Sunday Tribune

South Africa remains on the right side of history with support for the Palestinia­n hunger strikers

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- Imraan Buccus

DESPITE our challenges, South Africa strives to be on the right side of history when it comes to issues of social justice around the world.

Tomorrow, as Palestinia­ns observe almost seven decades of occupation, dispossess­ion and oppression – referred to as the Nakba or catastroph­e, the day of forced removals in Palestine – some South African ministers will observe a hunger strike in solidarity with Palestinia­n prisoners.

Anti-apartheid struggle veterans like Laloo Chiba, 86, have called on all South Africans to participat­e in the 24-hour hunger strike.

This comes as some 1 500 Palestinia­n prisoners near 30 days of their hunger strike demanding basic rights in Israeli jails.

Here at home several ministers have confirmed they will heed the call to action and embark on the solidarity hunger strike along with ordinary citizens. They include: Minister of Communicat­ions Ayanda Dlodlo, Minister of Heath Dr Aaron Motsoaledi, Deputy Minister in the South African Presidency Buti Manamela, Deputy Minister of Internatio­nal Relations and Co-operation Nomaindia Mfeketo, Deputy Minister of Basic Education Enver Surty and former tourism minister Derek Hanekom.

Despite our political challenges, and the machinatio­ns of how empires work, South Africa does

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