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Hamba kahle comrade Bobo Makhoba (1975-2016)

category southern africa | history of anarchism | feature author Monday October 03, 2016 17:07author by Zabalaza Anarchist Communist Front - ZACFauthor email zacf at riseup dot net Report this post to the editors

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C’de Bobo at the “Reclaim June 16” demonstration in Soweto, 2009

The ZACF is saddened to learn of the passing away of comrade Bobo Makhoba in Soweto this Thursday 29 September, at the age of 41, after a long illness. He is survived by his son, to whom we extend our deepest sympathies and condolences – as we do to the rest of his family, friends and comrades.

Bobo was a founding member of the ZACF as well as one of the original guerilla electricians for the Soweto Electricity Crisis Committee’s Operation Khanyisa campaign, which illegally reconnected thousands of households’ electricity after it was cut off for non-payment – forcing Eskom, the state electricity utility, to scrap arrears for thousands of Sowetans.

Born in KwaNongoma in KwaZulu Natal, Bobo first became involved in politics and struggle in high school, where he joined the Pan African Students Organisation.

He became involved in social movements and community struggles when he joined the SECC, soon after it was established in 2000, and later served as the organisation’s organiser and then co-ordinator.

He first came into contact with anarchism in 2002 during the mobilisations around the UN’s World Summit on Sustainable Development and soon thereafter established the Shesha Action Group (SAG). Based in Dlamini, Soweto – where Bobo lived – the SAG ran a study group and community food garden, as well as some of its members being active in the SECC and social movements, and was one of the founding collectives of the ZACF in 2003.

The SAG was unfortunately not very long-lived, its members dispersed and Bobo later moved toward Marxism and joined a small Trotskyite organisation but we maintained mutual respect and comradely relations. Although we saw less of him in later years we were always happy to run into him at demonstrations, where he would still ask to fly our red and black flags, or at Careers Centre in Soweto, where the SECC has its office.

Comrade Bobo Makhoba will be remembered as a dedicated and struggle-hardened working class militant who believed in direct action and grassroots organisation and made important contributions both to the ZACF, notably its model of township organising adopted in the early 2000s, and the struggle of the black working class in South Africa.

We find consolation in the belief that Bobo would not have wanted us to mourn his death, but rather for us to strengthen our resolve in the struggle of the exploited and oppressed majority against capitalism.

For our fallen comrades not a moment of silence – but a lifetime of struggle!
Long live the fighting spirit of c’de Bobo, long live!

Related Link: http://zabalaza.net

Bobo Makhoba at the Founding Congress of the ZACF, Johannesburg, 1 May 2003
Bobo Makhoba at the Founding Congress of the ZACF, Johannesburg, 1 May 2003

author by mitch - WSA, personal capacitypublication date Sun Oct 02, 2016 02:12Report this post to the editors

Sorry to read about the loss of one of your founding member's and comrade.

Clinched fist raised.

Ngiyabonga. Amandla!

author by Dmitri - MACG - Anarkismopublication date Sun Oct 02, 2016 15:55author email ngnm55 at gmail dot comReport this post to the editors

Dear comrades,

We express our sympathy and condolences to ZACF and our comrade's loved ones.

Keep the struggle on!

MACG

author by Alternativa Libertaria/FdCA - Ufficio Relazioni Internazionalipublication date Mon Oct 03, 2016 04:12Report this post to the editors

Hamba kahle (arrivederci) compagno Bobo Makhoba (1975-2016)

Con tristezza abbiamo appreso della dipartita del compagno Bobo Makhoba di Soweto lo scorso giovedì 29 settembre, all'età di 41 anni, dopo una lunga malattia. Lascia suo figlio, a cui esprimiamo la nostra più forte vicinanza e le nostre condoglianze, unitamente al resto della famiglia, agli amici ed ai compagni.

Bobo è stato uno dei fondatori della ZACF ma anche uno degli originari elettricisti guerriglieri per la campagna Operation Khanyisa del Comitato di Crisi per l'elettricità di Soweto, che riallacciava illegalmente la corrente elettrica nelle migliaia di case in cui veniva tagliata per morosità– costringendo Eskom, l'azienda di stato per l'energia elettrica, a condonare gli arretrati a migliaia di abitanti di Soweto.
Nato a KwaNongoma nel KwaZulu Natal, Bobo cominciò a fare politica ed a lottare già alle scuole superiori, dove entrò nella Pan African Students Organisation.

Partecipava ai movimenti sociali ed alle lotte nel territorio quando aderì al SECC [Soweto Electricity Crisis Committee], appena fondato nel 2000, dove poi divenne responsabile dell'organizzazione e quindi coordinatore.

Si avvicinò all'anarchismo nel 2002 durante le mobilitazioni contro il vertice delle Nazioni Unite sullo sviluppo sostenibile e fondò subito il Shesha Action Group (SAG). A Dlamini, a Soweto – dove Bobo viveva – il SAG gestiva un gruppo di studio ed un orto di quartiere, e siccome lui come alcuni altri era attivo nel SECC e nei movimenti sociali, il SAG fu uno dei collettivi che fondarono la ZACF nel 2003.

Purtroppo il SAG non ebbe vita lunga, i suoi attivisti si sparpagliarono e Bobo si avvicinò al marxismo ed aderì ad una piccola organizzazione trotzkysta, ma abbiamo sempre avuto rispetto reciproco e buone relazioni. Anche se ci si vedeva poco negli ultimi anni, eravamo sempre felici di stare con lui nelle manifestazioni, dove ci chiedeva la bandiera rossa&nera da sventolare, oppure al Careers Centre a Soweto, dove c'è la sede del SECC.

Il compagno Bobo Makhoba sarà ricordato come un tenace militante della classe lavoratrice che credeva nell'azione diretta e nell'organizzazione di base, dando un notevole contributo sia alla ZACF, soprattutto per il modello di organizzazione nei quartieri popolari adottato nei primi anni 2000, sia alle lotte della classe lavoratrice nera in Sud Africa.

E' di nostra consolazione sapere che Bobo non avrebbe voluto che piangessimo la sua morte, bensì che intensificassimo i nostri sforzi nella lotta degli sfruttati e della maggioranza oppressa contro il capitalismo.
Per i nostri compagni morti non un minuto di silenzio – ma una vita vissuta nella lotta!
Lunga vita allo spirito indomito del compagno Bobo, lunga vita!

Link esterno: http://zabalaza.net
(traduzione a cura di AL/fdca-Ufficio Relazioni Internazionali)

 
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