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13 Apr 2010 17:18
The Afrikanerbond has lodged a complaint with the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) about ANC Youth League president Julius Malema’s outburst against a BBC journalist.
“As the custodians of human rights in South Africa, we expected that the SAHRC would have spoken out or taken action against Mr Malema,” Afrikanerbond chief secretary Jan Bosman said on Tuesday.
It had also expressed its “discontent” about this in a letter to the SAHRC, containing the complaint, he said in a statement.
“We can only hope that the HRC will now act in a manner which will restore confidence in this constitutional institution.”
At a press conference in Johannesburg on Thursday, Malema called BBC journalist Jonah Fisher, among other things, a “bastard” and an “agent”.
Malema had been criticising Zimbabwe’s Movement for Democratic Change for operating out of the upmarket Johannesburg suburb of Sandton when Fisher remarked that Malema himself lived there.
The Afrikanerbond has already brought hate speech complaints against Malema over his public singing of the words “shoot the boer”.
“We believe that the promotion of human rights and constitutional values must now be a priority.
“Violations of any human right should also be addressed and in this regard the HRC has a big task at hand.”
In its complaint, the Afrikanerbond accused Malema of not only violating the rights to freedom of expression and freedom of the press in his “tirade”, but of “a racist attack which amount[s] to hate speech”.
In an apology last week to the BBC over Malema’s outburst, the Afrikanerbond wrote that millions of honest, decent, hard-working and civilised South Africans bore the brunt of Malema and the ANCYL’s agenda which, it claimed, was to “polarise” South Africa with “renewed racism”.
At the time of the incident, the Foreign Correspondent’s Association expressed outrage at Malema’s attack, which it described as “abusive and unbecoming of a politician” in a democracy.—Sapa
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