READERS may remember Kanye West, the musician caught in an Anti-Semitic spiral, having gone from Racist bad to Nazi worse in the space of six months. Now IOL claims “Kanye West says he’s ‘moving to South Africa’ to start a new life”. Of course, what IOL meant was there were ten Kanye West’s under the bed — the news outlet has to date refused to apologise for a fake multibaby story, even though editor Piet Rampedi subsequently resigned.
The article by ZamaNdosi Cele does make it clear that the video is “making the rounds on social media platform, TikTok” but readers are expected to trawl through twitter postings before discovering that the origin is a Kanye West parody account and the story has been trafficked by an international ring of news rappers.
Clearly the mainstream press in South Africa are living in Cloudcuckooland where Palestine and Israel are concerned. While Palestinian gunmen were massacring Jews praying at a Jerusalem synagogue on Holocaust Remembrance Day, the following items escaped editorial attention;
AP carried a story of the shock killing of a Gazan Ahmad Abu Murkhiyeh in October 2022 who ‘was a gay man who feared persecution for his sexuality’. The severed head and decapitated torso ofthe 25-year-old Palestinian were discovered on the side of a road in the occupied West Bank, “confirming gruesome details of a killing that shocked Palestinian society”.
On 20 January 2023 the European Commission issued a statement that it “considers that it is not appropriate to use the term apartheid in connection with the State of Israel. The Commission uses the non-legally binding working definition of antisemitism of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA definition) as a practical guidance tool and a basis for its work to combat antisemitism. Claiming that the existence of a State of Israel is a racist endeavour is amongst the illustrative examples included under the IHRA definition.”
WITH the colors of Pan Arabism and the words ‘Palestine’ written in bold, Johannesburg’s new major Thapelo Amad made his inaugural appearance. The politician and imam is a member of the far-right, minority Al Jama-ah (Arabic: الجماعة, lit. ’the Congregation’) party, which has found itself with a golden vote, as part of a strange coalition between the Metro’s ANC and EFF.
All three parties have diverging, and perhaps irreconcilable policies when it comes to the status of LGBT, women, secularism and the Middle East.
While the Al Jama-ah manifesto opposes “moral sexuality education for primary school children to ensure they not issued with soft porn material in violation of the sexual offences act”, it has a host of feel-good policies on poverty alleviation, economic upliftment and the like.
But it significantly also opposes events such as Gay Pride, much like its counterparts, Fatah and Hamas, and is actively positioning itself to introduce moral policing in the Metro, informed by scripture.
The ‘Palestinian Embassy’ in Johannesburg were quick to shower Amad with awards in the aftermath of his successful mayoral campaign (see photo left).
Amad’s party proceeded to upbraid reporter Qaanitah Hunter for ‘implying that only Muslims are opposed to Gay Pride’. The party then went on to claim there are several Christian organisations also ‘vehemently opposed’ on religious grounds.
Hunter claims the News24 report referred to, “implies that only Muslims are opposed to the Gay Pride event; they are aware that there are several Christian organizations — based on religious grounds – that are also vehemently against it.”
Amad’s Party ‘vehemently opposed’ to Gay Pride
The Party according to spokesperson Shameemah Salie “does not identify with any LGTQ (sic) activities whether it be Gay Pride parades and even comedy shows, it rejects any insinuation in which Muslims are not just negatively implicated but persistently fingered for wanting to cause chaos in that city. Whether – from a religio-theological perspective – we determinedly disagree with their forms sexual orientation and their queer belief system, it should unambiguously be stated that most of our communities do not support these LGBTQ groups.”
According to Salie: “Their lifestyle is condemned and unacceptable with the practices of Islam and Muslims. “
She also accused News24 of Islamophobia and said: “The paper’s repugnant headline undoubtedly is an unambiguous expression of purposeful Islamophobia; they want communities of other faiths to view Islam and Muslims negatively.”
The statement also said the party was “aware of constitutional rights” of LGBT and would find ways to ‘deal with them’.
Ed note: Secularism, as the man who coined the term George Holyoake asserted in his principles of Secularism, is not the absence of religion, but rather the absence of religious rule.
