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Racism has played a large and unpleasant role in the history of the Cape and South Africa. Under the repugnant system of Apartheid, the multicultural communities in the Cape were forcefully evicted and torn apart, the state engaged in unspeakable crimes against ‘non-white’ civilians and people's rights and opportunities were denied and limited based on their race. It will take a long time to heal from the wounds of the past.

Cape independence often gets accused of being overtly or subvertly racist. Critics allege that this is a movement to effectively ‘rekindle’ apartheid in the Western Cape. But this cannot be further than the truth. The Cape independence movement and we at the Referendum Party in particular are non-racial fundamentalists. We seek to revert the damages that Apartheid and, to a smaller extent, the ANC have inflicted on Cape communities. Building a non-racial, first world future for all Kaapenaars regardless of their background.

These accusations of racism against the Cape Independence movement are typically not made out of concern, but out of political smear. Our opponents will argue that the Cape Independence movement is “racist” because they have no genuine arguments in their possession. They want to scare you from supporting Cape independence and not engage with it on a rational level.

We need to acknowledge and learn from the past, but we should not allow it to be weaponised to attack groups and movements that seek to build a future that diverges from the prevailing norm.

The Western Cape is South Africa’s most racially diverse province. 42% of the population is “Coloured”, 38% is “Black” and 17% is “White”. Voters, in the past and in the present, have shown a tendency to prefer non-racialism in contrast with the rest of South Africa. This liberal tendency has a long history in the Cape. Unlike many other countries of its time, the Western Cape’s predecessor, the Cape Colony, was a proud proponent of a non-racial system of franchise — which didn’t prevent people from voting based on colour. While during Apartheid, the Cape was known as a ‘liberal bastion’ to the Apartheid government and served as the springboard for multi-racial movements like the UDM.

The ANC betrayed the hopes of Kaapenaars for a non-racial future. They kept the old pseudoscientific system of racial classification of the Apartheid and began to introduce dozens of laws based on skin colour. As a result, the Western Cape has denied Africanist parties such as the ANC a majority in the province, instead opting for parties which espouse non-racial policies and oppose race-based government programs like BEE.

The Cape Independence movement and the Referendum Party as its vanguard represent the diversity of the Cape and its historical aspiration for a non-racial society. Our candidate list consists of people from a variety of backgrounds, from Calitzdorp to Khayelitsha, who believe that when it comes to the lives of the Western Cape people, their content of character should be judged — not the colour of their skin.

Vote RP for a non-racial, first-world future.