Tuesday, December 10, 2013



South Africa, Land of the Rand,
In a less Rainbow-coloured view;
Is where more of the wealth and land,
Are owned by even fewer few. (1)
The many who were promised more,
And set free by the ANC;
Have merely swapped their masters for,
A Rainbow-hued wage-slavery. (2)
The Miners voting with their feet,
At Marikana, who downed tools;
Were branded by the black elite,
As reckless, feckless criminals.

Apartheid Police caused blacks to die, (3)
But every Marikana black; (4)
Was free to choose to be shot by,
His own Police Force in their back.
Corruption rules, crime violence soars,
With unemployment more than rife;
Mandela’s myth is scarred with flaws,
South Africa heads for more strife.
Amongst the few who’ve really gained,
Are leaders of the ANC;
Who’ve robbed their brothers, unrestrained,
By any code of decency.

Mandela, Zuma and their ilk,
A brotherhood of millionaires; (5)
Have freed their brothers up to bilk,
Whilst they increase their own fat shares.
And such wealth will go on to soar,
Because South Africa, it’s true;
Exploits its people even more,     
Than other states and countries do. (1)
The politicians who now mourn,
Are hoping to mask their own taint;
If they paint a new wondrous dawn,
And suck-up to this plaster saint.

(1)  According to the ‘Washington Post’,
South Africa is the world’s most unequal country
and has become more unequal in the last 20 years.
(2) ‘Rainbow Nation’ phrase coined by
Archbishop Desmond Tutu.
(3) Sharpeville 1960, 69 Blacks killed.
Soweto 1976, 176 Black students shot.
(4) Marikana 2012. 34 striking miners shot dead after
Cyril Ramaphosa, ANC Vice-President & director of
mine owner Lonmin branded them as “criminals”.
(5) ANC Millionaires: Nelson Mandela; Jacob Zuma;
Thabo Mbeki; Cyril Ramaphosa; Julius Malema;
Mamphela Ramphele; Mosima Sexwale; etc.

© Richard Layton


Anonymous said...

The ANC emerged from illegality the strongest because they had concentrated not on fighting their oppressors but on eliminating their rivals.

pgb said...

Alan, do you have a source for this poem by Richard Layton? Who is he exactly? I've looked up Google and Wiki and other places but can find nothing. Thanks.

ajohnstone said...

He is a SPGB member who has been recently submitting his poetry to the blog as the policy of the Socialist Standard is not to publish poems.