In particular Holyoake stated “A Secularist guides himself by maxims of Positivism, seeking to discern what is in Nature—what ought to be in morals—selecting the affirmative in exposition, concerning himself with the real, the right, and the constructive. Positive principles are principles which are provable. “
UPDATE: The press statement now appears to have been taken down alongside all the party’s press material and is no longer available on their website. However the document pdf and its url is still referred to on the Net and a copy is in our possession, and available below:
TECH Website Mybroadband are reporting that “SABC has started demanding that South Africans pay TV licence fees for computer monitors, even if they are not receiving broadcast signals on these devices.”
Hanno Labuschagne writes: “As has been the case for the past few years, the annual e-mailed TV Licence Renewal Notice letter explains that broadcasting legislation requires that owners of a TV set must have a valid (paid-up) TV licence.
If SABC are allowed to tax monitors and PCs by treating such devices as a source of revenue, they are likely to target any Internet-connected device, including your Laptop and Xbox.
In essence a tax on the tools of your profession and trade in addition to entertainment, and thus an assault upon constitutional rights.
Previous proposals to tax internet connected devices would mean the broadcaster would have been taxing copyrighted content and material for which it may not have express permission to resell nor benefit.
This time around, it looks the state broadcaster is rolling out a simple ‘dumb-tax’ which professes to ignore connectivity and instead relies upon novel definitions of what constitutes a monitor or computer device, this in order to supplement income from advertising and funding from government.
It remains to be seen whether the public broadcaster, which is a merely a company incorporated under the Companies Act, but subject to broadcasting legislation, has the authority to do so without the matter first being debated and tabled in Parliament.
Chad Cupido of Cape Conscious Media’s Edutainment Podcast interviewed DRL on the Muizenberg Electricity Crisis Committee (MECC), environmentalism, energy cooperatives, microgrids, nuclear power, Koeberg, the War in Ukraine and much more.
AVAILABILITY of electricity in South Africa is now at its worst in living memory. Prices are skyrocketing, tariffs are set to increase by a whopping 18.65% and the ruling party is hamstrung by its inability to unbundle Eskom into separate units. This at the same time as government insists on maintaining a facade, that the SOE will be able to provide for the entire nation’s energy needs moving forward.
Instead of examining the facts and figures, Dr Pali Lehohla, former Statistician General of South Africa, delivered a media sermon over the weekend, one whose message is painfully against privatisation and consumer choice. His comments reported by IOL, lack statistics, facts, figures, nor percentages. There is not a single prime number in a piece which rattles on about the President ‘being in the war-room’ to defund Eskom by ‘not funding maintenance in order to promote privatisation’.
Instead of examining the massive debt balloon run-up by Eskom over the course of the past decade (R401. 8 billion 2021, R396. 8 billion 2022), fruitless and wasteful expenditure compounded by tender fraud, unlawful contracts,R659 million lost in 2016 alone to a coal scam, alongside decreasing availability, (as if there were no maths problems here worthy of his academic qualifications), Lehola insists on misdirecting the public with a red-herring regarding the issue of maintenance of what is left of Eskom’s ageing fleet.
HOLOCAUST DENIALIST Whoopi Goldberg has doubled down on her bizarre assertion that the event which reduced a pre-War population of 11 million Jews living in areas controlled by the Nazis to 5 million, was merely ‘white on white violence’.
Goldberg’s latest remarks are deeply offensive and constitute a form of Antisemitism, in which the speaker attributes race to Jews, in order to, yes, make a point about race.
Another dimension is the manner in which the speaker also denies that race-based policies, such as that which existed under the Nazis, are even racist. In effect, decontextualising the Holocaust as nothing more than ‘white privilege’, and is thus a blatant form of denial.
In a new interview with a British newspaper, The Sunday Times shared during Hanukkah, Goldberg showed little remorse for her past rhetoric, ‘arguing again that the estimated 6 million Jews who were systematically killed in the Holocaust were not targeted based on their race’.
“The View” co-host also claimed that the Nazis targeted people of African descent in addition to Jews because they were physically different, and ‘went as far as to suggest that Jews had an easier time blending in with White people and hiding from the Nazis than Black people did at the time of the Holocaust.’
Whoopi’s comments are not simply illogical and wrong-headed, but could mislead one to conclude that black persons such as herself, cannot experience racism.
