Kenyan intellectual Patrick Lumumba said without land there would be no peace in Africa.
Lumumba was delivering the Nelson Mandela memorial lecture at Walter Sisulu University Mthatha campus on Tuesday night.
“Nelson Mandela would have reminded us that the last colonial question is land. If you don’t tackle the issue of land‚ you shall never know peace‚” Lumumba said‚ to loud applause from the crowd that had packed the auditorium.
The lecture was also attended by‚ among others‚ Bhisho legislature deputy speaker Mlibo Qoboshiyane‚ rural development and agrarian reform MEC Xolile Nqatha and ANC provincial secretary Lulama Ngcukaitobi.
The land question has become a hot potato in South Africa following the 2017 ANC December conference in Nasrec‚ which adopted the policy of land expropriation without compensation.
Lumumba continued reminiscing that if Mandela was among the people celebrating the centenary he would have asked numerous important questions‚ including how a continent like Africa‚ rich in mineral resources‚ remains poor today.
“He would have asked: how is it that our continent that is so endowed produces what it does not consume and consumes what it does not produce? He would have asked whether the continent of Africa is really liberated. Nelson Mandela would have reminded us that we Africans have suffered more‚” Lumumba said.
He said the time had come for Africa to cleanse itself and deal with corruption as Mandela would have liked.
“The time has come. We must do away with dealers and have leaders‚ do away with cheaters and have teachers instead. He would have posed the question that: how is it that corruption is still a scourge in our continent? Madiba would have told us to unite‚” he said.