[Imc-ct] Fw: Indymedia national meeting in Durban?
Molefi Mafereka Ndlovu
molefindlovu at yahoo.com
Mon Mar 7 00:20:37 PST 2011
Greetings comrade Peter; kindly forward your telephone contacts to me; i would
like to chat about the possibility to organise a national IMC session in a few
months, i seek your input and instincts regarding the participation of CT IMC in
this session and how this can be arranged.
Love and solidarity
To: Peter van Heusden <pvh at wfeet.za.net>; ; detidhodhi at hotmail.com;
imc-jhb at lists.indymedia.org
Sent: Thu, October 26, 2006 10:17:02 AM
Subject: Re: Indymedia meeting in Durban?
Greetings everyone, thank you Peter for the mail.i consider myself part of the
indymedia collective and have also taken part in some innitiatives of the group.
I agree with Peter that the shift of meeting venue from CT to DBN could upset
already set arrangements but i would like to qualify why i was sussgesting
Durban without repeating the points Peter mentioned in his mail.
1. The Indymedia innitiative has been running for the past six years since
2000? the most prolific time of its growth can be traced from the efforts of
comrades mainly in JHB and to some extent DBN over the period immidiately after
the formation of APF in JHB and the Ethekwini Social Forum, the height of which
could be argued to have culminated to the excellent work produced during the
World Conference angainst Racism that took place in Durban 2001.Since then a
steady group of media activists have merged media work with activist instigation
at different actions and events involving the emmerging social
movements. The reach of Indymedia had for a long time been limited mainly to
JHB activities albeit many of us were sayin these should spread nationally to
include collectives in CT as well as KZN.
2.The NEW (National Exploritory Workshop- held in JHB 2002) , during
preparations for WWSD 2003-the first meeting of the SMI (JHB) as well as annual
meeting of IMC also held in JHB where comrades debated our role during the
WSSD- are some of the oppotunities where comrades discussed how to set off the
indymedia centers nationally. All of these gatherings have not been able to sort
out key issues about the relationships of the national networks of IMCs, the
breakdown of communication within those groups that considered themselves as a
constituted a collective(JHB) as well as the tricky issue of resourse sharing
and a plan on the raising, managent and control of indymedia equipment etc
3. Whist it is encouraging to hear that comrades in CT have taken the
innitiative to organise for a much needed national discussion, it is non the
less worrying to note that the content and aims of such a meeting have not been
generally opened for discussion.
4. Some key issues that such a meeting may need to discuss, in my humble
opinion, should include what is the orientation of and approach will IMC
national adopt in relation to media work that we do? How do we ensure proper
organisational accountability for decisions relating to disbursement of
resourses and sharing of oppotunitiees so that comrades from affected
communities and organisations can take charge of the project to build the media
capacities of these organisations in a way that does not generate dependence on
a a few self appointed "experts" to tell the stories of the sub-alterns? How do
we support current IMC innitiatives that have been at the stoneface of
independent media without the incentive of international acclaim from the global
left- an example that comes to mind is the Rasa Low power radio that was
started in January 2005? What can we learn from the failures of the past four
years and do we even have the right to ask comrades( those that are among us
still) to account?
5. Finally, one meeting will not resolve all these issues, it is important to
begin somewhere, rather than re-inventing the wheel as if IMC began yesterday. I
am ofthe opinion that the sucess of the national meeting will weighed by how
committed we are at resolving some of these problems instead of side-stepping
them and brushing them off as "fight that we dont want to be sucked into"
I hope this debate continues to inform the comrades planning to host the
national meeting. From my side; there are no favoured venues wherever the
meeting sits would be good as long as we are clear that it should try to draw as
many of the IMC activists spread accross the country many of whom we dont know
of because the got no e-mail or do not socialise with the illuminaries of the
Motho wabatho bako rasa.
Peter van Heusden <pvh at wfeet.za.net> wrote:
As you comrades know, we're trying to organise a national Indymedia
>meeting for December this year. This initiative is the outcome of a
>lengthy discussion in Cape Town which itself grew out of our process of
>self-definition which started back in 2004. We want a national meeting
>because we want to try and understand what Indymedia South Africa is, we
>want a chance to sit down with the other people who have been involved
>in Indymedia in some way or another, and we want to talk about how we
>can go forward - how we can promote the vision of 'be your own
>journalist', etc. And also, we want to talk about the WSF in Nairobi.
>With a view to this, I've been talking to comrades about who can come to
>the meeting. One of our sticky issues has been Durban - we get a lot of
>coverage from Durban, but there is no collective group there, and I am
>aware that there have been considerable tensions between Durban
>activists. So to try and find a way through this, I called Molefi on
>Monday to tell him about our plans for the meeting - and he then pointed
>out that the Social Movements Indaba will have a national meeting in
>Durban from the 3rd to the 9th of December - i.e. over the same period
>that we are planning to meet (ours would be the 8th to the 10th). He
>suggest that we have the Indymedia meeting in Durban as well. We had
>already (in Cape Town) talked about being part of that SMI meeting, so
>there is a certain logic in meeting in Durban. Also, apparently comrades
>from Zim are talking about being at the SMI meeting, so again, why
>Also, if we're there, we can have more people from Durban, and hopefully
>negotiate the political space there a bit more easily. (Current plans
>were for 3 comrades to fly from Durban to Cape Town)
>Obviously we haven't had a chance to discuss this properly in the Cape
>Town collective (which at the moment is the group organising this
>national meeting) - we next meet on the 5th of November. We did discuss
>having the meeting in Durban before - but we decided to do that only if
>we could find 'partners' to work with to help with logistical issues.
>Since at that stage we didn't find any such partners - all the activists
>we knew in Durban seemed frantically busy with other things - we decided
>to use Cape Town as a venue. Since we haven't paid for anything yet, we
>could switch around the arrangement, but our earlier concern would have
>to be addressed - we'd have to know who we were working with in Durbs
>and be sure that they had the capacity to ensure a successful meeting.
>At the same time, I must admit to being personally a bit concerned about
>being sucked into the SMI space. In the past the SMI has been a highly
>contested structure - for instance, from Cape Town there hasn't ever in
>my knowledge been a SMI delegation sent to a meeting without there being
>considerable infighting and bitterness. This year there seems to have
>quite a bit of tension between comrades in Jo'burg and Durban over the
>question of the SMI. Part of the reason for this tension has been
>struggles for hegemony over the space which is labelled "new social
>movements" in South Africa, and its kinda claustrophobic when people are
>going at each other like that. I don't know how things are with the SMI
>at the moment, but I'd hate to see Indymedia get sucked into some fight...
>So there are positives and negatives to this suggestion. As I've said,
>the money isn't even in the bank yet, and most definitely not spent, so
>we can still make new plans. Let's have a (quick) debate on this and try
>and reach some consensus!
>from IMC Cape Town
Center for Civil Society
University of Kwazulu-Natal
Tel: 031 260 2216
alt e-mail:molefi at union.org.za
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