Afriforum blast “thoughtless” Zuma over Africa Day comment

BY CHARL BOSCH - MAY 25, 2015

Afrikaner civil rights organisation, Afriforum, has accused President Jacob Zuma of inciting hate speech against white South Africans following a comment made during his Africa Day speech in Pretoria yesterday.

According to reports, Zuma reportedly told dignitaries at the University of Pretoria’s Mamelodi-campus that Africans were living in piece and having fun until “they” arrived, with the organisation alleging the reference pointing towards the arrival of the first Westerners in 1652.

“Zuma ought to know that history is full of examples where conflict occurred due to irresponsible leaders’ comments about labelling ethnic groups as scapegoats,” Afriforum CEO Kallie Kriel said in a statement.

“In the current environment characterised by pain and the violence inflicted on farmers as well as other forms of murders, his comments points to a rise in hate speech that is absolutely inexcusable”.

Kriel stated that Zuma’s latest comments is the clearest indication yet that he is targeting Afrikaners and other minority groups opposed to government, adding that his “thoughtless” remarks would lead to escalating racial tensions.

“It is in our interest that none should be lured into an evil cycle of racial hate as perpetuated by irresponsible leaders such Zuma,” Kriel said.

During the ANC’s 103rd birthday celebrations in Cape Town on January 8th, Zuma told supporters that South Africa’s problems started shortly after Jan van Riebeeck’s arrival but added that he was merely stipulating historical facts and that it should not be viewed as an attack on whites.