Tribute to Tower Ben Khoapa

by May 10, 2024Obituary

Prof Bennie Albert Khoapa played a key role in the development of the Black Consciousness Movement (BCM) in South Africa.

On Sunday, May 5, we lost a champion of justice and equality with the passing of Ben Khoapa, a renowned Black Consciousness activist. Through his tireless efforts and unwavering dedication, Ben left an indelible mark on the lives of countless individuals and communities.

As a prominent figure in the Black Consciousness movement, Cde Ben fought fearlessly against systemic oppression and discrimination, inspiring generations to embrace their identity and demand their rightful place in society. His unwavering commitment to the cause and his unshakeable belief in the power of the black spirit continue to inspire the younger generation and us all.

Ben’s legacy extends far beyond his activism. He was a mentor, a teacher, and a friend to many, offering guidance and support to those who needed it most. His warmth, empathy, and generosity of spirit created a sense of belonging and connection among those who knew him.

As we mourn the loss of this extraordinary individual, we also celebrate his life and the profound impact he had on our world. Ben Khoapa may be gone, but his spirit and legacy will continue to inspire and motivate us to strive for a more just and open society where one’s colour, sex, creed and origin shall not be a point of reference.

Comrade Khoapa’s darkness at the break of noon leaves behind post-colonial Africa in its contemporary appearance, shaped by the retreat from revolution and the Proletariat struggle, with the reconfiguration of Global capitalist relations and structure. Our acknowledgement and tribute to his contributions that have shaped our past and present experiences can only be in the concrete through enhanced revolutionary activities and the building of the BCMU. We have to commit ourselves to the practical program and strategies towards scientific Socialism.

There is no predetermined path, but we can look to the past, the present and to the future in order to see possible directions that our struggle can take. We always have to bear in mind that our struggle is warm-blooded, and it will end where its gestation began: in the fertile soil of the anti-racist class struggle.

We know where we are going because it is the only destination for the total emancipation of the Azanian working and popular classes and underclasses. We know that the past is no longer and the future is not yet, for we are carried high by the shoulders of these giants and martyrs of our struggle “so that we can see more than they and see things at a greater distance not by virtue of any sharpness of sight on our part or any physical distinction, but because we are carried high and raised by their giant size”.

As cadres of the BCMU and the BCMU as a collective Movement, we draw our origins from all their experiences and experiences of the Proletariat, from the victories and defeats, from the conquests, as well as from the retreats that the workers, underclasses, and popular forces have experienced in the course of their class history.

We urge all our martyrs and fallen heroes to rise in Power with Us as the project of socialist revolution as the hitherto unattainable, distant ultimate goal has begun to pose new problems, trends of thought and tendencies.

Rest in Power, Cde Ben Khoapa!

Zolani Mabusela is a spokesperson for the Black Consciousness Movement United (BCMU)  

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