Daily Maverick (Johannesburg)

5 May 2014

South Africa: Siyanqoba - the Day the ANC Went to Soweto, but Could Not Find Its Way Home

analysis

The ANC is an extraordinary organisation. It is well aware of this, which is why it does what it does, in the way it does. The closing "Siyanqoba" rally was a showcase of the strength and power of the ANC in Soweto, where the heart of South Africa beats. It was all there, the people power, the colours, the songs of struggle. And yet, it was not the same ANC. The party is on its way to a fifth term in power and it remains the biggest political force in the country. Somewhere between the ANC of yesterday and the ANC of tomorrow is the ANC that wants your vote on Wednesday.

Two days after his release from prison, Nelson Mandela addressed thousands of people at Soweto's Soccer City stadium. "Today, my return to Soweto fills my heart with joy," he told the crowd.

Soweto is always the final destination on the ANC's election campaign trails.

The sprawling township was the heart and home of the liberation struggle. The 1976 Soweto Uprising possibly changed the course of history of the country. The ANC's political leaders were brought to Soweto when they returned from prison and exile.

An...

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