/ 17 July 2003

Commission brands ‘kill the boer’ slogan as hate speech

The slogan ”kill the farmer, kill the boer” has been defined as hate speech, the SA Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) said on Thursday.

The Freedom Front lodged a complaint with the SAHRC after African National Congress members used the slogan during two public meetings in June last year. One of these was at the funeral of ANC MP Peter Mokaba in Polokwane.

Earlier this year, the SAHRC said the slogan did not constitute hate speech but was an instance, although an undesirable one, of the right to freedom of expression.

The FF appealed against the finding.

Speaking at a media briefing on Thursday, SAHRC commissioner professor Karthy Govender said: ”The slogan ‘kill the farmer, kill the boer’ as chanted at an ANC youth rally in Kimberly and at Mokaba’s funeral is hate speech as defined in Section 16 (2) (c) of the Constitution.”

He said the freedom of expression was a fundamental right in a democracy. By the same token our courts are clear that the freedom of expression is not a supreme right as in the United State Constitution.

”We have concluded that the calling for the killing of a group of people is an advocacy of hatred, which must amount to harm.” – Sapa