I reported earlier how I came away troubled from a meeting I had attended two weeks back called by the Swellendam executive mayor, Councillor Nicholas Myburgh, to address a host of community-related issues.
Flowing from that meeting was a protest action this past Sunday 7 May 2017, which ended in the symbolic burning of a banner depicting Swellendam Municipality.
As has repeatedly been demonstrated, Suurbraak is a microcosm of the whole. This being so, I believe this current protest enables us to understand why this country is imperilled. I therefore urge you to read my earlier post (Canaries in the Suurbraak coalmine) as background to this report.
In order for this all to make sense I shall:
- briefly describing Suurbraak, its history and its people
- provide some background to some of the issues that surfaced during the protest
- provide a synopsis, from memory, of what happened during the protest
- try to pull together all the threads and show, as I see it, why this process holds significance for Suurbraak and South Africa as a whole
Continue reading Reasons for, report on, and thoughts about the Suurbraak protest
I came away troubled from a meeting I attended on Monday 24 April 2017 in the Suurbraak community hall called by the Swellendam executive mayor, councillor Nicholas Myburgh, to address a host of community-related issues.
After prayers the meeting immediately turned ugly when Myburgh laid down the rules: only three questions allowed for each point on the agenda, the meeting would end promptly by 21:00, if we didn’t abide by these rules he would pack up and drive off.
There was an immediate outcry slamming Myburgh’s attitude. Somewhat chastened, Myburgh adopted a more conciliatory approach although his persona slipped at times within a context where it appeared that there was at least one individual present whose goal seemed to be to stoke emotions.
The dark mood of the meeting constellated around five issues: heritage, services, oor die rivier (over the river), housing and fluisteringe (whisperings)
There were repeated references to Suurbraak’s heritage. For instance, the aforementioned gentleman complained about hideous Eskom electricity poles which he believed detracted from the character of Suurbraak. Heritage or precedent underpinned many of the other issues raised, as in: this is the way it has been for generations why these incursions, fences and/or rules? Continue reading Canaries in the Suurbraak coalmine