Mothutlung police murders: for a one-day Brits general strike in response

The Workers and Socialist Party (WASP) condemns the police brutality which has claimed another life in the Brits communities of Mothutlung and Damonsville. Sello Seema is the latest in the series of victims to die as a result of this vicious state repression. Two others have been killed since the beginning of the protest. One is wounded and in hospital. 14 people are in police custody. These communities have since last week been protesting against the lack of water, corruption and poor delivery of essential public services in general. The Mothutlung-three, just as the many others which have died at the hands of the police when protesting for service delivery, for better wages, for jobs and education, are the victims of the government’s increasingly authoritarian approach to enforcing the capitalist order in a time of escalating attacks on working class people’s living and working conditions.

WASP calls on all townships and villages of Brits to join the Mothutlung residents in organising a day of united action to demand clean water for all, to protest the police murders, to demand justice for the dead, compensation for their families and arrest of those responsible for their deaths. for decent services and against police brutality. Workers should support the struggle and make this a true local general strike.

We also call on Brits residents to escalate this necessary response to the police killings by issuing a call for a day of joint national action to all communities fighting for delivery of services, trade unions and students.

The cruel police savagery and violent state repression of working class protests in communities, workplaces and campuses reflect the increasingly desperate position of the ANC-ruled capitalist state which has become so highly discredited it can no longer keep the restless masses of the working class people in cage of mere lies and false promises. In impotent despair at the absence of any credible prospects of recovery in the worsening economic outlook or the health of the state fiscus, which rule out its capacity to meet even the most modest demands of working class and poor people, government has become convinced that nothing less than an iron fist can quell the growing reawakening of mass movements.

Looking ahead, we can expect that the ANC, as it is confronted with the worst election results since 1994 and a working class that is increasingly breaking the political bonds that tied it to its tripartite alliance with Cosatu and SACP – the historical process that erupted first in the mines and is now accelerated by the NUMSA split and the search for class independence and a political alternative –  will escalate violent repression to prop up is politically discredited, corrupt and inept pro-capitalist government.

Working and poor people of this country have no other choice but to organise, unite and struggle against poor delivery of essential public services like water, sanitation and electricity, for decent jobs and free education for all.

We are calling for an independent community- and trade union-led enquiry into the killings as there is really nothing ‘independent’ about the Independent Complaints Directorate which has consistently failed to expose and lead investigation for a successful prosecution of the ‘official offenders’ against the poor. Andries Tatane case in Ficksburg is a well-known example of this failure.