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Fatima Hassan responds to the Minister of Health's spokesperson's racist nonsense about TAC in the Mail & Guardian

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Sibani Nmngadi, the Minister of Health's spin-doctor has called Mark Heywood and myself from the ALP the 'rational and reasonable' lot in the TAC. I am offended. I have a reputation to defend and dammit I will. I have always prided my self on being anything but rational and reasonable. Ask my parents. And anyone who works with me knows that I am a foolish hotheaded lawyer who thrives on being unreasonable, especially in court. Mostly I have to be reigned in. Maybe it is my diet - too much chili - which always makes me too hot headed. Disciplined by the party - I mean employer - once to often for being too angry and too extreme I have been even warned by the party forces - I mean my employer - to minimize the influence of SA's real extreme lefties living in the leafy suburbs of JHB - so much so that I was forced to leave JHB and move to Cape Town. And then for Sibani to suggest that Zackie is a spoiler is rich given the Ministers own intransigence on countless occasions - even recorded by our appeal and constitutional court. And as for Sipho - her youthful days are over unless Sibani has changed the definition of township youth overnight. But then to suggest that TAC's members and volunteers, who mainly live on the outskirts of plush suburbs are drawn to the metropole by proudly HIV t-shirts is a joke - it overestimates the power of a white and purple t-shirt and underestimates the depth of knowledge, literacy and understanding of people who are poor. How rude. So sorry Sibani, you have it all wrong. Read the TAC Constitution, join a branch, see how black women in TAC are leading and deciding how this social movement will pursue the values in our Constitution (you remember that document) especially life and health over profit and dangerous foolishness. After all, it was them, not Zackie, Mark or Sipho that decided to embark on civil disobedience against a murderous policy. It was them who lined up to be willingly arrested even before (what you call) TAC 'leaders' had their morning coffee or, uhmm, chilli!