Racism and its bedfellows have no place in SA
The Democratic Alliance (DA) is angered by yet another racist incident that involves a Sodwana Bay guesthouse owner who refuses to accommodate black people and government employees. We thus welcome the decision by the South African Human Rights Commission (SAHRC) to investigate this case of overt racism, and we urge the SAHRC to act expeditiously in this matter in order to send a clear message to racists and those who engage in racist behaviour that their harmful and hateful actions are not welcome in South Africa.
The perpetrator in this matter, a KwaZulu Natal resident named André Slade, responded yesterday to a booking enquiry saying that his guesthouse does not “accommodate blacks or government employees any longer”, and that he believes in segregating people by race.
This matter is also personal to me, as the perpetrator has previously referred to me as a “beast” and “little bastard” in his online blog, revealing his racism in no uncertain terms.
I wish to use this opportunity to state again that racism, and its bedfellows – homophobia, sexism and religious intolerance – have no place in our democratic society. These incidents undermine and derail the difficult yet necessary project of building a fair and reconciled South Africa.
The fight against racism requires all South Africans – Black, White, Coloured and Indian – to unite in condemning the attitudes and actions of a few who seek to divide us.
The DA remains the only Party engaged in the project of building a reconciled and fair South Africa, and we will not allow racists to reverse the progress made in this regard.
On behalf of the DA, I am committed to ensuring that we breakdown the walls built by apartheid. We therefore need, among other things, an inclusive economy; to put title deeds in the hands of the poor through a transparent and publicly available housing list system; reconfigure our cities and towns to do away with apartheid spatial planning and; develop a quality education system.
On 3 August, South Africans will have an opportunity to choose a future for their communities, and the only Party that is committed to bringing about positive change in those communities is the DA.
By Mmusi Maimane