The great leak
It’s been an embarrassing week for the ruling party. From having to publicly charge some of its members with misconduct, to distancing itself more and more form Muammar Gaddafi. And by all accounts it shows no signs of getting better. The whistle blowing website Wikileaks has released a diplomatic cable that is bound to have International relations minister Maite Nkoana-Mashabane making a few calls. Perhaps the bulk of these calls will be directed at our foot soldiers in Washington.
According to the document released by the site a US diplomat compared the ANC with the Apartheid government. The cable was written in relation to the tactics used by the party whilst dealing with an Organization called Abahlali Basemjondolo. The organization is a grass roots movement that fights for the rights of people living in shacks. According to the cable. “The parallels between AbM’s struggles against the ANC and the latter’s fight against the apartheid regime cannot be ignored,”
This is just the latest in a series of headaches that have come to the ANC courtesy of the website. Interestingly on other cables published on the site US diplomats have expressed their amazement at Jacob Zuma’s rise to the presidency. The revelations are a great example on how the US does not seem to have a well thought-out view of South Africa and the Zuma administration. Despite strong ties between the two nations, relations have been strained as a result of South Africa’s growing love affair with China.
However public reaction has been mixed on the leaks. With some quarters saying that the US administration should be looking at race relations in this country as the primary area of concern if they want to have a strong relationship with South Africa. One user on news24 even went as far as to say “Whether we like it or not, South Africa is at the same level as Zim, when it comes to race relations!”
It remains to be seen, whether the US embassy in Pretoria will issue a statement on the document. But certainly the leaks will serve as a crack in future diplomatic exchanges (at least at embassarial level ) between the two countries