vp joice-mujuru 05-01-12ed.jpgActing President, Amai Joice Mujuru will leave for South Africa this Friday to represent the Head of State and Government and Commander-in-Chief of the Zimbabwe Defence Forces, President Robert Mugabe at the centenary celebrations of the African National Congress (ANC).

In a statement, the Permanant Secretary in the  Ministry of Media, Information and Publicity, Cde George Charamba said President Mugabe, who started his annual leave recently, is unable to personally attend these important celebrations scheduled for Saturday in Bloemfontein, meaning that Cde Mujuru will attend on his behalf.

Meanwhile, the Office of the Chief Secretary to the President and Cabinet has announced the appointment of Honourable John Landa Nkomo as the Acting President from Friday the 6th of January, 2012, until the end of the month when President Mugabe is expected to resume his official duties.

 

 

The centenary celebrations mark the formation of the continent’s oldest revolutionary party, ANC, whose birth was on the 8th January 1912 when Reverend John Dube, Pixley Seme, Alfred Mangena, Richard Msimang and George Montsioa organised an inaugural conference to launch the South African Native National Congress (SANNC) in Bloemfontein.

 

Tpresidents mugabe and zuma.jpghe main celebration of the formation and tribute to its founding fathers will take place on 8th January 2012 in Mangaung.

 

46 heads of state as well as royalty and luminaries will attend the ANC’s centenary celebrations, which begin with a golf tournament in Bloemfontein on Friday.

 

The new movement was aimed at increasing the rights of the blacks in apartheid South Africa.

 

By 1919, the SANNC was leading a campaign against passes but then became dormant in the mid-1920s.

 

In 1923, the organisation became African National Congress and in 1929 the ANC supported a militant mineworkers’ strike.

 

The ANC responded militarily to attacks on the rights of black South Africans, as well as calling for strikes, boycotts, and defiance.

 

This led to a later Defiance Campaign in the 1950s, a mass movement of resistance to apartheid. The apartheid government tried to stop the ANC by banning party leaders and enacting new laws to stop the ANC. However, these measures ultimately proved to be ineffective.

 

In the mid 60s the ANC began to branch out to countries within the region fostering the message of resistance against the colonial rule. In 1967, ANC’s military wing ‘Umkonto we Sizwe’ and ZAPU’s ZIPRA joined forces to infiltrate trained cadres into South Africa, most notably the operation that led to what has become known as the ‘Wankie Campaign’.

 

This became the first series of contacts between a combined MK/ZIPRA unit armed with modern weapons, and the joint security forces of Rhodesia and South Africa.

 

In early 1968, another joint MK/ZIPRA unit was deployed, giving rise to the Sipolilo Campaign, the second round of armed confrontation with South African and Rhodesian forces.

 

To date, the ANC and Zanu PF have maintained cordial relations aimed at maintaining peace and stability in these nations and deem these parties as forces of national liberation in the post colonial era.

 

As the ANC marks its centenary birthday, it remains steadfast in promoting black empowerment through various programs such as the Black Economic Empowerment (BEE) adopted by the South African government.

 

Its sister party in Zimbabwe, Zanu PF, has also adopted an Indigenisation and Empowerment Act to empower previously marginalised indigenous black and get them to participate in and own the means of production and the economy.

 

The ANC also remains loyal to its original aim as the SANCC which include promoting social, educational and political upliftment of the black people and addressing the just grievances of the black people as well as maintaining democratic socialism, social democracy and left wing populism.

 

The centenary stands as a milestone achievement of the ANC as a liberation movement. It seeks to celebrate the party’s proud traditions, values and principles that earned it an indelible place in the hearts, psyche and soul of both South Africans and the people of the world.

 

It reflects the ANC in all its facets and dimensions, for example, mass mobilisation, the underground; armed struggle and international solidarity.