The South African Youth Council has lambasted members of the ANC Youth League who disrupted the commemorations of June 16 in Port Elizabeth.
The league’s members disrupted Minister in the Presidency Collins Chabane, singing and shouting for the reinstatement of expelled league president Julius Malema, as Chabane delivered the keynote speech.
Youth council president Thulani Tshefuta said the disruptions had nothing to do with the advancement of the youth development agenda but had “everything to do with disgruntled members of a particular youth organisation using the event for petty politicking”.
“We are disappointed by the fact that most young people have been carefully chosen from a particular group within youth organisations while excluding the general populace of the youth. It is indeed distasteful to use a government event to fight party political battles at the backdrop of youth unemployment and other socioeconomic circumstances facing young people,” Tshefuta said.
He said events of this nature in future should unite young people across the political divide, religion and race in order to constructively tackle the issues they are faced with.
“We believe no individual or a clique has monopoly on knowledge or solutions to problems facing us as the youth of today.”
Tshefuta called on the government to investigate the events at Wolfson Stadium.
“We see the actions of those who disrupted the proceedings of the national Youth Day as selfish as they sought to deprive decent young people who attended the event an opportunity of getting the message that was delivered by Minister Collins Chabane,” said Tshefuta.
The ANCYL’s spokesperson, Nkosinathi Nomatiti, told The New Age last week the people who disrupted the June 16 event wanted to raise their anger with the government.