Numsa Western Cape performs a play on Children’s Day

2013 brought along relentless rain, hail and thunder, but nothing could dampen the spirit of the very attentive audience as the Western Cape cultural group took to the stage to perform their very own version of the kiddies’ story Little Red Riding Hood.

Set on the notorious Cape Flats it portrays the everyday danger and violence. Also in line with National Children’s Week it highlighted the importance of safety awareness among kids when traveling alone or alone at home.

Throughout the story one could hear giggles and laughter and even a scolding for the Big Bad Wolf played by Walter Mrabalala; the Grandma, played by Fowziah Thomas; and Little Red Riding Hood, played by Sylvia Mlonyeni. The narration was by Nazeema Samuels.

The emergency number 10111 was the magic number to remember. During the interactive session it was evident that apart from the good food and fun that the kids had, they also learned some valuable information. To never:
• Walk alone;

• Speak to strangers;

• Accept anything from a stranger;

• Get into strangers’ cars; or

• Divulge personal information, such as your name and address, to strangers.

Mujaahid Samuels, a 14-year-old learner at Heideveld High School on the Cape Flats, had this to say: “I attended the activity with my aunt Nazeema Samuels, who is a Numsa local office-bearer. I was excited as it was specifically for children and the first of its kind I had attended.

From the time I entered the boardroom where the activity took place due to the rain, I felt welcomed and at home. There was a comradely spirit, as the children were treated like VIP guests.

“However as a 14-year-old, I think there was not adequate entertainment for the bigger kids but I enjoyed watching and assisting the little ones. I liked the play Little Red Riding Hood a lot. Not because my aunt wrote and directed it, but because it was funny yet very informative.

I learned a lot, especially the emergency number 10111, that all kids should know when in danger and the safety measures to be taken when travelling alone or doing errands. I could identify with the story as it highlighted from the violent lifestyle that occurs every day on the Cape Flats, where I stay. Well done, Numsa Western Cape, for a super Children’s Day!”

Cape flats untamed
By Nazeema Samuels
Far beyond the city lights
She lay vast
Forgotten, derailed
Totally gone astray
Manenberg, Bonteheuwel and Mitchells Plain
Only but three of the worst crime breeding spots
From the highest degree
She never sleeps
Nor does she slumber
She’s the infamous playground
Of the notoriously known groups
Bound together by a prison number
Cape Flats Untamed
Daily battles
Deadly games
Not for the faint-hearted
What a crying shame!

When will the struggle end?
We say we are free, but are we really free?
When our people still live under unbearable conditions?
We say this is our land, is it still our land?
When a huge potions of the land belong to foreign owners.
When will the struggle end?
Thousands, millions of our people are still cramped in squatter camps.
They are there still seeking crumbs that the capitalists throw at them after hard labour and abuse.
While a few individuals own uncountable hectares of land;
Profiting directly from the sweat and blood of the poor;
When will the struggle end?
100 years of the Native Land Act
Can we really boldly say this is our land?
When the riches of our soil are foreign-owned?
When the capitalists continue to profit hugely through legalised slavery.
When the majority of the population still survive under excruciating conditions;
When will the struggle end?

They say:
“Fire them easily”
“Let them pay to get to work daily”
“Give them crumbs not seeds”
“Take their rights”
“Pay them less and have more slaves”

Mzwakhe Mbuli says
“Let me speak for my tongue is not tied”

And I say
Indeed they have reduced the Freedom charter to just a document
Not caring about the ideology and content of the Freedom Charter
The voice of the people suppressed by Neo-Liberal Policies
The cry of the nation is silenced as greed and hunger for power owns the hearts of the Capitalists
When will the struggle end?

Marx says.
“Let the ruling classes tremble at a communist revolution. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. Workingmen of all countries, unite!”
Aluta continua
By Mthokozisi Mgijima

Tigers that never shed tears
By Donald Mokgale
Welcome to Manse where rights have become wrong and wrong has replaced the traditional ethos that “umuntu umuntu ngabantu – a person is a person through others”. Now others watch and walk on by while modern men serve knuckle sandwiches to their victims.

Our Christmas presents were absent parents who never told us they loved us, so we looked for love from others, pretentious lovers who loved playing house and emulating our fathers and mothers. We were puffed up by societal pressures to collect praise from our peers; we were carnivores who see women as pieces of meat to meet their primitive needs.

We all feel the need to belong, right? So like gluttons we all consume the media, which tell us that that women must be sexy and cosmopolitan, while men must be tigers that never shed tears, never experience fear or emotions. So they are given “black labels” about what manhood is – being aggressive and hard; even descending from the mountain of circumcision forces one to have sex to test if the “machine” works. “Mshini wam mshini wam, awulethu mshini wam awulethu shini wam.”

Boys are taught to be men by single mothers who are too shy to speak about erections and wet dreams, so they look around for role models and see iskhothane burning his ambition, a president’s rape victim, Shrian Divani’s cheque book, a blade runner’s corpse and Richard Mdluli’s footprints … and follow the footsteps publicised by the ubiquitous media.

Ours is a damaged society, where “social entrepreneurs” are killed by rights and social norms. In the past, raising children was everybody’s business, but now people’s minds are liquidated, and men resolve their childhood aggression and identity issues using their “cocks”… while ironically being too “chicken” to speak up.

They try to fill the void in their souls by taking someone else’s power; they make excuses for the excuses of men they have become.

They complain about women’s provocative clothing, when traditional attire exposed more skin! See, all men are rapists! Including all those who are brilliant at watching other men rape and walk on by, yet expect their mothers and sisters to be safe. All men are rapists! So before you all walk on by –. wipe the blood from your hands.