THE Congress of the People Youth Movement is flabbergasted by the pronouncements made by the deputy president of the ANC, Cyril Ramaphosa, urging business to provide and create conducive working conditions.
This while he and the Lonmin mining company turned a blind eye and a deaf ear to ordinary workers pleading to get a living wage in Marikana.
This virtually turned into one atrocious, unprecedented massacre post-democratic dispensation in South Africa.
We are surprised by Ramaphosa, who wants to be a leader of virtue, though his actions attributed to the Marikana massacre are diametrically opposed to the call that he made yesterday: That was: "Where we are not doing anything actively about improving the living conditions of workers, business should go back to the drawing board and ask themselves, 'What is it that we can do to improve the livelihood and the living conditions of the people'?"
This is the advice he should have given to Lonmin to avoid the death of 34 mine workers and the taxpayers' money expended on the Marikana Commission of Inquiry.
The working class and the poor of this country will not take lightly what Ramaphosa has said because it is obvious that when he was amassing wealth, he cared less about the workers whose sweat made him a millionaire.
However, today he is occupying the second-highest position in the ANC and is trying to lure the very same people he neglected and alienated from having better lives by offering a vote-seeking bowl and speaking the language that resonates with the interests of the poor and the working class.
He further said: "Businesses should go beyond just paying people. We should start asking ourselves where they live ... human beings are not just commodities. The accommodation of workers is too appalling and needs attention ..."
Our people are still waiting. When will the appalling living conditions be changed for the better for the Lonmin mineworkers? If Ramaphosa is genuine in what he said, he, as a shareholder in Lonmin. could have apologised to the people of South Africa and the many affected families regarding what happened in Marikana.
But he resorted only to apologise for the R18-million he lavishly bid on a buffalo, which tells us that his heart is dear to the money and unworthy to the people.
Bongani Mahlangu, The Congress of the People Youth Movement