The UJ APK branch of the Solomon Mahlangu Freedom College (SOMAFCO) delivered a memorandum to the South African National Aids Council (SANAC) in Pretoria today, which called for the removal of its chairperson Cyril Ramaphosa.
This follows the leak of damning emails that revealed Ramaphosa’s alleged extra-marital affairs involving about eight young women. During a march to SANAC, protesting members of UJ’s Solomon Mahlangu Freedom College called for the removal of the Deputy President, whom they refer to as a “sugar daddy”.
“We want those people who are old enough to be our fathers . . . not to fund our sisters for sexual favours,” said Ratele Refiloe, an ANC Youth League convener.
“If SANAC is not going to remove Cyril as a chairperson, we will come back, and it won’t be like today,” Refiloe added.
The march served as a strong message against the noticeably thriving trend of “blessers”. These are old men who prey on vulnerable young women for sexual exploitation. Blessers operate by luring young women with large sums of money and other expensive gifts.
“We are saying the blessers have finished our sisters, cousins and our girlfriends in universities. This institution (SANAC) that is supposed to spread [the] message about HIV/AIDS is busy protecting a man who is spreading AIDS,” said Lindokuhle Xulu, one of the leaders of the march.
The memorandum contained the following list of demands for SANAC:
- To remove Cyril Ramaphosa as a chairperson of the Council within 15 days.
- Establish programmes in universities to educate students about the consequences of getting involved with blessers.
- Support free education as “girls become vulnerable because of desperation.”
- Make SANAC more visible and known to South Africans, especially to sexually active people because “if the institution is less popular than HIV/AIDS, it won’t be able to curb the disease.”
Dr Constance Kganakga, the Executive Manager of SANAC, received the memorandum and signed two copies confirming the receipt. Kganakga said SANAC could not comment about the content of the memorandum handed over to them at this point.