In the largest gathering of Moslems seen in recent years, thousands attended a rally at the Primrose Mosque at Athlone, near Cape Town, on June 17.
GV Moslems gathered in Primrose Mosque in Athlone, district of Cape Town.
SV Moulana Farid Esack speaking to listening Moslems. (SOT) (6 SHOTS)
TRANSCRIPT: ESACK: (SEQ 2) "Let us not be guilty of sending billions to their deaths, because that is what we are going to do if we vote. This is also a weekend, during the 16th and 17th, when so many hundreds of our youth died in the streets of Soweto. They died in the streets of Soweto because they dared to stand up for justice. They died in the streets of Soweto because they dared to reject (indistinct) education. They died in the streets of Soweto because they dared to say "we don't want to be cheap labour". And the question we must ask is, "who shot them, who killed them". The answer is simple. They were shot by the south African police and the South African defence force. It is that very army, that very defence force, who is going to invite us to join them. In fact, if we vote, they are not going to invite us; they are going to tell us to join them."
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Background: In the largest gathering of Moslems seen in recent years, thousands attended a rally at the Primrose Mosque at Athlone, near Cape Town, on June 17. The rally was to demonstrate moslem rejection of the South African Government's proposed reforms. With the rally's call of 'a vote for the new constitution is a vote for injustice', speakers including chairman Moulava Farid Esack rejected the forthcoming August elections for Coloureds and Indians, saying that they would be joining the people who killed their youth on the streets of Soweto. The polls will be in line with the new government constitution, giving limited rights to both groups. One house each for whites, Indians and coloureds will replace the present all-white chamber under a system designed so that whites will continue to hold the greatest share of power, and cannot be outvoted even by the Indians and Coloureds together. Blacks, who make up an estimated 73 per cent of the population, will continue to be excluded from government. The meeting endorsed the call by the United Democratic Front (UDF) to fight the new constitution, and called upon Moslems to sign the one million signature campaign currently being run by the UDF.