Race is the child of racism not the father. The issue here is not whether “Jews are divided on whether they are a race, religion or both” or perceive themselves to be a race (they don’t) but whether the Nazis did.
For the record, the Jews for the most part, form an historical community much like the Kurds, in which ethnicity plays a part, however there are many sub-communities, and thus one may discern Haredi, Sephardi, Ashkenazi and Mizrahi or Oriental Jews.
Local news-outlets such as IOL have failed to cover this story since it exposes and thus jars with the obvious attempt to decontextualise the Holocaust in order to provide a different narrative to the Israel/Palestine conflict, one in which the tragic genocide never occurred.
TON VOSLOO, the former Naspers chairman, appears to have suddenly realised that he is ‘living in a different country’. A piece published by Tammy Petersen of News24 carries details of his sudden change of heart, in which he selectively refers to events effecting the company’s standing in relation to the Truth & Reconciliation Commission.
In 2010 the company mocked the TRC Report during a hearing before the Labour Court of South Africa and proceeded to oppose a 2015 application before the Equality Court, brought to review the company’s opposition to the TRC Report and its continued hostility.
Referring to a letter published on Netwerk24 and Die Burger, Petersen relates that after attending a graduation ceremony, Vosloo suddenly became ‘ashamed of his beliefs and actions’
Why did we act “so mockingly” against those who warned about the dangers of apartheid? Vosloo appears to ask.
“These musings of an elderly Afrikaans speaker are far too late. Why did we, in our fiery youth and with our prowess as seasoned journalists, act so mockingly against those who warned us about the perils of forced racial segregation?” he wrote.
“Why did we support the government of the time when it violated the Constitution by filling the Senate with staunch Nationalists to remove the so-called coloureds from the electoral roll?”
Past tense, not so fast
The piece is remarkable for in placing emphasis on the past tense, Naspers appears to narrate a new version of the historical record, one varying the company’s previous attempts at revisionism and spin-doctoring.
A previous 2015 mea culpa issued via the company, was essentially a case-limited half-apology by Media24’s Esmerie Weideman, issued two days after I filed a review applicationbefore the Equality Court citing the company’s opposition to the TRC. The apology referenced a sole individual, one Conrad Sidego, who had experienced difficulties with separate facilities at the company.
Peterson now seems to have discovered a news report purporting to be from that time claiming:
“When apartheid was abolished, the Afrikaans press declined to make a submission to the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), News24 previously reported.
“However, more than 100 Afrikaans-speaking journalists later submitted affidavits to the TRC in their individual capacity, acknowledging the Afrikaans press had been integral in helping to keep apartheid in place and should have accepted moral responsibility for what happened.”
According to the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine, the report was published no earlier than the period surrounding 4 October 2022, when it was first recorded by the Archive’s webcrawler, and is thus fraudulently introduced as if it were published in 2015. The archive has three snapshots of the page stemming from this later date, when it was presumably published with the fraudulent dateline.
Peterson now suddenly refers to hard facts first published on Medialternatives: “JBM (Barry) Hertzog formed the Nasionale Pers (National Press) in Stellenbosch in 1915, soon after founding the National Party. The party later governed the country and enforced a system of racial segregation.”
Please note, the review application referred to above was abandoned due to lack of attorney representation following the absurd 1994-denialist outcome of Lewis vs Legal Aid SA (LASA). A scandalous decision in which AJ Bernard Martin of the High Court in 2019 proceeded to support the assertion by John van Onselen of LASA, to the effect that ‘the TRC Report would take a long time to read and may be ignored’.
For the record, the author condemns the crude High Court decision as ‘repugnant, vulgar, indefensible and contrary to our constitutional order’, one which includes a Preamble urging ‘recognition of the injustices of the past’.
THE OWNERS of Hank’s Olde Irish Pub, appears stuck in South Africa’s past. The drinking establishment have literally come out with their fists swinging, procuring a well-known criminal attorney William Booth to aggressively pursue all and sundry. “Hank’s Old Irish Pub issued instructions to proceed with a case against Christopher Logan and others for “false” racism complaints and is currently consulting lawyers pertaining to other charges” claims JC MacFarlane LLB who appears to be tweeting on behalf of Booth.
