Poet calls on SA to deal with attacks on African culture

There is an urgent need for government to deal with people who undermine African cultures, poet Zolani Mkiva said on Wednesday.

“Our cultures are attacked all time by the people who undermine it and this has to be addressed,” he said.

Mkiva was speaking after attending Ukhozi FM DJ Ngizwe Mchunu’s R10-million discrimination and defamation case in the Equality Court in Durban.

Mchunu brought the suit against the King Shaka International Airport, agriculture department official Thalamothalo Phaka and South African Revenue Service Customs and Excise after Phaka allegedly threatened to destroy his traditional shield (ihawu) at the airport.

Mkiva said what had happened to Mchunu happened to many South Africans every day.

“There is clear disrespect of our culture. What has happened to Mchunu has happened to me several times,” he said.

He said he had decided to support Mchunu so that the case would set a precedent.

“It is sad that our cultures are undermined at the time when it is supposed to he held in highest esteem.”

Mkiva said it was sad that only black people’s culture was being undermined.

“They don’t do it to other cultures. Why is the majority in this country made to live uncomfortable life?”

The court proceedings on Tuesday were attended by traditional music star Nothembi Mkwebane.

She said she was supporting Mchunu because what had happened to him had happened to her before.

“Our cultures are very important and they must not be destroyed,” she said.

The case has been postponed to December 13.—Sapa

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