Monday, January 05, 2015

Racism still prevails in South Africa

Growing racism have been highlighted in different media and by political parties. The racially motivated incidents over the past year led Archbishop Desmond Tutu to say that he felt like the dark days of apartheid had returned. “In recent weeks, in Cape Town, we have heard about white men beating up black domestic workers and urinating from a balcony on to black passersby. It’s as if we’re in a time warp and have returned to the past,” he said on the30th anniversary of receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. 

The main opposition Democratic Alliance (DA) party, which is viewed as a “white” party by many black South Africans despite its multiracial make-up, felt so disturbed by recent incidents that it issued a statement detailing and condemning the acts. DA leader Hellen Zille blamed the “sudden surge of racist incidents” on complacency by white South Africans who were not racist. She also held responsible the emergence of new “right-wing leaders” in the form of Afrikaans pop singer Steve Hofmeyr and literary critic Dan Roodt who have replaced the paramilitary types of old, such as Eugene Terre’Blanche of the Afrikaner Resistance Movement.

A recent survey by the Institute for Justice and Reconciliation suggests the DA’s concerns on racism are well-placed. Only 53 per cent of white South Africans agreed that apartheid was a crime against humanity, versus about 80 per cent of black, 77 per cent of Indians and 70 per cent of coloured South Africans.

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