In separate tweets a patron of Hanks warned the public: ‘trannies, race baiters, politicians, pedofiles, eff supporters, anyone who try to push their believes (sic) on others and assholes’ are not welcome, by which we take it they should stay away?
Consider this, a little over 15 years ago, Christopher Logan would have been jailed for swearing. The Irish-owned daily press would be entertaining its readers with an exclusive on how he had ‘assaulted an Irish Pub in Cape Town‘. His accusers would be given ample opportunity and column space to put their case before the public, whist Logan would be denied the most basic of rights such as the right to reply.
The SAHRC would not conduct a probe but simply refer the case to another forum, without providing any clear reasons. There would be a case pending before the Equality Court or Labour Court which would drag its heels for the next fours years, only providing a court date after the threat of protest action. Instead of issuing statements, our partisan government would simply look the other way.
Nobody within the legal fraternity, not least a black attorney nor an advocate of colour would have stepped up or been in a position to provide any assistance, perhaps citing the fact that Logan is ‘white’ or “Jewish” and therefore his case might distract attention away from their own client’s political agendas. It is remarkable that Logan has received any offers of legal assistance.
Restrained from calling any witnesses in the case in which my secular identity rather than the company’s own racist past, was put on trial, I faced a corrupt and blatantly unfair proceeding in which I was forced to lead evidence from the witness box and the presiding judicial officer later acknowledged the respondent was his client. AJ Cheadle failed to provide any explanation to Cape Law Society regarding information surrounding his business associates and their involvement with the company.
The government and the Minister of Justice have fought tooth and nail to suppress the proceedings, which included a test of the status of the TRC Report before the courts. The baldfaced corruption resulted in my opening a docket in terms of the Prevention and Combating of Corrupt Activities Act. The NPA under Zuma failed to act. I therefore can only express my dismay and solidarity with those affected by the latest racist incident and caution readers that our legal system is anything but a support group for the victims of racism.
Hank’s racist clientele have been spewing forth on twitter with a meme, that Christopher Logan is allegedly a “youth leader” who set up the entire incident to get elected, and that 25-year-old Thabiso Danca was merely asked for his ID to ‘verify his age’. Perhaps they have enough funds to pay off a corrupt ANC official like Halton Cheadle, to award them a partisan, 1994-denialist and overtly racist decision? It’s not as if this kind of thing hasn’t happened before?
Far from being politicos, the two are lifeguards. One can’t help notice that Danca looks very mature for his age, hardly a teen trying to get into a bar, and why are black persons being requested to supply ID but its okay for people like Logan to just enter?
He is understandably pissed off at the discrimination. Whether the result amounts to a disruption of the peace is another matter. Hanks seem to be arguing Logan was ‘out of order’ and therefore they were entitled to bounce him, at the same time they claim he was ‘the one who threw the first punch’. This is contradicted by CCTV footage and Logan’s nose-bleed. Don’t you just hate people accusing you of being aggressive when you’re the one with the blood dripping from your nose?
The fact that Logan stood for the SRC as a DASO candidate in 2017 is of no real consequence. One racist tweeter even goes so far as to view his raised fist in the DASO election poster as ‘suspicious’. This notion is reminiscent of apartheid SA, where case history records a well-known incident involving a black man sentenced to assault GBH in the ‘Transkei homeland’ for merely ‘raising his fist’ in what was considered then, a ‘black power salute’.
THE WATCHDOG is a regular SABC panel discussion hosted by Vuyo Mvoko. A recent episode on the Fish Hoek High ‘diversity intervention’ saga turned into a political platform for race supremo Andile Mngxitama, who attacked fellow panelist Sara Gon’s right to exist as a human being and citizen.
It does appear the Dept of Education, had used the opportunity presented by accusations of racism levelled at a single Fish Hoek teacher, to instead lock up several hundred students in a school hall, force feeding them propaganda on race and sexuality while reprimanding those present for ‘being white’ or ‘aligned with whiteness’. It was certainly not the ‘mere reading of a poem’ which got people a little hot-headed.
