The following article has been written by members of the Africa Bikers Brotherhood Forum. It is a call for all bikers to take part in the annual Ubuntu National Breakfast Run on the 28th January. ZA Bikers believe this is a very noteworthy effort to consolidate the growing integration between all bikers in South Africa and we wholeheartedly support this event – and we will be there again next year! Take a look; it’s an interesting read!
Simon Morton: Online Editor
“We would like to welcome you to the third Annual Ubuntu Run, which is customarily held on the last Sunday of January. We would like to thank you all for your unwavering support towards this worthwhile cause that brings us closer together and helps us to understand each other much better. This is the only event that fundamentally unites all motorbike clubs, in their various types, as well as independent bikers, to ride under the three pillars of Brotherhood which are, Love, Honour and Respect.
Uniting in our diversity have been a building block to the success of our past two runs. It has not been easy to keep the spirit of Ubuntu alive amongst the participants, however, we firmly believe that where there is a zeal to be one people and one nation, there is a will to ensure that we set aside our differences and work through them together, rather than against each other. Since the inception, we have had “nay sayers” saying “the event will not last” and that it “lacks the true spirit of Ubuntu”. In reply we asked “what is Ubuntu “? Is it a group of men and women or is it a National Spirit? That question always causes surprise as they realise that this is not a one man show but a collective effort that seeks to ensure that we are all on the same page and that we are all united for one cause and one cause only, UNITY in BIKING.
Being bikers makes us quite unique in the sense that we live under a code, a code respected by all. Thus it becomes a culture and not a cult, a culture that the Nation needs to embrace, understand and practice as it transcends across the racial barrier and describes Bikers in one word, for a Biker remains a Biker, regardless of the colour of their skin or birth origin.
We would like to give feedback on the results of the past two runs (2016 and 2017). The following is what we believe is the good that we have achieved as a collective:
- We have managed to get more Council Members, from different councils nationally, joining the African Bikers Brotherhood Forum.
- We have managed to get more Presidents from different clubs joining the African Bikers Brotherhood Forum.
- We have managed to meet in person, as leaders and members of the Forum.
- We have managed to organise runs and ride together in unity, as leaders and members of the Forum.
- We have successfully mediated peace talks between Club Presidents and Council Chairmen.
- We have managed to get people of all races to rally behind this initiative year in, year out.
- We have managed to get the entire Nation to stand behind us.
- We have managed to get people who never spoke to each other, to speak to each other and bury their differences.
- We have managed to get Presidents and Council Leaders to speak with one voice and show unity.
- We have managed to get Sponsors who feed into the cause and not influence the cause. This means we can keep our own vision alive and not be sidelined.
- We have managed to NOT get politically influenced in any way, form or shape. Again ensuring that our voice belongs to us all, as a community.
- We have managed to keep the Ubuntu Run alive, herein ushering the third event.
- In the year 2016 we rode in our thousands and defied the odds in all nine Provinces in South Africa, Lesotho, Namibia, Swaziland and Zimbabwe. We saw approximately 6000 bikers ride as one, at the same time, on the same day, which promoted the same powerful message.
- In 2017, we added to the countries that participated, namely; Nigeria, Uganda, Kenya, Ghana, Zambia, Botswana, Mozambique and Cameroun.
We still remain genuinely proud of the fact that when we don our helmets and leathers, we are defined by only one word. We are proud of the fact that we belong to various Biking clubs, but we are defined by one word. We are proud of the fact that we belong to different Biking Councils, but we are only defined by one word. We are proud at the fact that we ride different bikes, but we are defined by one word. We are proud at the fact that we use three different words when describing Brotherhood, but we are defined by one word. We are proud of the fact that ‘Brotherhood’ refers to both men and women, but we are defined by one word, which is “BIKER”
That said could we please have a moment of silence for the bikers we rode with last year who are not with us today ………………………!
We stand here again united and riding for one cause, and only one cause, and that is Ubuntu. Ubuntu is a spirit of togetherness, a spirit that says ‘I am because you are’, a spirit that seeks to see the best in others, a spirit that seeks to be of service to others, a spirit that says ‘my strength strengthens your weaknesses and thus together we are strong’. We Are One, Ons is Een, Rekaofela!
We continue to show that it is possible to set aside our differences. We were all proud of ourselves. Many relationships grew from this event across all races, tribes, religions and groups. We showed that we only know as much as we are taught, and we act no better for we know no better.
We would also like to thank the State Authorities for allowing us to run this event both last year, as well as this year – your efforts do not go unnoticed. We would also like to thank those motorists who allow us to pass when we lane split in traffic, and those that wave at us and encourage us, to enjoy our riding. For us Biking is not a hobby, it is ingrained in us and is a lifestyle. Yet for others it has become life itself, an escape from the world of many into a world that only those who dare to dream go.
We would like to appeal to the general motoring public to watch out for bikers. Our machines are faster than your motor vehicles and in the glimpse of an eye you may not see us coming. However, if you return to the basics and practice your five step approach to changing lanes or turning, you could save the life of a biker.
Bikers are family men and women. We are bankers, economists, lawyers, engineers, teachers, deans, train drivers, bus drivers, mechanics – the list is endless. That shows we are no different to you. We are people who just choose to use a different mode of transport from yours. We are people, not organ donors, but people who seek the thrill of adrenaline and the wind rushing at us.
This year it is our intention to ensure more great relationships are forged; many more great memories are made for people across all races, religions, tribes and groups. We seek to unify rather than divide. We seek to be the standard of what humanity should be all about. Ubuntu – ‘I am for you are!’ Let us Ride Free, Let us Ride Together, Let us Unite in Purpose! Much Love, Honour and Respect to All!
We are One, Ons is Een, Rekaofela- South Africa
We are One, Rekaofela- Lesotho
We are One, Tiritese, Sisonke- Zimbabwe
We are One, Ons is Een- Namibia
We are One, – Swaziland
We are One, Rekaofela- Botswana”
Written by members of the Africa Bikers Brotherhood Forum.
Photo Credit: Simon McDonnell / members of the Africa Bikers Brotherhood Forum.
ZA Bikers Video Report from the 2017 Ubuntu Rally