The United Democratic Movement (UDM) Youth Vanguard was abhorred at the now infamous “Mask Incident” which occurred right at the steps of the National Assembly on Wednesday, 24 February 2021.
We noted that UDM President Bantu Holomisa wrote to eNCA attempting to get to the bottom of the racial conduct of their reporter, Ms Lindsay Dentlinger. President Holomisa and the UDM gave eNCA ample opportunity to resolve the matter amicably.
Yet, eNCA missed the point and has defended the indefensible. It has given the middle finger not only to the leadership of the UDM, but to an entire South African nation who wants to see a true rainbow nation. eNCA chose to respond defensively to one incident, that of the person of the UDM Deputy President Nqabayomzi Kwankwa, but how do they explain other similar incidents?
It is disrespectful and arrogant of eNCA to find excuses to justify behaviour that continuously leaves the nation wounded.
eNCA has been under fire for institutional racism that is deeply rooted in the organisation and quite unfortunate for them the latest manifestation involved lawmakers.
South Africans suffer these instances and in such organisation as eNCA, where the perception is that it is the norm, it cannot be tolerated any longer. It is clear that eNCA does not want to accept responsibility to change and it is not ready to be a part of South Africa.
The South African Human Rights Commission, the Broadcasting Complaints Commission of South Africa, the South African National Editors’ Forum and Parliament must act and should they fail to hold eNCA accountable, it would result in South Africans losing faith in them.
President Holomisa dedicated his professional life to the struggle of accomplishing a non-racist, non-sexist South Africa and embraced a dream of a united country where black and white people live in harmony. The UDM was built on the premise of this dream; that it is a home for all South Africans irrespective of race, colour, religion, gender, sexual orientation and physical disability.
We therefore stand with our President in the face of all odds in his quest to fight against any form of racism, corruption, gender-based violence, as well as gender and sexual orientation injustice.
The UDM Youth Vanguard will continue to hold the banner of non-racialism and inclusion up high and intensify our nation building efforts.
South Africa shall be one.
Mr Yongama Zigebe
UDM Youth Vanguard