the South African government, and our ruling party, the ANC. Their strong stance in support of the people Palestine and their condemnation of the most recent Israeli attacks on the Palestinian Gaza Strip is inline with our commitment to the upholding of international law and human rights.
Israel’s latest assault and bombing of the Palestinian Gaza Strip, in the last 72 hours, has left over 45 Palestinians killed, including 15 children.
South Africa’s slamming of this barbarity by the Apartheid regime of Israel is indeed a reflection of the people of South Africa. This clear and consistent stance by South Africa is borne out of the support of human rights which is in our DNA. The recent statements condemning the horrific murder of Palestinians by Israel reflects the view of the majority of South Africans, who have elected the ANC into government.
It is clear that the SAJBD is a lobby group for a foreign regime and works closely with the Israeli spy agency Mossad together with the Israeli embassy in Pretoria. It has now become the norm that they will attack the ANC, our national government and leaders, while cosying up to reactionary parties such as the DA, ACDP and other small insignificant parties which blindly support apartheid Israel. The South African Jewish Board of Deputies must decide if they are South African or Israeli agents.
Africa4Palestine welcomes the recent ceasefire that has been announced in Gaza but we worry that the human catastrophe of the Palestinian Gaza Strip still exists. We also worry for Israel’s next assault on the Palestinian Gaza Strip. We remain committed to bringing an absolute end to Israel’s Apartheid regime. It is only with the dismantling of Israel’s apartheid policies that peace can be pursued. To this end we recommit ourselves to working with all parties that support Palestinian human rights including the ANC, NFP, other progressive political parties as well as the South African government and our democratically elected leaders. When the SAJBD attacks Minister Naledi Pandor for her pursuance of a Free Palestine and a more just world, they attack South Africa – the time has come and we are telling them to stop their endless Apartheid Israeli agenda and stop insulting our leaders.
ISSUED BY TISETSO MAGAMA ON BEHALF OF AFRICA 4 PALESTINE
ISSUED BY TISTESO MAGAMA ON BEHALF OF AFRICA 4 PALESTINE
Africa4Palestine Director, Muhammed Desai: +27 (0) 81 353 0699
Africa4Palestine Spokesperson, Tisetso Magama: +27 (0) 61 414 6348
Statement on latest Israeli aggression against Gaza
Monday, 8 August 2022
The appalling attack carried out by the Israeli occupation over the past days, in which it targeted senior Islamic Jihad commanders and innocent civilians in the Gaza Strip, killing more than 40 Palestinians, including women and children, and injuring hundreds more, is a serious escalation that reveals its sadistic nature and its policy based on committing massacres against the Palestinian people in a desperate attempt to undermine the Palestinian resistance, steadfastness, and fight for their rights, homeland, and holy sites.
As efforts succeeded in reaching a ceasefire brokered by Egypt and Qatar, Hamas hails Gazans for standing steadfast and backing the Palestinian resistance in the face of the Israeli aggression and states the following:
First: We mourn the death of Palestinian martyrs who have fallen during the Israeli offensive on the Gaza Strip, above all Islamic Jihad commanders. As we offer our sincere condolences to their families and loved ones, we stress that the Palestinian blood will fuel the struggle to restore the legitimate Palestinian rights to liberation and return.
Second: The political and diplomatic efforts exerted by Hamas, headed by its chief Ismail Haniyeh, with all relevant parties are part of its historic responsibility towards protecting the Palestinian people and ending the barbaric Israeli onslaught on the Gaza Strip.
Third: Hamas will continue its fight to preserve and protect Palestinian rights, constants, and holy sites, achieve the Palestinian aspirations, and embrace Palestinian unity and comprehensive resistance as an option to defend the Palestinian territories and detainees and the Al-Aqsa Mosque.
Fourth: The continuous wave of normalisation between some Arab states and the Israeli occupation will provide the colonial occupation with a cover to commit further crimes against the Palestinian people and their homeland. As we reiterate our rejection of all forms of normalisation, we call on the Arab regimes that normalised ties with the Israeli occupation to reverse their wrongful decision and endorse Arab and Muslim values against the occupation.
Fifth: We vehemently condemn the double standards policy adopted by the US administration and some EU states towards the Palestinian cause and rights and their bias towards the Israeli occupation and its aggression against the besieged Gaza Strip. We urge them to backtrack on their approach out of respect for humanitarian values and international laws and conventions.
Sixth: All Palestinian factions and parties in the Gaza Strip, West Bank, Jerusalem, and the Palestinian territories occupied in 1948, as well as in diaspora and refugee camps abroad, are required to reinforce national and popular unity based on a comprehensive and unified program to confront the Israeli occupation and restore the Palestinian national rights.
Seventh: The atrocities and massacres perpetrated by the Israeli occupation during its aggression on the Gaza Strip, in addition to its continuous violations and crimes across the occupied Palestinian territories, will not be forgotten by the passage of time. We call on all human rights groups and humanitarian organisations to strongly act to hold Israeli occupation leaders to account as war criminals before the International Criminal Court (ICC).
Issued by NEHAWU International Service Centre
For more information, please contact Head Office