When mentioning or counting struggle heroes we always mention the older generation, people who fought against apartheid. Little do we know that the struggles are not yet over, instead they have increased? The likes of Nelson Mandela may have defeated racial segregation but they have not brought economic freedom to our black society. It is now left up to brave young men and women to make sure they realize that.
John Senona is a 28 year old man from Mamelodi. He is a Black Consciousness activist driven to liberate black men. Although john is like any other young person, has a job and family like everyone but his passion is still stuck with the movement. His passion for liberation movement started in the year 2012, while engaging in discussions with his peers about the things that South Africa has went through as a nation. He says he came to a realization that actually black people are still oppressed economically and that most of us still see white people as our superiors.
John was inspired by Leo Mohammad, in a clip which he accidentally heard, where the man was talking about a black man. He says he instantly fell in love with the man and what he had to offer, thus followed him and got a hold of all his materials from then. He then started studying African history books, reading about some of the leadership we’ve had in our African countries. After four years of doing his own personal research on African history he started to participate actively.
Some of the groups John has aligned himself with are “African Pride was Stolen (APS)” which educates black people about their origins. He is also in “The Black Renaissance” and its aim is to unite black people, also in the “Black Consciousness Movement”. The black consciousness movement is known to have been founded by one of the most inspirational black people to ever impact our country and the world, Steve Biko.
Just like any other war, at some point you must push the enemy to his limit. John was part of the team that were leading and pushing the #FeesMustFall movement. Unfortunately his name ended up on the list of those who must be persecuted for mobilizing the students in the movement. This almost sounds like a story of another struggle hero from the past.
John says that his aim is to study philosophy, because he has so much love for history and want to actually work in preserving our history. He also wishes that more young people, especially in Tshwane can get actively involved in such movements and our community media work towards giving a platform to such organizations. John also recognizes that alone he cannot win the struggle but with more people the battle can be won.
John Senona is a perfect ambassador for this generation. It shows that it is not a lost generation as often described. This generation does not only represent a life of promiscuity, drugs, crime and HIV/AIDS. This society still has people who are willing to fight for change, for a good course and for a greater tomorrow.
By: ITUMELENG NKOSI