South African’s National Liberation Movement

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ANC Statements


The African National Congress is not surprised that ActionSA has banned the use of the word ‘comrades’ within its organisation because it clearly does not understand the real meaning of the term.

This latest populist stunt by the ActionSA leader goes to expose the fascist tendency that seem to be heavily engraved in the politics of ActionSA. The unfortunate danger of populist manoeuvres is their ability to deliberately mislead society and this must be rejected with the contempt it deserves.

‘Comrade’ has been used within progressive movements across the world for many decades to convey a sense of common purpose, shared values and solidarity. Within the ANC and the broader democratic movement, the word continues to hold that meaning.

The attempt by ActionSA to associate ‘comrade’ with “thugs and thieves” does a great disservice to the many real comrades within our movement who have stood up to corruption, patronage and state capture. It is an insult to those committed cadres who, often at great risk to themselves, have exposed wrongdoing in SOEs, municipalities, companies and other institutions. It is an insult to the overwhelming majority of ANC and Alliance members who steadfastly reject all forms of corruption.

As the ANC, we will not surrender the term ‘comrade’ to those within and outside our ranks who dishonour the principles and values of our movement. People who engage in corruption and other criminal acts have no place in our organisation and have no right to call themselves comrades.

As the ANC undertakes the difficult task of renewing and revitalising our movement, we will continue to use the term ‘comrade’ to refer to those cadres who are truly committed to the liberation and advancement of the South African people.


Pule Mabe
National Spokesperson

071 623 4975