Mngxitama was given ample time to bend the narrative to his own liking, he is after all, the author of a thin, self-published 2009 volume: ‘Blacks can’t be racist’ which borrows heavily from an argument first deployed in a 1987 Socialist Worker article “The Fallacy of Reverse Racism,” in which the author wrote, “Blacks cannot be ‘racists.’ They are not in a position to oppress anyone — certainly not the majority white population of the U.S.”
“It makes me very angry” says Mngxitama, “… a situation where black children, black facilitators trying to deal with acts of racism end up being accused of being racist. You see the civil society organisations called Afriforum, Democratic Alliance, the white political projects including white civil society, is very clear in manipulating language to maintain the white status quo.”
“So white children must not be told that their forefathers stole the land, that they are direct beneficiaries of apartheid.”
This strategic umbrage is unfortunately quite the contrary to the objections and record of the facts, lodged by civil society. (See my earlier piece here). The criticism has nothing to do with language games but rather genuine concern for the well-being of students. People feel targeted and unsafe as a result, necessitating trauma counselling. As the popular saying goes, ‘If it talks like a duck, walks like a duck, looks like a duck, it must be a duck?’
Free Speech SA’s Gon believes:”It’s very problematic to attribute to children what may or may not have been the behaviours of their predecessors, or their parents or grandparents.” You can read Gon’s piece on the subject here. And further commentary below.
If anything ‘white folk’ as citizens, and especially children, should be considered the current beneficiaries of a democratic system, under the Second Republic, one which grants equal rights and privileges to all citizens under a Bill of Rights. One of which is freedom of thought, the right to exercise inalienable liberties enshrined in our constitution. Understandably such a viewpoint begs the question of how are we all to access our rights, when doing so seems to carry such an enormous economic cost?
Only a fool would pretend such bread and butter issues did not have their genesis in the previous apartheid period, or the failings of the economy under the current government, and yes, the problem of institutional racism. This is not a call to end diversity training, but rather, to pose questions of methodology and praxis.
No Seat First
Mngxitama’s bizarre campaign to end the current status quo by literally halting the democratic dispensation, to pillory all white people, to accuse all and sundry of land theft, is surely a step too far, and has unsurprisingly tended to fail at the polls.
Not only did Black Land First (BLF), fail to garner any seats during the last election, but Mngxitama has been forced out of desperation to gerrymander and hijack platforms like that of Mvoko’s Watchdog. It is no coincidence that the basis for a thin 2009 volume of polemic, Black’s can’t be racist has inveigled its way into so-called diversity sessions. You can read my earlier piece deconstructing the strange assertion here.
One shudders to think what real ‘blackness’ might entail if it meant blind authority and cowtowing to a party line? Fish Hoek High School, like most public schools in the area, services a diverse cross-section of society, and is for all intents and purposes, a mixed school. So much for the time-warp narrative.
Mngxitama however proceeded to accuse Gon, who is not affiliated in any way, of being a ‘spokesperson for whiteness and a beneficiary of apartheid’ and went so far as upbraiding her appearance and presence in the country, claiming ‘whiteness is unethical’.
During the discussion, Mngxtama can be heard repeatedly attacking Gon for her alleged resort to ‘constitutionalism’ and free speech, or as he put it, ‘constitutional words’.
The BLF honcho’s position comes across as that of an intellectual bigot — anyone vaguely white, (you could have just a drop of blood) is automatically a beneficiary of apartheid — and should have no recourse to law, since in Mngxitama’s jaundiced view, such persons should be considered persona non grata?
So far as Mngxitama is concerned, every ‘white person’ is a racist regardless of whether or not you fought against apartheid, or were once the subject of a race reclassification saga. As such all melanin-deficient individuals are to be treated as unwelcome guests inside a ‘black country’, one characterised by the statement, ‘Africa for the Natives Only.’
Is this not the self-same bigotry posing as anti-racism, against which valid objections from Fish Hoek parents to the Dept were addressed, resulting in the Dept issuing a mea culpa? Mvoko resoundingly failed to bother touching the tricky subject of why an apology was even issued.
BLF has time and again issued what is essentially a blood libel, in its effort to inspire a semblance of nationalistic zeal, producing a mythology based upon 1994-denialism. Its founding texts should not be the starting point for anything as sensitive as an ‘intervention session on diversity’.
