Umkhonto we Sizwe Military Veterans Association (MKMVA) spokesperson Carl Niehaus has again thrown a hot wire into the political sphere.
Speaking at the Congress Of South African Students (COSAS) 40th anniversary in Kliptown, Soweto, on Saturday Niehaus slammed former apartheid-era president FW De Klerk’s attendance at President Cyril Ramaphosa’s inauguration at Loftus stadium in Pretoria last week.
Niehaus said while South Africa pulled out the red carpet for De Klerk at the inauguration, he (De Klerk) has still not answered for his crimes. "De Klerk has still not been charged. Even after the Truth and Reconciliation commision found that he had mislead them and that he was behind decisions that killed many people".
De Klerk’s attendance at the inauguration divided attendees, with many booing him on his arrival. South Africa’s last apartheid-era president, De Klerk handed over power to former president Nelson Mandela in 1994 after South Africa’s first democratic elections, but also became one of Mandela’s two deputies.
Niehaus pleaded with the ANC not to turn on itself.
The COSAS event drew speakers such as former minister of Energy Jeff Radebe, National Youth Development Agency chairman Sifiso Mtshweni, ANC Youth League treasurer general Reggie Nkabinde and former director of Intelligence and COSAS founder Billy Masethla.
Mtshweni told the audience that they must put the ANC’s promises to the test.
"Employers cannot expect 5 years experience from graduates, students or interns. We must do away with this thing of 5 years experience. How will students have experience if they’ve never worked. We will enter the workplace by force," Mtshweni said.
The FW De Klerk Foundation has not responded to questions about Niehaus’ accusations.