SA must show courage over Putin saga

To withdraw or not to withdraw from the International Criminal Court (ICC) is a topic that should be confronted head on by the ANC top brass and various other interest groups.

The ICC has asked of us as an independent sovereign jurisdiction to arrest Vladimir Putin, the president of Russia.

What business is it of us to honour this writ instructing us to arrest Putin?

But let us put on the table another important point. The war taking place in Russia and Ukraine is an ugly one that should be stopped, and the UN must play a major role to help end hostilities in that part of the world.

Dialogue must begin, and South Africa and other countries of goodwill must help in this venture of finding peace between Russia and Ukraine.

South Africa has historical relation with Russia dating back to the days of the Soviet Union, or the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics.

The big country offered its material and moral support to South Africa during the dark days of apartheid, providing training to liberation movements’ combatants in a quest to defeat the
unjust rule of the National Party.

How, then, does the ICC expect us to arrest a leader whose forebears supported our liberation struggle?

We must muster the courage: we will not arrest Putin.

The ball is in the governing party’s court. It must be bold and act decisively  to do what is morally and politically right.

Whether it cancels its membership in the ICC, as some within the ANC have suggested, it is the call only the governing party must mull over.

With that, we trust Putin will attend a Brics summit to be hosted by South Africa in August, to enrich its deliberation without fear of being arrested.

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