Voice from the Commonwealth
Commentary, World Views and Occasional Rants from a small 'l' libertarian in Massachussetts

"If ye love wealth greater than liberty, the tranquility of servitude better than the animating contest for freedom, go home and leave us in peace. We seek not your council nor your arms. Crouch down and lick the hand that feeds you, and may posterity forget that ye were our countrymen." - Samuel Adams

Thursday, February 20, 2003

The Democratic Alliance is delighted by Winnie Mandela's idea to become a 'human shield' in Iraq.

African National Congress MP Winnie Madikizela-Mandela's premonition came true on Wednesday -- the Democratic Alliance is delighted at the idea she put forward that she go to Iraq to act as a human shield.

Democratic Alliance chief whip Douglas Gibson said his party wished her a safe journey.

"I challenge Mrs Winnie Madikizela-Mandela to live up to her offer to travel to Iraq as a human shield. She has become a stranger to the corridors of Parliament and she will not be missed. Perhaps she should resign and move permanently to Iraq," he said in a statement.

Madikizela-Mandela's office said on Tuesday she believed the DA would like the idea.

"The DA, and elements within the ANC, will however be delighted to know that she is seriously considering a suggestion that she travel to Iraq as a human shield against American attacks," a statement from Madikizela-Mandela's office said.

The office said she, on her own initiative, wanted to travel to Iraq to act as a human shield and wanted other South African women to join her.

Madikizela-Mandela also defended her absenteeism, saying that she found it difficult to "share the chamber with politicians from the apartheid era who have the blood of black children on their hands".

Her fastidiousness met with disdain.

"She can only be referring to the ANC's partners, Marthinus van Schalkwyk and the New National Party. However distasteful she might find them, she is paid to sit in Parliament. But how quickly she has forgotten her conviction for kidnapping in the case of child activist Stompie Sepei," Gibson asked on Wednesday.

"Has she also forgotten the blood on the hands of (Iraqi President) Saddam Hussein, following his campaign of torture and murder against the Kurds in his own country? What about the blood on the hands of (President Robert Mugabe's) regime in Zimbabwe?"

Madikizela-Mandela was convicted in 1991 of kidnapping and being an accessory to assault relating to the death of child activist Stompie Sepei. Her conviction was upheld on appeal, but her six year jail sentence was overturned and a fine imposed.

Madikizela-Mandela said in Tuesday's statement she would return to court next week to defend herself against charges of theft and corruption.

She also intended to proceed with her legal action against Parliament, after it found her guilty of failing to disclose her business interests in the register of members' interests.

"The DA wishes Mrs Madikizela-Mandela a safe journey to Iraq. I can assure her that the DA will be hard at work improving the lives of all South Africans here at home, while she jets off to foreign destinations," Gibson said.

< email | 2/20/2003 03:12:00 PM | link

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