The South African Students Congress (SASCO) is saddened by the passing of the mother of the nation, Mama Winnie Madikizela Mandela, and celebrates her unmatched contribution to the National liberation struggle. She was an epitome of IMBOKODO.
The South African Students Congress has learnt of the passing of the revolutionary stalwart and an opponent of the unjust and brutal Apartheid system, the of the nation Mama Winnie Madikizela Mandela. She remained the pillar of strength for the whole nation during the difficult epoch in the struggle for the total liberation of the toiling masses of our people.
While the passing of this gallant fighter is painful, as the student movement will take this moment to celebrate her contribution to the struggles against commodification and colonial education system. This rare moment in our country deserves a celebration of her unparalleled and documented struggle for our democratic South Africa.
The South African Student’s Congress will remember her commitment to the attainment of free quality higher education, during the height of the #FeesMustFall campaign she stood with the students and was committed to joining us on the streets and dare the police to shoot with her on the forefront.
She sleeps today without breath knowing that she has played her part in the attainment of political freedom. She always reminded our movement and the youth in particular that they must take the baton and forge ahead with the struggle for the attainment of economic freedom. We believe economic freedom directly translate to freeing education from the ideological stranglehold and resolving the student accommodation crisis amongst others.
Our mother suffered humiliation and pain at the hands of the evil and brutal Apartheid regime, with the intention to break her resilient fighting spirit. She was arrested, banished and characterised as the terrorist by the white government, against all her suffering she became stronger and committed to the ideals of a non-racial, non-sexist, democratic and prosperous South African.
We are proud of the fact that Mama fought to ensure the liberation of Africans in particular and blacks in general from the yoke of apartheid and she played her part without ever vacillating. We want to assure her that we will continue as the student movement and advance the struggle beyond just the achievement of formal democracy but towards socialism.
To borrow from the German philosopher Karl Marx in a letter to his father while he was arrested and distraught, he charged “If we have chosen the position in life in which we can most of all work for mankind, no burdens can bow us down, because they are sacrifices for the benefit of all; then we shall experience no petty, limited, selfish joy, but our happiness will belong to millions, our deeds will live on quietly but perpetually at work, and over our ashes will be shed the hot tears of noble people”.
Our mother’s advanced consciousness guided her to choose the most difficult yet fulfilling route of liberating her people. She would have chosen to remain a social worker and work for her children and family, her happiness today belongs to the millions of people in our country and the world for whenever they think of her contribution to our people’s struggle hot tears are shed.
May the movement in memory of mama Winnie ensure that women activism is intensified. Use her vision and wisdom to dismantle patriarchal norms within the movement and the broader society.
As the current generation, we must draw lessons from the inspirational life of this gallant and fearless fighter. Every generation fights its own struggles and we take the spear and continue with the fight until the attainment of economic freedom.
We send our sincere condolences to the family of mama Winnie Madikizela-Mandela, the Mass Democratic Movement, the nation and the World.
Lala ngoxolo mama weSizwe!!
You have fought a good fight.
Issued on behalf of SASCO NEC
SASCO Acting Secretary General
Enjoy this amazing documentary on Mama Winnie Mandela: