DA submits hate speech complaint against Malema and EFF in Equality Court
16 September 2019
On 14 September 2019, the President and Commander in Chief of the EFF, Julius Malema, posted a carousel advertisement of quotes from the late Robert Mugabe, which was supported by an EFF logo. The DA regards the publication and distribution of this carousel advertisement as condoning, advocating and distributing hate speech and violence against white South Africans. Among his quotes were the following:
“What we hate is not the colour of their skin but the evil that emanates from them”.
“Our party must continue to strike fear in the heart of the white man, our real enemy”.
“The only white man you can trust is a dead white man”.
I have today submitted an affidavit in the Equality Court in Bloemfontein with a request that the Court consider my request to instruct Mr Julius Malema and the EFF under whose auspices these statements were made, to individually or jointly call a press conference in which they apologise unconditionally for the damage caused by branding white South African citizens as being foreigners who should be subjected to violence, that the Equality Court make a declaratory order regarding the carousel displays as being hate speech and that a sanction be imposed on them by the Court (see video here).
In my affidavit to the Equality Court in Bloemfontein, I indicate that we regard the carousel advertisement distributed on Twitter and which was supported by an EFF logo as condoning, advocating and distributing hate speech and incitement to commit violence against white people in terms of both the Equality Act and Section 16 of the Constitution. I also regard the language as racist in nature and a deliberate attempt to make white South African citizens a target of contempt in the broader community.
It is common knowledge that genocide against minorities is always preceded by derogatory comments and hate speech against the target group. South Africa is a diverse country of minority ethnic, racial, religious and other groups. This diversity is what makes our country unique and why our national emblems promote “unity in diversity”. In a transitional society that is grappling with entrenching the principles of democracy and racial tolerance, the Courts have a very important role to play in determining acceptable rules of behaviour and interaction among groups and individuals in South Africa. The responsibility of setting an example to the rest of society falls on the shoulders of all leaders in our communities, especially leaders of political parties.
The DA has a sound track record of defending the rights and freedoms of all South Africans, that includes the right to be protected from harm. We will continue to do this in a manner that promotes South Africa’s diversity and entrenches a democratic political culture in our country.
Issued by Roy Jankielsohn, DA MPL and Leader of the Official Opposition in the Free State Provincial Legislature, 16 September 2019