Ultra-left groups such as these appear to desire the creation of an ‘all black republic’, cast along racial lines, and sugar-coated with socialist rhetoric, similar in many ways to the double-speak of the former apartheid regime. Worse many current formations, envisage a continental superstate, unified not because of non-racial democracy, but rather amalgamated due to the machinations of skin pigmentation. It is a slow moving, ‘Fatah-risation of the struggle’ in which white persons, much like Jews, are restrained from occupying leadership positions.
Though Mvoko gave Gon ample time to put her case, and another guest Hendrik Makaneta stated that he ‘disagreed with blanket blaming people’, before lamely listing the communist Joe Slovo as a ‘white activist who had sacrificed during the struggle’, he essentially failed to moderate the debate when it came to Mngxtama. Mvoko literally introduces Mngxtama as some form of authority then avoids drawing down around the facts, (of which there are precious few). In the end, the current affairs show bore witness to the expression of an unscientific theory cast as the very basis for ‘diversity training’, one which proceeds to excuse behaviour, but exclusively for one group alone?
Mvoko deserves to be red-carded for dishonesty, and called out for allowing the advocate of a repugnant minority viewpoint to appear on a national news channel, to discuss his own crackpot theories, without bothering to introduce the author as a promoter (if not originator) of the subject. Mngxitama is certainly pitted against non-racialism, a perverse contrarian to our democratic order, yet granted succour in a prime time slot that ended up sadly reiterating the tired race stereotypes and caricature of the past.
As Gon put it: “The way to create understanding between groups, between races … is all about getting people to talk about it without being intimidated.’
IN THE end, the campaign to halt the development of Amazon’s campus in Cape Town seems to have come down to one man versus a very large corporation. It is a great pity that Tauriq Jenkins went out on a limb, in the process turning the legal saga into a minor disaster involving a micro-nation, and notwithstanding the environmental issues at stake.
Jenkins case was checkmated the minute he lost the support of the majority of the Khoisan groups whose backing he was counting on, and in the process, was taken to task by Judges Elizabeth Baartman, Hayley Slingers and James Lekhuleni for misrepresenting his capacity to litigate:
The bench found “Mr Jenkins misrepresented the first applicant’s constitution and did not have the authorisation to launch the proceedings that culminated in the judgement. He further misrepresented the views of some indigenous leaders without consulting them.”
An earlier interdict granted by Judge Goliath of the High Court was thus shot down and the applicant Amazon’s case brought to set aside the decision, was consequently upheld.
Groups such as the Observatory Civic Association and Friends of the Liesbeek had stepped back from the fray, in order for the issue of ‘who represents who’ when it comes to the multivaried ‘Khoisan Nation’, to be resolved, (with anything but unanimity) and appear to have been waiting upon a decision on the first injunction granted in order to regroup their support around a far broader issue — one involving simple environmental concerns rather than complex issues of heritage and history.
While the River Club Development now seems a foregone conclusion, the related Two Rivers Site remains situated on extremely sensitive wetland at the confluence of the Liesbeek and Black Rivers. Amazon has gone some way towards including wilderness preservation within its overall planning on both sites, but it remains to be seen if the developers have bothered gaining an Environmental Impact Assessment for their pet project.
How would constructing a complex on a flood plane on top of a wetland even pass NEMA?
It may be a bit late in the day to do anything about the situation, and a better outcome might involve compromise? According to Leslie London, “the case is still ongoing“
“Our legal team, Cullinans and Associates, has had to withdraw but the primary reason is the proliferation of litigation coming from the developers and/or their proxies which has exhausted the capacity of Cullinans to act on our behalf. It has also meant that our fundraising has been outstripped by the demands of endless and spurious litigation.”
“However, a new legal team will take over the case.”
“We believe that this strategy is one deliberately intended to litigate us into submission. This strategy has, as Observatory residents know, been accompanied by various other underhand stunts, from rent-a-crowd protesters to anonymous leaflets and smear campaigns against our leadership.
It should be noted, that Jenkins did not represent these two entities, and appears to have simply pursued the ‘public interest’ around the campaign.
“While this is a temporary setback, which has affected our ability to contest the appeal, the case in its entirety is ongoing. We believe we have a strong case on review and will be concluding the appointment of our new legal representative shortly. We will definitely not be giving up, no matter the propaganda.”