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By Faizel Patel

Senior Digital Journalist


WATCH: Gift of the Givers warns ANC not to partner with parties opposed to Gaza support

Sooliman also appealed to President Cyril Ramaphosa to re-appoint Naledi Pandor as International Relations Minister.


With coalition talks underway between the African National Congress (ANC) and other political parties, Gift of the Givers founder Dr Imtiaz Sooliman has cautioned the ANC against forming a government with parties that do not support Palestine or share the same position on the war in Gaza.

Sooliman was speaking at dialogue hosted by the Archbishop Tutu Trust and the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation aimed at furthering support for the Palestinian cause in Cape Town on Wednesday.

The once dominant ANC lost 17% of its 2019 vote share, losing 71 seats in parliament after the elections.

Watch Dr Imtiaz Sooliman urging the ANC to choose coalition parties who support Palestine

It will now need to make a deal with other parties to form a coalition government for the first time since the end of apartheid in 1994.

Warning to ANC

However, Sooliman warned the ANC against forming coalitions with parties not aligned with the Palestinian cause.

“This one country that couldn’t keep the lights on, can’t deliver water, has all kinds of problems has stood up from the whole world in terms of human rights and humanitarian justice.

“So, a direct call to the ANC, be very careful about what coalitions, what partnerships you make because we cannot stop this process. There’s been no government, no institution more brave than what South Africa has done,” Sooliman said.

ALSO READ: [WATCH] South Africa pledges R50 million in humanitarian aid to Gaza

Reappointing Naledi Pandor

Sooliman also appealed to President Cyril Ramaphosa to re-appoint Naledi Pandor as one his two choices from outside of the elected parliament to continue in her role as International Relations Minister.

In March during a town hall meeting with Lenasia residents to discuss South Africa’s International Court of Justice (ICJ) case against Israel, Pandor said the ANC would continue with the case against Israel even if the ANC did not get a majority.

“If you as the people of South Africa do something very odd, like not ensuring the ANC has a majority, we as the ANC we are going to pursue the case, but the government won’t,” Pandor warned.

SA soldiers in IDF

Late former president Nelson Mandela’s grandson Mandla Mandela, during the dialogue, called on government to cut trade ties with Israel, and to take action against South Africans fighting in the Israeli Defence Force (IDF).

“We have through the Ministry of Defence the Foreign Military Assistance Act that prohibits any South African from picking up arms internationally. We have had the honourable minister Naledi Pandor speaking on platforms that these South Africans that are aiding the IDF, on their return to South Africa will be arrested.

“They are singing our national anthem while participating in genocide, ethnic cleansing, war crimes and crime against humanity. Yet, right here in Cape Town, in Sea Point, we have these same Zionist that have been butchering and killing Palestinians,” Mandela said.

Zionist Federation condemns SA

Earlier this week, the South African Zionist Federation (SAZF) condemned what it called the “inflammatory and grossly biased statement” issued by the outgoing South African government regarding the hostage rescue operation carried out by the IDF in Nuseirat in central Gaza.

Government condemned the Israeli airstrike on the Nuseirat refugee camp in the Gaza Strip that killed dozens of displaced people who were sheltering there.

The Israeli strike in Gaza killed scores of people and left many more injured when it struck the facility without any prior warning.

Nuseirat attack

The Department of International Relations and Cooperation (Dirco) said Israel’s raid on the Nuseirat refugee camp on innocent civilians in a designated safe zone, “is one of the single worst massacres committed by the Israeli occupation forces in Gaza.”

“We are appalled that these attacks are being praised by some, for saving four Israeli hostages, while killing and severely injuring hundreds of innocent Palestinian civilians.

“While families mourn the loss of life, Israeli Defence Minister Yoav Gallant jubilantly termed the operation ‘daring in nature, planned brilliantly, and executed in an extraordinary fashion’. This once again raises the question of whether some believe that Palestinian lives matter,” Dirco said.

SA pledge to Gaza

Meanwhile, Justice and Constitutional Development Minister Ronald Lamola said South Africa has pledged R50 million in humanitarian relief aid to alleviate the dire situation in the Gaza Strip.

Lamola lead a South African delegation to a high level conference titled the “Call for Action: Urgent Humanitarian Response to Gaza”  on Tuesday.

Lamola said the money will be channelled through the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), a Palestinian refugee relief agency.

ALSO READ: WATCH: South Africa condemns Israeli attack on Rafah camp

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