TRIBUTE BY THE SECRETARY GENERAL OF SASCO CDE BUTHANANI THOBELA AT THE FIRST NATIONAL MEMORIAL SERVICE OF THE LATE DEPUTY PRESIDENT CDE BUYILE MATIWANE AT CPUT CAPE TOWN, WESTERN CAPE.
Programme Directors: Cde Vezi Simelane – SASCO DSG & Cde Mesuli Kama – ANCYL WC PCPC
Cde Tabile Dlamini – TG, NEC members present,
Vice Chancellor – Professor Chris Nhlapho and Management,
Convocation, SRC and CPUT Community,
NYDA Chair – Ms Asanda Luwaca and board members present,
Cde Mabuse Mpe – National Chair of YCLSA and all structures present,
Cde Nonceba Mhlauli – NYTT Convenor, NYTT, PCPC, RCPC present,
Cde Unathi Tshotwana and all ANC with its leagues,
Cde Sibusiso Thwala and all COSATU YW,
SACP, SANCO and all Unions present,
Importantly the bereaved Matiwane family, relatives, and friends
Fellow mourners, receive our greetings to you on behalf of the bereaved organisation and its 21st National Executive Committee. Today we stand before you with heavy hearts as we gather here on this unplanned day to mourn our Deputy President, who is the second official of this glorious organisation to depart whilst in office.
Comrades and friends before we address you, please allow us to take a moment of silence in honour of the stalwarts who have departed this week, the Deputy Secretary General of the 53rd & 54th NEC of the African National Congress Comrade Yasmin “Jessie” Duarte, Ntate Don Mattera who was a renowned author and our SASCO Deputy President a.k.a “World Leader”Cde Buyile Matiwane.
We are here at this moment to answer a crucial question posed by Antowne Fisher when he penned the poem titled “Who will cry for the little boy” as he defines his tragic growth and confronting his abuser, it is in this case and context that we feel strongly robbed by this occurrence which has stolen you Gaba. We are here to ask a difficult question of where to from here, “Sizokhala sikhalele Bani” because in the literal sense we would call you and say intervene kushubile!
We refuse to accept that indeed you will no longer be there to answer your phone or call to ask ‘Senze njani apha’, because that’s the kind of a person you were never once would you just call without seeking or giving some advice on any matter that faced us. Obviously, you and I continued to hold extreme views to provoke NEC/NWC meetings because you were a silent perfectionist who liked order.
Gaba your sudden departure has indeed taught us pain and what hurt is, like the little boy in the man. We remain clueless and without answer on who’s going to cry for the little boy who died and died again at an early age. Your first worry has always been the direction which this country is taking that is why we stood with you side by side in the picket lines fighting against the:
– Neo-liberal agenda,
– Austerity measures,
– Injustices against the people of (Palestine, Western SAHARA, Swazilanda, Ukrane, etc)
– Raising GBV-F and other social ills engulfing us,
– Violation of the much-needed Radical Socio-Economic Transformation
– Rampant Financial and Academic Exclusions,
These are but just of your known views which you shared fearlessly which why it becomes impossible that we must not address your views and echo them in these platforms because that is who you chose to be known as, so we must not be dare accused to have labelled you to be a proxy of any dominant MDM faction.
You were always for discipline within our ranks which is why we would always stress the leadership crisis which has befallen our Mass Democratic Movement, one must say though that your absence on the planned journey to that place will be felt especially when one think of the messages your wanted to pass in that session. We must as your organisation in your memory make a commitment to fight tirelessly uproot the rot and all abnormal new tendencies that have hijacked not only our structures but society in general, today in South Africa your country people are being massacred almost every weekend night, women and children continue to live in fear, students are faced with high levels of possible exclusions, TVET students are still without quality institutions.
Fellow mourners we want to say indeed ‘the little boy, did cry himself to sleep’ because he truly was a servant of his people that is why you can hear about his leadership role in CPUT from establishing debating society structures to being deployed to the Student Representative Council to his election within Progressive Youth Alliance structures and ANC ranks, of course he did win some and lose others because our progressive organisations teaches us democracy and togetherness.
We want to say it proudly that we were elected in a fiercely contested National Congress, which saw Buyile emerging as the only one from his caucus so it was widely expected that he would challenge decisions and be a difficult person because we knew his one stubborn people who believed that once a decision is there akabuyi mva, but we are proud to say that we have worked so well with the Deputy President and to an extent that we knew that when we want to run away from plenary we will give it to him.
“Hayi, Hayi MaCde anizukwazi lets be the serious ones so bayiqonde asidlali!
We never feared his chairing skills nor doubted the wisdom he provided. We want to say though to him that the work in his province of deployment is not down, and we stand before him today to offer our sincere apologies for the behaviour he got in some region there even though he was the first one to make me understand some actions and reactions of that regional congress. Indeed, we are today declaring you as a true servant and a qualifying convocants of this gallant student organisation.
To the Matiwane family, we want to sincerely offer our deepest gratitude for having raised this fearless patriot who loved his country. We offer our gratitude because not once would we deploy him to a meeting or congress, he says his unable because he fears your reaction. Even at the heart of heated violent congresses which once visited our organisation he would still be there leading the debates and songs because he believed that he was an intellectual who could also sing.
Ordinarily we are the one’s expected to arrive at your house and offer our condolences, support and hope but today we are the broken little one’s who are hurt and in pain but we are consoled by knowing that our Deputy President lived his life to the fullest, even though he was no consumer of the holy waters we could still bully him to go chill with us in those spaces and he would not be an awkward loner because with the people he belonged. We must say though he was no big spender, and you could not easily disrupt and inconvenience his finances because you had an unplanned evening even though ke he would eventually agree to a deal of sharing.
Who will cry for the little boy? A good boy he tried to be;
We want to say the South African Students Congress (SASCO), Southern African Students of Union (SASU), South African Union of Students (SAUS), All-Africa Students Union, Commonwealth Students’ association (CSA) in Africa and Europe, Activists of Asia and all progressive will cry for this little boy for he tried to be a good boy.
Allow us to borrow the words of Ntate Don Mattera when he said, “Remember to call at my grave when freedom finally walks the land.” So, we can try to say to you that we shall not tire to fight for the freedom of your people and that Free Quality and Compulsory Education, Economic Freedom shall be released in our lifetime.
Indeed, as the leadership of SASCO you have not only experience our losses but you too succumbed, you are a fifth official of SASCO who we have lost. We want to plead with the God’s and mother nature that noko this is too much on us especially because we are still excepting a lot from these young chaps, the future of this country is the one full here to mourn one of their own.
Farewell Gaba, Mngqosini, Msuthu, Mjobi, Mntuwomlabo!!
Delivered on behalf of the 21st NEC at the 1st National Memorial in Western Cape Province.
Secretary General: SASCO 21st NEC