Tactics of the Apartheid State Police still continues

National Intelligency Agency bugging APF comrades

Friday 22 September 2006

The APF condemns the persecution of its members

The Anti-Privatisation Forum (APF) is leading the current struggles in the Gauteng townships, namely Thembelihle, Orange Farm and the Vaal region. These are legitimate struggles for access to water, housing, land and electricity. The provision of social services including the right to housing is entrenched in the constitution of the country. All what these communities have been demanding is the implementation of the promises of the constitution and the policies of ANC government.

These vibrant struggles have attracted the attention of the police and the state security forces. The APF wants to bring it to the attention of the South African and international public that the security forces have been using dirty tricks aimed at undermining the struggles of the affected communities.

On 14 September 2006, one of our comrades, a leading member of the APF in Thembelihle in the south of Johannesburg, was approached by a person who identified himself as a member of the National Intelligence Agency (NIA). This person wanted our comrade to spy on the APF. Our comrade refused to do that as it goes against the principles of our organisation and general struggle of the working class.

On 13 September 2006, another member of the APF Vaal region was approached by three people who introduced themselves as officials of the NIA. They confiscated his cellphone because they felt that he was using it as a tool for organising protests in the Vaal. This was clearly an illegal and abusive behaviour.

The state and its various repressive arms have used a number of dirty tactics to undermine the APF and struggles of working class communities. For example, in 2002 during one of peaceful protests against the United Nation’s World Summit for Sustainable Development (WSSD) the police attacked our members. Subsequent to that a number of comrades were asked by the authorities to become spies but they refused to betray the legitimate struggle of working class communities. Despite that the forces of secrecy have not stopped undermining our organisation.

The intelligence officers have asked our comrades not to report these matters to the organisation, the APF. We would like to state it categorically that should anything happen to our members in the Thembelihle and the Vaal the intelligence officers will be held legally responsible.

The dirty tricks and secrecy will not destroy the struggle of the working class. We are calling upon all those who are orchestrating these deeds to stop because they are undermining our fundamental right to organise and freedom of association and expression.

Despite all these attacks by the intelligence, our struggles will continue. On 20 September 2006, the APF will be leading a march for housing and land in Johannesburg. We call upon all communities in Gauteng to join our peaceful protest.

For more information, please contact Mondli (084 3773 003) and Silumko (072 173 7268) or 011 339 4121

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